X. Thou shalt not go when the light turns green.
Therefore, waiting for a second or two before you start driving after the light turns green could mean the difference between getting to where you’re going or totaling your car as some insane person comes barreling through the intersection at Mach 5.
Trust no one.
IX.Thou shalt not yield to oncoming traffic when turning left.
The only exception to the tenth commandment is this one, wherein you simply must smash the accelerator the instant the light turns green, lest oncoming traffic get the wrong idea that it has the right-of-way.
Show no weakness.
VIII. Thou shalt never, under any circumstances, use thy turn signal.
By using your turn signal with intent to merge, you’re just asking for the driver in the other lane to speed up and form a blockade against your unlawful invasion.
Don’t do it.
VII. Thou shalt look not upon the speed limit sign nor heed its commands, for it is a false idol.
Driving the speed limit in Louisiana is a sure sign that you’re not used to driving in Louisiana — or worse, that you’re not from Louisiana, which automatically identifies you as easy prey for the natural predators of Louisiana’s roadways: native Louisiana drivers.
A general rule is to drive at least 15 miles above the speed limit at all times — but especially on the highway, where there are no rules.
You can’t drive 55.
VI. Thou shalt pass only on the left unless the right looks better.
A successful driver is one who weaves in and out of traffic so quickly and so often and so recklessly that every other driver on the road knows to stay out of his way.
Be aggressive! Be-be aggressive!
V. Thou shalt park wherever and however thou dost feel like parking.
Parking correctly in marked spaces is something that happens to other people in other places that aren’t Louisiana. Feel like double parking your 1973 Ford Pinto across two lanes at the grocery store to minimize the risk of an errant shopping cart bumping into it and exploding the gas tank? Go for it!
Want to park your jacked-up dually with attached lowboy horizontally across 10 parking spaces because you forgot to buy ice before you left in the morning? No sweat!
No parking spaces available? Easy. Just make your own. Drive up on the sidewalk, if you want. Park in the grass.
No man can judge you.
IV. Thou shalt tailgate until the last possible moment, then thou shalt angrily speed up and cut back in front of whomever thou shalt be passing, so they know thou dost mean business.
If some out-of-state driver is actually going the speed limit, you’re morally obligated to get right up on their bumper and aggressively tailgate them for a few miles. Flash your high beams at them too, if you want. Maybe honk once or twice for good measure.
Then, quickly cut into the other lane, smash the accelerator so your engine growls as you pass them, and cut right back in front of their vehicle as close to their front bumper as you can.
This is the way of highway royalty.
III. Thou shalt hit thy brakes whenever thou dost see a police car upon the side of the road.
Nothing interrupts the perfect flow of speeding, tailgating and weaving in and out of traffic quite like seeing a cop car up ahead. A ticket could really ruin your day, so it’s best to just smash your brakes as hard as you can the instant you see the officer’s car.
Sure, you were probably already hit with the speed gun before you ever even saw the police. But don’t let that stop you from conspicuously slowing down. Yeah, it might draw even more attention to your vehicle than your speeding did. But it’ll cause everyone behind you to smash their breaks too, which has a good chance of causing one of those phantom traffic jams for everyone you’ve passed over the last hour.
That will be something nice to think about while you’re waiting on your ticket.
II. Thou shalt never learn that “Bridge ices before road.” Thus shalt there be signs placed upon every bridge, which are to be ignored.
It doesn’t tend to freeze very often here in the Bayou State, but when it does, it’s important never to remember that bridges ice before roads. Go ahead and try to cross them anyway, because you’ve got places to be and things to do. You’re important.
On a similar note, always try to go through standing water under flood conditions without being able to gauge how deep the water is, because turning around is for the weak.
Just in case you forget to forget about the whole icing thing though, Louisiana has helpfully placed signs before each and every bridge in the state to remind you not to remember.
I. Thou shalt disregard entirely the traffic laws of man, for they are fallible and unclean.
The final and most important commandment is also the most comprehensive. Traffic laws are written by man, and are therefore fallible and not to be trusted. True Louisiana drivers get their laws from a higher power: themselves.
Really, just make up your own rules of the road. It’s what we do here in the greatest state in the union. We live by our own laws, and damn the consequences.
Just don’t come crying to us when you get a ticket.
We don’t actually recommend that anyone follow any of these commandments when driving on any road anywhere. Traffic laws might be annoying, but they exist to keep everyone safe.
Don’t be a jerk.
Kristian Bland is digital managing editor at 92.9 FM The Lake.