I’ve posted before about funeral procession etiquette. Well, I made a huge etiquette blunder recently.
I was traveling from Columbus to Starkville on Hwy 82. The two cities are about 20 miles apart. As I was driving through Columbus I came up on a long line of cars that appeared to be a funeral procession. Now this is a four lane highway and the procession was in the righthand lane but people in the lefthand lane didn’t want to pass the procession so they were hanging back. Needless to say there was a huge pile of cars and it became hard to tell where the procession ended.
After a few miles it began to thin out as people exited the highway or just moved on. I began to think that maybe the procession had exited the highway. I hopped into the left lane and accelerated. After a bit I caught up with some cars in the righthand lane and I began to wonder if it was the funeral procession. Maybe they didn’t take an earlier exit. Sure enough I noticed the headlights of the cars were on and they were doing about 45mph. The posted speed limit was 60mph and soon to be 70mph as we got out of town.
Then I saw the police car about a half mile ahead of me with his lights on. At this point I had about three options. One, I could slow down and look for a exit and just wait at McDonald’s for a while until I had given them sufficient time to get where they were going. Two, I could slow down and just hang back or merge in with the procession. Three, I could shrug and go on because who knows how long they were going to be on the highway.
I’m sorry to say that in the confusion of the moment and having another person riding my bumper, I chose option three. I sped up to about 55 or 60 and just passed ’em. I passed about 20 cars, two limos, the YELLOW hearse and the cop. I felt bad about it but I just didn’t know what to do at the time.
And believe me, they saw and heard me go by them due to my Flowmaster exhaust (it’s a bit loud). They were probably cussing me or just shaking their heads in disbelief at the disrepect of the white dude in the loud jeep.
The next day at work I asked my co-workers what was the proper thing to do and they unanimously agreed that I should have just pulled over and waited. They all agreed I was a disrespectful punk. Well, you live and learn, right?