Sometimes, Going with the Flow is a Good Thing

One person, who definitely did not go with the flow .

One thing I noticed on my trip to LA was that the traffic in LA tends to move at a fairly constant rate regardless of how fast or slhow or how many cars appear to be on the road. The only thing I can figure is that people there have adjusted to the congestion and changed their driving habits so that their traffic does not tend to accordion (expand and compress) as it does so dramatically here in the Seattle area and around much of the rest of the nation.

A friend I was visiting swears that the people in LA love to crash their cars for no apparent reason other than to experience the joy that any normal person feels as his car slams into a concrete barrier at 80 MPH. My theory is that they have adjusted over time to a unique driving situation and that crashes are bound to happen now and then regardless of how fun of an opportunity a potential crash presents. I saw almost no cars dart in and out of the traffic, trying to weave their way along the freeway faster than the rest of the cars. . . quite unlike the traffic to which I am accustomed.

The community reacted to a growing problem (slow traffic) and adapted to make the situation better for both individuals and the community at large. If individuals decided to abuse this system and take advantage of the reasonable driving space drivers have learned to leave in front of them, they would contribute to an accordion effect that would ultimately slow down traffic for everyone, even themselves.

We are often told to make our own way and to question the way that things are done, which is great, but what I saw in LA is a good example of people not overlooking the fact that some community adaptations may feel like a hindrance, but are overall helpful for everyone.

Unless I’m being naive and missing something here. Am I?

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