The light turned green and nobody moved. There was no nowhere to go. Gridlock was the defining feature of this morning’s commute.
Perhaps, with Irma breathing down Florida’s panhandle, people are flooding north to evade North America’s next impending hurricane. I didn’t see too many out-of-state license plates, but Twitter is abuzz with warnings of how bad the traffic is all the way from Orlando to Atlanta. It could be that today’s trouble stems from an accident on highway 400 or 20 or 285 (the worst). Or maybe the random lanes that were being closed in the middle of the crush rendered Peachtree Road such a mess.
Who knows why. This is Atlanta.
When You Just Can’t Take It Anymore
Anyone who has ever driven in Atlanta won’t be surprised to hear that we have the 4th worst traffic in the US and the 9th worst in the world.
They were “profiting from my suffering” by alleviating it!
Unfortunately, that little factoid comes as little comfort when you are pulling your hair out, screaming “go,” and wishing to the heavens that the long line of cars in front of you would just get out of the way, because you’re trying to get to work or anywhere they keep caffeine. Did I mention that you haven’t had breakfast yet?
Then, when you begin to feel that you just can’t take it anymore, you see a man strolling confidently down the sidewalk. He’s holding a sign. It’s Chick-fil-A and they’re hocking chicken biscuits for $3 to temporarily stranded motorists – my heroes!
My hanger is cured! I can hang on a little longer, be a little more patient. Maybe I’ll even let that sedan with their blinker on turn out in front of me.
I Didn’t Even Know They Cared
It was very enterprising of Chick-fil-A to come to my rescue in this manner. Somehow, without my telling a soul, they knew that I was in traffic, hungry, losing my patience, but unwilling to lose my precious spot in line to seek out breakfast. They solved that problem for me. And in return, they received three of my precious hard-earned dollars, a fair trade.
Yes, they were “taking advantage” and “profiting from my suffering”: by alleviating it! This is what entrepreneurs do: find gaps in satisfaction and step in to fill the breach. This is especially welcome in situations in which bureaucratic pains like mismanaged roads so frequently create gaps.
Now, if only we could figure out a safe way to get Chick-fil-A, Starbucks, and Taco Bell onto the 75 South during the next jam.