Q A reader requested suggestions on how to advise an apparent "bad driver" friend. The DMV offers free "Senior Guide for Safe Driving," an excellent 60-page booklet that addresses that sensitive problem head-on and offers many practical suggestions.

Jerry Meyer

Los Gatos

A Lyn Gomes of Lafayette made her plea a week ago, adding she would love to hear everyone's advice. "I avoid driving with her, and when I do, I usually close my eyes," she said. So off we go, eyes wide open.

Q I think the letter writer had a better way even if she didn't know it, by saying, "Girlfriend, I can't say if you're a bad driver, but I do know you don't stay in lane when you turn, and that can be dangerous and annoying to other drivers."

Stick to specifics, label the behavior and not the person. And yes, great idea to go to driving school with her. It's a good way to say we can always improve in everything we do, whether it's driving or running a marathon, even being married. It's not like you attain perfection and get to coast for the next 60 years.

Red Ree

A And ...

Q There is no unemotional way to tell someone they are a bad driver. The best way to deal with a bad driver is to vote with your feet: It's better to walk than ride with one. In the example given in your column the bad driver can't seem to stay in her lane when turning. This is extremely dangerous, and nothing to be unemotional about.

Steve Wagner

Oakland

A Now I get blasted.

Q Gary, this is possibly your worst advice ever. Let me see if I have this right. Lyn writes that her friend has trouble staying in her own lane, asks if she is a bad driver and your response is that only she (the driver) knows for sure?

Actually, EVERYBODY on the road nearby knows that her friend is a bad driver. Where I come from, real friends can, and do, tell their friends the truth, especially when they are putting themselves in danger! Your advice to Lyn puts us all at more risk.

Russ Goodman

Los Gatos

A And ...

Q It's completely absurd to say that only the bad driver knows if they are a bad driver, as you recommended. I'd say most bad drivers are clueless or don't care. It's the passengers and others who observe and recognize bad driving, and they are also the ones (not to mention any nearby pedestrians) who are subjected to its dangers. If a friend has the humility to ask if they are a bad driver, they need to be told the truth right away.

Geez, nip it in the bud.

Paul Hale

A I'm trying!

Q Oh brother. What kind of malarkey was your advice? The friend, who obviously suspected that she was a bad driver, did freely ask the question, and was given a disingenuous answer by you. What would be wrong in answering the question honestly? Friends should be able to count on real friends to be truthful.

GRRRRRR.

Vilma Pallette

Santa Clara

A Lyn, any final thoughts from you?

Look for Gary at Facebook.com/mr.roadshow or contact him at mrroadshow@mercurynews.com or 408-920-5335.