CONTACTTRAFFICABOUT TOM VANDERBILTOTHER WRITING CONTACT ABOUT THE BOOK

Archive for June 3rd, 2009

How to Double Road Capacity

Traffic, Moscow-style. Keep an eye out for the intrepid pedestrian.

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Posted on Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009 at 11:39 am by: Tom Vanderbilt
4 Comments. Click here to leave a comment.

Is Stephen Wright the World’s Best Traffic Comedian?

George Carlin is a serious rival, and Jerry Seinfeld has his moments — and any other suggestions are welcomed — but I submit to you the following road-related quips from the Brillo-headed surrealist:

My house is on the median strip of a highway. You don’t really notice, except I have to leave the driveway doing 60 MPH.

I hooked up my accelerator pedal in my car to my brake lights. I hit the gas, people behind me stop, and I’m gone.

I replaced the headlights in my car with strobe lights, so it looks like I’m the only one moving.

I put a new engine in my car, but forgot to take the old one out. Now my car goes 500 miles per hour.

I watched the Indy 500, and I was thinking that if they left earlier they wouldn’t have to go so fast.

I had to stop driving my car for a while… the tires got dizzy.

My neighbor has a circular driveway… he can’t get out.

I used to work in a fire hydrant factory. You couldn’t park anywhere near the place.

I have an answering machine in my car. It says, “I’m home now. But leave a message and I’ll call when I’m out.”

I saw a sign: “Rest Area 25 Miles”. That’s pretty big. Some people must be really tired.

A cop stopped me for speeding. He said, “Why were you going so fast?” I said, “See this thing my foot is on? It’s called an accelerator. When you push down on it, it sends more gas to the engine. The whole car just takes right off. And see this thing? This steers it.”

I was going 70 miles an hour and got stopped by a cop who said, “Do you know the speed limit is 55 miles per hour?” “Yes, officer, but I wasn’t going to be out that long…”

One time a cop pulled me over for running a stop sign. He said, “Didn’t you see the stop sign?” I said, “Yeah, but I don’t believe everything I read.”

I got my driver’s license photo taken out of focus on purpose. Now when I get pulled over the cop looks at it (moving it nearer and farther, trying to see it clearly)… and says, “Here, you can go.”

When I get real bored, I like to drive downtown and get a great parking spot, then sit in my car and count how many people ask me if I’m leaving.

The other night I came home late, and tried to unlock my house with my car keys. I started the house up. So, I drove it around for a while. I was speeding, and a cop pulled me over. He asked where I lived. I said, “right here, officer”. Later, I parked it on the freeway, got out, and yelled at all the cars, “Get out of my driveway!”

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Posted on Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009 at 11:29 am by: Tom Vanderbilt
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There’s No Such Thing as a Freeway

Philip Greenspun raises an interesting idea based on some recent (crowded) drives in California: Why should a state with a $25 billion budget deficit give away one of its most valuable assets — highways — for free?

(Horn honk to Devorah)

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Posted on Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009 at 11:11 am by: Tom Vanderbilt
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Traffic Tom Vanderbilt

How We Drive is the companion blog to Tom Vanderbilt’s New York Times bestselling book, Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us), published by Alfred A. Knopf in the U.S. and Canada, Penguin in the U.K, and in languages other than English by a number of other fine publishers worldwide.

Please send tips, news, research papers, links, photos (bad road signs, outrageous bumper stickers, spectacularly awful acts of driving or parking or anything traffic-related), or ideas for my Slate.com Transport column to me at: info@howwedrive.com.

For publicity inquiries, please contact Kate Runde at Vintage: krunde@randomhouse.com.

For editorial inquiries, please contact Zoe Pagnamenta at The Zoe Pagnamenta Agency: zoe@zpagency.com.

For speaking engagement inquiries, please contact
Kim Thornton at the Random House Speakers Bureau: rhspeakers@randomhouse.com.

Order Traffic from:

Amazon | B&N | Borders
Random House | Powell’s

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U.S. Paperback UK Paperback
Traffic UK
Drive-on-the-left types can order the book from Amazon.co.uk.

For UK publicity enquiries please contact Rosie Glaisher at Penguin.

Upcoming Talks

April 9, 2008.
California Office of Traffic Safety Summit
San Francisco, CA.

May 19, 2009
University of Minnesota Center for Transportation Studies
Bloomington, MN

June 23, 2009
Driving Assessment 2009
Big Sky, Montana

June 26, 2009
PRI World Congress
Rotterdam, The Netherlands

June 27, 2009
Day of Architecture
Utrecht, The Netherlands

July 13, 2009
Association of Transportation Safety Information Professionals (ATSIP)
Phoenix, AZ.

August 12-14
Texas Department of Transportation “Save a Life Summit”
San Antonio, Texas

September 2, 2009
Governors Highway Safety Association Annual Meeting
Savannah, Georgia

September 11, 2009
Oregon Transportation Summit
Portland, Oregon

October 8
Honda R&D Americas
Raymond, Ohio

October 10-11
INFORMS Roundtable
San Diego, CA

October 21, 2009
California State University-San Bernardino, Leonard Transportation Center
San Bernardino, CA

November 5
Southern New England Planning Association Planning Conference
Uncasville, Connecticut

January 6
Texas Transportation Forum
Austin, TX

January 19
Yale University
(with Donald Shoup; details to come)

Monday, February 22
Yale University School of Architecture
Eero Saarinen Lecture

Friday, March 19
University of Delaware
Delaware Center for Transportation

April 5-7
University of Utah
Salt Lake City
McMurrin Lectureship

April 19
International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (Organization Management Workshop)
Austin, Texas

Monday, April 26
Edmonton Traffic Safety Conference
Edmonton, Canada

Monday, June 7
Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals
Niagara Falls, Ontario

Wednesday, July 6
Fondo de Prevención Vial
Bogotá, Colombia

Tuesday, August 31
Royal Automobile Club
Perth, Australia

Wednesday, September 1
Australasian Road Safety Conference
Canberra, Australia

Wednesday, September 22

Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s
Traffic Incident Management Enhancement Program
Statewide Conference
Wisconsin Dells, WI

Wednesday, October 20
Rutgers University
Center for Advanced Infrastructure and Transportation
Piscataway, NJ

Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Ontario Injury Prevention Resource Centre
Injury Prevention Forum
Toronto

Monday, May 2
Idaho Public Driver Education Conference
Boise, Idaho

Tuesday, June 2, 2011
California Association of Cities
Costa Mesa, California

Sunday, August 21, 2011
American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Attitudes: Iniciativa Social de Audi
Madrid, Spain

April 16, 2012
Institute for Sensible Transport Seminar
Gardens Theatre, QUT
Brisbane, Australia

April 17, 2012
Institute for Sensible Transport Seminar
Centennial Plaza, Sydney
Sydney, Australia

April 19, 2012
Institute for Sensible Transport Seminar
Melbourne Town Hall
Melbourne, Australia

January 30, 2013
University of Minnesota City Engineers Association Meeting
Minneapolis, MN

January 31, 2013
Metropolis and Mobile Life
School of Architecture, University of Toronto

February 22, 2013
ISL Engineering
Edmonton, Canada

March 1, 2013
Australian Road Summit
Melbourne, Australia

May 8, 2013
New York State Association of
Transportation Engineers
Rochester, NY

August 18, 2013
BoingBoing.com “Ingenuity” Conference
San Francisco, CA

September 26, 2013
TransComm 2013
(Meeting of American Association
of State Highway and Transportation
Officials’ Subcommittee on Transportation
Communications.
Grand Rapids MI

 

 

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