Friday, October 02, 2009

Ask Mr Indonesian Man: The Driving Test

Q: So what's the deal with Indonesian motorists?

A: What about them?

Q: Crazy.

A: Tsk. Tsk. Look, if you know us long enough, you'll know that we're more than just crazy.

Q: Can I not know, then?

A: Nope. You've brought down the question. So you shall reap the answers yourself. The most effective way to really know Indonesian motorists is from the driving test.

Q: You guys took driving tests to get your driving licenses, right?

A: Not really. What I mean is if we reverse-engineer a driving test from the way we behave on the road, this is what we'll get.



  1. When a car in front of you starts flashing his left-turn signal, what will you do?

    1. Honk

    2. Speed up and pass it from its left

    3. Pass it from its left WITHOUT speeding up

    4. Speed up to pass from its left, brake immediately midway and HONK! HONK! HOOOOOOONK! GOD THAT FEELS GOOD!

  2. When you want to change lanes from left to right, which rearview mirror do you use?

    1. Left one

    2. Center one

    3. What rearview mirror?

    4. Ah, you mean this thing I use to comb my hair after a ride?

  3. What is the most important thing to check before picking a helmet?

    1. Coolness factor. It sports an awesome pair of antennas

    2. Price. It's cheap. The paint gets off after exposed to a little rain? No problem

    3. Ergonomic factor. I can throw it easily at other annoying motorists. Especially when it's cheap

    4. Stealth. Nobody's looking at you at the parking ar--Oh! You mean my OWN helmet?

  4. What's the maximum allowable number of passengers on a motorcycle (including the rider)?

    1. Four

    2. Five

    3. As long as the motorbike still moves

    4. Does a goat count as one? Or two?

  5. What should you do when your headlight's out of order?

    1. Take the motorcycle for a spin

    2. With passengers

    3. At night

    4. After making sure the brake's not working either

    5. All of the above


  1. When you want to turn into an intersection and a car in your way stops to let you move first, what'll you do in return for courtesy?

    1. HOOOOONK! Loser!

    2. I'll blind the driver's eyes by flashing my headlights on the high beam

    3. Act like I'M the one doing him a favor

    4. All of the above

  2. How loud should you set your stereo?

    1. Until everybody in the radius of 20 meters can hear the lyrics to Sir Mixx-A-Lot's Baby's Got Back

    2. Until I couldn't hear the police officer knocking on my window

    3. Until I see a pedestrian's ear dripping blood

    4. Until SETI contacts me to stop because aliens from Alpha Centaury have been asking what did us humans mean by "Get Outta My Dreams and Get Into My Car"?

  3. On interprovincial highways, the emergency lane should only be used...

    1. all times

    2. ...religiously

    3. pass other cars

    4. ...while honking

    5. All of the above

  4. Things you could do while driving (you can pick more than one):

    1. Eat. Drink. Be merry

    2. Apply make-up

    3. Make a phone call

    4. Text a friend so at least someone will know when I...

    5. ...have an accident

  5. How many people should be in the car when you're driving into a 3-in-1 area?

    1. Wait! I need to see the jockey's fingers. Two fingers. Plus me, that'll be... three!

    2. Look, I can't drive, check my Blackberry and count at the same time!

    3. Okay, fine! If you won't give me a clue, I'll just circle around the small roads to get to my destination


  1. You do realize that in Indonesia, we're driving on the left lane?

    1. Not really. Why?

    2. My left, or your left?

    3. What's the difference?

    4. Ooh! Ooh! That's the opposite of the lane where there's a lot of vehicles going our way, right? We call it the boring lane, where everyone rarely screams. Or shouts.

  2. When is it an acceptable time to honk?

    1. When we stop in front of our houses and wait for someone to open the gate, even though it's 2 in the morning and we're not handicapped or sufferring from heavy allergic attacks from opening gates ourselves

    2. When the vehicle in front of us stops

    3. When the vehicle in front of us moves

    4. When there's even no vehicle in front of us

    5. All of the above

  3. What is the main source of traffic problems?


    1. Cars

    2. Cars

    3. Cars

    4. Cars


    1. Motorcycles

    2. Motorcycles

    3. Motorcycles

    4. Motorcycles


Andre P. Siregar said...

Hehehe... Also, the traffic light is a game of who-is-faster: me stepping on the gas pedal or the guy behind me honking his horn.

isman said...

It's a losing battle, man. Trust me. I'd even at one time gone ten meters ahead of the car behind me, and the driver still honked.

andry said...

What is the main source of traffic problems?

- Cars

- Motorcycles

for Pedestrians:
- cars, bikes, bajajs, bemos, angkots, metrominis, etc


Anonymous said...

for pedestrians: street vendors, food stalls, beggar, thief, and many more! *do we have pedestrian path btw?*


Haris said...

can't wait for the ultimate driving test for public transport drivers/riders!

Terbanglah Lebih Tinggi said...

Not as I expected, but still.. :-) Two thumbs up!

nonoke said...

do we need driver's license ? (even if we are 17-minus years old)

isman said...

@Andry and endah: yes, pedestrians are the third-world citizens of Indonesian roads.

@Haris: Dude, not only licenses to drive, TransJakarta bus drivers have licenses to kill!

@Cahyo: Thanks. You weren't expecting me to put up an actual driving test, were you? If so, obviously, you haven't known me long enough.

@nonoke: Yes, for negotiational purposes with police officers.

Rendra said...

Additional question, what is zebra cross?
A)flattened zebra remains, should be cleaned up
B)the place to stop
C)the best place to honk at pedestrian
D)starting line

Lex dePraxis said...

Ahahaha, so true, so true..


Manusiasuper said...

I've lost my helmet when park in... Police Office Buliding!!

isman said...

@Rendra: E) where targets flock.

@Manusiasuper: maybe because all the officers are directing traffic. And by "directing" I mean "standing on the center of the road and waving hands while showing a really, really bored expression."

Kang Jodhi said...

these bikers enlighten me, shome me the true meaning of being an indonesian : brave and careless. how can our founding father misinterpret these as "brave and pure"?

pj said...

Its seems that the latest activity to do while driving is watching TV. Its funny stopping at the lights and watching people channel surfing.

msh said...


Kang Jodhi said...

Houston calling Isman, please return to planet earth immediately and submit new articles on this blog

nury vittachi said...

Hi, Isman, this is a message from Nury Vittachi. I am writing a piece about Asian comedians, and particularly Muslims. Can you give me a quote for it? you are one of the few funny guys i know... Why do Muslims have a bad reputation in the west -- they think muslims are grim, unfunny people. are there muslim jokes?
nury @ vittachi. com

isman said...

@Kang Jodhi: Our forefather had seen a glimpse to the future and refused to believe it. Alas...

@pj: Maybe they're trying to find news updates about their upcoming accidents.

@msh: Uhh, for what exactly?

@Kang Jodhi (again): Houston, your signal's breaking. We can't hear you clearly. What? Barnacles on a bog?

@Nury Vittachi: just wrote you an email. I sure hope I'm not as late as I thought. This commenting system's only showing clocks. Not really helping.

tupai said...

LMAO.... and in a few weeks i'm gonna get manual driving lessons in indo. now you've scared every fibre in me. still LMAO.

cerdasberhemat said...

Good manual. Now, I'm preparing for taking a driver license. So.. these will show up in my next driving test right? :)

isman said...

@tupai & cerdasberhemat: Don't worry, these will show up as Easter Egg questions.

brix18 said...

another answer choice on the acceptable time to honk:

IMMEDIATELY after the light turns green, honk! honk! honk! repeatedly until the light turns again, stop for a second then HOOOOOOOONK! again like its the last honk of your life to make sure the lazy ass in front of you won't make you miss another the green light :D