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2004-10-22 - 8:15 a.m.

Rules of the Road in the Washington DC metro area

First, you must learn to call it by its rightful name. It is
D.C., or "the District". Only tourists call it Washington.
Next, if your road map of Montgomery County is more than a
few weeks old, throw it out and buy a ne w one. It's obsolete. If you are
Loudoun or Fairfax County and your map is one day old, it's already obsolete.
There is no such thing as a dangerous high speed chase in
D.C. It's just another chase, usually on the BW Parkway.

All directions start with "The Beltway"...which has no
beginning and no end, just one continuous loop that locals believe is somehow
clarified by an "inner" and "outer loop" designation. This makes no
sense to ANYONE outside the Beltway.

The morning rush hour is from 5 to 11 AM. The evening rush
hour is from 1 to 8 PM. Friday's rush hour starts Thursday
morning, especially during the summer on Route 50 eastbound.
If there is a ball game at the Reds kins stadium, there is no point in driving anywhere near PG County.
(Tip: Never say PG County to anyone from Mitchellville, Upper Marlboro, or Fort Washington.
They'll blow a vessel in their neck and go into a seizure.)

If you actually stop at a yellow light, you will be
rear-ended and shot at. If you run the red light, be sure to smile for the $100
"picture" you will receive courtesy of DMV.
(However, if you don't go as soon as the light turns green,
you will get cussed out in 382 languages, none of them English.)

Rain causes an immediate 50 point drop of IQ in drivers.
Snow causes an immediate 100 point drop in IQ and a rush to
the Giant for toilet paper and milk.
construction on I-270 is a way of life and a permanent
source of scorn and cynical entertainment. It's ironic that it's called an
"Interstate," but runs only from Bethesda to Frederick. (Unless
you consider Montgomery County another state, which some do).
Opening in the 60's, it has been torn up and under
construction ever since. Also, it has a "Spur" section which is even more confusing.

All une xplained sights are explained by the phrase, "Oh, we're in Takoma Park".
If someone actually has their turn signal on, they are by
definition, a tourist.
Car horns are actually "Road Rage" indicators. Heed the
warning. All old ladies in Buicks have the right of way in the area
of Leisure World.

Many roads mysteriously change their names as you cross
intersections. Don't ask why, no one knows.
If asking directions in Arlington, Langley Park, Wheaton or
Adams Morgan, you must know how to speak Spanish.
If in PG County, ebonics will be your best bet. In Annadale, a Cambodian or Vietnamese dialect will
come in handy. If on Dupont Circle, Capital Hill or U Street, a gay dialect
helps. If you stop to ask directions in Southeast... well just
A taxi ride across town will cost you $12.50.
A taxi ride two blocks will cost you 16.75.
(It's a zone thing, you wouldn't understand)
Traveling south out of DC on Interstate 395/95 is the most
dangerous, scariest thing you will ever do. There is nothing more
comforting then seven lanes of traffic cruising along at 85 mph, BUMPER TO

The minimum acceptable speed on the Beltway is 85. Anything
less is considered downright sissy.
The Beltway is our daily version of a NASCAR reality show.
Strap up and collect points as you go.

The open lane for pa ssing on all Maryland interstates is the
far right lane because no self-respecting Marylander would ever be caught
driving in the "slow" lane. Unofficially, both shoulders are
fair game. The far left lanes on all Maryland interstates are official
"chat" lanes reserved for drivers who wish to talk on their cell phones.
Note: All mini-vans have priority clearance to use the far left at
whatever speed the driver feels most comfortable multi-tasking in.

If it's 10 degrees, it's Orioles' opening day. If it's 110
degrees, it's the Skins opening day.
If the humidity is 90+ and the temperature is 90+, then it's
May, June, July, August and sometimes September.
If you go to a Skins football game, pay the $75.00 to park in
the Stadium lot. It's cheaper then getting towed or a citation.
By law, you're not allowed to walk on the "public" roads
around the stadium during game days.



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