It’s been a few years since I’ve had to get up and drive during morning rush hour. Once Mikaela got her license she drove herself to school most days, leaving me free to do as I pleased in the mornings, which usually meant not driving until AFTER rush hour was said and done. Since it has been so long since I’ve had to leave my house at that time I’m either out of touch, or my memory is playing tricks on me, sort of like it does after you give birth once, experiencing the worst pain on the planet only to turn around and do it a few more times. Driving during rush hour when one doesn’t really have to, feels a lot like that, excruciatingly painful and very much like “what the hell am I doing this for???” With this analogy in mind I can’t be 100% sure what I recall happening during rush hour, but I don’t remember construction on major arteries starting during it as “a thing.” I just feel that if this was something that used to happen I would remember it, I would remember because it’s such an asinine thing for the city to do, and therefore it would have stood out if it was happening four, five years ago. I mean it’s such a giant inconvenience I can’t imagine not remembering that it was something the city regularly did.
Look I get it. Everybody has a job to do, and there are only so many hours in a day, and there are even less of these when the days get shorter and colder. But seriously. Seriously. Morning rush hour people? I mean does it get any crueler?? People are waking up, getting in their cars assuming that their commute will take the same time as it did yesterday, sipping their coffee/tea, listening to their favorite radio station, audio book what have you, cruising along and then BAM they land in a heap of gridlock, going nowhere fast. It comes on without any warning too. You’re happily driving along, well as happy as one can be on their way into WORK, but still minding your own business, making your way, and then out of nowhere comes the giant big orange and black sign indicating that there is a merge up ahead. Which means only one thing. All the assholes are going to come out of hiding. That driver behind you, who seemed like a logical, level headed road sharing citizen will all of a sudden act like their eye sight has left them. That they didn’t see the giant flashing lights and sign indicating that there was a merge up ahead. They will then continue driving along in the lane that ends, behaving as if they don’t know what’s happening, pushing their way, two, maybe three cars ahead, squeezing in at the last minute, causing even more gridlock and in some cases even accidents.
Why? Why do people do this? I get it, you’re frustrated too. This unscheduled, surprise construction during your morning commute has really messed with your timing. Well HELLO. SURPRISE. It has interfered with EVERY SINGLE PERSON’S morning commute on the road with you. What makes these people think that they’re the only one’s affected by the construction?? It really makes me go “hmmm.” I totally don’t get that guy/gal who acts like their inconvenience is worse than every other driver on the road with them. We should all work to NOT be that person. The person who behaves like all of a sudden they’re without their eyesight, and didn’t see the giant signs in front of them. All of us who aren’t like that are begging you who are, to help your fellow drivers out, and merge as soon as you notice it. If you are a merge pusher, I have news for you, it actually makes the delay longer, and the traffic worse. If everybody merges like civilized people there is a natural flow to traffic that doesn’t have to become a giant delay. If you don’t believe me try it out next time you’re on the road, don’t push right up to the end of the merge and force all traffic to come to a complete halt while you squeeze in where you don’t belong. I tried it yesterday morning, in fact I even let two merge pushers in ahead of me just to be a help to the flow of traffic rather than a hindrance, and you know what happened? I still got where I was going, on time.
Here’s a challenge for all of you merge pushers who might be reading this. Next time you come upon unexpected construction, give merging when you first notice the giant signs in front of you a try, and while you’re trying that on for size I’ll see if I can’t figure out why the hell they’re beginning “daily” construction jobs in the middle of rush hour in the first place…
Sound like a deal???