I used to think I wasn’t the best of drivers. There, I’ve said it. Lost lad points all round.
Prone to bouts of savage road rage is my main issue.
I’m more than competent behind the wheel though, even if the wife likes to make out I pop down the shops like Jenson Button wearing a blindfold.
But compared to the young lads and lasses on Barely Legal Drivers (BBC Three), I’m not just competent, I’m a fully-fledged advanced driving instructor. The show centres on two recently qualified drivers being filmed undertaking three journeys while their parents secretly watch.
Like a less entertaining version of Sun Sea and Suspicious Parents.
Even worse for these newbie drivers though, their technique behind the wheel is also being scrutinised by a former traffic police officer, a woman who is so obviously missing the heady days of hanging around main roads crouching in the back of a van with a portable Gatso it’s painful.
And at the end of the three drives, the parents and the former officer get to decide whether the young’ uns get their own car – or face some advanced driving lessons instead. To be honest though, it’s hard to see how some of them finished up with a licence in the first place.
At one point, former PC Traffic sighs and says: “Matthew (one of the new drivers) didn’t drive very well there.”
Not very well? He’d just reversed his car straight into a concrete pillar on an empty car park. Equally annoying though is the end-of-show scene where the youngsters are told they’ve been watched by their parents and a nosy ex-copper the whole time.
“It’s my job to look at your driving,” starts the former officer’s patronising advice.
No. It used to be. You’re retired. Go and pick up a Faraway Shores brochure or something.
Meanwhile, the national papers ran with a story this week that the first episode of The Apprentice (BBC One) saw a surge in viewers in the last five minutes because all anyone wants to see is Sugar firing one of the insufferably smug and arrogant gasbags.
God knows where they find these horrendous people, but I could have told them years ago that’s the only bit worth watching.