Jennifer Pamplona, 24, from Sao Paolo, Brazil, spent ov
Unless you're a child, New York City resident, or UPS driver, chances are you've made a left turn in your car at least once this week.Chances are, you didn't think too much about how you did it or why you did it that way. You just clicked on your turn signal... ...and turned left. GIF from United States Auto Club. The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles instructs drivers to "try to use the left side of the intersection to help make sure that you do not interfere with traffic headed toward you that wants to turn left," as depicted in this thrilling official state government animation: GIF from New York Department of Motor Vehicles. Slick, smooth, and — in theory — as safe as can be. Your Drivers Ed teacher would give you full marks for that beautifully executed maneuver. GIF from "Baywatch"/NBC. Your great-grandfather, on the other hand, would be horrified. GIF from "Are You Afraid of the Dark"/Nickelodeon. Before 1930, if you wanted to hang a left in a medium-to-large American city, you most likely did it like so: Photo via Fighting Traffic/Facebook. Instead of proceeding in an arc across the intersection, drivers carefully proceeded straight out across the center line of the road they were turning on and turned at a near-90-degree angle.Often, there was a giant cast-iron pole — called a "silent policeman" — in the middle of the road to make sure drivers didn't cheat. Some were pretty big. Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images. These old-timey driving rules transformed busy intersections into informal roundabouts, forcing cars to slow down so that they didn't hit pedestrians from behind. GIF from "Time After Time"/Warner Bros. Or so that, if they did, it wasn't too painful."There was a real struggle first of all by the urban majority against cars taking over the street, and then a sort of counter-struggle by the people who wanted to sell cars," explains Peter Norton, associate professor of history at the University of Virginia and author of "Fightin
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