backseat driver

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Related to back-seat drivers: backseat drivers

backseat driver

1. A passenger in a vehicle (not necessarily in the backseat) who attempts to instruct the driver or criticize their driving skills. John quickly became annoyed at Mary's tendency to become a backseat driver whenever he drove her somewhere, so he just began to let her drive.
2. By extension, someone who tries to establish and maintain control over every situation. Primarily heard in US. Although Mary was capable of completing the project on her own, John couldn't stop himself from being a backseat driver and telling her what to do.
See also: backseat, driver

backseat driver

Fig. an annoying passenger who tells the driver how to drive; someone who tells others how to do things. I don't need any backseat driver on this project. Stop pestering me with all your advice. Nobody likes a backseat driver!
See also: backseat, driver

backseat driver

A passenger who gives unwanted and/or unneeded directions to the driver; also, a person who interferes in affairs without having knowledge, responsibility, or authority for doing so. For example, Aunt Mary drives us all crazy with her instructions; she's an incurable backseat driver. This term originated in the United States in the 1920s, when it was first used for a passenger legitimately directing a chauffeur, and it was quickly transferred to figurative use. Also see the synonym Monday-morning quarterback and the antonym take a back seat.
See also: backseat, driver

a back-seat driver

COMMON
1. If you call a passenger in a car a back-seat driver, you mean that they keep telling the driver what to do. My mother is a terrible back-seat driver, especially when my sister is at the wheel.
2. If you call someone, especially a politician, a back-seat driver, you mean that they are trying to influence or control a situation that should be controlled by someone else. They accused the former prime minister of being a backseat driver. Note: This expression is used to show disapproval.
See also: driver

a back-seat driver

1 a passenger in a vehicle who constantly gives the driver unwanted advice on how to drive. 2 someone who lectures and criticizes the person actually in control of something.
See also: driver

a ˌback-seat ˈdriver

(disapproving)
1 a passenger in a vehicle who keeps giving advice to the driver about how he or she should drive
2 a person who wants to be in control of something that is not really their responsibility: There are too many back-seat drivers in this department. This is my project and I’m the one who’s in charge!
See also: driver

backseat driver

n. an annoying passenger who tells the driver how to drive; someone who tells others how to do things. I don’t need any backseat driver on this project.
See also: backseat, driver

backseat driver

A passenger who gives unasked-for and usually unwanted advice to the driver of a vehicle; by extension, anyone who interferes without having real responsibility or authority. The term originated in the United States during the 1920s, when many automobiles were chauffeur-driven and their passengers sat in the backseat, often quite legitimately telling the chauffeur where to go. Today the passenger’s location is irrelevant, the term being principally figurative. It has largely replaced the older armchair general. See also Monday-morning quarterback and the very different take a backseat.
See also: backseat, driver
References in periodicals archive ?
The 'Driver Distraction' study, commissioned by esure car insurance revealed that 14 per cent of motorists have had an accident or near miss due to being distracted by a back-seat driver.
After all, remember how Ken Tynan once described critics as back-seat drivers facing the wrong way, and certainly critics are usually pretty good on the past, moderately good on the present, and helpless and hopeless for the future.
The chief executive has put his back-seat drivers to steep.
EXEC EXPRESS The S-Class is built to carry elite back-seat drivers
Don't let Blairite diehards like Lord Mandelson be your back-seat drivers.
You've heard of back-seat drivers, well now I've a front one too.
Bill Engvall is on the road without his "Blue Collar TV" buddies, Jeff Foxworthy and Larry the Cable Guy, and he'll stop here tonight to chat about dishwasher protocol, morning breath, beer, back-seat drivers and other pressing issues in a pretty PG-13 show (Silva Concert Hall, Hult Center, 8 p.
BACK-seat drivers could actually help prevent accidents, according to county road safety officers who are bringing their tips on reducing'in- car stress to Rugby later this month.
Raised seats in the back let the passengers in and out of the car with more poise, but it also helps them see the road better, so prepare yourself for an earbashing from back-seat drivers.
In a thinly-veiled attack on some of Mr Miliband's top team, Mr McCluskey adds: "Don't let Blairite diehards like Lord Mandelson be your back-seat drivers.
Not the least vocal among these is a clutch of Welsh Labour MPs who, in their attempts to be devolution's back-seat drivers (they'd like to drive it into a wall), have already begun to undermine what Rhodri Morgan and Ieuan Wyn Jones have painstakingly negotiated.