Thursday, August 13, 2009

On reporting bad drivers...

I had a run-in with some young fella in a pick-up a few weeks ago, as I made my way in to work. He was lane hopping, no signals and cut me off, forcing me to put the binders on. In a car, this can be a real wake-up. On a bike, it's just way more excitement than you really want. So I noted this young asshole's particulars and phoned it in to the local Gestapo once I got to work. I was content that I had done the right thing and that junior would get his comeuppance for his less-than-responsible driving habits.

I received a phone call from Ottawa's finest to confirm the details a day later and the matter was put to rest. Perhaps less than a week following that, I received a phone message upon arriving home, from the Ottawa police. They informed me that they had located the info on the owner, but as he was from another town, there was nothing they could do. I had to let this sink in for a while... So what was the point of all this? I have always been under the impression that the rules of the road applied across an entire province, not just on a city by city basis. If I should have reported this to the OPP, they should have let me know. But the OPP don't have any jurisdiction over the streets of Ottawa/Orleans...

I have witnessed many other bad/dangerous driving practices since that event, as I'm sure we all do on an everyday basis. Just this morning as I was coming in along the Rockcliffe Parkway, some moron was tailgating me, obviously in a big hurry to pass. As we reached the stretch running by the RCMP stables and paddock, he screamed out around me and hurtled towards the string of oncoming traffic. Needless to say, this was in a double line zone. I have been known myself to stray on the other side of this line, when following the dawdlers, as I like to call them. Thoses who severely interrupt the 'swoop and flow' of riding the Parkway when it's not under construction. But never in the face of oncoming traffic.

There was a single line zone just a little further down the road, if he really wanted to pass. As it turned out, he ended up right in front of me for the remainder of the trip in. I passed him as he was waiting in line for the left-hand turn at King Edward, waiting to go to the Dark Side. As I passed him, our eyes locked and with my thumb and forefinger forming a circle, I thumped it against the forehead part of my helmet, thereby sending him the international sign for "Asshole!!!"

Sad to say, but I have resigned myself to doing absolutely nothing about it. Just like everyone else around me. I have come to the realization that just as with every other instance regarding lawlessness and wrongdoing, we the citizens are pretty much left to our own devices as far as protecting ourselves and striking back. So if you happen to cut off a biker or are crowding his ass-end as you both scoot down a highway or boulevard, don't be too surprised if your windshield ingests a 2-ounce, flat steel washer. Just think of it as a self-protection device against BCICs.

Besides... When we do, what's the other guy gonna do? Report us...??? :)

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