Tobe Frank: I’ll be walking from here on in 187



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To be frank I’m done with driving or being a passenger in a car for that matter… I’ll be walking or jet-packing it from here on in.

Let me explain.

A car trip used to be something to behold, something to treasure, something to look forward to.  A Sunday drive was an adventure, a journey and sometimes an epic magical mystery tour to somewhere new. Sometimes it was to Sydney, sometimes to somewhere like Nimbin.  Getting there was half, if not all, the fun.  We’d pack three in across the bench seat in the front and as many as possible across the back as would fit and still allow for an age old game of corners.  The windows would be down and the arms would be dangling out. The wind (and sometimes the rain) would be dancing wildly inside, mixing up with the inevitable plume of smoke from the ciggies.

Seatbelts were considered optional and curtain wall airbags were a thing of science fiction movies.  But hey, we were driving iron tanks and we were only cruisin’… We weren’t thrusting them down the road at 140kmph.

Games of eye spy would last hours.  The wireless would alternate between crackling versions of the latest hit song and the ABC’s cricket commentary.  You would yell “any trains?” and hope for the best as you crossed a level crossing.  And of course there was the inevitable, “are we there yet?”

All in all, it was a privilege and being a privilege meant you enjoyed every minute.  You enjoyed the smells, you looked out the windows and were amazed at the world around you.

There weren’t DVD players or iPods.  A personal music device was Dad attempting to be a one-man-band, not something drowned out glorious conversation and titanic fart jokes… occasionally accompanied by a suffocating fart.

But at the end of the day, it’s not the preoccupation of today’s passengers with pixelated entertainment that’s got me worried…it’s the preoccupation of the DRIVERS with pixelated entertainment that has me buying sneakers and looking for a jetpack on E-bay.




Honestly anyone would think we have a worldwide epidemic of torticollis (wry neck), with the amount of drivers I see with crooked necks straining to read the “can’t-wait-another-second-to-read-critically-important-text-from-no-one” with the phones resting on one’s lap.  Newsflash… We know what you’re doing people!  Facebook at 60kmph is not that important.  If you’re not careful the only Facebooking you’ll be doing is a date with your face and the dashboard.




I thought it funny when the young’uns starting driving slouched so low to the left they could barely see over the dashboard… But, dare I say it; this was a new age form of the cruising.  I kind of dug it… I understood what they were doing.  At least it was drivin’ with the right type of attitude.


Ace Ventura


Others like Ace Ventura had a different idea. That bad ass wanted to see so much of the road he drove with his head fully out the window, enjoying the wind in his ample hair and bugs in the teeth.

But nowadays it seems that eye contact (on the road) is an optional extra, just like the floor mats, metallic paint and the tinted windows.  Oh and holding the phone, away from your ear with the volume on speaker. It’s the same thing driphead.

I can’t stand it… I really can’t.  It’s basically saying “F you” to the rest of us on the road.  It’s not right and the penalties need to be stiffer.  As far as I’m concerned the police departments around Australia can raise as much revenue as they like picking up people texting and other outrageous crap like that.  Catch a bus if you can’t tear yourself away from your social life for five minutes.

The rest of us just want to get where we’re going… We may even want to enjoy the journey… That is not the same them clicking “LIKE”.

If only you could use your mobile phone to take a photo of these bozos and their number plate, but that would require the same unfortunate distraction…


Do you agree with Tobe Frank? What should penalties should be enforced to prevent people from using technology while driving?




Tobe Frank

Tobe Frank is a recently retired 62 year old gentleman with many views. He has grand ambitions for his retirement he just isn't sure what they are yet and is constantly looking around to find them. Tobe shares his views on Starts at Sixty regularly as one of our columnists.

  1. You beauty Tobe Frank, admire your writings. Have found myself totally uneasy in a car with a mother texting with yelling children in the back; mother looking at phone also turning to the back of car to reprimand children…..heaven help us all!

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