I am not native to these parts. In fact, I am from the East Coast. As a bona fide foreigner, I have some beliefs which are truly foreign to you. For instance: I believe that highway engineers, traffic cops, and road workers are trained professionals who design roadways and place temporary traffic cones in accordance with how automobiles should travel most effectively. I believe in the accuracy of their placement of lane merges. I believe traffic lanes should be utilized, in their entirety, up to the point where they merge. Although your “polite” passivity requires that you merge at least a half mile before lanes physically join, I do not consider open lane usage to be a rude or aggressive act. When I drive in the clear lane you’ve left, bypassing your politely placed cars and shaving minutes off my commute, I have not stolen this time from you. I have not cheated you. You voluntarily offer this gift to me, preemptive lane mergers of Seattle, and I will take it. Every time. It’s just how my people are.