Beat This: The Worst Commute

by Nate St. Pierre on October 14, 2011

For the “Beat This” series, I’ll throw out a topic, tell you my story, and see if you can beat it. Today’s topic: the worst commute. If you have a story that can compete, tell us about it in the comments, or leave a video response. Go!

(Image source: MSVG)

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  • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

    In case you don’t want to (or can’t) see the video, my commute hits 2 hours on some days. It’ll take four lights just to make it one block. Green . . . red . . . green . . . red . . . etc. I literally get passed by old ladies walking on the sidewalk. :-/

  • Peliroo

    :) I can’t beat that. I can only tie you. That was my commute when I lived in Pasadena.

    As a transplant myself, I find the commuting culture here fascinating. A very large number of my coworkers (and other folks here on base) commute in van pools that leave places like Lancaster, Desert Springs, and Temecula at 3AM. (For those outside the LA area, that’s over or close to 100 miles away.) They leave at 3AM! That’s insanity to me. They “finish” sleeping in the vans while someone else drives.

    I moved closer to work about 2 years ago because I couldn’t handle the commute anymore. But when I was doing the 105/110 slug I did feel closer to humanity in a weird way -stuck on the freeway with everyone else. There was a shared miser, and everyone around me was going somewhere. Even better, I saw people becoming creative and devising ways to deal with it. (like you, I guess) I practiced harmonica (tried to perfect Brandenburg Concerto and failed. :)

    Interested to hear what everyone else’s commute is like.

    • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

      3AM??? Man, you really don’t wanna live in the city. Cripes!

      Interesting about feeling closer to humanity. I can see what you mean in a way, though that’s not the first impression I get… ;)

      • Peliroo Corrice

        lol.  I had to start thinking positively about the commute before I went crazy and started throwing trail mix at other cars. I’m a people watcher, so it was like “mobile anthropology” time for me.  

        I also listened to old-time radio shows.  (“Dragnet” was my favorite.)  I learned to always have food and drink easily accessible. (Forgot that last Friday :/ )The only reason I don’t live closer to work is the school district we’re in.  I really would love to live close enough to bike to work.My commute now is all side streets.  I purposely take the ones that hug the coast.  When I worked in the DC area I would take the GW Parkway next to the Potomac so that I could be covered in trees and see the river.  Made it easier and I felt connected to history.Nate, it’s an older movie, but LA Story, with Steve Martin might be a movie you might want to see.  It’s high 80′s culture, but has some great observations of LA.  There’s a small scene regarding his commute.  Laugh every time I see it.

        • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

          Yeah, I’m trying to figure out ways to make that time productive, if not relaxing. At least I can get stuff done. Some video blogging, a little consulting (dictating into my phone’s voice recorder, then transcribing later at home), taking care of my personal calls, etc.

          I’ll check out that movie, thanks. Love Steve Martin.

  • Sarah

    Before I moved close to my job in GR (back when I was pregnant for my oldest kiddo), we lived about an hour from my office. One day, in a horrendous snow storm (of course, no office closings) the roads were SO SO AWFUL it took me darn near three and a half hours to commute. They were not relaxing hours. I was near tears by the time I arrived. Now? If the roads are truly awful? Screw it, I’m staying home.

    • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

      Dude, I had the same thing once back home! Couple winters ago, actually. HUGE snowstorm, and for some reason I decided to go into work, even though the city was pretty much shut down. Took me over 3 hours. Ugh.

  • Foo

    Hate to state the obvious, but…

    WTF do you live so far away from work?

    • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

      I don’t actually live that far from work – I commute the same distance I did when I lived in Milwaukee. Trouble is out here it’s a lot different — what was 30-45 minutes at home is 1-2 hours here.

      • Foo

        In LA, we measure distance in minutes, not miles.

        • http://natestpierre.me Nate St. Pierre

          Yeah, I’m learning that one the hard way. :)

  • Willow

    Obviously, I’m quite late to this response, but hey, better late than never, right? I was actually staying with a friend in Europe and we were on our way home to her house. She decided we would take a back road, a little short cut to avoid the traffic lights that were in town. A storm had passed through and a branch had fallen in the middle of the road, we had no other way around other than to move it. We both got out and successfully edged it out of the way. In the process, another car had pulled up behind us, we casually waved and got back in our car, turned the radio up, and as soon as we put the car in the drive the car behind us started flashing their lights and got right up on our ass. Annoyed we drove faster, they drove faster, flashing their lights the entire way. Really annoyed, and starting to get freaked out we called her parents to meet us at the door. They followed us, right on us, all the way to her drive way. We had our seat belts off, we ran inside into the safety of the house. Less than 20 seconds later the door bell rang. It was an old couple, apparently the ones who drove the car, we spoke through the crack of the door. The kind old man stated as we moved the branch out of the road a man from the other side of the ditch had gotten into our back seat and he flashed his lights and rode behind us to make sure nothing happened. He said when we parked the car and ran inside the man jumped the fence and ran through the other neighbors yard. It wasn’t a particularly long night, but scary. My life nearly ended.

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