Why Bluetooth Devices Are Worse Than Cellphones When Driving

Every time my phone rings while I’m driving, I panic a little, and it’s not just the normal who-is-calling-me-because-I-don’t-feel-like-talking-to-humans-today panic. It’s the crap-crap-crap-where’s-my-Bluetooth panic.

I can never find that stupid thing, and half the time the battery is drained when I finally locate it in the console or on the passenger seat or most likely on the floor. My car is kind of a mess you guys ... I’m not proud.


Anyway, the Bluetooth, aka the bane of my existence. It’s illegal in California to drive while holding a phone to your ear, so I was forced to purchase the earpiece. Of course I could’ve just decided to keep the phone in my purse while I drive, but being a Gen-Y'er and all, that concept doesn’t resonate with me. Be technologically disconnected from the outside world for longer than five minutes? Next thing you know, you guys are going to want me to stop showering with my iPhone. Not happening.

So Governor Jerry Brown made me buy a Bluetooth, and I’m pretty sure it’s actually added to the distractibility factor while I’m driving.

Old way: Phone rings. My handy dandy custom ring tones let me know if it’s someone I want to talk to. Pick up the phone, hit the green accept button. Hold the phone to my ear with one hand, steer with the other. Talk.

New “safer” way: Phone rings. Immediately be filled with dread because I have no effing idea where my stupid tiny Bluetooth is. Panic sets in as I rummage clumsily through the junk in the center console. Cuss loudly. Try not to swerve into oncoming traffic. Get honked at. Cuss some more. Find Bluetooth just as the call goes to voicemail. Call person back. Cuss more as I try to figure out if the blue light means it’s on. Cuss again because for some reason, my phone has “forgotten” the device. Put phone on speaker. Be asked to repeat everything four times because the other person can’t hear me over the road noise and my bitter frustration that I can’t just answer the phone like a normal person anymore.

Just let me talk on my phone, people. Not everything needs to be regulated because some people are jerks. If people needed two hands to drive, they wouldn’t give driver's licenses to one-armed people. If people were unable to hold conversations and drive at the same time, all cars should be single-occupancy vehicles. And kids in the backseat? Fuhgeddaboudit. It’s amazing we all don’t crash and burn every single day.

Do you miss being able to talk on your phone while you drive?

Image via Sam Lee/Flickr

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