Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Why I Was Scared

I drove to work yesterday. I'm not proud of it but it happened and there's nothing to be done about it now. My commute is about an hour on the bike and around 45 minutes in the car due to massive construction on the two arteries between me and where I work.
Driving in rush hour traffic underscores how much I hate being in a car stuck in traffic but looking in my rear view mirror I get a little scared and decide to snap some pictures of this moron behind me so that when he rear ends me, I have photo evidence of his driving style.
It's a little hard to see in this first pic but he kept coming real close when the traffic stopped so I could see what he was doing. You can see in the second picture just a little better. Notice that his head is turned towards the passenger side of his multi-ton rolling weapon. No big deal I suppose since lots of folks don't keep their eyes on the road every second but for the several miles he was behind me I didn't once see him look at the road.No, looking at the road would have been too much of a distraction for the email he was writing. Perhaps he was just putting the finishing touches on his epic novel that would free him from driving this commercial pickup truck through rush-hour traffic every day. Of course I didn't watch him every second either since I was also driving and prefer to keep my eyes on the road which I did even when holding my phone over my shoulder to capture the evidence.
It was scary enough having this moron behind me when I was in the car but I couldn't help but wonder if he drove this way off the freeway as well and how long it would take until he "accidently" took out a cyclist or even a pedestrian due to his lack of attention. I had been hoping to get a picture of the side of his truck and send the whole collection to the company but I was driving and thought that was more important...


  1. Nice to see you back on blog, Wheel. Been sick, huh? I have driven in many spots in Europe, Mexico and even Cairo, where one can encounter a team of burros or a goatcart in the next lane as fellow commuters. There is NOTHING to compare to the everyday haps on the streets and freeways of LV, NV. Truly, sincerely, literally, every day is harrowing. Half the population (say everyone under 35) owns urban assault vehicles, selected - no doubt - for their aggressive qualities.

    I was honored to have the Badger go out for a walk with me. We were in a clearly marked crosswalk in daylight. A woman on a cell phone in a Hummer or some such, looking the other direction, was accelerating toward our small bodies as she made her turn . . and she clearly hadn't even seen us yet. The Badger snatched me aside and then leapt into the air and smacked the passenger side door (flat handed), letting fly with some well-chosen language. When she had safely completed her turn, as we propped ourselves against a block wall, hearts pounding, she slowed up to toss us a comment out the window: "Potty mouth!" And then she sped off to the mall. Only one story from one walk selected from years and years of walking these mean, mean streets. Every day a new adventure.

  2. One of me favorite pet peeves to be sure. I was rear ended by just such a driver and my life was forever changed. If they are particularly bad I have to pull over and let them go. I wish that there was special unit designed to protect our bike lanes....I can dream.

  3. I got an email this week. A club official got hit by a car. Crushed hand, crushed hips, crushed ribs, crushed foot, crushed everything. He's still in intensive care. We should stop calling those things "accidents". It sounds oo innocent, like "Oh well, accidents happen. It was nobody's fault" when in reality the car driver just did not pay enough attention. It makes me so angry!

  4. Limes - I've been in that same crosswalk, most memorably with a co-worker who, grateful to still be alive, turned to me and said "I wonder how that moron got to his car?" We're all pedestrians at some point!

    HWB - So that's the source of your pain; so very sorry but ever grateful I didn't join with you as a result of the moron in my post.

    Groover - Yikes, I hope recovery finds him! Our traffic radio folks switched to using 'crash' rather than 'accident' and I like to think it helps us along the path of thinking about the implications of our actions and the responsibility we bear.

  5. Tip of the hat to Groover! These are NOT accidents. These things are the LIKELY results of the choices made by idiots who care about no other person except themselves. This stuff is MORE likely to happen than NOT happen. The only "accident" in it is whom it will land on.

  6. Imagine the driver in front of you: "What are these two goofballs doing behind me? It looks like the guy in the truck is typing on his laptop. And the other guy... no... is he trying to take photos over his shoulder -- photos of the guy on the laptop? WTF!?!? The world has gone mad!"

    But then again driving into work makes all of us a bit insane.

  7. AH - LOL, touche, although in my defense, I just snapped a bunch of random shots over my shoulder without looking so I didn't have to take my eyes off the road. I can't argue with driving into work making us insane.