Testing out my new stickers
Tuesday, Oct 25, 2005
Stickers have a strange power as physical manifestations of moral, ethical, or otherwise societal accolades. Whether it's a gold star on your 5th grade spelling quiz or a donor sticker on your drivers license, stickers make us feel things, and sometimes they grant us permissions as well.

Last Saturday I got my HOV (carpool) access stickers for my Prius, meaning I can drive in carpool lanes during restricted hours even if I'm by my lonesome. The stickers, annoyingly orange to clash with my red car (which still doesn't have a name after two years!), say "ACCESS OK" and are visible from each side of my vehicle. It's sort of a holier than thou priviledge, especially when you consider that my mileage would actually be better in slow traffic than in the carpool lane, flipping the stats of the average vehicle. Nevertheless, if the law uses this carrot to encourage hybrid sales, who am I to argue. I'm even reducing gridlock by one car.

The trouble is that I rarely commute during these peak hours. I usually leave for work at 9 when the lane ends, and I leave work after 7 when they end again. Yesterday I raced out of my last meeting to clean off the corners of my car, apply the stickers, and get on the road in time to jump into the diamond lane a few minutes before everyone else could, but I ended up getting on the freeway at 7:03 for no joy.

It's 5:25 now and I'm making a point of coming home early to test the power of four thin pieces of yellow plastic that get me home faster than if I had a 160mph sportscar. Ironically, this is life in the fast lane.

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Hi, I'm Kevin Fox.
I've been blogging at since 1998.
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I've led design at Mozilla Labs, designed Gmail 1.0, Google Reader 2.0, FriendFeed, and a few special projects at Facebook.

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