Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Silly and the Smart

Ok and when I say silly it should really read stupid.  One of the roads I take is a nice slow 25mph winding up and down type road that goes past a lake.  It's not a big lake and there is a road that goes the other way around it that is 35+mph and less scenic and flat.  There are bike lanes on both sides of the flat road and nothing much on the scenic.

Coming home last night (on the scenic road) traffic goes from a stately 20mph to nearly a stop for no particular reason.  Oh, but there was one.  See someone on a bicycle with really great gear (nice fenders, commuting tires and really bright lights) was riding on the shoulder of the road.  That in and of itself wasn't really an issue.  But the cars with their headlights coming up the hill were blinding the drivers going down the hill and because of the really bright bicycle lights they knew someone was on their right.

The only major problem is that person was traveling against traffic.  But wait there's more.  There was another cyclist going with the flow of traffic on the right side of the road also trying to get past the wrong way cyclist thus causing traffic to slow.

It only took a couple of seconds for everything to work out, but the issue remained  because of one person and a whole lot of people had to make a lot of right decisions and that one person was riding a bike which caused the little spark of hatred motorists have with cyclists flare just a little bit, when by riding on the proper side of the road everything would have been fine.

I felt bad for the person doing the right thing because the cars that had to wait for everything to get sorted out took out their frustrations by passing them closely as they were accelerating.  LEARN THE RULES OF THE ROAD.

Now the smart.  It was a cop.  I have a lot of respect for law enforcement, but probably underestimate exactly how knowledgeable they really are.

My late night route takes me past one of the Everett stations.  On my way by I saw a cruiser pull out, but it's a station so I didn't think anything of it.

Just past the station is a short section of MUT and other the other side was a cruiser.  The timing was too coincidental.  I checked the plate cruiser number.  Another street and the cruiser rolled past then another section of trail.  At the end I saw the cruiser roll by again.  Another section of trail and the same cruiser.  You would have to be very familiar with the area to know all the twists and turns the trail takes in order to be at the end and you would have to be moving quickly to beat a cyclist on them.

Finally there is a long section of road that goes slightly downhill and two sections of path that are downhill as well.  I pushed hard and lost the car.  For a little bit.

I swing back up to a road-only return and shortly after I did the cruiser rolled past me again.  I felt better seeing them.  It was fun to play the hide and seek game with them through the trails and road, but they not only knew the trail intimately enough to keep up with me most of the time, when they figured out I hadn't back-tracked up the trail they went to the most likely route back for a cyclist and found me.  Smart.

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