Brake Check!!!

It’s raining. I’m minding my own lane space as I roll in ‘Rain’ mode down Robinson Avenue, at a sedate pace of 35 miles per hour, which coincidentally is also the speed limit. I’m on my way to work, feeling fine and listening to Lady Gaga’s ‘Bad Romance’. Traffic is pretty heavy, since it’s rush hour in the big city of Grovetown. I like the way the S1000RR minds its manners in crap weather. The ‘Busa had it together, too, but this bike screams confidence, but not overly so.

I see him sitting there, in his black sedan with his chromed-out rims. He is stopped, and not antsy, like some of the drivers trying to make a left turn onto Robinson Avenue from Katherine Street. There is a line of cars behind him, also waiting to merge into Grovetown’s main artery. I’m closing the distance to the T-intersection, when suddenly he guns it and pulls out in front of me. I don’t have time to think, all I can do is react. I quickly bring my fingers up, curl them around the front brake lever as I roll the throttle closed in the same swift, desperate movement and grab the biggest handful to date in Miss Busa’s colorful 18-month riding career. Gone is the thought of “but… but it’s wet”, all I can think of is that I need to stop this rocket before my front tire kisses this joker’s rear bumper and high-sides me into oncoming traffic. Not that I have any other options. Oncoming traffic to the left, curb to the right. I couldn’t jump that anyway, the angle of approach wouldn’t be steep enough, and I’ve really had enough of curb jumping against all odds for the time being. I’ve done killed one Peregrine Falcon with that stunt, don’t need to add a Pirate Matey to the list of things wrecked due to impossible angles. The S1000RR does its thing (or I do), because I haul myself down in time to escape calamity. Straight, well behaved, controlled, without lockups. I don’t even put my foot down, but bang it down a gear into first, then ease out the clutch, which I had pulled in at some point during this fiasco, but can’t recall doing so. Holy hell! I glance down and see no telltale lights that speak of the Beemer’s intervention. Damn! Still couldn’t make neither the ABS nor the DTC come on and help a chica out. I’m beginning to worry… if anything this should have done it! Never mind that now… I show the jerk that he rates No. 1 in my book, but the single-digit salute doesn’t really do it for me. I want to make sure the asshat gets a good look at the face of the person he just put into a do or die situation. The face of the girl who could have had herself one pisser of a bad day courtesy of his stupid ass. And this is definitely NOT how I like to start my day, no sir! When the traffic clears I speed up, cross over into the oncoming lane. I buzz him really close and stare into his window as I pace him. He looks at me like I’m some sort of wacko. Ah, I hate that look. The look of non-comprehension. So he gunned it to cut off oncoming traffic, but never looked back to his right to see the girl on a motorcycle and the giant SUV behind her. Fuck me! It would have done my psyche better if he had just been a complete jackass and had done it on purpose… I don’t know why that matters… probably because that would take one shitty variable out of this messy equation. *sigh* I shake my fist at him anyway, then leave him to sniff my fumes and make sure I’m back to speed limit by the time I do my almost daily pass and review in front of the cop shop.

Damned if you do & damned if you don’t!
What really grinds my gears is this: If there is no contact between vehicles it is not ruled an accident. Think about this for a moment. Think about how that silly, asinine law affects motorcyclists. I would have hit his ass had I been in hubby’s truck; making double-sure of there being contact, had I not been able to stop in time. It would have been ruled his fault. I was traveling at speed limit, he cut off not just me, but oncoming traffic as well. Plenty of witnesses. On a motorcycle? Physical contact between their parts and yours needs to be avoided at all costs or you’ll really be in for a world of hurt. In my case, I had no outs, but to stop and hope for the best. Couldn’t swerve left due to oncoming traffic. Couldn’t swerve right due to the curb. Either of which would have resulted in a highside… to the left into a moving object. To the right into a stationary one. Hitting the offending car would have also resulted in my soft parts being lobbed into the air. Only way out? Lay it down, separate and hope you’ll stay in your lane as you slide to a stop on your ass and further hope the driver in the car behind you is paying attention. Not really all that comfortable with these odds. This is pissing me off all over again…. ARGH! To the point: Had I avoided impact but laid down my bike in the process, it would have been ruled my fault and I would have been turned into an unwilling pedestrian, since I can’t afford another freaking $1000 insurance deductible. Not to mention my rates would be so far down the crapper… enough said.

They need to change that stupid law (at least for motorcyclists)! If someone causes you to lose control of your vehicle because they violate your right of way, it should be deemed their fault, vehicle contact or not! We only have two wheels, after we screech to a halt, we still have to remain in balance to avoid damage to our vehicle.

Lesson learned:
I’m mounting a video camera to the bike permanently, and I will run it every time I ride. I had too many close calls now. Then I will use that footage, along with witness accounts and sue the pants off your driving-skill lacking ass or have my surviving hubby do it for me. LEARN TO DRIVE!

I’m still not calmed down. And this happened over seven hours ago. 😦 And something else just occurred to me: Had I been on my Hayabusa, this day would have been one hell of a bummer, indeed. There’s no way I could have stopped The Fat Lady in time to avoid a highside. Now I’m double-bummed… or maybe things happen for a reason?!?

3 Comments on “Brake Check!!!”

  1. @moldor says:

    I feel your anger… Thought about mounting a camera on the bike myself, but I’m getting a small HD camera and mounting it on the helmet. Not that the Police here will take any notice of the video…

    Had a similar, but less dangerous (and funnier result) thing happen here a few weeks ago. Wet weather, riding to work on the only major freeway into this pathetic city – left hand lane (we ride on the “wrong” side, remember). Indicator on to merge right, look, smallish SUV about 6 car lengths back. at 60k (35mph) more than enough distance.

    So I move over and hear a blast of horns – this dickwad had ACCELERATED when he saw me move. Now, Baby isn’t small (GL1500 Goldwing), so his grin and “sorry, didn’t see ya” just didn’t wash. Pulled up next to him in traffic, snapped his pic with the iPhone, and said in my best Highway Patrol voice (I’m not, but he didn’t know that) “That little stunt, Sir, will cost you $350 for negligent driving. Have a nice day” and rode off.

    The little shit tailgated me, flashing his lights and getting pretty damn close. I moved into the middle lane and he went for the right. After I took his mirror off with my fist (Sorry, Officer, I thought he was getting too close and didn’t see me !), he rolls the window down and starts abusing me. Here’s where it gets “funny”;

    We start rolling forward, with him making “pull over” motions and screaming epithets at me – not something I was about to do, tyre lever in my boot or not. Traffic stops and he starts screaming again – get the picture ? Good 3 car lengths in front of me clear, so I call him an asshole and accellerate hard, then stop. He’s looking left at me and does the same thing.

    Problem is the 3 car lengths in front of him was partially taken up by a brand new Mecerdes 350SLK – now equipped with a well-embedded small Suzuki SUV up it’s ass.

    Hehehehe… I walked over to the Merc. driver to make sure he was OK, have him my card and said I’d be a witness for him but I had to get to work. He said he saw what the SUV had done to me earlier too. Smiled at the aforementioned dickwad, waved and left.

    Here in Australia the law is that if you rear-end someone you are at fault (and if you are rear-ended, and you changed lanes, you shut UP about it). Cops called me later that afternoon and asked for a statement, and mentioned the mirror incident. “Mirror, Officer ? Must have been damaged in the prang with the Mercedes. Oh, and by the way, that Suzuki was all caved in at the front BEFORE the accident, and the driver admitted liability”.

    More hehehehehe…

    Turns out that his Insurance Company, who contacted me a few weeks later, have a policy of refusing any claim where their insured admits liability in front of witnesses (me and Merc. driver). Looks like the fucker is going to have to take them to court to get them to pay up.

    The 350SLK ? Written off, although I thought it would be repairable the owner refused to accept repairs on a 7 day old car and demanded a new one – he’s suing Dickwad for the replacement while Dickwad is suing his insurer.

    Ain’t life a bitch on the road ?…:-)

    • MissBusa says:

      Oh holy hell! You’re right, I do feel better! Thank you for sharing that little morsel with me. Dickwad, I’m sure, is not having a really good month. ;P

  2. Strega_Rossa says:

    I’m glad to see someone did some body modification on an offending cager – I was going to suggest that to you LOL!!

    As an aside I *always* ride with my high beam on; it won’t prevent an antsy cager from pulling out in front of you but it certainly can’t hurt.

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