Zen and the art of passing your driving test
October 12, 2006
I did not realise that the official website on the UK driving test would be such a rich source of philosophical musings. “During the test the examiner will tell you in good time which way to go. If you go the wrong way do not panic the examiner is testing your ability to drive not your ability to follow directions. It is better to go the wrong way correctly than to go the right way incorrectly.” This advice seems to have guided followers of most religions who appear hell-bent on pursuing a series of dead ends and wrong turnings in the absolute certainty that they are correct. It also applies to a lot of very clever people who can tie intellectual rings round the rest of us but who lack the one thing they need to be right: common sense. Me, I prefer the opposite tack- point yourself in the right direction and it doesn’t really matter if you make a few mistakes along the way. A more sensible piece of advice I found in a notice at Heathrow Airport a few years ago:
“Please ensure that you are facing the direction in which you wish to travel.”
Of course, I might be wrong- the Driving Standards Agency might be subtly sowing the seeds of subversion- it doesn’t matter what officials tell you, do what you know to be right. Somehow I don’t think this particular body will be leading the revolt against Whitehall’s control over our lives.