Spring madness on the roads

Living here, I am ready for anything on the streets of Boston, whether I am biking, walking, or driving. But what is it about beautiful weather that seems to bring out the nuts? Two cases this morning:

(1) Driving in on Beacon Street down the long hill in front of BC, and I see in my rearview mirror an "adult" bicycle rider drafting off of my car -- roughly 6 inches from my rear bumper. I finally get him off my tail and suggest through my open window that he is crazy and that what he is doing is REALLY dangerous. (What if I have to stop suddenly, for example.) He says, "No, it's fun."

(2) Upon arriving in town, I park at Landmark and need to crossing Park Drive by foot. There is no turning traffic, and I have the walk signal, but it changes to flashing "don't walk" as I am halfway across. A T bus driver (bus #0257) turning into the intersection blasts his horn at me for getting in his way and points to the flashing sign in support of his action.

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    Crappy intersection

    By on

    One of the problems at that intersection is that much of the traffic is turning. The bus may well have had the green light at the same time you had the walk signal. He might have been pointing to his green light rather than your flashing don't walk.

    Of course he should have waited for you, but bus drivers are some of the worst traffic offenders out there. Their interpretation of right of way is yours to get out of theirs.

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    hmm

    By on

    Maybe that's why it took over 5 weeks to get my MRI's sent to my doctors office. The radiology department must have not been able to cross Park Drive.

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    Maybe the biker was

    By on

    Maybe the biker was interested in becoming one of your customers?

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    The license says "CRAZY"

    By on

    Those T bus drivers are a wild bunch. As I often hop on and/or off the Green Line at Lechmere, I frequently get to witness those bus drivers blowing right through traffic and pedestrians. They don't stop for red lights. They don't slow down. I don't think they even bother to look. Each time they leave that station I cringe and wait for the sound of screeching brakes and crushing metal.

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    6 inches, eh?

    No offense, but I'm pretty sure you're not accurate about the distance between your rear bumper and the cyclist drafting you. Even professional riders don't get that close behind cars when they chase back up to the pack during closed-course races.

    One of the (many) problems with driving a car is that you can't really get a feel for how far away the objects around you really are.

    At any rate, the odds of dying accidentally in a motor vehicle are much higher than dying on a bike, so statistically speaking, he should have been yelling at you...

    -Cosmo
    http://boston.redfin.com/blog/author/cosmo.catalano

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    Going Downhill

    If you are keeping up with traffic on a bike, you'd best be near the tail end of the car in front of you or people on cellphones eating their donuts and afflicted with Masshole Stiffneck Syndrome will wipe you out.

    I've gone down hills at 40 mph in a 35 mph zone and gotten passed by motorists annoyed that I was "in their way" because I'm taking the lane. Ditto for riding at traffic speed in the flow of traffic - like, it matters to be six feet closer to that car three feet in front of me???

    (Bikeee alwayz goo slowwww *drools*)

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    If not 6 inches,

    Cosmo, it was pretty close to that, since he filled up a major portion of my rear view mirror.

    SwirlyGrrl, did I mention I am a biker, too? I've seen plenty of bad drivers, too, and I don't excuse them. This biker was not doing this to be more safe. He was just having fun.

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    can't ... resist ...

    "objects in mirror are closer than they appear"

    (okay, I hear you ... and I understand the issue. Just couldn't resist the obvious come back, given "rear view mirror" and all ...)

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    Right!

    CLOSER than they appear. :)

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    A Man's Guess ...

    Six inches ... well, you know the old joke about women and math ...

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    Longer than 6 inches

    By on

    My response to Paul's post is too long for a comment, plus I like traffic to my own site, where the topic is subject appropriate. My full thoughts. An excerpt:

    So, I've decided to stop trying to defend or explain bicyclists. Paul, the community of bicyclists is probably no better or worse than the community of automobile drivers. As the novelty of bikers sharing the road wears off, I expect that you'll get used to the bike community's fair share of nutters.

    Please read the whole thing and comment here, there, and everywhere.

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