Tag Archive for idiot drivers

Today’s ride, on which I question my cultural identity

Maybe it’s because of my lifelong affinity for the comedy of Mel Brooks and pre-Hannah, pre-Soon Yi Woody Allen.

Or maybe because I’ve long believed that the Catholic faith I was raised with is actually the fourth branch of Judaism — Orthodox, Conservative, Reformed and Really Reformed.

It could be due to the 10 years I spent working in the jewelry business, where Yiddish is a second language — which I picked up easily, thanks to the lingering influence of my German-speaking Pennsylvania Dutch grandmother.

Maybe the fault rests with couple rabbis I’ve known, who loved to egg me on because it was so funny to hear Jewish expressions come from such a goyishe punim.

Or it could be I’m just the reincarnation of a Borscht-Belt comic.

But even I was surprised when a car edged out from a side street while I was riding today, and the driver looked directly at me as he pulled out further to block my way entirely. And I heard these words pass my lips as I braked hard to came to a stop just feet from his open window:

“What am I, chopped liver?”

Oy gevalt.

………

A reader asks if there’s viable route to ride from Santa Clarita to the San Fernando Valley:

I reside in the Santa Clarita valley and I do plan to go on the “Silent Ride” Saturday.  My comment is that there does not appear to be any reasonable way to go from the Santa Clarita valley to the San Fernando valley by bike.  There’s the Old Road and Foothill Blvd.  Both are plagued by little to no shoulder and a number of blind curves.  I’ve seen cyclist on Foothill and I take my hat off to them.  Never on the Old Road between Sierra Highway and Balboa.  Once you get to Balboa things are good.  I assume this would be a L.A. county issue or maybe CALTRANS.  In any event, I wish something could be done about it.  If you have any suggestions or comments that would be great.  Thanks

Any suggestions for him? Or anyone planning to attend the ride, that he could join to ride back to the Valley?

………

BOLO Alert: Keep your eyes peeled for Joe Linton’s blue Trek, which was stolen last night from in front of an Internet café on Wilshire near Normandie:

So… friends and fellow travelers… be on the lookout for my bike around town… it’s the blue one in the photo (below) – it looks more-or-less like that picture, though it has more stickers and new kinda-bulky black plastic mountain-biker pedals. It’s a big frame (I am 6′3″) light blue Trek, 24-speed, about 3 years old. Bontrager (sp?) black/gray puncture-resistant slick road tires. Lots of stickers – C.I.C.L.E., FoLAR and others. There’s a faded green paper flower and a large Chinese bell on the straight handlebars. There’s a basic black utilitarian rack on the back.

I hereby resolve to lock my bikes really really well in the future.

Be On The Look Out for Joe Linton's blue Trek

Be On the Look Out for Joe Linton's blue Trek

………

Joe Linton takes over for new daddy Damien on Streetsblog to discuss planned sharrows in Hermosa Beach, and promote the upcoming David Byrne bike round table — and yes, I’m planning to be there. Green LA Girl notes that meetings are being held for four bike plans around the area; just pick your city. Continuing with the color scheme, the Green LA Transportation Working Group defines what Living Streets means. A new group ride rolls through the Eastside. A 65-year old KC cyclist was intentionally hit by an impatient driver. Boston Biker offers advice on how to avoid the door zone when riding in a bike lane; plus advice from Philly on how to pass in one — though you might want to signal and announce you’re passing, as well. Finally, good advice on how to share the road from north of the border.

The things you see while you’re riding: Worst parking job in human history?

Parking-1

I saw this car parked near the Mormon Temple in Westwood while I was coming home from a ride awhile back.

Parking-2

Maybe the driver saw the small gap in the red curb where the handicap ramp is, and thought park there, as long as he wedged himself into that tiny little space. Or maybe he was running late for something at the temple and all the other spaces were taken, and he thought no one would notice.

Parking-3

Of course, in that case, you probably don’t want to be the last one to leave.

And please excuse the blurred photos on the last two pictures; that’s my fingerprint on the lens.

Oops.

The very definition of four-wheeled irony

Just a quick aside before getting back to this week’s topic.

It didn’t take long on today’s ride to realize it was going to be one of those days, when I had to be extra careful because a lot of the drivers weren’t. Like the one who turned his post-red light left into a long delayed U-turn, nearly t-boning me in the process.

But the winner had to be the woman who was waiting impatiently as I approached a four-way stop at the bottom of a steep hill.

The driver ahead of her might have been aware that a lot of riders blow through that stop sign; or maybe he was just being cautious and waiting to see if I was going to stop. Either way, she was having none of it as she laid on her horn and yelled out “He has to stop, moron!”

He continued waiting until I came to a full stop, then proceeded through the intersection as I nodded to thank him.

And then she ran the stop sign.

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