Here’s a photo of the renovated 22nd Street and Main Avenue intersection. Across the intersection is a two-way street, Alamo Drive. If I obey the posted signs, I can only turn left in the left hand-lane and only turn right in the right-hand lane. There is, apparently, no way I can legally go straight! Is anyone planning to fix this stupidity? Or do I just have to break the law to get to the lighting and design studio across the street? – John Condie
Your intercession regarding the intersection brings to mind some insightful observations from two of America’s great philosophers.
Not that anyone refers to philosophers as “philosophers.” Today, we call deep thinkers “Thought Leaders.”
The difference between the two is clear.
Philosophers have ideas. Thought Leaders have clients.
Thought Leaders also deliver keynote speeches, after which attendees can purchase Thought Leaders’ latest self-help books signed with personal inscriptions.
So if you’re at a conference and the featured Thought Leader offers “8 Steps To Declutter and Prioritize,” resist the urge to buy the hardback.
“Declutter and Prioritize” will just collect dust on your shelf because you didn’t make time to read it.
All of which has nothing to do with dubious signs that are at cross purposes at the crossroads, or, as you pithily put it, “is anyone planning to fix this stupidity?”
Therefore, let’s turn to our first great American philosopher, Ron White, who famously said, “You can’t fix stupid.”
Members of the intelligentsia will wonder who is Ron White and where can one read more of his theories?
If you want to read Ron White, you’ll need to watch a DVD.
He’s the scotch-swilling, cigar-chomping, blue-collar standup comedian whose 2006 “You Can’t Fix Stupid” performance was a smash hit.
Have you noticed that comedians possess keener insights into the human condition than most Thought Leaders?
The other great philosopher is Yogi Berra, whose wisdom transcends the ages. He said, “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”
Thus, at the new and not-so-improved intersection of 22nd Street, keep your eyes on the road. Literally. Then take the fork in it.
Just before the swanky new multi-modal crosswalk, there’s a faded painted symbol on the blacktop of the left lane.
It features forked arrows, one curving to the left and one pointing straight ahead. This is called an “optional lane use arrow,” indicating it’s OK to go forward or to make a left.
CDOT’s sign-content library has handy item, the model R3-6L: “Straight Ahead or Left Turn Only.”
Action Line will do a good turn and straighten this out with some phone calls this morning, suggesting that an R3-6L would prevent directional misdirection.
After all, as Yogi Berra observed, “If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else.”
Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 80301. You can request anonymity if you can visualize using your turn signal.