I love my motorcycles, but I rarely commute via bike. It's a fairly quick ride-- about 15 minutes, and it seems like it should be a no-brainer, but it isn't. The trip to work seems like a nonstop series of merges, lane-changes, and other assorted traffic clusterfuckery. You start by getting onto the freeway and immediately moving one lane to the left, a lane that lots of other people are trying to get into because it's their exit, and you have about half a mile of playing dodge-the-SUV before your only choice is to take an exit that you don't want. From there you have to cut left across three lanes of traffic so that you can get to the bay bridge approaches and try to avoid the next batch of nimrods who are randomly changing lanes so that they can try to find the optimal lane and save seven seconds getting to the toll plaza.
The bridge itself is fairly peaceful and scenic, except for the last half-mile or so when people start playing the erratic-lane-change game again in preparation for taking the exit that they were ill-prepared for. Once off the freeway it's the usual assortment of construction, steel plates, pedestrians who don't look where they're going, drivers who don't look where they're going, and random debris in the road.
There are also morons in the mix, of course, just to keep it interesting. The drive home is a completely different set of challenges, but the idiocy level is unchanged.
I took the bike to the city today because I needed to have some minor work done on it. It was an average day today, which meant I only had a few occasions where I found myself using the sphincter-grip on the seat. They were:
- As I merged onto the freeway, some cluetard came flying around a semi, cut in front of him, and then tried to take the lane I was in. Score one for being observant.
- As I passed through the toll plaza (the mini-plaza on the far right of the bay bridge, if you're familiar) some mouth-breathing muttonhead was in the toll plaza in reverse. Yes, he was actually backing up in his SUV in one of the toll lanes on one of the busiest bridges in the world.
- There were shards of what looked like broken mirror bouncing around on the bay bridge.
- "Dear pedestrian. Please don't walk out from behind a UPS truck without checking to see if there's any traffic coming. kthxbye"
- As I was driving up second street on the way home, what looked like a ceiling tile fell off of a truck about three car-lengths in front of me.
Nonetheless, I made it home in one piece, and my bike now has a new switch on it. When I flip the switch, my hands get toasty warm. It's pretty awesome.
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