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Journal Daneboy's Journal: Driving in Pittsburgh : Is This Hell? 2

Am in Pittsburgh these days, doing some work for a troubled customer. One of the things I like about my job is that I get to travel to all sorts of places, learning many valuable lessons in the process. Today, here in lovely Pittsburgh (lit. "City of Pits", or possibly "City from The Pit"), I learned about...

The Pennsylvania Turnpike (Not Your Friend). OK, so I'm on my way back to my hotel after today's work, and I decide to grab a healthy and nutritious dinner of grease-on-a-bun from Wendy's. Missing the miniscule entrance to the Wendy's parking lot, I take the next exit, intending to turn around. But lo, said exit turns out to be a secret on-ramp to, yes, the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Funny thing about the Penna. Turnpike is that it has no exits. I realize that limited access is kind of the whole point of turnpikes, but this is excessive. Really. I end up having to drive halfways to $#@!ing Ohio or Virginia or somewhere like that (depending on which way I was going, which was either West or South, or possibly East) before being able to turn around. And THEN I had to sit in a 20-mile traffic jam before I could get back to what passes for civilization in these parts. According to the guys on the radio this morning, the governor of Pennsylvania recently announced that he's looking for a new State Slogan. He should call me -- I have some suggestions!

I also learned about streetlights and signs. Thing is, most major cities have an abundance of both of these. But Pittsburghers have seemingly come up with a novel idea for saving money: First, identify a semi-busy state highway going through a really confusing part of town. Then put up some helpful signs in key places, indicating things like the locations of off-ramps and the names of other major roads. To be extra helpful, put up some streetlights so people can see the signs even though the lettering is non-reflective. And then -- this is the good part -- save energy by turning the streetlights off at night. Brilliant, I say, just brilliant!
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Driving in Pittsburgh : Is This Hell?

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  • They turn out the lights because the hunting is so much better in the dark. That and it makes it easy for those needing an excuse because they just shot the neighbor's rat... erm dog.. sorry.
    • True, true. And they *do* love their hunting up here. Even normal, non-hunter types. One of my colleagues, who ranks quite highly on my "Smartest and Geekiest People I Know" list, spent half a day chortling about how some other hunter had shot several holes in his decoy. This is not a unique occurrence -- Pittsburgh has an abundance of that rarest of breeds, the Redneck Geek. I think this could be an untapped market for the ThinkGeek guys.

      In fact, strange as this seems to a semi-southwesterner such

The shortest distance between two points is under construction. -- Noelie Alito