Thursday, April 26, 2007

Bright Side: It could have been an Escalade

Well, my ride home last night was way more exciting than I wanted. Here's the short version which I posted elsewhere:

So I rode into work today as I've been trying to do once or twice a week. All rides so far have been uneventful. Today... not so much. I wasn't thrilled that the weather nerds got it wrong again, but no big deal. My route takes me on route 20 through the main part of Waltham which can be an adventure, but usually just requires being awake and watching everyone. I went through the light at Prospect St right in front of Frank's and was cruising along without any traffic around me (I think they got held up by someone turning). There are a few side streets on the right and I see this car up the road stopped like he was going to take a left into one of the streets, but he looks like he has overshot the turn so he's almost making a partial u-turn to go into the street. He waited a long time to actually turn and I could see he had been staring in my direction so I figured he was waiting. Just as I got close enough to not really have an out, he hits the gas and goes for the street. I knew I couldn't stop in time to not ride right into the side of the car and he sort of checked up mid-turn so I figured he saw me and was stopping. I went in front of him in an arc into the side street figuring worst case he'll see me when I'm in front of him. Well, I think the first time he saw me was when I was sliding through the crosswalk. I had made it most of the way by, but then he drove right into the rear wheel. Him hitting me along with the wheel getting tacoed and coming to a dead stop sort of just tossed me over sideways. I landed primarily on my hip/butt and have a pretty impressive bruise/raspberry to show for it. I was able to roll on my back and skid on my backpack a few feet so really the damage to me was minimal. The bike is an unknown... obviously destroyed rear wheel (sorry Neil... that free wheel WAS working great), bars should be replaced because the hit the ground and got scratched up, frame might be bent. If there's a bright spot, I carried it a block to Frank's and asked him to go over it for me and then he let me hang out and wait for a ride.

The colorful version:
The way they guy was making the turn it was obvious that he couldn't drive which f'd me up more. He sort of paused twice in the middle of doing it so it gave me the sense (twice) that he saw me. When he ever accelerated and drove right into me it was just sheer disbelief. I probably scared the life out of him because I bounced up pretty quickly and walked towards the car using of course the highest quality of language to express my displeasure :) I think it was something to the effect of "What the f$&k were you looking at?" I was really worried for a minute because he immediately started in with asking me how much it would cost to fix everything and that he wanted to pay me so it didn't go against his insurance. I was waiting for the follow up of "I don't have insurance". The shop is supposed to call today with the damage assessment and then I'm going to write it up and give him a very limited time to pay me. A small part of me wants to do it through his insurance so he gets several years worth of painful reminders to pay attention while he's driving. Heaven forbid one of those hooligans on a two-wheeled machine try to share the road with him and get in his way. Honestly, as long as he pays up I'll just let it go. It could have been sooooooooo much worse. My wife actually handled it VERY well. I did have to make that phone call which started out with "First I'll tell you I'm fine, but..." It worked out extra well because the first call I made was to tell her I needed a ride since she was over 20 miles away and I knew it would take a while. I told her to get me at the shop and she just sort of assumed the bike came apart on me or something and said she'd call me back. She's just thankful and will be fine eventually.

Ok, time to work. I'm going to have to get up every 30 minutes or so and walk around today to try and keep this hip loose. I'll find out tonight how it feels while riding.


Robert said...

glad you are ok,
are you still racing sturbrdige?


gewilli said...

wow man...

that blows big chunks....

maybe you'll get a bike that fits out of this ;)

trackrich said...

Still in for Sturbridge unless this hip thing gets worse. Hopefully it'll be fine in another 2 days. Have to see how it feels riding.

Part of me is hoping the bike is wrecked so a) he has to pay a lot for his mistake, and b) I get a shiny new toy. If the frame survived, I may just have to stick with steel bikes for the rest of my life :)