Driving 'green,' Detroit style

A funny thing happened on the way to work Thursday…I ran into traffic.

That doesn’t happen much any more here in Detroit. Not enough Detroiters left working to slow traffic much, let alone stop it up.

OK, so it took a real fluke to recreate a good old-fashioned traffic jam. An armored car lost its load on southbound I-75, spraying thousands of bills across all lanes of the main artery into downtown Detroit (for the non-Motown crowd, that’s the Chrysler Freeway near the Ford Freeway. For conspiracy fans, the cash spill was on a direct line between General Motors and Chrysler headquarters).

Taxpayers may be propping up GM and Chrysler these days, but believe me, these days, in Detroit, cash -- actual green, folding money -- can draw a crowd. A big one. It took nine police cars to keep onlookers from hopping the fence while the armored-car guys ran around stuffing blowing bills into big plastic bags.

And instantly, we had a traffic jam again. Stop and go. Without construction cones. All the way from central Detroit out to the suburbs. I had 45 extra minutes to ponder when Detroit rush hours were last this jammed up.

Too long.

Lately, the road is full-speed all the way. I have days when my garage to the office run is a mile-a-minute even counting time on local roads.

I’m not eager to lengthen my commute. But it would be nice to have a little more company.

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