Dear driver of the Honda Accord from Ohio:

The orange barrels are lovely to behold, that is true. They glisten in the sunlight as they line either side of the lane down which you meander. Our town is known for its natural beauty, but nothing can compare with the delight of two straight rows of fluorescence leading you toward your destination.

This is what I must assume you are thinking, since you are driving seven-and-a-half miles per hour down said lane.

Or perhaps you find construction fun, and are slowing down to relive the Tonka trucks of your youth.

My husband has suggested that drivers like you are daunted by the road work — by the cones and the barrels and the orange signs — and while I believe that that is generally true, I know that in your case this cannot be the holdup. You see, I grew up in your fine state, and I know for a fact that Ohio, too, undergoes construction projects. Big ones. Extraordinarily massive ones brought on by weighty snow, speeding semis, and ice-cracked asphalt.

So here is what I would like to know: How much moolah would it take to get you to pick it up a little? Just to, say, ten miles per hour instead of seven and a half? Because I wish to see my cats and my house and my husband again before the turn of the century, and I’m not sure ninety-two years is enough time.

Thank you.

The driver in the car behind you