Richard S. Chang, writing in today's New York Times Wheels section about the pleasures of driving a stick shift:
I was living in Los Angeles. Even though stopping and starting and stopping over Laurel Canyon during rush hour was excruciating, it was a completely different experience when the canyon roads were empty. Thatís D-R-I-V-I-N. Forget about the talk of no mass transit. As long as Southern California has those roads and those views, no oneís giving up their cars, but I digress.
Sometimes it's worth remembering that L.A.'s original commitment to transit didn't peak and begin to lose ground to cars in the smoggy 1940s or '50s, but way back in the '20s and '30s.