Thursday, November 01, 2012


One of my students is writing a paper on bad drivers and is struggling to figure out how he can turn it into a scholarly research project. I shared a few of my theories with him to help him brainstorm possible academic angles, including the following.

Six or seven years ago, I met my sister Maryann in Mexico to study Spanish in Playa del Carmen. We flew into Cancun and rented a car. It was a little beat up stick shift that served us well for a week of narrow roads and crazy traffic. I loved it!

When I got back to Utah with our broad streets, I was surprised that I felt less safe. People weren't paying attention to their driving as well as we all did in Mexico! I think we are deceived by the wide berth we're given here.

Engineering and public administration meet neurology and psychology. Throw in a little anthropology. Ba-da-boom. Viable research project.

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