Missing: Traffic Etiquette. Please Return if Found

Note: the following image is a rarity. Please handle with extreme care…


Yes folks, this is a documented image of Interstate 5 with MODERATE traffic. I was told two things for which I should prepare prior to heading west: a tolerance for coffee and blindingly frustrating traffic patterns.

Granted, Seattle was once reported as having the fourth friendliest drivers in America, but just as we observed with Joe Namath, being nice doesn’t always equate to a positive, healthy outcome. I wanna kiss you, fellow I-5 commuter…

In order to provide a more proper understanding of what I’m discussing, o fellow trafficster, here’s a brief visual of what I experience, from an illustrated, bird’s-eye view, during my routine southbound commute:


Back in my college ball-playin’ days, we called this situation the South Dakota Roadblock. Clearly note the robotic, almost self-soothing precision of each vehicle, spacing itself just enough to avoid horizontal eye contact yet maintain absolutely no room whatsoever for weaving amongst the throes.

This method is painfully effective in reducing road rage among Washington’s happily-caffeinated denziens. For me, however, I’m more accustomed to the following commuter experience:


Please note the use of tiered velocities, regardless of posted speed limits. This system has been tried and true throughout the Midwest, and I hear Los Angeles has had some mighty success with this format as well.


2 Responses to Missing: Traffic Etiquette. Please Return if Found

  1. Jessica says:

    Thank you from all of the non-native Seattle residents for so precisely expressing our collective frustration over the I-5 commute. I think we’ve all learned an important lesson here.

  2. mandy says:

    jonny (boyfriend from seattle) and i call it the “pacific northwest nice-off” when it comes to strangely stopping too long at stop signs, pausing at green arrow lights, etc. especially when cyclists are involved. just freakin drive, people! i should hope i have enough brains in my skull to avoid death at the hands of your hunk of metal. if i don’t, maybe it was my time to go anyway courtesy of charles darwin. plus, you don’t go to jail for killing a cyclist. sad but true.
    anyway, the pacnw driving is truly maddening but i guess it’s better than…well, i don’t know what it’s preferrable to. except ending your sentences in prepositions.

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