1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber
    MalahatTwo7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Loco madidus effercio in rutilus effercio.

    Talking Chicago illustrates the driving dilemma

    Chicago illustrates the driving dilemma

    By David Booth, For Canwest News Service November 20, 2009 2:08 AM

    The worst traffic in the world is not in Tokyo. Nor is it in New York or even Los Angeles. No, if you really want to understand the concept of gridlock, visit Chicago on marathon weekend.

    Traffic along the prime Michigan Avenue artery is not so much stop-and-go as merely stopped. And even at 6:30 in the morning, route 90/94 leaving downtown makes southern Ontario's Hwy. 401 look like a country road at 3 a.m. on a Tuesday.

    What I am saying here is that I had a lot of time to contemplate my fellow commuters. What will come as no surprise is that the vast majority of the cars all but stalled on Chicago's motoring arteries carried only the driver. Despite my seeming total devotion to all things automotive, it was not lost on an internal-combustion apologist such as me that this, like most motoring in North America, is a model of waste.

    The average car in North America weighs in at a tad less than 2,000 kg. The average human being, even in these Supersize-Me days of burgeoning obesity, weighs less than 100 kg. It doesn't take a degree in advanced calculus to realize that there is an inherent inefficiency in this vehicle-to-occupant weight ratio.

    Were the preceding uttered by David Suzuki or any other master of the 15-second environmental-impact soundbite, their acolytes would bow their heads in awe at the incredible obviousness of their prophet's profundity and wonder why the rest of the world "just doesn't get it."

    Indeed, if people would just commit to only ever driving solo, on paved roads, with minimal cargo, and promise to never, ever, crash into one another, automakers could produce only tiny little commuter cars smaller than a Smart Fortwo that averaged four litres per 100 kilometres and emitted so little pollution the entire hybrid/hydrogen/electric car debate would be moot.

    If only the world could be so simple.

    The first problem is that while most motoring is, unfortunately, conducted solo, virtually every car owner will eventually want to transport a friend/enemy/mother-in-law somewhere.

    Take the small matter of the golfing foursome out for a weekend best-ball tournament at a golf course out in the country. They, of course, have to transport their shoes and hats and tee-time attire, not to mention their big bags stuffed with more than the regulation 14 clubs. As soon as they opened the trunk, they'd forget the Smart car and start thinking about a Toyota Camry.

    But the boys want to be coddled in the lap of luxury befitting their exalted status. They want even more room for their arthritic knees than is strictly necessary and, while you're at it, can you throw in a decent audio system and a seven-inch LCD screen in the back of each of the rear seats "because our attention span isn't what it used to be." Now we're in a Lexus LS 460.

    But, the boys are in a hurry. Let's say the golf course has strict policy regarding tee times. So, they need enough juice to sprint past seriously geriatric motorhomes and speed-limited 18-wheelers. So, maybe we should trade up to a BMW 750i and its twin-turbo'd 400 h.p.

    But a weekend of rain has turned the road into a slippery nightmare. We need something with serious off-road ability that grips the road as tightly as a frustrated golfer does his clubs, and has room for our overstuffed Louis Vuitton golf bags (just $9,750 US base price!), roomy seats and enough power to literally fly to the course and back. And we want it all in one hedonistic package that rides comfortably as well.

    Add it all up and you know what you've got?

    A Cadillac Escalade. It weighs in at 2,695 kg.

    Getting Stuck in Traffic on Route 90 to Chicago's O'Hare Airport Is What It Does on Its Off Days.

    Copyright (c) The Victoria Times Colonist

  2. #2
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2009


    Ah, Chicago traffic. Been there done that.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber
    MalahatTwo7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Loco madidus effercio in rutilus effercio.


    Quote Originally Posted by fire1977 View Post
    Ah, Chicago traffic. Been there done that.
    Ya me too. Just once. Unless I have specific business to attend in the city, I will look for alternate routes around the I80/94 toll road.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

    "I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD

    "Its not Rocket Science. Just use a LITTLE imagination." (Me)

    Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

    impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto

    IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Award Funds Dilemma
    By JD1234 in forum Federal FIRE ACT Grants & Funding
    Replies: 37
    Last Post: 09-07-2007, 06:47 PM
  2. Firehouse Dilemma
    By MrSmokeEater in forum Firefighters Forum
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 08-24-2007, 09:31 PM
  3. Dilemma
    By CaptBob in forum Hiring & Employment Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-28-2006, 09:45 PM
  4. Was just hired...My dilemma..need help
    By scote3232 in forum Hiring & Employment Discussion
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 02-10-2005, 07:05 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register