Maybe I haven’t had enough coffee this morning, but the headlines on today’s Seattle Times website seemed oddly revealing. Here’s a sample:

Should toll roads help fight global warming?

Rabbi who hit, killed pedestrian gets two years deferred

SUV becomes airborne; 2 people injured

Delays ahead with I-90, I-5 roadwork

Crash in Seattle kills father, injures 2 daughters

$4-a-gallon gas? Predictions surprise Bush

Notice a pattern? The thing is, it’s no special indictment of the Seattle Times; this morning’s headlines are probably a fairly accurate reflection of our collective obsession with cars.

I hope I don’t sound smug. I’m no different. I love writing about cars, roads, or fuel, in part because it’s these posts that are the most widely read and emailed—almost without exception.

And when you think about it, there’s a good reason for our obsession. Cars are woven into everyday life for most of us. Unfortunately, as the headlines reveal, they are responsible for a large share of our tragedies too.