Lightly anticipating

I’ve had other posts with the idea of “anticipation” in it, but the anticipation I speak of today is not about a holiday or vacation. Instead, it is a type of anticipation that can happen in everyday life. After I start the next paragraph, the photo will make it obvious what I am referring to. (Evil Teacher Editor looks darkly at the last sentence and this one, saying, “Well, start it already!”)

There are two similar parts of anticipation that I want to consider. Look at the following picture, and then the following video.

A red light at Buckley Road.


Let’s consider the red light first. When I am either in a car or on a bike, and stopped at a red light, I tend to not look straight ahead at the red light. Instead, I will often look left or right. Not only is it more visually stimulating to see the moving traffic rather than a fairly static scene ahead, but I tend to like to know when the light will likely turn green.

This reasoning is based on the frequent pattern of lights: when the light turns green, the WALK signal often appears too. Before the light turns red, the WALK signal will change to a DONT WALK [sic] signal, flashing, before turning solid when the light turns yellow or red. Then, the light will turn green… unless the opposite direction gets a green arrow or there is an anti-anticipatory light cycle.

For example, the Isabella/Ridge/Sheridan/Sheridan interchange in Evanston has lights which are not reciprocal. The northbound and southbound lights take cycles of green, rather than both being green simultaneously! Or, the intersection at The Arch on Northwestern’s south campus has north-, south-, and eastbound turns… and crosswalks where the WALK signal never coincides with any green lights.

Is it just a me thing to have wandering eye saccades when the light is red, rather than looking straight ahead? My blogger friends who drive or at least are in tune to the idiosyncrasies of the road: Do you feel the same way, or am I crazy?


היום שלושה-עשר יום: שהם שבוע אחד ושישה ימים לעומר

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2 thoughts on “Lightly anticipating

  1. I don’t know, if he still does this or not, but DH had the traffic light color change down to a science, so just as the opposite traffic light switched from yellow to red, then he knew the light facing him would change to green. Talk about impatient or too much in a hurry, but this mindset could have gotten him in trouble a time or two. There was one incident while he sat at a traffic light fixing to do the same thing when for some odd reason he paused for just a second before entering the intersection and that’s when an emergency vehicle went flying through the light. If he had proceeded, then he would have been t-boned and well…maybe not here with me today. I believe God was watching over him that day. What do you think? But, to answer your question, no I don’t think you’re crazy. There are others who do the same. 😀


    • Thanks for the comment, Cathy! Indeed, I feel that there are times where people are (Divinely) protected from their own impulses.

      And hopefully he knows that not EVERY light will act in that way, like how I described a few of them!


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