The 2% Cash Back Starlings

Saturday morning at daybreak I headed out with the dogs for a deserted traffic island near our house. It’s at the spot where several municipal streets that lead to downtown from the eastern edge of the city converge, and then merge into the on and off-ramps of the old highway that follows the course of Walnut Creek to the north and crosses the river for the Bastrop highway to the south. In a car or on foot, it’s a labyrinth of loco loops to nowhere designed by 1960s traffic engineers, who no doubt thought it was a tidy little network node of ambulatory American utility. In the last couple of years leading up to the lockdown, the cars would line up for hours every night on those onramps, which were also designed for 1960s traffic.

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