Angry Motorists Make My Day

The corner of 10th and Juniper. Midtown. In the right lane, there’s a Land Rover. In the left, a pick-up hailing the kind of wire trailer you expect to see loaded with lawnmowers.

1. Pick-up Truck tries to change lanes, Land Rover doesn’t let him in. Land Rover begins to pass Pick-up Truck on the right.

2. Pick-Up Truck swerves into the right lane, then jerks back to the left when he sees that Land Rover hasn’t let him in. His trailer does that snaking, flailing thing. Thankfully, nobody gets hurt. Pick-up Truck driver is shouting, waving his hands in the air.

3. Land Rover moves on, stops suddenly (as is common on 10th Street), just as Pick-Up Truck is trying to change lanes again. Thus Pick-Up practically drives into Rover’s taillights. Again with the shouting and the waving of the hands.

4. Finally, Pick-Up gets in behind Rover.

5. Both cars are stopped by a red light at 10th and Peachtree. Even just as shapes through their back windows, the tension is visible. When the light turns green, Rover makes his turn onto Peachtree… really… really… slowly…

6. It looks like they’re not done. Rover is creeping up Peachtree, trying to draw Pick-Up in. Are they going to shout through their windows? Stop and brawl?

7. Stuck at another red light, Pick-Up pulls into the left lane, next to Rover, but pretends to ignore him. Rover pantomimes, uh, loudly, for Pick-Up to roll down his window. Pick-Up finally does.

8. Rover is smiling, one hand extended open, fingers splayed, in an apology. Both of them are laughing now and shaking their heads. When the light turns green, they wave to each other, still smiling, and proceed on with their lives.

9. At the next red light, I end up next to Rover, two lanes away. He’s laughing and moving his hands in front of his face, enjoying his relief with the woman in his passenger seat (or is he on his cell phone?).

10. The left-turn arrow goes green and I make my turn thinking how little it takes to piss someone off and how little any of that has to matter. It takes so little to make things better.

12 Comments so far

  1. David Ortiz (unregistered) on March 28th, 2006 @ 2:45 pm

    11. Rover driver, still guffawing over his encounter, fails to change lanes in order to pass me, on my bicycle, in the left lane. Rear view mirror hits me in the head. Driver is oblivious.

  2. David Ortiz (unregistered) on March 28th, 2006 @ 2:46 pm

    Correction: “me, on my bicycle, in the right lane.”

  3. Tony Mc (unregistered) on March 29th, 2006 @ 12:53 am

    12. Me laughing while another bicyclist is taken off our already congested roads.

  4. Maigh (unregistered) on March 29th, 2006 @ 10:26 am

    Tony, allow me to share with you how NOT funny your “hit-a-cyclist” comments are –

    I’ll lean back now and wait for karma to come hurling back around and kock you on your ass. Luckily, I’m a patient woman.

  5. Maigh (unregistered) on March 29th, 2006 @ 10:37 am

    That would have felt better had I not misspelled “knock”. Surely you’re bright enough to figure that one out though, hell you’d probably take great pleasure at pointing out the type-o as another demonstration of your superiority…

  6. Tony Mc (unregistered) on March 30th, 2006 @ 1:18 am

    Jeez, lighten up. I have never hit anyone with my vehicle and I drive 40k miles per year in the metro area and live in NW Atlanta where there are lots of bicyclists.

    I am not a type-o nazi. We all make mistakes.

  7. Maigh (unregistered) on March 30th, 2006 @ 11:36 am

    I honestly wouldn’t have reacted at all, but you’ve made similar comments in the past and my point was – as I said – it’s so. not. funny.

  8. Tony Mc (unregistered) on March 31st, 2006 @ 8:04 pm

    You’ve remebered my comments? Then either you hate me or are cyber-stalking me. Please don’t hate me. But the stalking part would be awesome!

    I only kid, of course. Being too large for human bike frames I am semi-envious. But would never ride intown unless the streets were empty. I drive lots and even in my car the other drivers scare the sh*t out of me.

    If you ever need someone to ride behind to offer safe cover (I’m sure there is a technical name for this). Then I will gladly help.

    BTW, one of my all-time favorite movies is Breaking Away.

  9. Maigh (unregistered) on April 2nd, 2006 @ 10:03 am

    Nah, I just remembered b/c I’m sensitive about it. You know that woman thing – remember the bad shit so you can bring it up again in an arguement 5 years down the road. Not that I’m sterotyping women or condoning that behavior. ;)

    I’ll holla if I need a spotter…

  10. FTP (unregistered) on April 2nd, 2006 @ 10:23 pm

    It is way too dangerous to ride a bicycle on Atlanta streets. Look, I would rather sky dive without a freaking parachute. And now, every other driver is on a cell phone and not even paying attention to the road. Atlanta driving is psycho.

    I love bicycles, but it’s not smart to ride them in ATL…unless you like death. Not trying to threaten, just being realistic here. Wake up. It’s bad enough being in a car. The “hard core” Atlanta bicycle folk … I feel you, but enjoy your legs while you still have ’em. In a park.


  11. Will (unregistered) on April 2nd, 2006 @ 10:33 pm

    That being the case, let’s get some more public transportation in this city. If we can’t get some jetpacks or a monorail in here, let’s at least get ourselves some lightrails and the new train circuits.

  12. Tony Mc (unregistered) on April 3rd, 2006 @ 12:10 am

    Mono, D’oh!

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