Where invisibility is worst is when drivers elect to turn in front of you. Either from intersections into your path or from the opposite direction across your path. Both of these cases happened more than once today. Like I said, I don't know why (pending further examination of cap for magical properties). It even happened at intersections, when I had a green light and the turning driver had a red. How freaking prescient do I seem? Or maybe, my audience (all nine of you) decided to play a hilarious practical joke on me by taking to your cars and cutting me off every here and there. It's unpleasant to have to brake and then to wonder if you'll actually stop before you collide with a car (I did!) and then it's even more unpleasant to ride behind that driver and stew over their lack of concern for your safety. Stewing is the worst. Unless it's the world's largest dairy store, Stew Leonard's. The problem with bad things happening during a ride is that they beget other bad things happening. You get hung up and distracted and then you ride angry and then you start to see the world through shit colored glasses (Not carried by most optometrists). And (I'm not totally sure how much I believe this, but I think it's relatively true) once you start riding like bad stuff is going to happen, it's much more likely that bad stuff will happen. This observation is borne out by no statistics. I'm not even sure there's anectdota. I still think it's true.
Prior to all the nonsense with the cars happening, I was passed by what I think were two cops on bikes who did not, by all appearances and bike handling abilities, appear to be bicycle patrol officers. I have no idea what they were wondering, except chatting with each other, almost getting hit by a Jeep Grand Cherokee, and then complaining to me that there was a hill and I believe one of them even asked if I was responsible for putting the hill there. Um, no. And secondly, um, what? To the best of my knowledge, I'm not responsible for any number of myriad geological features in the DC metro region (I did put some sod in my backyard). Maybe I misheard.
I shan't catalogue all the inconsiderateness. I just know that it got to me and there was a certain point in the trip when I just wanted it all to be over. Every commuter has some bad trips (unless you're a blimp commuter. Then you're life is just peachy all the time) and bike commuters are no exception to that rule. I'd say, in general, bad commutes are much less likely to befall me because
Looking up at the traffic lights as you pass under them in order to suggest to an offending driver that she do the same doesn't work. You can cross that one out of your passive-aggressive playbook.
Rushing doesn't work. At a red light, a woman on her bike rushed passed me, blocked the crosswalk and then pedaled past the crosswalk, with her bike almost in the right hand travel lane of 14th street and she rocked back and forth, looking for a gap in the car traffic that never materialized. She jumped the green light by three seconds and pedaled. The light turned green. After seven seconds, I was directly behind her, once again. Was all that nonsense worth it for a "gain" that could be erased in seven seconds? Getting home fast is a factor of going fast when it matters and knowing the difference between a smart choice and a dumb one. And if you really want to get home fast, buy a jetpack and not a bike.
11th to Penn and Penn up the hill. I was glad not to be hit by one of the three taxis making u-turns across the bike lane. Enough is enough. This is just ridiculous. What's the best way to get this enforced? I'm thinking either hunger strike, sit-in or blogging about it every so often and I'm pretty sure the last one is totally in my wheelhouse.
I don't see nearly as many Bikeshare commuters in the evening.