Mea culpa. What can I say? I was in a hurry.
I don’t normally split the lane on Middlefield Road — the lanes are very narrow, traffic is heavy, and the vehicles are huge. Construction resulted in cars and trucks backed up for several blocks west of Oregon Expressway, however. The traffic light ahead was red, and the gap between the two eastbound lanes looked just wide enough to fit my skinny backside through. Several cyclists filter through on the far right or even use the sidewalk, but this is dangerous because several people turn right onto Oregon.
I normally queue up behind the other traffic in the right lane, and I usually need to creep up with the other traffic through a couple of traffic light signal red-green phases. Today, though, I was running late.
The narrowest gap was between the side mirrors on a white Ford F250 and a red Hummer H2, so I scrunched in my shoulders and slid right through, yee haw! then *thwack*thump*.
My messenger bag struck the Ford’s mirror and knocked my Princeton Tec Swerve taillight clean off. The light flew up and bounced against the Hummer’s fender.
And by this time the light had turned green and traffic started moving, so I couldn’t exactly stop to exchange drivers licenses and insurance information. I looked left — the Ford had a landscape company logo on the door, and the Latinos inside were laughing at me. I looked back right to see the Hummer driver on the phone and oblivious — I’m not sure he even noticed my bike light skittering off of his vehicle.
All’s well that ends well, I guess — I just lost a tail light this time. Still, splitting the lane is sketchy at best, even if you’re in a hurry. Experto crede.
And quando omni flunkus moritati.