Sunday, May 15, 2011

Once I thought I was wrong but I was mistaken.

I rode down to Eugene Friday night after work to attend their monthly Bike Night held at the Sonic Drive In in Springfield. I enjoy standing around talking bikes and meeting new riders.

Photo taken by forum member Wiley Coyote

Photo taken by forum member Wiley Coyote

I am sure Sonic Drive In has a fantastic menu but as with most fast food chains, they lack anything resembling vegetarian fare. French fries and tater tots do not constitute a veggie meal. So I stopped at a Cafe Yumm on my way...


I came into town from the north of a very busy beltway and was stopped in the left turn lane turning east when I spotted the sign for the cafe straight ahead on the right. I made the left turn and moved over to the right lane and made a right turn to go around the block then into a Chevron gas station parking lot so I could position myself to turn right, move left across four lanes of traffic of Gateway Street into the cafe parking lot on the west side of the street. Local bloggers know this part of town and this road, as all the road construction going on, the disabled traffic lights and the new Cabela's store that just opening recently.

I had planned to wait until the light down the street to my right turned green and then slip into moving traffic and merge over to the left turning lane. Unfortunately, during rush hour traffic courtesy can become your worst enemy. One car stops to let me in and now I am stuck in stalled traffic, I sneak over one more lane and am now perpendicular behind a stopped car and in front of a truck in the left lane. The oncoming traffic to my right is clear and I move out to cross the remaining lanes when I caught a bright red Ford Mustang in my left peripheral.

Oh Shit! I made a mistake! I didn't even consider that a car would be traveling down the left turning lane. Of course, I should have known. People will drive two blocks in the turning lane to make a left turn just so not to sit in traffic. I could blame the driver but I was in the wrong, it was my mistake and can only be thankful that they must have seen my front wheel, stopped and waited for me to cross. I am also thankful they stayed off the horn as not to scare the living crap out of me. Courtesy was my friend that time and saved my ass. Thank you... sorry.

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!

Trobairitz said she was glad she wasn't with me and my response was that I never would have threaded traffic like that had I not been by myself. So why did I do it? I couldn't have turned left, traffic was gridlocked. I should have turned right, traveled north through the intersection I came in on, away from the busy traffic then turned around and came back, positioning myself in the right lane to make a right turn into the parking lot.

I am human, I made a mistake and I learned from it. Maybe a Sonic burger isn't so bad because being a vegetarian is downright dangerous.



  1. I didn't know that vegetarians like living on the edge ;-)
    Well, we all make mistakes, yours was probably caused by starvation. Glad, nothing happened, and for a change a cager looked out for a rider.

  2. Nice post Troubadour! Although your post shows we're all human, it more importantly shows you're an excellent rider. I think it's a characteristic of good riders in that they tend to beat themselves up when they've made a mistake. The less experienced riders and the average cage drivers don't take anything from it.

    It must have been the weekend for mistakes as I went through a stop sign which I mistook for a give way. No consequences apart from feeling like a complete muppet.

  3. Mistakes happen, I'm glad the driver saw you and stayed away from the horn as it could have turned worse had you been startled. Next time just go for the burger :-)

  4. Troubadour:

    believe me, that burger tastes better than your bumble pie. We all make judgments that are not always in our favour, thankful nothing serious happened. It seems to happen more when we are in a hurry and let our guard down. I often go the long way, around, or different route just to avoid the traffic.

    Riding the Wet Coast

  5. I always thought being a vegetarian would come to no good....

  6. Close calls are a great teacher! Glad you didn't get squashed.

  7. I like Gary France's comment. Glad to hear you are all right. Sounds like way too much traffic for me....

  8. Glad you were okay! It's nice to know there are drivers out there who are considerate enough to know we all make mistakes sometimes and are keeping a sharp eye out for those moments. One thing I know, we all have those moments. I hate rush hour traffic.

  9. As everyone else has said "very glad that you are okay." Scary incidents like that keep going through my head over and over. I like to believe that Geoff is right. When we recognize them, we learn from them and hopefully avoid the situation in the future. But like Bobskoot, try to avoid that stuff. And if I have to go, usually take the long way around. Stay safe and I hope that dinner was excellent and worth it. :)


  10. It is now an officially crazy area around there. The new Cabela's has snarled it up badly. I was at the stop light by KFC to turn left and head home via Coburg direction back roads.

    Ended up turning right and going all the way around to Coburg Road.

    Good job taking care of yourself. It's not getting into a situation so much. It's how you get yourself out of it!


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