Mar 6, 2011, 12:00 PM EST
By definition, a person who gets behind the wheel of a car while drunk isn’t operating at full mental capacity. I mean, even a guy who hired people whose job it is to keep him safe got behind the wheel while drunk, so you can see that even the outrageously well-reasoned notion of “driving drunk is totally idiotic” doesn’t easily penetrate a drunk’s addled mind.
As such, it’s always more effective to keep the message to the would-be drunk driver simple and direct. Like, say, taking his keys from him. Or calling him cab. Or having a designated driver who will literally sit behind the wheel to keep the drunk away from the controls. Another way to deal with it is how the Mariners are doing it with their players:
“Two years ago, we came out with cards in English and Spanish giving the numbers of car services players could call for a ride home,” traveling secretary Ron Spellecy said.
“This year, one of the guys at the car service came up with the idea of giving everyone a key fob. I asked our merchandise people, and they said they could come up with one.”
When Spellecy got them he began handing them out to everyone in camp.
I’ve been around people who have had to been talked out of driving drunk. The simplest stuff always works the best. Having a big phone number of a guy whose job it is to drive players and team executives home right on his key chain has to be even more effective than a cab because there won’t be any looking for phone numbers or “I don’t wanna pay for a cab” stuff to get past. It’s not foolproof of course, but the idea that a player can be so easily reminded that he need only make one phone call, sit back down in the bar and, a few minutes later, have a guy show up in a Lincoln Town car to take him back to his spring condo in comfort strikes me as a great idea.
Good job by the Mariners. Here’s hoping it’s as effective as it seems like it should be.
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