I'm a little slow today. I just switched to Sanka. So...have a heart?

Monday, January 22, 2007

What's that Road Called?

I, as usual, have a gripe.

In Miami and the Tri-County area (or quad-county area), I'm used to each road having at least three names. There's the Name Name, like Red Road, there's the Number Name like 57th Avenue, and then there's the State Road Name, like how Douglas Road (37th Avenue) is State Road 9 or 41 or something.

Okay, whatever. Only in Broward do people ever refer to State Road and even there, I feel like the only road anyone ever calls that, is State Road 7. And in Miami, eventually you learn the name and the number. Douglas, Le Jeune, Pioneer, Flagler Street, Coral Way, Kendall Drive, Unity Boulevard, Milam Dairy, Miller, Ingraham/Main/Whatever...

And you learn that the designation N.E., N.W., S.E., (there are very few S.E. streets, because of the geography of Dade County near the Flagler-South Miami Ave intersection that serves as the middle of the grid) and S.W. each have VERY important connotations.

Oh, sure, there are places like Hialeah, where suddenly you're on West 4th Avenue, and it's like God picked up the North-South, East-West grid and turned it 38 degrees, causing you complete confusion, but who cares about Hialeah anyway? And if you get lost in the Gables, with our Streets all named after villages in Spain, well, you didn't belong here anyway. Go back to Kendall.

And then there's Route 1.

Route 1 is the same Route 1 that winds from Maine to Key West. Where I'm from, it's called Route 1, or Maryland 301. Nothing else. It's Route 1. In Florida, that goddamn street has so. many. fucking. names, ALL IN FOUR COUNTIES, it's sort of ridiculous.

Where I am, it's South Dixie Highway, and a little farther south, it is now, apparently named the Palmetto Parkway (Gay.) I'm sure it changes names again further South towards Homestead, and then I think it becomes "Route 1" again after Florida City, before becoming "Overseas Highway." From South Dixie Highway North, (probably starting just after Vizcaya, and north onto Brickell) it's Biscayne Boulevard, cutting its spliced and perpendicularly-angled route through downtown Miami, and then North, where it remains Biscayne. Then, somewhere around North Miami, or Ft. Lauderdale, something terrible happens.

There are all these... incarnations of the Name. I truly have no idea what the following roads are: A1A, Federal Highway, Dixie Highway, South Dixie Highway, Route 1... I think they're all the same, but I'm never sure. And Sheridan street confuses me, because then it seems like they're NOT all the same road. And Mapquest, which gives you like fifty a/k/a names for ANY other road besides Route One, will say, "Turn onto State Road 1, Federal Highway."

Oh, sure, that'd be alllll well and good if the Streets were Marked that! But sometimes it'll say Dixie Highway, when Mapquest tells you Federal. And sometimes it tells you that you're on A1A and you don't know whether that's Rt. 1 or not. And sometimes, when you're north of Broward Boulevard, and between Oakland Park and Broward, it's some fresh hell of a windy freakshow that briefly winds onto like Griffin Road.

In Richmond, it's the Jefferson Davis Highway.

And even up in Boston, where the family lives off this Goddamn road, as it cuts through Wrentham, Foxboro, Walpole, Sharon and Norwood, it's called the "Norwood Automile."

So, I say unto ye, Mighty Route 1, figure your shit out. You don't have to be Boston Post Road, or the Overseas Highway... what's so wrong about just being "Route 1?" Hmm? What's so hard in that? I daresay it'd make the whole eighteen day trip up you, from Key West to Madawaska, Maine a bit more pleasant...


The end.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. You are doing a public service and reading my mind at the same time.

8:22 PM

Blogger Rootietoot said...

I would be paralyzed.
Of course, this town I live in now, East Bumfart, only has 9 streetnames. Not because there's 9 streets, but because there's East Main, West Main, North Main and South Main. Also E,W,N,S College, and Zetter, and Jones,Grady, Fair, and some others. I guess they got a bulk discount on street signs if all the streets had the same name.

You learn to navigate by landmark rather than map directions.

No lie- Word Verification sez:

6:12 AM

Blogger dmbmeg said...


Girls were hot, wearing less than bikinis

Rockman lovers driving Lambourghinis

6:18 AM

Blogger SuperBee said...

Anon - I'm glad to know other people feel this way too.

RT - It's not that bad... you learn to navigate by Landmark here too, until somehow, by osmosis, the street names become known to you... Still, Route 1 is a VERY. MAJOR. STREET (I imagine it probably runs close to you in Georgia as well... or at least not excessively far away) and it would be nice if it only had one name - especially in Broward. I can handle Biscayne and South Dixie. The other incarnations involving other letters, numbers and Federal designations really throw me. Also, nice word verification. :) Mine is Ozwidio.

Meg - is that Vanilla Ice, 2LiveCrew or Pitbull?

7:20 AM

Blogger Andy said...


7:49 AM

Blogger Laura said...

Oh superbee! I'm disappointed in you. You don't recognize Vanilla Ice when you here it???

Perhaps this will jog your memory. The song starts with:

All right stop collaborate and listen
Ice is back with my brand new invention...


8:17 AM

Blogger SuperBee said...

Laura - I THOUGHT it was Vanilla Ice, but I wasn't sure. That's why I started off with him.

Secondly - you remember me in 6th grade. Was I in any condition to listen to Vanilla Ice? No. I was too busy not bathing and stomping through streams to try to find frogs.

If you'll recall, I was a VERY strange child.

9:04 AM

Blogger Yvette said...

Oh, SuperBee, at least US1 runs in a straight line, unlike circuitous Route 9, which has all of these names within about 5 linear miles, from Boston to Newton:

Boylston Street --> Avenue of the Arts --> Huntington Avenue --> Boylston Street --> Route 9

From Key West to the mouth of I-95, it's entirely appropriate to refer to the whole thing as US1 (forget all the other names!). BUT, if you really want to have fun, ask the typical Miamian whether location X is on the Northbound or the Southbound side of US1. You'll find that our little pea brains can only process the concepts of "East of the highway" and "West of the highway". We are apparently not bright enough to recognize that the highway, therefore, runs North to South.

(And when I die, I want to be buried on Little Diamond Island, ME.)

4:31 PM

Blogger SuperBee said...

When are we grabbing a nice glass of Prosecco, Yvette? :)

ALTHOUGH... I will say that between the end of 95 and probably Dadeland, because US 1 curves angles down, North or South of the Highway is still a valid question, even though it roughly translates to East or West. (West usually being North, and East being South...)

5:10 PM

Anonymous lauren said...

two words: calle ocho

7:50 AM

Blogger Yvette said...

SuperBee, I am sad, sad, sad to say that I, who love all yummy sparkly liquids, have never had prosecco. I hope you'll let me know when you're in the mood! There's a link to my e-mail address in my Blogger profile.

9:50 AM

Blogger SuperBee said...

As soon as I've worked off these last few pounds and my six-pack starts coming into focus.. I think I'll be good to resume heavy drinking again. :) And then we'll make plans!

11:04 AM

Blogger Yvette said...

I'm too much of a lightweight for heavy drinking, I think, but I'll look forward to drinking with you and your sixpack, when the time comes. As long as my sixpack can stay where it currently hides and you don't make it feel bad about being shy.

4:22 PM


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