Have you ever had one of those days where simply riding or driving across town is the worst part of the day? Of course you have, we all have. Some days it’s just a matter of hitting too many red lights or road construction slow downs or even worse, being stopped and getting a ticket for speeding. These are things that are just plain annoying and give your day a bad start.
Here in Southern California however, we have traffic. Lot’s of it. All day, everyday. It doesn’t matter if it’s Monday morning rush hour or Thursday at midnight, there’s traffic. I truly believe that this where the term traffic was invented. We now have TV shows dedicated to traffic reports, radio stations give traffic reports every five minutes, even your iPhone gives you traffic reports at the push of a button. Southern California is traffic personified.
Commuting on a motorcycle here is risky business. Drivers are either putting on makeup, shaving, reading the newspaper, texting a BFF (whatever that is??), checking their GPS for an alternative route, watching a video with their kids, or yelling at the kids (Billy!! quit looking at your sister!!), whatever it is, drivers are not, I repeat not, watching what they are doing, muchless looking out for motorcycles. Unexpected lane changes…, “hey that lane is moving 1/2 mile per hour faster..I think I’ll move over” and the ever popular… “oh sh*t there’s my exit”. Those of us on two wheels have to pay attention not only to what we’re doing but what everyone else is doing too. No wonder we’re tired when we get to work.
Now, this story is not going to evolve into some safety lecture, there are plenty of those out there and it’s not going to turn into some gruesome accident story either, it’s about how I decided to handle traffic for myself. After years of lane splitting and hearing the “I didn’t see you” way too many times it was time to go on the offensive. I’m not a fan of the ‘Loud Pipes Save Lives’ theory and I look stupid in one of those reflective safety vests, so what to do?? A few calls to my congressman and my problem with traffic is a thing of the past.