Monday, July 6, 2009

Outlaw Biker

Seven months is a long time. I was surprised that I hadn't posted since November of last year, but time flies. I guess I can reimmerse by telling you about being pulled over twice during the interim, once officially and once informally.

The first time, I turned left on a red light around 5:30 AM on the way into work. This was after sitting through three cycles without a left-turn arrow. The officer followed me down the block, but didn't light 'em up until I was inside the parking garage, behind a gate. I park on the third floor, and probably could have feigned ignorance, but I turned around and faced the music. He asked the usual questions, ran my papers, and told me I should be more careful. He acknowledged that I had 'gotten away' and didn't have to come back outside the garage to face him, so he let the incident drop without a citation. Since I can't afford to wait half an hour at an intersection for a queue of heavier vehicles to trip the left turn light, I just take another route into work now.

The other time was less formal, and I wasn't really pulled over, but given a stern 'talking to' by a motorcycle cop. As we waited for the red light to change at a busy intersection, he instructed me to flip up my visor. He then proceeded to tell me to keep one foot on the bike, and one on the pavement when coming to a stop. I understand the need for this on a motorcycle, but your left foot (or right for that matter) has no function on a scooter with an automatic transmission. Of course, I didn't point this out. Officer Friendly wasn't looking for a spirited discussion on the topic. He also pointed out that with two feet on the pavement, I was more likely to step in motor oil. Again, I found that argument to have little weight behind it but I wasn't about to get into a back and forth. He ended the discussion with a comment about "ride if you are going to ride," which I still don't fully understand - unless he meant I should enjoy my commute into work a hell of a lot less. If that's the case, then mission accomplished. At least for that day.