Not just because of the weather....
Sent: Sunday, June 11, 2000 4:37 PM
Subject: [SDCBC] Another Close Call
Hooray for the San Diego Police!
I had just left my apartment for a late-afternoon ride. I was heading
westbound on Washington Street in Mission Hills, near the intersection with
Front Street. An old guy in a beat-up Ford F-250 pick-up truck was driving
next to me, a little too close for comfort. I was sandwiched between him
the cars parked along Washington. I knew that this guy had no idea I was
there. Suddenly, without any warning (i.e. a turn signal) the guy began
moving over, trying to dart into a last-minute parallel parking space. I
inches away from being squashed in between his huge truck and the cars
along the street. There was no place for me to go, so I squeezed on the
brakes like my life depended on it (it did), narrowly avoiding getting
Needless to say, I was livid. I rode up next to this old codger, whose
window was halfway rolled down, and stuck my now-red face inside. "Do you
know how close you came to killing me?!?" I yelled, more scared than angry.
With no reply, I posed my question again, this time a bit more forcefully.
With a look of total hate and contempt in his eyes, the old man glowered,
"You're damn lucky I didn't."
Well, I was about to rip into this old idiot when I noticed out of the
corner of my eye a police cruiser waiting at the intersection. The cop
inside saw me and yelled out his window, "Hey, I saw the whole thing. The
guy in the truck was totally wrong. I'll talk to him." With that, the cop
pulled over and asked the old man to step out of his truck. The cop then
began to give the old man a polite but firm lecture on how bicycles are
vehicles on the road, how motorists are required to regard them as they
any other vehicle, and how that guy came within inches of killing me. The
cop said to the old man, "You're in a three-thousand pound truck and he's on
a twenty-two pound bicycle. Who do you think's gonna win that battle?" The
old man muttered, "Um, no contest, I guess, officer," his look of hate and
contempt now a bit more contrite.
A bit more calm and eager to get on with the ride, I profusely thanked
the cop. The old guy didn't offer so much as an apology, but I still felt
It was so refreshing and relieving to have a San Diego police officer
come to my rescue. I've gotten into verbal confrontations with motorists
before, but it seldom solves anything, even though I usually try to
level-headedly explain why they were in the wrong for nearly sending me to
early grave. But this cop completely quelled the situation, while ensuring
that this idiot motorist knew how wrong he'd been.
I wish there were more cops out there like him.
Bike safely and take care of each other out there. . . .
P.S. I didn't catch the cops name, but I'd like to thank him. Does anyone
have an address (either email or snail mail) for the SDPD Public Relations