The observations and opinions of a person who has no discernible insights or ideas.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

A Gibbous Weekend 

As a college student, I almost never went to bed before 2 a.m. As a married guy with a full-time day job, I rarely stay up past midnight. What’s up with that?

The problem I’m running into is that on weekends, I have started slipping back into my old insomniac ways, sometimes staying up to 2 or so. Sure, it’s not like what I used to do, but then I’m supposed to be at work first thing in the morning on Mondays, and these weekend indiscretions take a lot out of me.

Why can’t I just sleep like a normal person?

Friday, October 08, 2004


Today, I got into a bit of a debate with my sister on the subject of merging. Both of us agree that Utahns can’t merge properly, but we disagree on what the right way to merge is.

Actually, we agree on the zipper method, and that merging should be done at or near cruising speeds. What we disagree on is when merging should take place. She feels (as I once did) that when made aware of an impending merge, drivers should get over as soon as possible so as to not cause problems with people having to stop for last second mergers (who often have cut ahead of dozens of cars in a nearly empty lane). The complaint, according to this line of thinking, is that the people who cut ahead have to come to a stop in order to merge, and therefore slow the whole group down. I objected to this sort of thing because the people who get ahead in the closing lane are jerks (I still feel that they’re jerks, but I’m not as scathing towards them now).

My position is that all lanes should be used until they close, at which point they can zipper evenly. This has the advantage of not prematurely crowding any lanes or leaving empty lanes to tempt greedy drivers. In fact, I think that you shouldn’t change lanes in thick traffic if you can help it. It just slows people down. If two lanes are zipping together at the merge, then they can time it properly and do it at a respectable speed, and both lanes move faster (although not as fast as a third lane would move).

The problem with doing things my way is that not enough people do it. We get nervous and get over early so that we don’t have to merge at the last minute. We resent the people who get ahead by staying in the doomed lane. In order for the full zipper effect to work and improve traffic flow, we have to overcome these mental barriers and stay where we have believed that only reprehensible people travel. Still, we must, if we ever want to make it through all this road construction.

I also discussed the war in Iraq with my sister, but there’s no meaningful conclusions that can be derived from debating that.

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