Scoot Commute

Riding at Dusk

Posted in Buddy St. Tropez (Franz Biberkopf), Daily Commute by sbahn on 2010/09/23

I left campus pretty late tonight as I was trying to catch up on all the help requests that came in during the day when I was out of my office doing stuff in person (like going to class, meeting individually with faculty, and attending an event sponsored by one of the office’s on campus).

It was dusk to almost dark out, but we’re having a huge harvest moon. Big moon = I don’t hafta turn my lights on. Or so the moron drivers of Providence think as there were many cars without their lights on even though it was pretty dark. Maybe if we go the way of Cranston and turn off every third street light, our moron drivers would notice that they can’t see.

I got behind a Volvo S something on River Avenue with a driver who obviously felt that driving was the least of his concerns as he puttered down the hill toward Valley Street. At the light at the T junction, he took the effort to put on his right blinker but then didn’t do anything about actually turning right even though no traffic was coming and it is legal to make a right-on-red at this intersection. He eventually wakes up and makes the turn as the light is turning yellow in the other direction.

At the next intersection where I have to turn left, there is a long line of cars in the right lane (to go straight). Mr. Volvo S can’t seem to figure out where he wants to go and I’ve decided he’s too unpredictable to go around. If he can’t see non-existent traffic, he’s certainly not going to see me.

So I wait until he finally scoots up into the left lane. No blinker. I turn left behind onto a street that opens up into two lanes; right lane for straight and left lane for turning left. He’s kinda meandering between both but I’ve had it by now so I scoot up around him in the left lane as I need to turn left onto Atwells.

At the next light, guess who’s behind me? Yep. So I start thinking it was probably better to have him in front of me where I could keep an eye on him. I decide to pull into the gas station to fill up after making the left just to get him away from me.

When I continue on my merry ways, things are pretty good. Then I take the right onto Dexter Street. There’s a guy on a bicycle on my right complete with flashing red rear light and a minivan pulling out on the shortcut road, Hollywood Road, just above the park. He looks right at me but apparently doesn’t feel like stopping as he starts to roll into my lane.

I check for the bicyclist, who also sees what’s going on as he starts to swoop behind the minivan. Now that I know he’ll be ok, I bear down on the Stebel horn. The guy stops dead. I just shake my head and continue down Dexter Street. Freakin’ minivans in my neighborhood. What is with them? The green ones are the worst, followed closely by gold. If you’re ever riding ’round the ‘hood, watch out for minivans.

I got home, pulled into the driveway, and rolled Franz into the garage for the night.

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