Chet Skwarcan is an award-winning engineer, writer, and industry innovator in the field of traffic engineering. He is known for leveraging his creativity, logic, and technology to solve today’s engineering challenges.

Untrue Traffic Fiction

The Universe is Expanding — Hang in There

If you ask a dozen people to name their number one traffic complaint, you get 13 different answers. Some mention roundabouts, some mention new development, and one guy answers twice.

Sometimes I feel sorry for “traffic.” Complaining about traffic is simply too handy. And traffic is a safe topic. If two people can’t agree about anything else, they most certainly agree about all that traffic and become fast friends and start planning their camping trip.

Yet, when faced with serious challenges, or when you can’t find your socks (look behind the sofa), traffic “problems” instantly fade to the background. But the rest of the time, when all our ducks are in the same basket and life is good, our human nature insists we need something to complain about. And I have just the thing: Traffic! The traffic in front of my house is horrible— and that new housing development adds even more traffic (and by the way, I’m so glad MY housing development didn’t add any traffic). And oh yeah, all those stores I shop at have horrific traffic congestion — and try to find a parking spot. Where is all this traffic coming from? Why can’t everybody stay home? Hang in there — the universe is expanding — and that alone will eventually solve the traffic problem…

But in the meantime, let me suggest a simple trick. Stay home. Or, do what I do. When you feel it’s taking way too long to get somewhere, break it down into 2-hour increments. All of a sudden instead of taking 90 minutes to get to work, you arrive in a mere 1.5 increments. Or in my case, even though I can see my office from my house, I can get there in less than one increment. Try it. Report back.

And remember, it’s never too late to modify your mindset about traffic. Wait, how old are you?

Chet Skwarcan (traffic engineer, author, unique insights) with over 25 years of traffic engineering experience — online help available at or leave a note on my door.