This isn’t something I like to talk about, because, well, I don’t want my parents to freak out about my very dangerous motorcycling habit, or my sweetheart to worry when I’m a few minutes later than he expects on my commute home. But after a lovely two years of scott-free motorcycling, so far this season at least THREE vehicles have tried to off me. (I say at least because these are just the ones I noticed! there could have been more-subtle vehicles out there!)
- 4/19/11. A lady in some kind of fancy cross-over SUV during the morning commute who tried to merge directly into me as I rode in the left-most lane of the I-87/I-287 merge on my way to work. My response: lean on the horn until the apparatus swiveled around the handlebars. Hers: TOTAL chagrin and remorse. WAKE UP.
- 6/2/11. Someone (gender undetermined) in a small older-model sedan who tried to merge into me as I rode in the left lane of the fly-over ramp between NJ Rt 17 and I-87. My response: horn, but it’s still kind of loose so not effective. Theirs: not sure, it was dark out.
- 6/6/11. A huge jerk of a dude ON THE PHONE in an older minivan who tried to merge into me as I rode in the left-most lane of NJ Rt-17. ON THE PHONE. ON THE PHONE!!! My response: evasive maneuvers and, for the first time EVER, a sincere flipping of the bird. His response: to give me a 4-car length lead. (For the record this is the first time I have genuinely wondered if kicking a drivers side mirror would cause me to be flung from the motorcycle.)
View VehiclesVSKari in a larger map
There is an interesting trend – note the vicinity in which I have had these problems – they’re all within 3 miles of each other. Granted, these are tricky roads and I do try to ride aggressively and pay attention to my position in my lane to avoid being squashed (and to give me a little room to run away and evasively maneuver) but there also may be a heightened level of jerkitude and hurry-up-ed-ness in this general area as well that makes people less likely to drive safely.
So I thought maybe I’d better keep track of it. with GRAPHS. Because I’m a huge nerd.
(If I were a better nerd I could figure out how to make google documents plot with two y-axes.)