Parked in Boston

With sales tax, registration, and license-plate fees, the new car I just bought cost $2,000 less than my first house.

But this is not about housing. It's about the American love affair with cars - no matter how homely the driving conditions.

Let the record show two things: (1) I'm not that old; (2) I bought a sports car because I never owned one before and I want to go fast.

It's not one of those high-priced German machines that help Deutschland auto workers start with six weeks paid vacation.

It has just the right power under the hood - to keep the heater in winter and the air conditioner in summer running smoothly while stalled in Boston traffic. The seven-speaker stereo system and power sunroof are mandatory options for gridlock.

Virtual reality on the Web may be new to many folks, but rush-hour traffic in Boston tangles drivers in a real web, not a virtual one.

The Big Dig that you've read about - where 12 billion federal tax dollars (more yours than ours) go to tunnel 3-1/2 miles of new road in the cradle of the American Revolution - is really the Big Park: all bumpers and backup lights.

So the idea of a "personalized virtual traffic reporter" that Eric Evarts writes about (page 12), welcome as it may be on any of 100 Los Angeles freeways, strikes this Boston driver as a used-car salesman selling time shares to Ponce de Len's Fountain of Youth now relocated to Shangri-La.

Maybe a high-tech gadget on my dashboard linked to GPS navigation systems will read the number of cellphone calls from other cars so I'll know where traffic is flowing. But in car-dense Boston, all that gear will just be coming to a car I'm parked in.

*Comments or questions?


(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
QR Code to Parked in Boston
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today