Almost by definition, commuting is the daily torture we accept without question. The radio, therefore, serves as a kind of redeeming miracle, bringing news and music from the world beyond the sprawl into every car on the roadway.
Why is it, then, that every single morning, every radio station is compelled to deliver traffic news? With such a wide range of possibilities (anything in the audible universe), why must our ears submit to traffic updates?
This is usually only an issue when I am in the passenger seat. No matter how frequently I ask to change the station, we listen to traffic when my mother is driving. I know what it is like to be victimized in this way, and I will never force such pain on my passengers (though I suppose I have discovered a reasonable punishment for my future children).
I do not care if the road we’re driving on will have or is having problems. That being said, I also do not care about the twenty other roads in my area which I will not be driving on this week. The way I see it, there are three major times when traffic news is completely useless:
- The driver has only one route to the destination.
- The driver is already trapped in gridlock, en route to the destination.
- The driver has already arrived at the destination.
These three time periods address before, during, and after gridlock. Therefore, traffic news is always useless!
What would I rather listen to, you ask? How about these uplifting stories to start your day:
- Michelle finally received that promotion she has been working so hard to attain. Go Michelle!
- Daniel is excited for his Monday morning. Go Daniel!
I will admit that there are times when traffic news can be helpful, or even necessary- during emergencies, or when roads are closed, for example. Almost any other time I would prefer to listen to something else.
Don’t force your passengers to endure that noise- change the station.