There’s a reason why Southern Californians use the “The” when we refer to our Freeways, i.e., the 5, the 10, and the (expletive) 405. I always thought we were simply personifying these evil infrastructure beings for wrecking havoc on our psyches, schedules, relationships and nerves. But, no there is a real reason.
Kristen Lee’s post on Jalopnik, “This Is Why People In Southern California Say ‘The’ In Front Of Freeway Names” explains the history behind the “The”. In a nutshell, as with most things today, we Californians were ahead of our time, especially with the concept of “motorways”, but then we had to adjust to accommodate the rest of the country when it decided to construct its highway system and numbering.
Hope you enjoy Kristen’s post and learn some important SoCal history too.