Commuter Chronicles


There are 253 million cars and trucks on U.S. roads at any given time, and while you know—you know—they can’t all possibly be on the Capital City Freeway on a Thursday afternoon, it sure feels like it.

By now you ought to know that when you hit the highway during peak hours, you’re just asking for traffic. It’s like clockwork, and yet somehow you’re surprised every time, as though today would be different, that you’d be the modern-day Moses able part the red sea of brake lights.

Congestion is a part of life. You get it. You even expect it. That is, until you’re in it, and then you become acutely aware of the cosmically unfair forces conspiring against you.

But traffic isn’t going anywhere. Add it to the list of life’s guarantees, along with death and taxes. And with more and more drivers getting behind the wheel each year, it’s only going to get worse. Sure, you can choose different routes, maybe even leave 15 or 30 minutes early, but truth be told, the only consolation is that, when it comes to congestion, we’re all in this together.

So sit back, turn up your favorite radio station, take a deep breath and try to enjoy the ride.

This is the first of a collection of articles highlighting how Sacramentans get to work.