64 Worst: Left Turn Signals Vs. Parking At Trader Joes

March 28, 2008 at 9:18 am in 64 Worst


So far many of these “64 worst things about LA” posts have been about something that sucks, well I’ve got two things that are awesome, unfortunately we we don’t have nearly enough of them. Left turn signals and parking spots at Trader Joes.

A little over a year ago I was asked by The LA Times what the biggest problem facing LA in 2007 would be and obviously my answer was the city’s bias against people turning left and sadly the situation isn’t much better today. We’ve got major streets and major intersections all over the city but in most cases it’s easier to shoot past the street you want to turn left at and then make 3 right turns rather than sit at a light for what will certainly be hours trying to make a signalless left turn. Who was it who decided that these things weren’t important for LA when all the stop lights were being put in? They are all over the rest of the world in ample supply, but in LA not so much. I know people who purposely map out every single trip across town so that they never have to turn left just because it’s such a nightmare. True story.

But no tale of the haves and the have nots would be complete without talking about the parking that Trader Joes does not have. This is truly a Los Angeles paradox because everything inside the store makes you want to go, but everything outside makes you want to run screaming away. The problem wouldn’t be so major if the food Trader Joes sold wasn’t so damn tasty and inexpensive. Every time I go there I’m amazed at what I was able to pick up, but going there requires massive planning and scheduling to make sure that the least possible other people in LA might be there at the same time. And it’s not just that there aren’t enough spots – lots of places in LA have fewer parking spots than they should, but Trader Joes goes a step further by introducing the bottleneck. It’s almost as if they were designed that way on purpose, but getting into the lots to begin with is next to impossible, and then getting out.. well lets just say I advise against buying frozen perishable items if you drive there.

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