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Thread: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

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    Default A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    A couple of things happened on my London commute yesterday that gave me at least brief pause for thought. I mentioned them to my son who did his CBT on Monday, as part of his education Just thought I'd pop them up here, albeit that they are far from earth-shattering.

    1. Heading north over Westminster Bridge, I'm in the outside lane because I'll be turning right at Big Ben onto the Embankment. There's a bus just to my left that has its indicator on. I hang back to let him pull into my lane. He continues to indicate, but remains in his lane. I wait again. Ditto. By this time we're close to the junction & have come to a halt. I'm alongside. I try to signal to him that he has left his indicator on. He winds down his window. I'm anticipating either a puzzled question or some impolite words. He smiles and says, "I'm breaking down". Must have been hazards, then: something you don't tend to see on a bus that is still moving. Oh well.

    2. On my way home. There seemed to be a bit of tension in the air. I wasn't sure how much was me and how much was everyone. (Was it a strike day?) Heading west along Stamford Street towards the iMax I have to stop for pedestrians who are crossing against the lights. A rider behind me repeatedly sounds his horn. I turn round angrily and issue an expletive. When we're through the junction he pulls alongside and says he's not happy I had a go at him, because he was sounding his horn at the pedestrians not me. I apologise for swearing at him. On reflection, and if we'd had more time, and I hadn't sworn, I might have made the points that (a) he was using his horn as a rebuke (b) he was using his horn while stationary (& not in an emergency) and (c) by using it behind me he was leading me to believe it was directed at me.

    I've probably done all of those things myself. Now I've been on the receiving end I can see how potentially unhelpful they are.

    3. Yes, I said a couple of things but the title referred to an extra thought Actually it's not really extra, it's an elaboration of the "tension in the air" comment under point 2. This is the thought that perhaps we should consider the prevailing driving mood, as it were, as a potential hazard in addition to the usual ones. We are probably all aware of the Friday night syndrome - everyone rushing to get home for the weekend. But to what extent do we reflect on how to deal with any extra risks that it presents, as opposed to just thinking "It's a jungle out there"? Conversely, if there's a vague sense that there's "something in the air", do we consider it might have a cause (eg strike day) and take extra care, or do we just allow ourselves to get as wound up as the rest of them?


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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    He who angers you becomes your master.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    I agree. The effect of consciousness on perception is something that is worth a serious examination in all aspects of life, not least when riding a motorbike.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by Scootabout View Post

    3. Yes, I said a couple of things but the title referred to an extra thought Actually it's not really extra, it's an elaboration of the "tension in the air" comment under point 2. This is the thought that perhaps we should consider the prevailing driving mood, as it were, as a potential hazard in addition to the usual ones. We are probably all aware of the Friday night syndrome - everyone rushing to get home for the weekend. But to what extent do we reflect on how to deal with any extra risks that it presents, as opposed to just thinking "It's a jungle out there"? Conversely, if there's a vague sense that there's "something in the air", do we consider it might have a cause (eg strike day) and take extra care, or do we just allow ourselves to get as wound up as the rest of them?

    Friday night I always found to be distinctly different the rest of the week (Monday morning as well, and Sunday night is just weird).
    I think it's the extra mass of drivers getting out of the city for the weekend, and the general 'end of the week' malaise.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    6:30 last night, the M4 westbound was like a motorised cavalry charge

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by Horse View Post
    6:30 last night, the M4 westbound was like a motorised cavalry charge
    Often is. I had the joy of Basingstoke - Andover - Devizes which was a relative delight!

    Good point about 'tension in the air' though. I'm sure its actually down to pure chance but I notice some evenings filtering up the A33 from central Reading to JCT11 is a Moses job, other evenings I'm constantly seeing groups of cars all fighting for the same space, no one giving way to merging traffic let alone checking their mirrors before changing lanes. It really does make a difference to the commuting experience. The same is true on the M4 but its easier to keep your distance from the anger.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by Horse View Post
    6:30 last night, the M4 westbound was like a motorised cavalry charge
    I usually always go into work (frimley), via the M4 from home (Chippenham), but usually always come home M3>A303>A342 for that very reason, on bike or in car.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    That's why a) always ignore bus drivers; they're wankers b) always ignore other motorcyclists; they're wankers.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by CoolHands View Post
    That's why a) always ignore bus drivers; they're wankers b) always ignore other motorcyclists; they're wankers.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by RiceBurner View Post
    Friday night I always found to be distinctly different the rest of the week (Monday morning as well, and Sunday night is just weird).
    I think it's the extra mass of drivers getting out of the city for the weekend, and the general 'end of the week' malaise.
    Friday has to be the lightest of all the commutes... dunno why this is, 'cept that perhaps a lot work only 4 days, or perhaps they stay behind for drinks? Easy in, easy out today... much easier than Monday, which is by far the worst of the 5.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Friday is work from home day. I recall noticing a significant difference in the Friday morning commute on the original introduction of the central London congestion charge, it seems that this was a trigger for flexible working to kick in.

    Friday evenings however, are when everything goes wrong and you get 7 mile tailbacks on the M25.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Tension in the air, tingly spidey senses, feeling that something is going to happen before I even leave-yep listen to all of those. Only times I haven't something has happened.

    I have considered maybe it's me. Got a bit of the flutters-perhaps me who not in the ideal frame of mind & then I make the error which precipitated something?

    I don't swear at people though-not these days. Too many bampots about.

    IME Friday is just a pants day from 11am onwards-anywhere. I try very hard not to travel after then. Sunday from about 1pm onwards is usually when I see the stupidest things.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by burty View Post
    Friday is work from home day. I recall noticing a significant difference in the Friday morning commute on the original introduction of the central London congestion charge, it seems that this was a trigger for flexible working to kick in.

    Friday evenings however, are when everything goes wrong and you get 7 mile tailbacks on the M25.
    Even back in the '80s I found Friday pm the lightest day and Thursday pm the heaviest in London. Some people must be getting away with a skivy Friday!

    Mood is less obvious when you are not riding daily. However, I know that in the Alps, the warm wind that sometimes blows which they call the Foehn (= hairdryer) makes people moody, irritable, erratic and liable to RTAs.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor View Post
    Sunday from about 1pm onwards is usually when I see the stupidest things.
    I used to go for a ride on Sunday, aiming to get home about 5:00 or 6:00 pm. IME the mix of Sunday drivers, idiot motorcyclists trying to keep up with their mates, and long distance traffic coming home from the cottage in Wales/South West in the Mercedes/BMW is pretty lethal. At least the Friday traffic is predominantly quick, it is the mix of quick and slow on Sundays that makes it worse. And more than a few motorcyclists take silly risks.

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    Default Re: A couple of interesting (?) incidents & an extra thought

    I think there is something in the air sometimes. On certain days coming into London its dog eat dog and on others, people seem remarkably courteous (usually when the sun is out). Friday evenings are terrible from 4pm onwards. Its a car park all the way from C London to Ruislip.

    On other weekend evenings, I can get lucky and get all the way to Marylebone with hardly any filtering or stopping.

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