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Careful: A User’s Guide to Our Injury-Prone Minds

The other day I read a news article about a young woman who was arrested for child endangerment for allowing her two children to ride on a mattress strapped to the top of her car. She was incredulous that what she had done was wrong, much less illegal. What was her reply to the police officer? Her father had done the same thing with her when she was child. She didn’t think a thought about it. Yes, that does seem a bit stupid. However, I am certain we can all relate in some way.

I am sure you have all had a good laugh at what our parents allowed us to do as kids that we wouldn’t imagine doing today. Ride a bike without a helmet, sit on our dad’s lap and steer the truck, sit in the bed of the truck, heck- sit in the front passenger seat without anything more than a lap belt. Gasp! How did we all make it to adulthood? We are fortunate to be so much safer today. Or are we? Research shows we are no safer today. In fact, we are living in far more dangerous times. Just look at the person driving next to you with their eyes glued to a mobile device while driving.

“Careful” takes a look at the science of our minds. Why we think we can multi-task, even when it is downright dangerous. Case in point: texting and driving. Why do we ignore good common sense? Because “we know better”? Casner’s book is well written and uses fun examples like: why do you run that yellow/red light when it only saves you a millisecond. It might make you even question why you are even driving a car. “Careful” will make you rethink the false sense of safety and security you feel. And it just may keep you from getting a Darwin Award!

This is one of my favorite reads. It kept my interest, gave great examples, and while statistic heavy, it doesn’t bury you in numbers. I would highly recommend “Careful”.


Steve Casner


Riverhead Books



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