Summertime. And the livin' is easy.
Once you get off work and navigate the road construction on your way home, and then again as you head out for the entertainment destination of your choice.Speaking of road construction, is it just me, or does anyone else feel that the number of dead ends has now exceeded the number of through-roads?
Or that secret night crews have been hired to exchange "closed" and "exit" signs when no one is looking?
And has any other northbound driver gone past the 600 South exit, thinking it was just a makeshift gravel road for construction workers? And then you get into North Salt Lake before you're able to exit the freeway and turn around?
What we really need on the freeway these days are a few U-turn exits.
But I digress . . .
Anyway, warm weather ( . . . make that hot weather) has finally arrived, and the outdoors beckons - from cool, breezy mountains to green city parks to local swimming holes . . .
And as you travel to those areas . . . has anyone else noticed the number of roads lined with orange cones, but there doesn't seem to be anything going on? That is, a posted sign says, "Right lane closed ahead," and you see the cones that close off that lane, and traffic slows down - but then you notice that the road is in fine shape, and no one is working there!
A couple of weeks ago, the right lane on southbound Highland Drive, from 45th South to 48th South, was closed for an entire weekend, which considerably slowed traffic headed to the Cottonwood Mall. But there were no workers in sight - and there was nothing wrong with the road.
Then, on Monday, workers finally showed up.
They removed the cones and left!
At times it feels like some sort of sadistic maze.
But I digress again . . .
On the entertainment front, which is, of course, what this column is supposed to be about, live theater is in full swing, summer concert series have begun and there are even a few movies in theaters worth checking out.
Of course, when you settle in to channel surf on your cable or satellite system or over-the-airwaves channels before calling it a night, there ain't much there.
For some reason, television is just the opposite of every other form of entertainment. Stage shows, concerts and movies all strive to bring the next big blockbuster to audiences during the summer. But TV programming just settles into a slump.
It doesn't matter how many times NBC says, "If you haven't seen it, it's new to you." It's still a rerun!
How bad is it? I'm starting to really enjoy the Telemundo network - and I don't speak Spanish!
Frustrated at the lack of TV choices, you hop in the car for a late-night snack, and find that you have to serpentine all over the road to avoid driving into a pothole that might swallow up your vehicle whole!
And if you stop at a red light, the guy behind you starts honking his horn as if you've violated a law. Not that it's his fault, mind you. He's just frustrated because he took a short cut through Sugarhouse and found himself unable to turn at the traffic signal that would take him home.
Digress, digress, digress . . .
There are also lots of alternative forms of entertainment around.
Take the Utah Starzz, for example. Have you noticed on the 10 o'clock news, when the sportscasters show WNBA clips, how empty the Delta Center looks? But the Starzz are actually kind of fun to watch in person. And the tickets are pretty cheap (especially compared to Jazz tickets).
There are also hypnotists and garden shows and carnivals and horse shows and parades and dances and festivals . . .
And how about those freebies around town? Like the Brown Bag or Lunch Bunch concert series downtown.
Of course, to get to those you might have to drive. And find an exit. And a street that's not too encumbered by road signs and orange cones and potholes and . . .
Good grief! Am I digressing again?
Well, maybe not.
When you think about it, driving around the Salt Lake Valley may one of the more entertaining events in town.