Monday, May 11, 2009

My Superpower

Some of my friends have superpowers on the bike. For instance, Mark is so strong that people actually call him "Nails." Then there is the "man of steel", who does amazing things with steel tubes and rides with a cape. Its seems like most of the people I ride with these days can climb walls (on their bikes) like spiderman.

Although I don't have any bike-related superpowers, my superpower is still pretty freakin' cool. Somewhere between the superpowers of my friends and the superpowers from the Mystery Men, like Mr. Furious, the Shoveler, and best of all, Flatulence Man ("whoever smelt it, shall forever dealt it").

Anyway, my superpower is the ability to inflict instant karma on other drivers. Allow me to demonstrate with two true stories:

Story # 1:

I was heading north on Redwood Road at around 6200 S and was about to turn east on the I-215 on-ramp. It was dark and snowing heavily, so most everyone was using extra caution. I was in the center of three lanes and needed to get to the right lane. There was a long line of traffic in the right lane, so I slowed down and patiently waited for an opening. A good opening presented itself, so I turned on my blinker and slowly merged over. Turns out that the prick 100 feet back in the lane I was merging into decided that I didn't deserve to get on the freeway 3 seconds before him. So he gunned it, went into middle lane to get around me, and then swerved in front of me close enough that I had to put on the brakes to avoid hitting him.

The problem for him is that he didn't have quite enough road to pull this off. At least not on a snow day. After he cut in front of me, he had to turn even sharper to the right to make the on-ramp. And then he had to correct to the left to stay on the on-ramp. The coefficient of friction between his tires and the slick road wasn't quite high enough to handle this kind of maneuvering (that's the undergraduate explanation, anyway).

He started fishtailing, corrected the other way, etc., etc., and eventually was barreling off the right of the on-ramp. Unfortunately for the prick, going off the right side of the on-ramp meant dropping down a 20 foot steep hill into a field. He rodeo'd down the hill and through the field, and crashed through a chain link fence and finally came to rest next to a long row of storage units.

Story # 2:

Back when I lived in super-hip Sugarhouse rather than tragically unhip Orem, I was "just driving along" on Highland Drive one afternoon. I'm not sure when Highland Drive was constructed, but I can tell you that Brother Brigham would not have been happy if he ever tried flip a U'ie with his four oxen pulling a wagon down Highland Drive. If Brother Brigham was around, I bet he sent the designer of super-narrow Highland Drive down to settle Milford or something (no offense if you're from Milford).

Due to its narrowness and the need to accommodate all of us Sugarhood yuppies, much of Highland Drive consists of two lanes of cramped traffic in each direction with no middle turning lane or shoulder. I'm in the left lane and need to get into the right lane (again). This time, I'll fully admit to nearly cutting off the dude in my blind spot. I saw him at about the same time I started to cross the white line and and I got back into the left lane and gave the guy the "I'm sorry, my fault" wave (not a "what the hell" wave or a middle finger wave). He came up beside me and I gave him another "sorry" wave to acknowledge fault. No harm no foul, right?

Well, not in his mind. He starts flipping me off and cussing me out. Both of our windows were down and we weren't going too fast , so I heard every word. I replied "sorry man, chill out." He dropped a few more f-bombs and another middle finger. I won't write down my next reply word for word, but I'm pretty sure I told him what he could go do to himself.

In the midst of the maylay, a UTA bus had pulled over to pick someone up in the right lane. As described above, there is no shoulder on Highland, so the bus was in the A-hole's lane 100 yards or so ahead. He certainly wasn't going to let me get in front of him at this point, so he punched it. The problem was that there was another car in front of me that he decided he also had to beat out for good measure. I can't be entirely sure, but I think the car in front of me sped up a little once he saw the jack-A trying to cut him off. Do I even need to finish this story?

The motard tried to merge, but there wasn't really anywhere for him to go. He clipped the front end of the vehicle in front of me and sent them both into a bit of a spin. Miraculously, no other cars were involved, but the collision seemed to cause plenty of damage on both cars.

It's easy not to end up like these two fools. Just don't be a jerk while in your car. At least not to someone like me whose superpower is to inflict instant karma while driving. Don't even get me started on the number of people I've seen pulled over by a cop right after flying by me at crazy speeds and/or cutting me off.


Ski Bike Junkie said...

"that's the undergraduate explanation, anyway"

Priceless. Remind me to never cut you off.

dug said...

i just cut you off in my head, and then walked into a wall.

damn, man. that's cold.

Aaron said...

I wish I had more control over my superpower, because I wouldn't have made them actually crash. Because making people crash is cold. Fortunately neither incident was bad enough to cause any injuries.

nails said...

I would give up any superpowers to have yours, especially living in the fine state of Utah. Remember to not hide your "talent"

Grizzly Adam said...

Perhaps Ben can chime in with the "graduate explanation". :p

Control over your superpower will only come with practice. And yours is a superpower I always wanted.

South County Ciclista said...

Thanks for not making me crash last night as I cut you off in that corner.