12.15.2009

ah... same story different day

ah... taking it easy
dodging the post work rides
no racing objectives
just chill-laxing

my legs are tired... my body is tired
my bikes are tired
time for some R and R
Rest and Repair

took the straight route home
did not pass go
did not collect two hundred dollars
just left our of work and pointed in on the fastest most easy route home

headed up 18th with the camera around my neck I adjusted my pace to get a closer look at the passing cyclists
the Jamis Nova between my legs is as worn out as I am right now

as I traveled north on 18th closer to Dupont Circle than Adams Morgan I was passed by an Audi going what seemed to be over fifty miles an hour
the speed was so great I could have flown a kite in its wake
the pass was wide enough that there was no real concern
there was some anxiety as I felt its fast approach
my knuckles grew white and I clutched the grips trying not to fade to my left
hoping that the car was not going to run me down
then when the pass was wide I was relieved
not at all angered

no worries... the speed was excessive but the distance granted was grand
I watched ahead as the driver passed the cyclist ahead of me
again outrageously fast... but not dangerously close

not changing pace I rolled passed this same silver Audi as it stood still behind a line of cars
each car took its turn at the four way stop by Laurial Plaza

as I made my slow pass I looked back to see what sort of person drove in this fashion

urban professional
maybe my age
kid seat... maybe an infant seat in the back of the car
suit... tie... and blackberry in hand
not heavy... not lean... light brown skin

just as my head turned forward to go on my way I heard a less than friendly "what did you say?"
so I turned my bike around and rolled up to the rolled down window to see what this person had to say

the conversation started simple enough with my response... "I did not say anything... but you did pass me going a little fast back there"

the car driver was articulate and a tad aggressive
for some reason he took the dominant roll
as if he were more intelligent and also more right
he used all sorts of words that did not quite match up

like when I told him that he had more than doubled the speed limit in a twenty five mile an hour zone he told me it was my opinion
it was my opinion that he was driving like an asshole... okay... it was also fact that he was driving like an asshole

I tried to correct him that it was a statement of fact
I glanced at his dash and gestured that he had a dial to give him an accurate account of the speed of his vehicle

when I tried to match each of his wordy rebuttals he tried to shoot me down
saying he was trying to meet me with some sort of consensus
which was not my objective
my goal was to point out his actions were dangerous and without sense

I did not really want to hear his shit... he really did not want to hear mine
in my mind he was wrong
in his mind he was right

we went back and forth
no cussing... nothing personal... just a quick back and forth
each of us trying to pick apart the argument of the other

he got his turn and moved through the intersection
again hitting the power band only to have to make a panic stop one block ahead

when I rolled up to the still open passenger window the driver was already on his cell phone
I asked him how his driving style was working for him
he was confident that it was working well... I chuckled
I asked him how he would feel if I drove through his neighborhood by his kids at that rate of speed
he told me that I was not a kid and that we were not in a residential neighborhood

well... although I am not a kid... that was not my point
I was not so worried that he had put me in danger but that his driving style was in fact dangerous
and as far as Adams Morgan goes... it does have a strip of commerce... but it is a residential neighborhood... not just his commuter route
the buildings that lined the street beside us are all row houses and apartments
this is obvious to me but somehow oblivious to him

again he got his turn and sped away
this time he pulled a few moves through traffic to allude me
I did not alter my pace
I was not so concerned with him and our conversation
he was arrogant, self righteous, and wrong
there was no opening his eyes
not by me at least
I felt it was just as well to keep my distance from him and his fast moving car

sure enough at 18th and Columbia there was a red light and a long line of cars
this silver Audi with it know it all\better than you driver was stuck in the queue
there was an opportunity for more converstaion
but instead I just went on my way
not making one last stop
not trying to initiate any more conversation
just getting on with my day
and letting him get on with his

maybe he will think about our conversation
maybe he won't

this man is like so many others... but maybe not as bad
as obnoxious as his driving style he did grant me my space
and he was willing to discuss things... even if he was a tad bit condescending

maybe next time I will have a tape recorder to get a more accurate account of the action
there was much more back and forth than I can recall
but now... it is all behind me

on with my night

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