John Marchione
Mayor’s Office, 4NEX
City of Redmond
15670 N.E. 85th Street
PO Box 97010
Redmond, Washington 98073-9710

Dear Mayor Marchione,

I write to inform you of a horrific traffic signal malfunction that costs me and possibly dozens of uninteresting, less garrulous people valuable minutes every day. The pedestrian walk signals on 40th Street to cross the access roads of East and West Highway 520 do not sync with one another, nor do they sync with the walk signal to cross 40th Street. Because of this abomination of city planning, those traveling on foot to the northwest corner of 40th and 520 suffer extreme losses of time, productivity, and overall quality of life.

Like many Seattlites, I ride the 545 bus to Redmond every day to avoid the cost of rising gas prices and the ridiculous amount of traffic on 520. I considered simply living in Redmond and walking to work instead, but I found upon further investigation that your fair city has the potential of sucking what is left of my black, angry soul from my unassuming, caffeine-saturated body. I’m sure Redmond has its own unique set of amenities, perfectly fitting for Microsoft zombies, soccer moms, and people who don’t like good times and fun. However, as mayor you have an obligation too great to ignore to accomodate the commuting masses, most importantly those who ride the bus from Seattle like myself.

Please direct your attention to the following illustration:

Figure 1-1: The Shittiest Walk in the History of Mankind

As you can see from the professionally charted map I have provided (Figure 1-1), the current traffic light situation is in dire need of reform. The process begins when I exit the bus and walk toward 40th street. Upon viewing the illuminated “walk” signal, I cross the eastbound access road and walk onto the bridge that spans the width of 520. From a distance, I see that the “walk” signal to cross the westbound access road is already illuminated! Now it’s counting down! This happens every day! What the hell??

I reach the crosswalk and wait a full light cycle so I may safely cross the westbound access road. I will safely cross this street when the light dictates, for if I don’t, a large surly crossing guard who probably gets paid more than I do will shout at me and give me a lecture about jaywalking.

Once I have crossed this street, I must wait another full light cycle to cross 40th Street. By this time I have already slain three dragons, fought a pack of hungry wolves with my bare hands, and avoided being eaten by 50 sharks with lasers on their heads. I am very tired, and just want to get to work where I can pour myself a cup of free Starbucks coffee and try to edit protocol documentation before I contemplate stabbing myself to death with a loosened support beam.

Although I do not live in Redmond, I hope you will give this correspondence the attention it so obviously deserves. Remember, dozens of people are counting on you, but most importantly, I’m counting on you to put aside whatever mayoral issues that currently require your attention and see to it that mitigation for this atrocity is delegated to the appropriate department.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with further questions.

Rev. Kat Taylor, Esq., MD, CNN

Addendum: I never sent this to the mayor, or anyone, via e-mail or otherwise. Although it would be nice, I do not actually expect this problem to be rectified. This letter was intended to be a satirical format through which I could laughingly bitch about my morning commute. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. That is all.


  1. Anonymous says:

    Rev. Taylor, thanks for your email to Mayor Marchione regarding your experience with pedestrian signal timing on NE 40 Street at SR 520. These signals are maintained by the Washington State Department of Transportation. While City of Redmond traffic engineering staff work with the WSDOT, it is the State that has jurisdiction over any timing revisions at signals owned and operated by them. The format in which you contacted Mayor Marchione makes it difficult to respond to you directly, or to forward a complete, intact copy of your message to the WSDOT, but I will attempt to send your message to them. You may want to make direct contact with Bob Lindskov, WSDOT Traffic Signal Engineer, by phone at 206.440.4382 or by email at to be sure he has become aware of your concerns. I am also providing City of Redmond Traffic Operations staff with information about your email to the Mayor so they are made aware, and so they know your message has been forwarded to Mr. Lindskov. Please feel free to contact me at if you have further need. Susan Byszeski, City of Redmond Traffic Safety Specialist.

  2. Hmmm says:

    OMG. That’s amazing.