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There are some things that we are learning to live with in Lubbock. The near-constant threat of catalytic converter theft, the impending closure of Joyland, and the ubiquitous weeds that have taken over our finest city facilities.

But lately, and perhaps the surge of students that have invaded Lubbock has contributed to this, one of the worst things about Lubbock has to be driving (or, more accurately, crawling) up Milwaukee Avenue anytime between 4 and 6:30 p.m.

I'd rather have sulfuric acid poured onto my naked behind while getting a giant tattoo of Justin Bieber on my chest than have to sit in that nightmare. Congratulations, Slide Road. You're not the worst anymore.

Yesterday, I was reminded just how brutal Milwaukee Avenue can be, but also had some thought as to why it sucks like a brand new vacuum.

As I approached the dueling highway interchanges of Spur 327 and the Marsha Sharp, traffic barely moved for at least 20 minutes and I counted no less than 5 light changes as I drove north from 66th Street. As I finally made it to Spur 327, I glanced at my GPS in the car to get a view of the future.

Image: Lance Ballance-Townsquare Media
Lance Ballance, Townsquare Media

The map looked like the Red Wedding from Game of Thrones.

This was bullcrap. I called an audible, whipped into the far left lane and turned onto Spur 327 heading west. Ultimately, I was able to exit at Upland Avenue, and from there it was smooth sailing heading north.

But why does Milwaukee Ave. suck? Two reasons: 1) it's overbuilt, and 2) people are stupid.

Every time you turn around, another new business is setting up shop on Milwaukee Ave., especially around the Marsha Sharp interchange because they think highway access helps. Uh, no.

Highway access means zilch in Lubbock. It's just crowded, and the shopping center there just creates more traffic at the end of the day. Plus, I can't tell you how many idiots think they can whip in and out of the Rosa's and Cracker Barrel parking lots like Dale Jr. People do some really dangerous stuff. You know I'm right because you've either seen it or done it yourself.

This causes congestion and ruins our mantra of being able to get anywhere in Lubbock in 15 minutes. You can't get from Spur 327 to The Plaza Restaurant in 15 minutes on Milwaukee. It's just awful lately. Plus people are so used to using major thoroughfares that no one thinks to find quicker alternate routes. Admittedly, the fact that Frankford doesn't go all the way through is just idiotic, and Upland is a fairly unknown option.

Although honestly I really don't want anyone knowing about Upland. That's my little secret weapon to get home faster.

Happy motoring.

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