A couple months back I was on my way to lead a club ride, going downhill, exceeding the 25mph speed limit by 4 or 5mph, and taking the lane. Traffic wasn’t exactly light, but this particular side road wasn’t horribly busy, either. I noticed a car riding too close to my rear just before I got to a curve in the road, and an oncoming SUV. At this point, instinct might have told most people to get out of the way, to move over and make some room. Experience told me to hold my line, because if I got out of the way, the driver of that car was sure to try and squeeze around me on that curve, regardless of oncoming traffic. That would have been a dangerous situation. I’m sure you can imagine the possible consequences of a mishap while sharing a narrow lane with a 2 ton car in a curve at 30mph. So I held my line.

And the old bat pulled out to pass. I’ll reiterate. Speeding, both of us. Curve in the road. Oncoming traffic. The oncoming SUV swerved to its right. I braked hard and swerved to my right (where there was lots of room because I held my line). Crazy old lady in the Buick cut me off and hit her brakes, you know, so she could stop at the STOP SIGN just ahead of us.

This should have been the end of it. My little take-the-lane ploy sorta worked and no one got runned over. Crazy lady made it to her stop sign intact (because others were paying attention).

But it wasn’t the end of it. I was mad as hell and my anger got the best of me. There were no fingers, no words exchanged, no dirty looks. But I hopped in front of that Buick at the sign (I didn’t run it), and when it was my/her turn, I really took the lane and rode near the center line for the next 4 blocks at about 10mph, one man critical mass, until she turned off. I sure showed her. Or something.

The reality is that she probably hadn’t the first clue. “Why did he get back in front of me, and why is he going so slow now, and why won’t he let me pass?” I should be ashamed.

But I’m not.

It felt really good…

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2 Responses to Shame

  1. Andy Moleasses Petersen says:

    Too many times, we’ve all been through the same situation. My most recent was my morning 16 mi commute. Just left the driveway and had torn my shorts on the nose of my saddle. How? No clue. Already in a bad mood though. Then as a line of traffic is picking their way past me, which I am fine with, one aggressive driver who has cut it close a few times (vanity plate is easy to remember), has his passenger window down and hollers “Get on the f*&%ing sidewalk, then speeds off as fast as traffic allows him. I’m not the fastest guy in the world, but can maintain a pretty aggressive sprint. I got my ass in gear and was able to keep pace with him and traffic until we got to a light and told him I’d love to talk about traffic laws with him on the side walk together. He told me to f-off. I wanted to drag his ass out of the car and thump him. Shame? Perhaps. I know where he parks his car. I’d never slash a tire no matter how upset I may be. I would repeatedly let air out of all 4 tires to the point where I imagine he isn’t getting very good mileage. Maybe someday i’ll let him know.

    • the sloth says:

      Get a valve core tool. As you pull each valve core, replace the cap as quickly as you can. Car tires have relatively low pressure, and the caps may hold the air in so long as the car doesn’t move. But as soon as he starts driving…pop, pop, pop, pop. Even if it doesn’t work, he’s got four flat tires. No damage done, but it’s a time consuming fix. Win, win! Not that I’d do something like that. No, not me…