I ride my bike everywhere and in my time of riding, I've encountered a lot of problematic drivers. I've seen cars blow through stop signs, really push red lights, exceed the speed limit excessively, swerve, use the bike lane to pass other cars and just about every other infraction you can imagine. However, my experience yesterday took the cake. Alex and I were trying to cross a street (we had the green light) and I was heading into the crosswalk. A woman in an SUV started honking and tried to make a right turn right in front of me. I tried to brake in time, and I came within inches of being hit by her. I was so upset by this interaction, that I was literally starting to cry and I was clutching my chest, unable to process the near miss that had just occurred. She had stopped, and I attempted to waver her past me, telling her to please go. She pulled up in front of me, and rolled down her window. Thinking she might actually ask me if I was OK, I looked at her (she was driving a nice car and looked like she was coming back from church). She proceeded to yell at me and tell me how wrong I was (yeah, for trying to cross IN THE CROSSWALK ON A GREEN LIGHT!), even though I was visibly upset, crying and hyperventilating. She was just mean and malicious and I have no doubt in my mind that she would have hit me if she could have. I am literally shaking as I type this, an entire day after this incident occurred.
Look, I get it. You're in a hurry. That's fine. Most people are. But when you get to the point where you think it's OK to hit someone (someone NOT surrounded by 2 tons of steel) then something's wrong here. Most of the crazy incidents that happen around Philly are just due to stupidity or inept drivers, not ones with malicious intent. This woman had a maliciousness about her that was somehow taken out on me for no apparent reason. That's not OK, and I don't really understand how people can get away with being so rude here. When I first moved here, I thought it was "quaint", but now, honestly, I'm just sick of it. I am really looking forward to our move to CA in a few months. Honestly, it can't come soon enough.