Thursday, 8 October 2009
little van man
My doctor was right when he reckoned I'd have a week of pain from the rib. By yesterday it was more bearable and I was aching (as it were) to get back on the bike. So I went down to the library.
Coming home, I was riding along Durdham Park, which is a useful route home for me, being relatively quiet and more direct than the main road.
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As you can see, it's quite windy and usually parked-up on both sides for a lot of the way. So when cars come too fast around the corners, as they often do, and meet other cars, they end up having to reverse again, or, equally likely, sit there and face down the other driver.
A van came up behind me. It came quite close behind me, in fact, and started gunning the engine to express the driver's impatience to get past me.
So I stopped and got off. I motioned for him to wind his window down. He wouldn't. I said, "There isn't room for you to overtake safely, so will you please stop revving your engine at me".
He looked all sulky, and forced his way past me.... to be held up immediately by a taxi going head-to-head with another car. When they moved, he pulled into the kerb, because he had arrived at his destination, about a hundred feet ahead of the place that he'd been so keen to get past me.
He got out. He looked very small, unprotected by his little van.
"What's your problem?" he shouted.
"Arseholes in cars," I replied. " I got knocked off only last week".
"I wouldn't knock you off", he said in a peculiarly nasty way.
"I wouldn't knock you off," he repeated in a dubious way, presumably because his remark had fallen on stony ground. And then he returned to the mobile phone conversation he'd been conducting throughout this encounter.
I think it was some sort of sexual innuendo, thinking back. Wasted on me. Just as, apparently, my suggestion that he should not drive dangerously was wasted on him.