Road Trip Across The Street
I can't believe I have to drive all the way to work on a Saturday!
A character gets in a car, or similar vehicle for long-to-medium-distance trips, but the trip doesn't even leave the street. Usually a comedy trope, as it's really hard to have a legitimate dramatic reason for it, unless a character is Too Important to Walk
Not to be confused with driving because a poorly planned road makes it more dangerous to go on foot.
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- There was an advertisement for the lottery that had a man kiss his wife goodbye from his car as he went "to work", he drove around his circular driveway to pick up his check from the mailbox, then drove back. After being about 10 seconds around the driveway, she asks "How was your day?"
- An ad discouraging drunk driving has Allison Brie leaving a party at Adam Scott's house by getting in a limo (thereby avoiding drunk driving) and being driven to her house... across the street. She even waves to Adam as she walks from her driveway to her front door.
- Baby Blues: The kids want to drive to their mailbox, so they can get in the car.
Films — Animation
- In Penguins of Madagascar, after mistaking Shanghai for Dublin, the penguins mail themselves to Shanghai, where they think Dave will strike next. The mail truck picks them up and drives off... then drives back and drops the penguins back where they started.
- In Toy Story 2, Al lives in an apartment right across the street from his toy store, and still drives there. And he gripes all the way about having to drive to work on a Saturday!
Films — Live-Action
- Bill Bryson brings up a few real life examples in Notes from a Big Country, one example involved some of his neighbours being invited to his house for dinner one day and despite living a short way down the street they drove there. Bryson mentions jokingly asking if they go shopping via light aircraft.
- A couple of times on Get Smart.
- Once in The Pilot when Max drives from the concert hall to CONTROL HQ — he gets in his car, does a big U Turn, and stops in front of the building across the street (getting Rockstar Parking each time); this example made it to the opening credits.
- In a later episode, where they get in a cab and tell the driver to go to X address: the driver pulls forward about 10 feet and says, "Here we are."
- In How I Met Your Mother, Ted took Stella on a two minute date. This involved them getting in a taxi two separate times in order to go one building down the street.
- This happens on The Andy Griffith Show when a famous musician returns home to Mayberry. Barney insists on giving him a police escort from the courthouse to his hotel—which is four doors down the block.
- Combined with Short-Distance Phone Call in a sketch on You're Skitting Me. A schoolgirl calls her mother and begs to be picked up from school. When her mother finally relents, its revealed that their house is literally across the street from the school.
- Liberace once bought a Rolls Royce which his chauffeur only ever drove once — across the stage where Liberace was performing, in order to deliver the robe he wore for the next song. The car is now in the Liberace Museum in Las Vegas.
- There is an occasional real life example not caused by laziness, but really long streets.
- A woman saw her husband go out and get into the family car, which was parked on the street. She yelled at him to wait while she and the kids freshened up and joined him . . .only to have him drive into the garage.
- Railroad transportation:
- If you were to ride the Chicago 'L' around the central Loop and you entered at one Loop stop, then got off at another Loop stop, chances are this trope might play out. If you enter at State/Lake and get off at Clark/Lake one stop west, you've taken a train for the equivalent of 500 feet. If you got on at State/Lake and got off at the very next stop, Randolph/Wabash, you've gone about 600 feet, or the equivalent of one block east and one block south. However, the 'L' lines that service the Loop also avert this trope once they are in the Chicago suburbs, where the distance between stops is much greater, which is especially noticeable on the freeway sections of the Red and Blue Lines.
- The London Underground has some central stations at similar intervals
- Or, try going from Monument to Bank. This means 5 stops and 2 changes by the route plan. However they are actually directly above each other, with an escalator connection - but this was edited off during construction of the Docklands Light Railway in the 90s and some installations STILL don't show this as a result.
- This phenomenon is likely to be endemic to municipal rail systems in general. The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, for example, has a light rail system with some ridiculously close stops, especially downtown; walking from the Santa Clara station to the St. James station doesn't take more than 30 seconds plus whatever time you spend waiting for the crosswalk signal to change. The BART stops in San Francisco aren't quite this close, but you can still walk from one to another in less time than it takes to wait for the next train.
- The Washington Metro averts this in the suburbs, where there can be gaps of several miles between stops (especially on the Orange and Silver Lines), but it's played straight in central D.C. Most specifically, get on the Red Line at Metro Center and go one stop east to Gallery Place / Chinatown to transition from the Orange, Silver or Blue Lines to the Green and Yellow Lines. You've gone all of less than 1,000 feet.
- This can be justified if you're trying to move a lot of stuff a short distance: If someone on your block is having a yard sale, and he's selling a large chair, do you carry it all the way home (which would probably take some extra minutes, given the weight of the chair) or try to put it in your car? Similarly, if you're trying to get from your house to your mother's house less than a quarter of a mile away (that's five minutes walking, tops), it may be worthwhile to take your car if (1) you have several bawling small children who are easier to keep in line for a 30-second car ride than a five-minute walk to visit Grandma; (2) are taking some food to a family dinner at Grandma's and would rather not risk dropping it in the middle of the street; or (3) it's really, really cold (or wet, or hot) out and you don't want to deal with the weather (it may also be a safety issue, especially if it's raining or if there's snow on the ground, especially if you are taking the aforementioned bawling small children).
- One Man's 90-Foot Uber Ride
- In the early days of Hollywood, there were actors/actresses who insisted on this because the car service was one of the perks in their contract, and if they didn't insist on using them, the studio would think they could pushed around.