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Friday, October 21, 2005

Accidental Traffic

I’ve written a rant on traffic describing the most efficient way to drive through Boston during the Big Dig. Having to commute into and out of Boston everyday, I’ve become quite the expert. However, I still don’t understand why traffic stops when there is an accident on the OTHER side of the road. I’ve concluded it is due more to human nature than to actual traffic flow mechanics.

There seems to be some primal urge to see blood on the highway reminiscent of the driver’s education films we saw at sixteen. I find it quite pitiful that we take pleasure in stopping to observe other peoples’ misfortune when we are obviously destined for an alternate location. We weren’t planning on seeing a traffic accident, but when we do, we slow down to examine all details so we can later explain it to our friends and complain about how backed up traffic was. Hypocrites! Don’t stop to look and there would be no traffic back up to speak of!

Case and point, I was stuck in a three mile backup of bumper to bumper traffic while my north bound comrades rubbernecked a south bound car fire. It’s not that I get paid by the hour or that I love work so much, but I’d rather be at work than sitting immobile in my automobile while feeble-minded morons watch a car burn.

Given that, one would think that reality shows about police chases would be the highest rated programs on television. Instead, they’re surpassed for reality shows that involve people’s egos hurting other people’s feelings. Frankly, I couldn’t care less about either genre but I think the reason the former doesn’t fare well is because people can get their fill with live action on the real highways.

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