Saturday, April 28

Danger Ahead

On the Same Stretch as in the Photo, the Oncoming Motorist "Froze"
at the Sight of a Cyclist Stopped at a Stop Sign. Clearly, the DANGER Here was
That the "Nice" Motorist Would be Rear Ended, With Me Watching the Whole Thing
Not all is cheery goodness on my daily commute. On Thursday, I encountered two dangerous motorist behaviors - within a two block distance. In the first case, I would have been a mere witness to a fiery crash my existence caused. In the second case, it could have gotten a little more personal, had I not been able to take matters in hand.
Situation 1: Cyclist (yours truly) is stopped on the side street, signaling his intent to make a right onto an arterial when traffic permits. This occurs pretty much every day for just about any cyclist. However, this time, the oncoming eastbound motorist on the arterial STOPS. Clearly, this motorist has encountered enough scofflaws on bikes to throw the rules of the road completely out the window. Luckily, the traffic behind this motorist stopped as well rather than creating the fiery mess. After an awkward delay, and the motorist finally realizing that incorrectly giving up his right of way would mean he would be STUCK behind a SLOW cyclist (and he had no way to know how slow, or that I DO control a narrow lane), he finally proceeded. As did the motorist who stopped behind him. Even for me, politeness has its limits. If motorists were required to have their cell phone numbers in their windows, I'd have called to inquire what was he thinking?

At this point, I breathed a sigh of relief and made my delayed right turn

Situation 2: Now, the cyclist is on the arterial, pedaling east, signaling his intent to make a left off that arterial when a reasonable gap appears. And that gap isn't far off. Instead, ANOTHER motorist, headed west - right in front of that gap decides to stop and be "nice." This time, the cyclist is not so amused at the motoring games. THIS time, the eastbound overtaking motorist will be overtaking HIM, and the westbound overtaking motorist behind the "nice" lady is closing that gap rapidly. In short, time is running out while some lady is sitting right IN THE WAY. Smiling. The cyclist waves her on frantically. Frustrated, he finally makes his turn behind her when she creeps far enough forward to permit it. While perfectly safe, that gap was smaller than I like. It wasn't quite so bad because the motorist behind the "nice lady" had slowed somewhat. I do regret I didn't think of waving to him as I finished my turn. He was in a situation not of his own making.

And Then, ANOTHER "Nice" Motorist Froze, Right About Where the Silver Oncoming Car is in the Photo
I Was About Where the SUV Was, Signaling My Turn Intent. MY Turn to Start About All the Gaps Closing

Oh, I forgot.

Situation 3: While still shaking his head over the sheer unnecessity of situations 1 and 2, cyclist sees a third motorist, running the stop sign off to his left and coming at him. He waves, and blows a kiss to that motorist, and yells "hello, dear." Sometimes we forgive motorist transgressions in the interest of familial harmony. At least she didn't honk at me today. "Thanks, dearest!" And, for the record, the motorist in situation 3 SWEARS she made a full and complete stop.

"Share the Road?" Darn Bikers Ought to be OFF the Road! OTOH, I think as a Pedestrian,
I'd Rather Not Be Sharing the Sidewalk with a Harley

1 comment:

John Romeo Alpha said...

With the seventh edition of the cycling version just released, I have to wonder if there's a book out there which covers "Effective Motoring".

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