Tuesday, March 25, 2014

To Protect & Serve

Cruising to work on that final stretch is always interesting.  Been staring at the traffic light for nearly a mile hoping that it will magically be green when I hit that intersection.  Judging my time by the Ford Escape blasting hip hop at volume at 6 am (if I am running behind I hear it).  Light is green hammer time up the incline to the overpass of I-80.  It's a 4 lane so I take my royal share of the outside lane.  Some ass in a black Camry encroaches if I ride too far to the right.  The law cleary states that cars must change lanes to pass.

I pass the debris that may have been or may not have been a dvd case.  It has been there for weeks.  At the center of the overpass I look down at the freeway traffic and smile that it is not me.  Today I have a mere head wind.  Sometimes it is so windy up here that I feel that there exists a possibility that I could be blown off the road and plunge to my death on the freeway below.  Not today.  Time to prepare for the downhill and 180 degree turn into the parking lot of work.

Something is wrong.  There is a car in the medium at the bottom of the descent.  No lights, no flashers, no reflectors.  Just the dark outline of a vehicle stationary where it does not belong.  I ease a bit to the right.  Cars are going to see this and want to get over and out of the way.  What a hazard.  As I pass I have a sudden urge to shout, "Are you OK?"  But I resisted.  Need to represent the bicycling community properly.

As I close the distance quickly as gravity and pedaling have increased my speed the car becomes more visible.  West Des Moines Police.  Radar/speed trap.  I have seen them here before on westown Pkwy.  Sometime in Farm Bureau parking lot.  Yesterday across from Lowes searching a mini-van.  Great, I just got dosed with radiation.  Worse still, a Prius passes a little too close.  What is it with assholes in Toyotas out here??

Then I think about it.  He/she is getting cars to slow down or punishing those that speed.  This is a good thing.  But years of driving and the general abuse of power by government agencies have lowered my opinion of police in general.  Revenue generating or safety promotion?  And why did he/she miss the Prius passing me illegally?

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