backseat driver

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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
References in periodicals archive ?
BACKSEAT drivers, getting lost and noisy kids have been rated as the top causes of car journey bust-ups, a study has revealed.
With it they have penned dozens of infectious songs brimming with witty one-liners and takes on the world around them, focusing on everything from backseat drivers to the farcical sexiest men on the bus.
Backseat drivers all too readily show us this weakness.
New York, June 7 ( ANI ): A recent survey has found that spouses make the worst backseat drivers.
Not only was I having trouble seeing the road, I had a car full of backseat drivers and my wife (who had trouble seeing at night) was driving behind me.
This is because partners are the worst backseat drivers, with husbands and boyfriends disrupting the driver most often and 45% of them voicing their traffic-tips several times during the shortest of journeys.
Yet as we thundered down a rare straightaway only miles after crossing the border into Bulgaria, the backseat drivers, bless them, were strangely quiet.
Either way, there''s plenty of room for 8pages of new & used motors backseat drivers in all the cars, although the raked rear hatch of the S7 limits headroom.
ANXIOUS parents will soon be able to be virtual backseat drivers when their teenage children are driving - thanks to a "dashboard spy".
A[cedilla] Backseat drivers (even if they are sitting at your side) are dangerous.
Other groups performing: Jupiter Hollow, Opal Creek, Teasing Thieves, Wild Hog in the Woods, Kylan Johnson, the Fret Drifters, Rain on the Rocks, James and Julz, Rick Bartow and the Backseat Drivers, the Lemon Drop Fairy and Colin Woekel.
Nothing can separate the buds, and even their respective wives (Diane Bonnot, Leonie Simaga) become backseat drivers to a smooth ride that will inevitably get bumpy when Bruno decides to accept just one last shady gig.
You know which direction you want to go in and you must not give in to backseat drivers.
Fed-up with the backseat drivers, I slapped it into Dave's hand then hung over his shoulder, barking directions.