With a nod to W.C. Fields, let me say I spent a month on the LIE yesterday afternoon. Fields said the same of a weekend in Philadelphia.
One car had a bumper sticker that read, “I Drive the LIE, Pray for Me.” I will. However, I will not pray for the nitwit guy in the pickup truck splattered with bumper stickers that read, “Eat Shit” and, “Looking for a hot lunch? Eat My Shit”. Now there’s a fella who is not getting enough oxygen.
The LIE, full name Long Island Expressway, is a 71-mile stretch of highway that was built from 1939 to 1972 and first opened to traffic in 1940. I would imagine when it was first built it provided more than enough room for those rambling along its surface.
Not so today.
Today, it tests the limits of those with the greatest patience and, if you’ll permit me, calls into question the sanity of those who live within its grasp and pay large amounts of money to reside in settings that require steady doses of the LIE experience.
What I get a kick out of (though I must confess there is bit of a mean streak deep inside me that would like to run the little shits off the road) are drivers that swerve in and out of lanes as fast as they can to gain a car length and put life at risk. What exactly travels through the mind of someone that jumps from one lane to another in a burst of speed only to discover they are merely one care length ahead in a line of cars that is so long it extends through several time zones?
I do like Long Island very much, once I am here. It is the getting here and the leaving here that makes me long for country quiet and a cup of mint tea.