Traffic light taunts, tortures drivers

Published 9:17 am Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I know it’s odd to have feelings of intense anger toward an inanimate object, but I have to get this off my chest.

Dear traffic light at the intersection of Liberty Avenue and State Route 141,

I hate you!

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I’ve wished short-circuit or lightning induced death to you on many occasions. I’ve considered doing things to you that would probably land me in the joint. I’ve cursed you until a fly wouldn’t land on you.

I want you to die a miserable death and spend eternity in a landfill surrounded by animal carcasses and rotten plywood.

Yet, you remain on your lofty perch, unaffected by the time you cost me each day as I simply attempt to turn left into Ironton.

I estimate that you cost me nearly ten minutes each week, which translates to more than eight hours per year idling my vehicle at an average of about $3.70 per gallon.

In the grand scheme, the dreaded wait at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles has nothing on you. When it comes to the unnecessary waste of people’s time, you are rivaled only by Walmart’s checkout lines.

Thanks to your insensitivity, I could draw a detailed sketch of Ohio University Southern from memory.

What bothers me the most is that you keep me sitting there even when no traffic is coming from any other direction.

You lack empathy and common decency and do not care that you are wasting my time, even though there is no logical reason for it. You taunt me and waste my gas and I detest you for it.

I’ve been told that if you turn red when I am within 50 yards of you, which you do to me nearly every time I travel into town via Route 141, I can turn right on Liberty, pull into a nearby driveway, back out and make it through your green side at least 45 seconds before I would have if I sat and waited … not that I would consider doing such a thing, of course.

That’s another reason to hate you. If I’m in a rush, I need to turn right and break the law to essentially turn left. Oh, and you seem much more willing to let people out of Ironton than to let them in.

And if I have the misfortune of being the sixth or seventh car in line waiting to make the dreaded left-hand turn, or get stuck three cars behind someone who feels the urge to turn into the first University Mart entrance and halt everyone else from proceeding (instead of simply driving another 15 feet to the second entrance where the odds of evading oncoming traffic are much greater), I get the opportunity to suffer your tortures twice!

Would it be too much to ask that you upgrade yourself and install some sensors?

As things stand now, every soul who travels into town to work at places such as Ironton High School, Jo-Lin Nursing Home and Liebert begins each workday with a profanity-laced tirade caused by you.

I know I speak for a multitude of people when I say, “I hate you and I wish you nothing but the worst!”

Rant over. I feel better — at least until I go into town tomorrow.

Billy Bruce is a freelance writer who lives in Pedro. He can be contacted at