As everybody probably knows by now, the 405 will start closing at 7:00pm tonight, and will continue to be closed until early Monday morning. People are reacting like it’s the end of the world

It’s not.

First of all, this is happening on the weekend. People aren’t going to and from work. Yes, folks in the Valley take the 405 to get to the beach, but it’s going to be 70 degrees and cloudy. It’s not beach weather, anyway.

The people worst hit will be the ones west of the 405, stuck taking Topenga Canyon over the hill. And do you know who lives west of the 405?


That’s why we keep hearing about how terrible this shut down is going to be.

These are the people who consider the 405 the dividing line between the west and east side of Los Angeles. Look at this map from the LA Times, and tell me that makes sense. They think downtown is the eastern edge of the city. (Traditionally, the river divided the city, a demarcation that, apparently, only the gangs still respect.)

There are plenty of options for those of us in the remaining three-quarters of Los Angeles. Traffic will certainly pick up in the canyons between the Sepulveda and Cahuenga passes (Coldwater, Laurel, Beverly Glen), but seriously, how big of a hurry are you in on a Saturday afternoon?

Besides, there are other ways around traffic.

But none of that counts if some spoiled brat in Westwood has to wait an extra fifteen minutes to get to memaw’s house in Calabasas. So, we have to keep hearing about the looming Carpocalypse.1

Here’s my prediction for this weekend– nothing will happen. Most people will be cowering in their homes, even more terrified of traffic than usual. The worst that will happen is someone will freak out, Falling Down-style.

Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. Rejected alternatives to “carmageddon” included: Book of Carevelation, Day of Wreckoning, REVelation, and Autoomsday.
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5 Responses

  1. …And the reason there isn’t any traffic? It’s because all the assholes who cause it live in the fucking valley…

  2. There was a similar panic as the Summer Olympics approached LA back in 1984 — summer traffic, already bad, would surely slow to terminal gridlock with the influx of visitors from abroad. Life as we knew it would come to a grinding halt. I believed it too, and shuddered as the day drew near… but the result was the best two or three weeks in the modern history of LA. Apparently all the natives left town, because the streets and freeways were clear and free-flowing for the entire run of the Olympics.

    I’m not saying this weekend won’t be all fucked up — it probably will — but it’s a minor problem for a very limited period of time.

    Besides, I’m already out of town…

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