Sphincter Spotlight: Louisiana DOTD

Sphincter SpotlightThe Department of Transportation and Development is nothing but a bunch of sadistic jerks who like redesigning highways just to screw with Louisiana’s less-than-intelligent drivers.

DOTD LogoCase in point: The new J-turns nearing completion in Ascension Parish.

What kind of perverted bastard gave the green light to install such an obviously overcomplicated feature in multiple spots along Airline Highway in Prairieville?

The $1.4 million state project replaces traditional left turns at some of the parish’s busiest intersections with these so-called J-turns, which are like really super-complex U-turns with traffic lights and lanes in the median to hold vehicles waiting to make turns.

Why not just give drivers a pop quiz on quantum mechanics instead? The typical Louisiana driver would have a better chance at acing it than figuring out how a goddam J-turn works.

Instead of turning left at the intersection like most people are accustomed to, drivers must counterintuitively drive past the intersection, use the J-turn down the road in the median, then go back to the intersection from the opposite direction, and turn right.

Why not just give drivers a pop quiz on quantum mechanics instead? The typical Louisiana driver would have a better chance at acing it than figuring out how a goddam J-turn works.

As The Advocate reported this weekend, the partially completed project has been met with lots of consternation and criticism from local commuters and business owners.

“There’s no explanation of what’s going on. It’s an accident waiting to happen,” Paige Borskey told The Advocate. And she’s right.

Thanks to DOTD, Louisiana highways are looking more like scenes from Mad Max movies.
Thanks to DOTD, Louisiana highways are looking more like scenes from Mad Max movies.

The story mentions how drivers in a dedicated J-turn lane on the far left at one particular intersection are being cut off by impatient drivers in the dedicated left turn lane immediately to their right. Instead of turning left as state highway officials and the big-ass white arrow on the roadway say they should, these poor, mentally impaired drivers are making U-turns and damn nearly colliding with the legally prescribed J-turn traffic on their left.

It’s like a post-apocalyptic hellscape in Ascension Parish, all thanks to those debased SOBs at DOTD!

What kind of sick f–k thought it would be fun to watch area drivers – who have yet to master simple tasks such as using turn signals and headlights after dark – try to navigate their way through these taxpayer-funded labyrinths?

Sure, a 2009 U.S. Department of Transportation report based on computer modeling found that J-turns allow traffic to move through main arteries more efficiently by eliminating the need to reserve time for left turns in traffic light cycles.

But unless those computers took into account the intelligence (or lack thereof) of the vehicle operators, the models aren’t worth sh-t. After all, that was a nationwide study. This is Louisiana’s Ascension Parish we’re talking about here.

Now, of course, Ascension Parish has one of the best school systems in the state, and one might be inclined to think the people there should be able to figure out how J-turns work.

Even the name J-turn can be confounding to lots of drivers. It assumes that they know the entire alphabet.

However, this is still Louisiana. Thinking people are smart just because they have the best school system in Louisiana is like thinking the Nobel Prize for chemistry should go to the winner of the Special Olympics.

Even the name J-turn can be confounding to lots of drivers. It assumes that they know the entire alphabet.

At least the name U-turn sounds somewhat intuitive. It implies that “you” get to turn there.

J-turn, on the other hand, could be interpreted in all sorts of ways by people who aren’t sharp enough to figure out that the turns are named that because they’re designed to result in an upside-down J shape.

“But what if my name’s not Jay? I don’t get to turn?” ponders one hypothetical moron with a driver’s license.

“J-turns? What, they pass out doobies at the red light?” queries a stoner behind the wheel.

As 22-year-old bank security guard Jarell Matthew told The Advocate in reference to the new J-turns as he was pumping gas, “It’s jacked up.”

Yes, Jarell, it is indeed “jacked up.”  Thanks for clarifying what the J really stands for.RedShtick-Top-ColumnStop

About Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff
A random collection of overqualified, underachieving smartasses.

Check Also

SPHINCTER SPOTLIGHT: Haters of Tasha Clark-Amar, Council on Aging Executive Director

Haters, like the media, state ethics watchdogs, and people with a sense of decency, need to lay off Tasha Clark-Amar.