What the Beep?

Have you seen the new ads from 76 Gas about “Honkaholism?”

I have to say, I’m more than a bit offended by this ad and the entire campaign.  Yes, it’s supposedly done in a cute way, but this is exactly the same tack that began the “war” on smokers a few years back.  Now, there are so many rules against smoking (at least here in California), that I expect smokers will soon have to face fines for doing so at all.

And I predicted there would be another target if this no smoking fiasco became successful; I just didn’t think it would be something like honking your horn.

Now, I’m not someone who lays on the horn a lot–at least, I don’t think I do–but I do find it a valuable tool when driving on the road.  I’ve used it to let someone know they can cross the street and I’ll wait for them.  I’ve used it to let a car in front of me know that the light has turned green and it might be nice if s/he stopped texting for a moment to actually drive.  And yes, I’ve even used it to tell the person who cut me off that I wasn’t happy that I had to slam on my brakes to avoid rear-ending him/her.

Each of the above-referenced honks has a different length and sound to them; kind of like Morse Code.  From a light, quick “ahem,” to a full-blown “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!” honking the horn is an effective way to communicate with people who are 20 feet and a bunch of steel and glass away from you.

So I find this whole campaign to stop people from honking quite ludicrous.  What are we supposed to do, just suck it up and take it when someone blatantly disobeys other safe driving rules and cuts people off, or runs a red light or stop sign?  Do the people at 76 honestly believe that pushing a little squeaky toy is the answer?  I can guarantee you that it isn’t, simply because that takes away the opportunity to tell the offending driver that they’ve done something not cool.  Not that the offenders care anyway, but that doesn’t mean they should be able to get away with it without so much as a “You Idiot!” honk.

I’m guessing this new “war” on “honkaholism” was started by people who either: 1) make said offending moves and don’t like being called out on their jerkiness; or 2) think this world is just getting too crazy and noisy, and long for the “good old days,” when cars couldn’t go faster than 45 mph anyway, and most people rode on horses or bicycles.

Yes, those are HUGE generalizations, and I’m sure the truth is a little more complicated, but it just irks me that “they” stick their noses in things like this, no matter how much “they” think it’s for the “betterment of society.”  Betterment according to whose standards?  And why do the rest of us have to live by those standards anyway?

Now, I do agree that too much honking can lead to noise pollution, and I agree that excessive honking is a sign of some serious anger issues, so I can see why New York tried to fine drivers $350 for each unnecessary beep, but that experiment failed less than two years after it first began.  It’s like jaywalking; yes, it might be against the law, but hardly anyone enforces it because there are bigger fish to fry out there than where someone crosses a street, or whether someone lets out his/her anger via the little noisemaker in their car.

Still, I’m sure this isn’t the end of the attempt by those who don’t like honking.  I’m sure “THEY” will try some other tactics, which will be less and less cutesy than the little squeakers offered by a gas company.  But I sincerely believe (and hope) that “they’ll” lose this particular “war.”

And once this particular campaign fails, be on the lookout for their next cause . . . Why Wearing Purple Is Harmful to Society!


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Dana Fredsti
    Aug 30, 2013 @ 10:30:07

    ANd now and again honking has prevented someone not paying attention from running into my car with their car… I’m with you on this one. I hate it when people honk in slow traffic when there’s nothing anyone can do about moving faster… but honking has its purpose.


    • Alyx Morgan
      Aug 30, 2013 @ 10:33:06

      I agree with you, Dana, that honking in slow traffic is pointless. When you see everyone else is going through the same issues you are, honking just makes you look like an asshole. But, as you so aptly pointed out above, it can often prevent an accident.

      Thanks for stopping by today. Always nice to “see” you here. 🙂


  2. Craig
    Aug 30, 2013 @ 15:21:02

    The other issue that is just as annoying, is the issue of advertising. This whole campaign probably just came about as some sort of advertising campaign with an agency sitting around, saying “We need a new series of ads, what do you have?” and someone said “here’s an idea. Isn’t this cute?”
    A lot of these annoying ads are basically companies that feel they have to advertise SOMETHING, just because they have a budget to do so, and need to stay in front of customers’ eyes. And there’s so many ads for anything and everything out there, that it’s difficult to get an original, interesting, funny or compelling concept anymore.
    That just goes to show us that we are being WAY TOO ADVERTISED TO. (Forgive the horrible grammar, please.)


    • Alyx Morgan
      Aug 30, 2013 @ 15:23:07

      Well you won’t get an argument out of me, Craig, that we’re being inundated with too much advertising. And I agree that this is one of the sillier campaigns I’ve ever seen.

      Thanks for your input today.


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