Posted by: Miriam | 21/06/2008

Rant: Stupid People in Cars

I dont know what has gotten into people. Or why they are more stupid than normal. But they are.

I’m talking about bikes and cars. Yet again. I swear since the weather has gotten nice, people have become much worse drivers.

Last Thursday: I’m headed up to the trail head. I have to go straight through a light (because the turn lane doesnt recognize bikes). This is a 3 lane road, one lane each direction for traffic, and a turn lane in the middle. I need to turn left into a parking lot so I can cut across it to get to the road I need. So I look behind me, there is a car, a little ways back. I have plenty of room. Nobody coming the other direction. I put out my arm to let the car behind me know that I am turning. I’m almost in the turn lane, when the car flys up behind me and passes me on the left. Yea, I’m attempting to turn left and I get passed on the left, with my arm still out. The driver and I made eye contact, I gave him the finger. This dude deserves it for his stupid behavior. I dont even drive and I know passing on the left when someone is turning left is bad/illegal/potentially deadly. Best part is he slams on his breaks when I flip him off so I almost hit his shiny new black Impala.

Monday – Friday: People just driving waaaay too fast on small residential streets. Come on people, the speed limit is NOT 40. It is 25. So what if a bike is also doing that…doesnt mean you HAVE to pass that person on a bike to prove your superiority of fossil fuel burning.

Yesterday: On the way to the market, there is a car in the separated bus lane, trying to turn across 3 lanes of traffic w/o any sort of right away. The buses HAUL ass in their own lane, and they trigger the lights so they get the green…this could have been bad. After work, I’d to catch the bus to get to the shop to pick up my bike. I’m waiting for the bus and some idiot tries to make a left across the same 3 lanes of traffic, where there is no turning left. He creeps across the intersection and is halfway into one lane waiting to turn. Nobody even honked at him. And then on my way home from my ride, at about 8:30 – plenty of light left, sun didnt sent until 9ish. I have a kid (he couldnt have been over 20) in Mom’s Camery, look directly at me and pull out infront of me, causing me to hit the breaks had and the dude who was behind me to almost hit me. I just gave him the hand up in the air, WTF look. He looked at me with ‘What, I didnt do anything wrong, f#*king cyclist’. He also got the finger. Had he waited the 10 seconds or so for me and the dude behind me to pass, he would have been able to pull out w/o any traffic around. But no, his time is more important than my life.

It really seems like people have no idea what to do around bikes. How to interact with bikes, or where bikes even belong (the “get off the road” comments). I’m amazed at how many people dont seem to understand hand signals even. I am really surprised there are not more car/bike incidents in this town. Maybe there are, but they arent reported or maybe there isnt a good public forum (like http://www.bikeportland.org ) But I am getting very tired of almosts and close calls and feeling like I’m a target sometimes.

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Responses

  1. I think people have been MUCH more stupid lately… maybe the sun fries their brain cells? Yesterday we had 2 …. not one but TWO vehicles in a ONE HOUR period of time where the people decided that getting out of their vehicles in the middle of a safari park with wild animals roaming around was a good idea. One genius got our of his car in front of two ostriches to clean his windshield…. !!!! seriously.The other car was two drugged up hippies who got out at the top of the rhino hill to wander around through the grassy fields among gemsbok that can spear you with their antlers while spinning around with their arms out communing with nature. Fucking hippies.Seriously, it’s not just you… people are freaking stupid.


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