Bike Lane Crazies

Today I went into the office half an hour early so it was still dark on my commute. Heading east, nearly there, while I was sitting at a red light, I saw a guy going past, with the flow of cross-traffic who had the green. He was in the bike lane. He had on knee-length pants and a white windbreaker with silver reflectors, a miner-style hands-free headlamp, and N line skates.

I thought, “Well, how environmentally friendly, foolhardy, and stupid.”

I thought things probably couldn’t get much weirder.

So I’m driving home, heading west on the same stretch of road, and I see a guy on a bicycle in the bike lane ahead of me. Also ahead of me is an F-50 pickup. As the pick up passed the bike, the cyclist reached out and grabbed the edge of the rear passenger wheel-well, letting the vehicle pull him along. He hunched over the handlebars, the wind belling out the sleeves of his white shirt and making him look like a seagull riding the slipstream of a trawler.

As we approached a red light, he let go and glided up on the sidewalk, waiting for the light to change. I pulled up alongside him. He was older than I expected, with a wispy beard and a stubble of brown hair poking up from a recently shaved head.

The light changed. He kicked off, swerving in front of me to grab the truck again. The truck turned right without signaling. If it had been me, that’s where I would have gone right under the wheels, but not my guy. He spun right, up on the sidewalk again, shooting between a decorative sapling and a power pole, cut in front of a car coming through the intersection in the right lane, and grabbed the truck as it changed lanes. They disappeared from view and I went on my way.

It was like watching a live version of the opening scene of Snow Crash, only with stupid people instead of YT and Hiro.

What’s with the bike lanes in that part of town?

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