Before we left for Montana this June the NYT had an article about the most dangerous things people do around the country. In Los Angeles the people who were interviewed said that the scariest, most dangerous thing they did was drive. I agreed completely.
In LA one has to be super-hypervigilant, always on the look-out for the other driver, who is probably using their cell phone. These distracted drivers obviously haven't read Matt Richter's brilliant book A Deadly Wandering about the tragic consequences of texting-while-driving, or even using-the-phone-while-driving.
When you take into account how crowded the roads have become, how much the traffic has increased, how frustrating it is that it takes so much longer to get anywhere, it's not surprising when people are road ragers.
So, it's no wonder after a summer spent driving the tranquil, pastoral, rural roads of Montana, a big sky, wide open place with less than a million people in the entire state, I felt rattled when I returned to LA highways. I look around me and think: Where did all these people come from, and all these cars?
I've heard recently about people who have left LA because they can't stand the traffic. I'm not there. Yet.