Thursday, September 01, 2011

Bike Commute 2011 - Day 52 - See and Be UNDERSTOOD

IN -
My daughter left me a message to charge her phone in my car today. I don't know where she's been since I haven't driven except for two days in the last three weeks. I left the keys for her to charge up her phone and decided to ride.

I am on my last set of clothes so I stuck another two sets (all I have) in my wife's car for her to bring.

It's a favor for her to bring them in for me. She works in another building in the East Campus at Abbott Park, but at least we get to see each other this way, which is really nice.

It was overcast and the streets were wet, but it never really looked like it would rain.

My legs felt like lead which was doubly bad considering I left late trying to figure out the whole phone/clothes thing. I didn't get out until 4:27. My latest leave time this year I think.

I was trying to make it in 33 minutes so that I could say I made it to work by 5:00 (not cleaned and dressed, but at least AT work). From the get go I didn't think I'd make it.

On top of my legs being weak there was an actual Easterly wind. It was only 5mph, but still fairly rare for me to get a headwind on the way in.

The really memorable thing about this morning was at the end when I was trying to turn onto campus from Atkinson.

There were two cars behind me. The first caught up to me and turned into Abbott. the second one was further behind so I moved over into the middle of the lane (take the lane - as they recommend on bike commuting sites) and put up my left arm.

This guy passed me right before I was about to turn, right under my outstretched arm!

I know he saw me because he still gave me a wide enough berth, but if I had been more aggressive in my turn I would have hit him or he would have hit me.

As it was, I put my arm up in plenty of time and I didn't need to turn right when I put it up, so it wasn't as scary as it was aggravating.

Why would you pass someone on the left when they are clearly turning left?

My guess is that the driver didn't understand my signal.

That and he probably had already gone over to the left lane (oncoming traffic lane) and it was just easier to slide past me than to actually, I don’t' know, maybe slow down.

It really burns my goat how ignorant drivers are to bicycle rules of the road and how other riders don't help make it easier by not knowing or following them.

Coming soon there are going to need to be more bike riders, for economy and ecology sake, and I really hope we don't do it stupid.


My right knee has been aching since yesterday and it is slowing me down a bit.

What really slowed me down was the headwind. That's right I had a headwind going to work and a headwind going home. The wind turned right around and came at me from the SW at 9 mph.

I made it home in 47 minutes which was pretty good considering.

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