A disturbing thing happened tonight. There are several details that require a breakdown. Let me explain.
My wife and I attended a show tonight in Koreatown, Los Angeles. We parked just a half block north of Wilshire, facing south. Leaving the gig at about 10:30PM, I got her in the truck, started up, and rolled down to the red light there at Wishire. I was intending to turn left, heading east. I turned on my signal.
Just as the light turns green, I look to my right and see least a dozen riders on motorcycles, traveling east on Wilshire, crossing right in front of us. They’re running the red light at full speed.
Stop and think about that for a moment. It’s insane. I’m staring at a green light, ready to go, and a river of motorcycles is flying past me, from right to left, going about 60 miles an hour.
One of them stops in the intersection, drops his kickstand, and parks right in front of me. Effectively blocking my truck from running into the river of motorcycles. It was clear that this is how they operate: when they get to a red light, in order to keep their army from getting separated, a couple of their guys will stop and block the crossing traffic. Reckless shit.
The batch of what seemed at this point to be about 30 motorcycles finally clears the intersection, and their designated “blocker” finally rides off, pulling up the rear of their traveling fellowship.
Now, having the green, I proceed to pull into the intersection, left blinker on. A car traveling the opposite direction, facing me, is doing the same thing. Additional cars begin to cross Wilshire, northbound and southbound. After all, the light is green, and the intruding red-light-running motorcyclists have finally cleared.
This is where it gets complicated:
The light turns yellow. As competent drivers, we all know what that means, right? We’re turning left, and need to be on full alert as we turn left while the light turns red. Lots of factors involved in this particular and common maneuver.
Half a second after the light turns yellow, as I’m sitting there with my left blinker on, waiting for that final northbound car to cross, ANOTHER group of motorcyclists comes speeding eastbound down Wilshire, perpendicular to me. Maybe the second two-thirds of the group? One of them stops, and like his predecessor, drops his kickstand and blocks me.
As the light turns from yellow to red, I’m sitting there with my wife in the intersection as, I don’t know, 60, 70, 100 dickheads on motorbikes run their red light again, from right to left, at full speed. It’s a mirror image of what happened a couple minutes ago, but with waaaaaaay more motorcycles. And the big difference is that this time we’re stuck in the middle of the intersection.
Gets worse. As our light turns red, the WESTBOUND side of Wilshire proceeds, passing right behind our truck. Give that a few seconds to flow, and suddenly you’ve got full-speed westbound traffic on Wilshire, with us sitting there perpendicular in the intersection, blocked by a designated motorcycle blocker guy as he allows his eastbound friends to fly by at full speed.
The at-least-two-blocks-worth batch of motorcycles finally clears the intersection, along with the blocker guy, followed by the normal eastbound flow of traffic other cars. Note that at this point, they’ve got the green light.
Where does that leave us?
Sitting there in the intersection, facing south, left blinker on, sandwiched between full-speed Wilshire traffic traveling both east and west. We’re trapped. And what’s really scary? These eastbound and westbound cars are oblivious to what has has just transpired. All they’re seeing is a green light.
I got us out of it, but it could have been really ugly. It could’ve been one of those stories you’d see on the news about a couple out on the town who ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time.
I’ve got a few questions for every single one of you douchestick motorcycle hobbyists:
What the fuck is wrong with you people? Are you all retards, or just following one? Have you ever stopped to consider what you’re doing? Have you ever considered what could transpire twenty seconds after you clear out?
As for writing tickets? That’s a laughable thought. Police could never stop this. They’d be completely overrun. There’s simply too many of them. It’d be like a monkey trying to stop a stampede with a paper sign. Trying to stop even one of these bikers would only lead to a high-speed chase in a hundred different directions, causing more danger.
I don’t really see a solution. But if it were up to me? And failure was not an option? And you’re honestly asking?
Here’s what you do:
You get a sniper to pick off one of these motherfuckers in the kneecap, letting him live. You know, like that one ant you let live after you kill all his friends with Windex. The logic is that if you let him live, he can go warn the others. And the next time, you get two. Then three. Then four. You get the idea.
Because the only thing that can stop them is them.
I think we’ve all seen groups of motorcycles around at one point or another. I certainly have. But NEVER as many as this. It was like anarchy, and it lasted for TWO RED LIGHTS. It introduced a danger I’ve never really considered as a driver who normally assumes everybody’s using common sense.
That said, whenever you see a group of motorcyclists like this, and sense that there are more of them, NEVER GO INTO THE INTERSECTION. Seriously, even if you’ve got a green light, wait it out. Right of way means nothing when people aren’t playing by the rules.
Be safe out there, and always assume everybody’s a moron. And never forget that a fatal accident doesn’t have to be your fault for it to happen to you.