traffic tuesday #12 – merging

Merging is one of those things that usually just “happens” when you are on the road. Typically, people don’t want to die on the road so people adjust speeds and react so that everyone gets where they need to go.

Unfortunately, there are exceptions to everything (which is probably what prompted the real, unnecessarily complex “how to merge” sign from Dekalb, IL pictured on the left).

I remember a specific entrance/exit in Springfield, MO where traffic would backup on the entrance ramp because people would stop at the end of the acceleration lane. Cars/Trucks wouldn’t move to the left lane or slow down to left traffic in.

On my way to work every morning, I take Harlem over I-80. Each time I cross over, there are dozens of cars exiting the highway onto Harlem. I’m always extra conscious at that spot because 10 of the 12 cars merging onto the road rapidly cross three lanes of traffic in order to turn left onto 183rd Street. And by rapidly, I mean with complete disregard for anyone else on the road.

So here’s a few tips to successfully merge every time:

  • Drive a big car, preferably one with a gun rack.
  • Drive a fast car–you’ll need the extra “oomph” to get ahead of the pack
  • Don’t turn your signal on too early, it might cause the driver you’re trying to get in front of to realize what’s happening and try to speed up.
  • Liberal use of the horn while yelling “my wife is labor!” out of the window. This is effective whether or not your wife is in the vehicle. Actually, it’s probably more effective as other drivers will think you are insane and give you plenty of room to merge.


Author: erik

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  1. maybe you should do a post every Friday called: Forget Work Friday….or one on Wednesday called Why can’t it be Friday..or one on Sunday called….Sunday School Superb…(if I spelled it right)

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  2. Wait till you come to OK. Here, they have the fast cars that have gun racks, and they have the shortest merge lanes you have ever seen. These merge lanes end prematurely in a concrete wall. THEN you have the people that are NOT in a hurry, so they merge at like 15 miles an hour

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  3. Too hilarious, Erik!
    My sister lived in TX for 2yrs, and we were in for quite a shock when we visited…the rules of merging are opposite…the merger has right of way and the person on the highway has to yield to the merger. Weird. And they will definitely run you down in their pickup trucks if you don’t catch on quick. It’s so dangerous driving there. lol.

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