Don't you just hate traffic? And don't you wish there was just one easy step we could all take to, you know, make it less sucky? Well one man thinks he has landed on a radical solution to our congestion woes and yesterday took to the pages of the Chronicle to proclaim it far and wide. But what could this amazing idea possibly be, you ask? Brace yourself: We all take turns working from home.
Ed Cohen, who notes that he moved to San Jose five months ago from North Carolina, explains that his daily commute to Santa Clara involves a 45 minute drive each way and that this is just patently insane.
"Everyone I’ve talked with — and that includes [KQED traffic reporter Joe] McConnell — says traffic here is as bad as it’s ever been," observes Cohen. "And McConnell’s been a traffic reporter here since 1987. Enough," he declares — the exasperation practically jumping off the page.
But just exactly how would this work? Surely working from home has been tried before, right? Someone, somewhere, must have attempted it — and yet we still have traffic. Once again, Cohen to the rescue.
"It’s simple: a voluntary program by which people agree to work from home one day a week," he explains. "We can devise an online registration system to divide up the days, so not everyone can sign up for Friday or Monday."
Cohen urges you to sign a petition pledging your support, promising that we can all expect to see "faster commutes" and "better air quality" as just a few of the immediate benefits.
"But wait," you're likely thinking, "what about all those people whose jobs require them to physically be somewhere?" Cohen has had that thought too, and he addresses it in his proposal.
"Obviously, not everyone can work from home," he writes. "Cashiers, surgeons, truck drivers and the Golden State Warriors come to mind. But in the digital age, many others, especially office workers, could. I could. I think everyone in my building could."
In a rousing finish, he implores the good citizens of the Bay Area to rise to the occasion and make his work-from-home dreams a reality.
"We can do this, Bay Area. In a region that boasts of being the smartest, most forward-thinking, tech-savvy place on Earth, it’s amazing we haven’t already."
Amazing indeed. Though the entire piece begs the question: if he can work from home five days a week, why doesn't he just do that? Then we'd all know for sure that the actions of Ed Cohen were most certainly and successfully reducing Bay Area traffic. By at least one car, anyway.