Roger Marolt: Time to spread traffic jam on a thick slice of Texas toast
Sure, we could make lemonade out of lemons, but I don’t think a dose of vitamin C and puckered lips are what we need right now. I’m thinking we need to distill some hard cider out of the bumper crop of rotten apples that have fallen all over our streets.
Here we have this otherwise awesome offseason going on and we have to deal with the Mobility Petri Dish construction traffic. I don’t know about you, but … strike that. I actually do know about you. Late summer and autumn are incredible around here, but this prize time of year also passes nervous-twitch-eye-blink quickly, too. It’s not like blink and you miss it. It’s more like you see its tail end heading south as your eyelids are still on their way down. Missing any of this time because you’re stuck in traffic drives you crazy.
It’s bad enough that this dust and rumble through our identity-defining bottleneck of cars is happening now. It’s made all the worse because the fabulous spring offseason was ruined by orange cones, tractors, trucks, noise and radiator-blowing traffic, too. It has made me realize that it is now a toss-up between which is more frustrating, Christmas week or this modern version offseason. Honestly, at least we’re making good money during Christmas week. It stinks to have to drive to town enduring traffic these days to more or less unlock the doors and turn on the lights.
We like to say, “so what are you gonna do?” It’s a copout. But, what are we going to do? Construction is a reality that we do not have any control over, or at least there is scant evidence that we do.
I’m tired of being ticked off. My fuse is burnt to the end. If I don’t let off some steam soon, I’m likely to write an anonymous op-ed about the Skadron administration, exposing how boring skinning up ski mountains really is! OK, it is good training, but what does that get you?
I’m getting detoured here. That’s that last thing I wanted!
Sneaking back into the HOV lane: let’s have a freakin’ street party! We may not be able to drive on the end of Main Street, but those orange cones don’t mean “No Dancing.” Let’s have a street dance right out in front of the Hickory House. I mean, it’s like, if we have one ounce of decent blood running through our collectively road-raged and haggard bodies, we will do this for no other reason than it would help out a dear friend.
Our dear friend is the Hickory House. It’s iconic. It’s one of the few affordable, funky, delicious, old restaurants in our town. It’s chain gang headquarters. It’s also more recently known as the local business that has been hammered harder than the busted up and replaced concrete curbs in the S-curves. They have more or less been washed down the gutter for two consecutive offseasons. Do you think Prada could endure that? How about the Caribou Club? Absolutely not! It’s a good thing the folks at the Hick House are as tough as their pulled pork is tender.
This could be great! Both offseasons of 2017 have been marred by massively maddening construction projects. Let’s do something to build a little community instead of a redundant bike path. We didn’t get any fireworks on Fourth of July. Maybe we can launch some off at the base of Shadow Mountain now. I’m sure someone at the Fire Department has a box of them in their closet somewhere. We couldn’t have any campfires all summer, so let’s have a bonfire now. Maybe a toast with a cold draught is just what we need to break the sweltering drought, just as winter starts thinking about booking a vacationing here again.
Come on, city of Aspen, have a heart. It seems like you’ve gotten in the habit of busting our balls and have forgotten how to have one. Let us know you care about us who have to drive every day through this mess we are making primarily to attract tourists. You spent $50 grand for a new logo. Can’t you spring for a barbecue and a little entertainment for your peeps? It’s not going to take much planning. Hire the Hick House to cater this thing! Show us some love! More and more it seems like you are hell-bent on becoming The Man. How about being our buddy again? Just for old times’ sake.
Roger Marolt hopes this community reward for patience happens quickly, while the weather is still great. Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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