Bad, Awful, Worse, Worst!
I just returned from a delightful bike ride through town to the beach. Weather was perfect, flowers were blooming and the exercise I was benefiting from was only outdone by the scenery of my lovely Connecticut town in June. However, some incidents marred an otherwise perfect experience. I list them here from bad to worst:
We all know how dangerous it is to talk on cell phones or to text while driving. Apparently bikers think they are exempt from such restrictions. I saw one biker cruising along, glibly texting on her Smart phone, oblivious to the traffic and other distractions around her. I wonder what it will take for her to stop doing that?
At one point, I came up behind a pedestrian while I was riding a short stretch on a sidewalk, avoiding biking in the street on a busy thoroughfare. As is polite and customary, as I got within earshot, I shouted, “On your left,” and expected him to move to his right. Not seeing any response, I repeated the warning to no avail. As I slowly passed him on his left, I saw the reason for his deafness: white ear buds inserted in his ears; apparently the music he was listening to was at a deafening volume, enough to block out sounds around him.
On my ride, I take a shortcut through a parking lot. At this time of the morning in this location, cars were lined up and traffic was heavy; evidently others knew about this shortcut. However, two cars thought they’d beat the line by riding parallel to it by entering a path that clearly had the sign “Do Not Enter” at its start. Not to be deterred, however, these cars entered, wove through the parking lot, and emerged at the front of the legitimate line of traffic.
I don’t know about your state, but in CT, motorists are not allowed to pass a stopped school bus whose red flashing lights are on. As I approached one, I dutifully stopped but the car in front of me pulled an unlawful left turn right in front of the bus! The driver and I both raised our hands as if to say, “What the …?” but of course the driver (who must have been raised feeling “privileged”) got away with the move.
I’m sure you’ve got your stories similar to mine of drivers who have no business being on the road, of bikers who are lucky to still have all their limbs and of pedestrians who by shear luck have not been struck by oncoming traffic. These made me stop and wonder ….