Saturday, October 12, 2013

3775 I am amused

Saturday, October 12, 2013

No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.


So, truckers are slowing down traffic on the Washington beltway this weekend, starting yesterday, to protest - something - I'm not clear on what, but that's ok because I'm not sure they are, either.  The slowdown doesn't bother me, except that I wonder about the wisdom of pissing off people who might otherwise support you in your protest.

Anyway, I cracked up when I read that the truckers themselves were slowed down by the beltway's normal congestion.  They got caught in a traffic jam!



There weren't as many trucks on the belt yesterday as expected, kind of disappointing. 

I'm not surprised because I wondered where those trucks would come from.  Trucking companies are unlikely to approve of their drivers wasting fuel and rubber going 'round and 'round in circles in a symbolic exercise, and independent truckers are unlikely to be able to afford it (if their gas-price protests are to be believed).

Yesterday only "a few dozen" showed up.  That belt is long.  A few dozen trucks is normal.  Friday was a normal workday, so most trucks were elsewhere, busy hauling.  I'll be interested to see how it goes today.


I lived in that area in the late '70s.  I drove on the beltway a lot, and it was never clogged, unless there was an accident  In fact, I was often dismayed at how fast people were driving.  It frightened me.

I hear that these days the beltway is essentially a parking lot.

I wonder how people, commuters, cope with that, because there really isn't any other way to get anywhere.  Yeah, you can drive through the residential areas inside the belt, and through the city, but there are traffic lights or stop signs every three feet (feels that way, anyway), so that's not practical.  I've been hearing from old acquaintances that a 20 mile commute can turn into a 2 hour drive.

An obvious solution would be to stagger office start times, so everyone isn't on the road at the same time, but nobody wants to cooperate with that because everybody has to interface with everyone else.  I guess work-at-home/telecommute is an option, but that turns into either watch TV all day, or work 24 hours a day.

There is a subway system, they were just opening that back when I lived there, but as usual in the US there is insufficient parking at the stations, and a lack of bus transport from residential areas to the stations.  Whoever set it up seemed to assume that every worker had a spouse who could drive them to the station.

Now if this were Europe....

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