On the way home from work, I was riding along when a Chrysler 600 sedan went by. The passenger rolled down his window and said, "Mrummph blump lala," as the car passed. At least, that's what it sounded like, but that's what it always sounds like when people in passing cars say things to you.
I wonder if they actually think you can understand them, as they go by at 2 to 3 times your speed.
Anyway, I caught up to the car at the intersection with MLK Jr. Boulevard, and rode up beside the passenger window. The dark tinted window was up, but I could still see the look of surprise on the young gentleman's face.
I know that people in cars rarely expect to see you again after making their passing remarks.
I motioned for him to roll the window down, and he rolled it about halfway.
"I'm sorry," I said, "I missed what you said, back there."
"Oh,", he said. I think he was surprised by my polite tone. "I said that there's no bike lane on this street."
"Actually, every street is a bike lane," I explained. "We get a lane, just like a car."
"That ain't no car. You get run over, you're gonna know it." Still very polite.
"Yeah, and if an 18-wheeler runs over your car, you're gonna know it. Does that mean only 18-wheelers should drive on the street?"
That was apparently enough conversation for the young man. "Oh, shut up!" he said, sounding more exasperated than angry. Then, he rolled up his window.
I rode on past them, and the car that they were behind (which was waiting to turn left), crossed MLK and continued on my way. About halfway down the block, the car passed me again.
I smiled and waved. I couldn't tell if they waved back, or not, because of the tinted windows. At the end of the block, they pulled over and parked. I rode on by, smiled and waved again, and continued my ride home from work.
I cherish these little talks...