Become a fan of h2g2
It's quicker. Really.
A bizarre invention, formulated by bureaucrats that obviously have no connection to reality. What they have done is set aside a lane on the freeways (or highways, depending on geographical preference) that is only to be used only when there are 2 or more people in the car. Strangely, no law has been passed yet to prohibit, for instance, a woman and her 3-week old child from driving in it, and lone motorcyclists are permitted as well. A strange tactic some other motorists have used has involved driving with a mannequin in the passenger seat. These drivers are generally cited as a matter of principle, and are usually then subjected to humilation in the newspaper.
The idea behind this lane is to encourage people to ride along with others that work either at the same place or a nearby location, in order to alleviate traffic. It would seem, however, that by taking an entire lane away from normal traffic would lend itself to greater congestion, the bureaucrats, in their infinite wisdom, claim that it does in fact work. Most days, the lane has half as many cars as the rest of the road, but still continues to crawl along at the same rate of speed, since the average American has the same level of driving skill and attentiveness behind the wheel as, say, a fishbowl full of dirty water. As such, they fail to notice that in fact no one is in front of them and so they can drive at whatever speed they wish, causing intense frustration to those stuck behind them. Also, another odd feature of the car-pool lane is a double-double yellow line, which means no changing lanes. About every mile or so, there is a break in this line, enabling people to enter or leave the lane. Due to the way these lines are structured, however, it is very difficult to stay in the lane and still make your exit, since most breaks are not correctly positioned with exits.
The lanes tend to end abruptly every 10 miles or so, where the freeway has not been widened neccesarily to allow for the extra, largely unused lane, so the car-poolers are once again shoved out with normal traffic, which, because of the skill (or lack thereof) of American drivers, invariably results in another traffic jam. The only times the lanes seem to work well is late at night, when no one is on the road anyway, so driving in the lane is particularly pointless. The lanes are also a favorite hangout of the CHP, who seem to think that people driving along at a medium pace of speed are some sort of threat, so they will pull you over indiscriminately and cite you for some imagined offense.