British media company Unilad Tech posted a video onto its Facebook page showing an apparently German man describing—in a thick accent, of course—just how maddening it is to drive on American roads. It’s hilarious.
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This is obviously a joke, but the guy’s comments do make me think of advice my German mom gives. “Rechts vor links,” she reminds me every single time I visit her house near Nuernberg. “You’re supposed to drive in the right lane unless you’re passing,” she tells me a thousand times when I’m driving in the center lane of the largely overrated but sometimes awesome Autobahn.
Can you blame me, though? By comparison, America’s roads are a damn free-for-all. Pass on the right. Pass in the middle. Pass on the shoulder if you have to (but don’t get caught). There seem to be no rules.
As for the speed limit, in Germany, it is just that: a limit. Well, for the most part. Sometimes folks will go a few km/h above it, but when you’ve got speeding cameras everywhere, letting that needle rise far above the number on the big round red and white sign is just too risky.
In the U.S.—especially here in the Detroit area—70 mph means 80 mph for most people. Unless there’s a cop going exactly 70 mph, because he’ll pull you over if you pass him doing 71 (ask me how I know).
There are some good things about American roads, though. The guy in the video is totally right about the whole “right on red” thing. It’s a great thing, and should be allowed in Germany. Another great thing about American roads is just how big they are. My parents’ 2011 Chevy Equinox feels like a boat on some city roads in Germany, and in parking lots. In the states, it feels like the small crossover that it is.
One thing the video doesn’t mention is just how much better maintained German roads are (versus the pothole-ridden streets in the U.S.), and how the country uses lots of yield signs and roundabouts, where in the states, anytime two roads intersect there’s usually a stop sight or stop light—a waste of time and gas, if you ask me.
In any case, it’s a hilarious video, and what’s great is that much of it is actually true.
Update Oct. 26, 2018 11:37 P.M.: It appears that the video is originally from Speed Comparer, the YouTube channel that brought the world the hilarious “How to pronounce German car names” video last year. The YouTube video embedded in this post has been updated to the one originally posted by Speed Comparer, rather than the copy from Unilad Tech that’s been making rounds on Facebook.