Some holiday traditions are nice, such as eating stuffing and spending time with family members. Other holiday traditions are not as nice, such as spending time with other members of your family or being stuck in massive traffic jams.
With Thanksgiving right around the corner, many Americans are about to embark on some of their slowest and most frustrating car journeys of the year.
As a reminder of what that looks like, here is some footage from the Wednesday before Thanksgiving 2022, posted to YouTube by Fox 11 Los Angeles and titled “Holiday tradition: Nightmare Thanksgiving traffic on 405 Freeway.”
The video shows endless bumper-to-bumper traffic as far as the eye can see. (As many commenters pointed out, “this is an everyday occurrence on the LA freeways.”)
Due to the car-centric urban planning that dominates practically every American city, major traffic, especially on holidays, is simply a part of life. But if you have the option, it may be worth it to take public transit instead of your car.
When committed to by the government, public transit is the fastest, most efficient, most affordable, and most environmentally friendly type of transportation that exists. Bullet trains in China, for example, transport people around the country more than twice as fast as cars, cheaply, reliably, and comfortably — all while running on electricity.
But when places do not commit to public transit, as is overwhelmingly the case in the United States, we end up with situations that local news stations casually refer to as “Holiday tradition: Nightmare.”
The commenters on the YouTube video were equal parts frustrated and resigned.
“And this is why I avoid driving Wednesday and Thursday, I don‘t really like the 405 tradition,” wrote one commenter.
“I don’t know why people can‘t wake up early and leave. I woke up at 4am, left at 6am and got to Fresno by 9:30. Normal traffic,” wrote another.
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