Welcome to Atlanta where the playas play.

…And we make on average sixteen u-turns per day.

Okay, so I made that statistic up. Let’s not lose track of the point of this discussion, though, and it is: turn lanes are awesome. To give you a little bit of background I am currently in Lithia Springs which is about fifteen miles outside of Atlanta (that’s a rough estimate, and I’m too lazy to try to corroborate the claim, so if it’s wrong, whatever), and today an interesting thing happened to me. I discovered that many times in order to get where I want to go I have to pass it and turn around at the next intersection. The first time it happened I was very much of the mindset “oh, well don’t I look like a silly non-native who doesn’t know where he is going” but then it happened again. And again. To more than just me.
Here is a transcript of my second most recent u-turn:

Me: one
Me: two
Me: threE
Me: fouR
Me: fiVE
Me: sIX

That was me counting the cars that made a u-turn instead of turning left from the left turn lane. That count started with the first car in the queue. That’s right, folks, eight cars in a row made a u-turn in the left turn lane, myself included, as well as two cars behind me. I counted. Out loud. Quite enthusiastically. Three of us went on to turn right into the Wal-Mart parking lot, presumably to purchase alcohol so that we could drink ourselves into a dream where there were actually turn lanes that people could use to get into various businesses without the need to drive a street too far.

WTF, South? It’s things like not having left turn lanes that probably lost you the war.