My commute is a long one, over 60 miles, and it crosses a set of railroad tracks about 2/3 of the way home. The route travels over a mountain pass with many twists and turns and most people choose sleeping over carsickness. Almost everyone besides the driver are lightly asleep when the railroad tracks are crossed. Sometimes people wake slightly at the bumpy track crossing. The people in my van-pool have been passing over the tracks twice a day for over a decade and there is a subconscious tensing that occurs as a programmed response to the approach of the tracks. Sleepers go from half asleep to a quarter asleep for the few minutes that precede the tracks. This period of vulnerability is unique and I would make good use of it.
Person B is also in my van-pool and made it clear that he would be a willing accomplice in my revenge.
As we approached the tracks I slowed down slightly and commented out loud “ why is everyone slowing down”? I then sped up as if I was passing some folks. Mr B took his que and stated “Aren't you going to stop?” while handing me the air-horn. I prepped the air-horn while murmuring “What are you talkin' about?”. Person B then yelled “TRAIN”. At this point person A's head whipped up as he was completely awake. After the millisecond needed for him to see that we were indeed at the train tracks I let loose with the air-horn. I believe he crapped his pants at this point. I had no idea that human eyes could open so wide. It is perhaps a vestigial adaptation related to our reptilian ancestors who like modern snakes could perhaps open their mouths to swallow prey many times their size.
I should include a note of warning. This sort of malarkey is dangerous while driving. For several minutes I was laughing so hard that tears partially obscured my driving. On the bright side I did not know that person A was so fluent in French.