Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Round - A - Bout

When Mary got smart and moved back to California from Arizona she full on shortened our date commute. Now I will admit that she did that long commute from Pheonix a great deal more than I ever did (could you blame her Pheonix vs. Encinitas). The point is when she moved back she lived with her mother in San Marcos. That shortened the commute from 100's of miles to 9.8 miles. That was all good but she actually didn't really shorten it. Pure distance was shorter but time spent in the car was about the same. How could that be you ask? The answer lies in my post tonight.

What the heck happend to the USA when roads were constructed. The rest of the world uses roundabouts and we Americans choose Stop Signs and Stop Lights. I have an idea for Mr. Obama and his energy plan. Turn off the stop lights and replace them with roundabouts. Think of the electricity savings. Not to mention all the idle cars burning fuel going no place.

So why is a roundabout so good? They are all good except that stupid one in Beutlesdorf. Even the driving instructer thought it was stupid. Anyway forget driving for a minute and let's go bike riding. In San Diego you're really lucky to go on a ride and not have to stop at a stop light. In fact I challenge that you can't do it. Well most can because you run the lights. That doesn't count. Today I went for a ride here in Germany. I road 70 minutes and guess what. I stopped once. That was a very rare stop. Generally on my rides I don't have to stop. Most intersections have Yield signs. Most major intersections have roundabouts. There is a flow to a roundabout that done correctly means you don't stop. What a concept. I'm sure going to miss it.

I plea to all those in the USA, if there is a referendum for an intersection and you have the choice, vote roundabout. We cyclists thank you.

Back to the love commute. In that 9.8 miles there were 13 stop lights. That's 13 chances to sit idle for 3 or more minutes. Once I made it all the way through without stopping. Many times unfortunately I stopped at each an every one of them. I'm very glad those stop lights didn't ruin our love. Somehow we made through them.

It's a good life....

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