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Downtown Race: Me and the 33

By Eric Richardson
Published: Wednesday, July 06, 2005, at 07:03PM

One of my favorite things about biking Downtown is the healthy competition you get to have with the bus drivers. Today, though, I had a guy driving the 33 try to cut me off and I really didn't appreciate it. I got the last laugh, though.

It all started back before 1st Street. We were both heading down Spring, and I was hanging out in the second lane to give room for buses that wanted to make the right turn on 1st. He pulled up next to me at the red light at 1st. I took off when the light turned, beat him off the line, and got into the right lane. He pulled left and passed me pretty quickly between 1st and 2nd. He got stuck at 3rd with a red light, and I caught up. I got stuck behind a right-turn, though, so he left me off the line. But then I was sprinting to make the light at 4th Street, and I think he must have stopped, 'cause I ended up ahead before 5th.

Between 5th and 6th was where the real fun happened. It was a touch after 6pm, so there were cars stopped in the right lane. I was hanging on in the edge of the second lane, and all of a sudden I felt that he was coming up hard on my tail. In front of me was a metal plate in the road, so I moved left to miss it. The only way the 33 was going to get around me was going partway into the 3rd lane, and he started to head that direction but had to brake quickly when he saw stopped traffic up ahead at 6th.

Without that traffic, though, he would have run by me, veered back into the right lane, and stopped right in front of me. All of that would have been in the course of maybe a third of a block.

Most MTA drivers have been considerate of cyclists in my experience, but that guy deserved to get cut off.

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