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[I]n our democracy, 1% of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation’s income … In terms of wealth rather than income, the top 1% control 40% … [as a result] the top 1% have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn’t seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99% live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1% eventually do learn. Too late. (^
Joseph Stiglitz (May 2011). “Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%”. Vanity Fair.)

Three cheers for the one percenters who don’t even live in my neighborhood! There are now four way stop signs at the top of the Road to Nowhere. On the plus side, residents are no longer taking their lives into their own hands by driving down the street. Park patrons now are required by law to stop before leaving the park and turning onto the Road to Nowhere.

Unfortunately, residents have to stop. Every single time, regardless of other motorists. In fact, most of the time residents travel along this street there is no “cross traffic.” It is the exception, and not the rule, to see pedestrians in the crosswalk, or cars attempting to cross the Road to Nowhere.

Yet our fine city has painted the blacktop with warnings of impending stop signs. Sandwich boards litter the area with warnings of traffic control changes up ahead. Today I stopped at a stop sign on my own street eight times. There were no other cars. Ever.

I’m so glad I can suffer for the stupidity of the 1% who travel my neighborhood. The 1% who can’t read or comprehend huge yellow signs stating that cross traffic does not stop. The 1% who believe the crosswalk is a stop bar. The 1% who create a backlog of traffic during the fall and spring. It’s not that many months out of the year that sports attract traffic. Even then, it’s mostly on weekends. Residents now get to stop all day, every day, sports traffic or not.

I know I’m being whiny. What’s a stop sign? Not a big deal in the grand scheme of things. It’s just annoying to have to stop while going in and out of my neighborhood when I never had to before. All because of the 1% who don’t even live here.

As I was trying to get used to having to stop for no one, I went to the store. Everything there has changed too! All of the small fridges next to the registers have been taken out. I did find one but it was completely out of Diet Coke bottles. Who are the 1% of shoppers so opposed to fridges full of bottled soda that they have been taken out?

What am I supposed to do while I wait for the Halloween parade to start? Walk further to the gas station for bottled goodness? A better question is what am I going to do to celebrate my happy anniversary? I could have bought a six pack of smaller bottles. All I really wanted was two cold ones from the fridge. Looks like 15 years of married bliss will come with canned Diet Coke and hot dogs for dinner, baby! At least we went out for dinner last night.

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