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

Monday, April 27, 2009

Bridge T(r)olls.

At the corner of Purdy Avenue and 17th Street or the Venetian Causeway or whatever it's called right there, is a sign.

A sign from God?

No, my child; a temporary electric construction sign from the City of Miami Beach, or Miami-Dade County. You know the kind of signs - big, orange, notorious liars -- promising impossibly soon completion dates or warning of "mild" delays and "mild" inconveniences...

Signy McSignerson, my newest neighbor, is apparently a liar, AND a total jerk, flashing its jerky message with its yellowy-orange lying pixels.

The incredibly inconvenient fib this sign tells, is the following:


MAY 1 - MAY 30


Of course, I wrote it like that because each line is a one-third flash of the entire jerky lie.

Now, let's examine why this sign is 1) a jerk and 2) either a liar, or amazingly optimistic.

The Venetian Causeway (also known as NE 15th Street on the Mainland, then the Venetian Causeway, until it becomes 17th Street on the Beach) has two drawbridges, and a whole bunch of other bridges. The Westernmost Bridge is the larger of the two drawbridges, and the East Bridge is just... like, why is there even a drawbridge there? I mean the channel can't be THAT deep...

On the East side of the East Bridge, is Belle Island and Mainland Miami Beach.

On the West side of the East Bridge, going West, are Rivo Alto Island, DiLido Island, San Marco Island, "Bernice Steinbaum's House" Island, and "Pyramid-Apartment-And-House-With-The-Big-Birdcage" Island (or Biscayne Island. Whatever.) and then the Toll Booth and the West Bridge onto the Mainland.

Let me draw you a word picture, going West to East. Dashes connote Bridges:

Mainland - West Drawbridge - Toll Booth and Biscayne Island - Venetian Island - San Marco Island - DiLido Island - Rivo Alto Island - East Drawbridge - Belle Island - Miami Beach.

The closing of the East Bridge, for a MONTH, with tolls collected... in a word... SUCKS.

To illustrate my point, my friend lives on Belle Island and her parents live on DiLido Island. If my friend were to invite me to dinner at her parents' house, she would hop West over two toll-free bridges, and be there. I would hop West over three toll-free bridges and be there. Eating and laughter would ensue, and I would be sent home with a bag of cashews or some other bulk-food. Everybody wins and everybody is happy. The trip (for me) would take four minutes. Seven if the bridge went up. For my friend, it would take two minutes.

No one has to pay a toll, and no one has to drive twenty blocks to the next four-mile-long-causeway, to get off the Beach, drive three blocks North or twenty-one blocks South, and through a toll booth, to drive right back to the center of the Island chain.

Because that would be idiotic.

Except that on May 1, if my friend wants to visit her parents... who live literally four blocks away... she'll have to do that. My friend's parents, if they wanted to get to Epicure, will have to drive West to the Mainland, through the toll booth, up to the Tuttle or down to the McArthur, over either causeway, and then back up or down the Beach to Epicure.

And to add insult to injury, they're still collecting TOLLS.


I mean, they live on the Causeway, so they have the Resident pass, but STILL! I'd have to pay a toll to get to their house, after driving about a six or seven mile detour! When the trip is not more than 3/4ths of a mile! WHY ARE THEY STILL COLLECTING TOLLS?! They stopped when they were rebuilding the Toll Booths, and that was a damn-sight less inconvenient than this traffic hiccup!

So, that's why the sign is a Jerk. Because it's a harbinger of awful jerkiness and mind-blowing inconvenience.

It's a liar because it says the East Bridge will only be closed a Month. To me, that translates into four months. Because EVERYTHING here is ALWAYS delayed at least four months past its completion date.

How long has the 17th Avenue bridge been closed?!

'Nuff Said.

I can't wait till my horrible neighbors go away - both the lady under me with her bass, and the lying mean signs sitting outside my window...