Regular readers of this column (I know there are a few) will know I have no patience with morons on the road, whether they be drivers, cyclists or pedestrians.
Take the two drivers I saw Tuesday morning.
To set the scene, I was driving east on Fifth Avenue, coming up to Stuart Street and a marked crosswalk. I saw a cyclist approach the stop sign on Stuart, stop, and get off the bike. There was a vehicle ahead of me, but I was already preparing to stop to allow the cyclist to cross Fifth.
The vehicle in front of me stopped, which made me happy, since they had obviously seen the cyclist and decided their life wasn’t going to be thrown into complete and total chaos by stopping to let someone cross the street legally.
I looked to the other side of Fifth, and saw drivers in both of the westbound lanes had also stopped.
So now we had three lanes of the four stopped at a marked crosswalk. Pretty easy to figure out what’s going on if you’re a driver with a single functioning brain cell, right?
Well, I guess the driver in the other lane didn’t have a single functioning brain cell, as they went sailing right by the stopped traffic and the crosswalk without even slowing down.
The cyclist now started to cross Fifth, pushing their bike. At which point, with the cyclist now in a marked crosswalk with signs on either side of the road, that the next vehicle in the lane next to me came charging up to the stopped lanes of traffic.
Apparently they had a single functioning brain cell, because as they drew level with me, they slammed on the brakes and came to a stop, just as the cyclist was stepping out into the area between the two lanes.
Had there been an incident at that crosswalk involving the pedestrian (which is what the cyclist now was, pushing their bicycle), the police would have had no shortage of witnesses to make it clear who was in the wrong.
I shook my head, then felt a small degree of satisfaction when my lane of traffic proved to be faster-moving than the other one, and I was able to pass both the offensive vehicles before we even got to Highway 16.
It would be nice if drivers showed a small degree of intelligence, and the vast majority do, but there will always be that small number who switch on the ignition and switch off their brains.