Not to make light of Michael Jackson's death but one positive thing did come from his passing. Today was by far the lightest traffic day I have ever encountered on my way to work. Amazingly, it really should have been the exact opposite. I work about five blocks from the Staples Center, the site of today's Michael Jackson memorial. There were numerous announcements of street closures due to the event. They were not even going to let people with in a few blocks of Staples Center just to keep the crowds under control. Given all this, I was fearful of what my commute would be like today.
But much to my surprise the freeways were completely empty. I'm not kidding, it looked like a Saturday afternoon in downtown L.A. Heck it looked better than a Saturday and I should know considering how many Saturdays I've worked lately. Ironically, those who took the train in told me that the trains were pretty crowded in the morning. The only think I can guess is that everyone was so afraid of how bad traffic would be, nobody decided to drive in. That made it very easy for those of us who decided to drive in (or who had no choice).
I very much doubt that all those people could take the day off or simply work from home. So what it really tells me is that L.A. traffic would not be nearly as bad if they really could just find a way to promote public transportation.