Wednesday, May 12, 2010

An Oversight for the Ages

The other day I took a wrong turn trying to get onto the freeway and ended up on the freeway heading in the opposite direction. I had to drive for several miles in that direction until I could find an exit and get myself turned back around.

Now, I'm kind of stupid, I'll admit it. It's pretty much guaranteed that on any given excursion to somewhere I don't go very often that I'm going to take a wrong turn. In fact, I've discovered more roundabouts by taking wrong turns than I even thought existed in the state of Utah, true story. Nevertheless, this time I'm going to pin the blame for my suffering on the freeway.
Why, in the name of all that is good, can you not make U-turns on the freeway? Really now! I can't be the only one who thinks this is a massive oversight. Anybody who has gotten onto the freeway going the wrong way knows of the pain of driving for miles in the opposite direction of where you want to go, staring wistfully at the cars going the other way just on the other side of the median. You can see the other drivers smiling, singing, and high-fiving each other through their windows as they make their carefree way in the right direction. Meanwhile, the median, which is standing between you and your dream, taunts and jeers and shouts horrible things about your mother at you as you speed down a dark, endless path towards oblivion. It's torture, that's what it is. An emotional tax on the directionally challenged.

So, why can't we just remove the median? We know how to drive in two lane traffic, and if the freeway included a turn lane, I'm pretty sure we could work it out without too much trouble. Then when we took a wrong turn, we could curse ourselves for a second, but then just glide on over into the turn lane and swing around so we were headed in the right direction and could still be on time to testify at grandma's court hearing. Sure, it might be dangerous, but so is driving a giant metal object filled with highly flammable liquid at breakneck speeds down long stretches of rock and debris strewn road with hundreds of other similar vehicles. Anyway, there are ways you could make it safe, such as (as mentioned before) having turn lanes on the freeway (Meaning a lane to turn from, and a lane to turn into. Makes sense to me at least.)
At any rate, I'm just wondering why this is not something that has been considered before now, because it seems like it could save a lot of people like me a lot of gas and a lot of blind, hopeless rage.

And even if I'm wrong and this is a terrible idea, some consideration might still be nice once in a while. If personal teleportation modules had already been invented like they were supposed to have been by now according to the 50's, we wouldn't even have this problem.
Once again, I blame science.


Steph-a-Neph said...

AMEN! Wonderful observation once again! :D

Adam James McLain said...

I think it's 'cause you live in Utah.

They have turning lanes in Washington where you can turn around if needs be :) Utah's just lame with their roads haha

The Erin said...

Apparently so. Stupid Utah...

Meg said...

I understand the median thing. It stops high-speed vehicles from crashing into other high-speed vehicles going the opposite direction, which would be bad.

But yeah, science has totally screwed us over. Where's the space exploration? The teleportation? The meals in a pill? The cure for the common cold (and, you know, cancer and stuff)? Come on, scientists! Get your act together!

(On that note, there's a Threadless t-shirt that has a rant along the lines of this.)