Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Weird Inside the Beltway Things

So I have been thinking about life "inside the beltway" as we call things DC-centric here. There are a few things that I think would be very weird to those outside. First, is Line Standing. This is an actual occupation here in the DC area. Companies provide individuals to stand in line for Congressional hearings, which are often held in tiny rooms that fill up so you cannot get in. These companies charge upwards of $40/hour for line standing. Some employee college students (I would think would be the perfect candidates) but often, they are adults.

The other thing is slugging. Wikipedia tells me there are other cities that do this, but I have never heard of it outside of DC. The practice of slugging is used when there are many HOV traffic lanes during rush hour, and people need carpoolers. "Slugs" wait by designated stops near the entrance to the highway and get picked up as a way to speed up everyone's commute. I think it is such a cool idea. I don't know if I would ever do it (although I know people who have), out of fear of getting in a stranger's car. But in the DC area there have been no cases of slugging abuse ever documented. There is even a cool website that gives the appropriate etiquette for slugs and places where slug-lines are commonly found.

What is a unique thing in your area?


Julie said...

Even though I live "outside the beltway" and have for years and years I still find slugging to be such an odd thing.

You can also tell locals vs tourist by the way they refer to DC - as "downtown" or "the city".

Justice Jones said...

I love DC, it's so different than any other city. I used to live inside the beltway years ago, right over near Catholic University/Providence Hospital and never heard of either ritual. Slugging sounds pretty interesting but I agree, don't think I would ever try it. I would be interested in seeing slugging in action.

damon said...

Slugging? Never heard of it. But now I have yet another use for that blow-up doll in my closet. The HOV lane!

Courtney said...

Um, yeah, those both are foreign concepts to me. lol I can't think of anything especially unique like that to where I live...I have, however, had to sit and wait for cows to move out of the road when they got loose from a neighbors field. lol