Friday, June 20, 2008

Commuting's Brave New World

Spiraling gas prices have thrust a new commuting regime upon us all and it demands that we reinforce the hard-won lessons of the past -- or, in some cases, get and stay current with those lessons.

Exhibit A: The photo shown here displays both the promise and peril of the hordes who have recently added their distinctiveness to the Borg that is the MAX. Promise: maybe, upon a sunny day, someone will get on the MAX wearing revealing clothing. Peril: same as promise. Suffice to say not every member of the Borg should dress like Seven-of-Nine.

Exhibit B: I've already covered the apposite lessons, but with gas prices spiraling ever higher and the weather improving, I've noticed an uptick in bike commuting, and this calls for a refresher on key points.

Toward avoiding overgeneralizing, I direct this comment to the woman who passed over the Hawthorne bridge traveling west this morning at approximately 7:12AM on a blue bike: from the evidence of the saggy back tire and your fearful riding style, I gather you are new to bike commuting. Perhaps that isn't even your bike; no doubt you'd be much happier if only you could return to commuting as the only passenger in a huge SUV. But so long as you are riding that blue bike with the sagging back tire, stay in the goddamn bike lane as you pass over the bridge. And speed the fuck up -- you're endangering not only the pedestrians whom you're crowding to the bridge's railing, but also the many bikes that are passing you on the left, unsure of whether or when you'll go darting into the bike lane.

And after you leave the bridge and approach the exit ramp to Naito Parkway, if you make a left-turn signal, do turn left. Today, your slow pace and left turn signal backed up the cars unfortunate enough to find themselves lining up behind you; it slowed them because they were sure, from the evidence of your hand signal, that you'd be entering the left lane at any second. And yet you didn't. You kept going west, very slowly.

I have been known to post unflattering photographs of people who disturb the commutes of others. Out of courtesy, and more so because I didn't have my camera handy, I am not posting any such photos of you at this time. I promise no such discretion going forward.

Thanks all, and happy commuting!


Mike said...

Seven-of-Nine, eh? Try this one, Dale. I think it would be OK on the train.

Dale said...

Wowza. That'll do on the train, on a plane, anywhere at all.