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(54 posts)

Road rage in our neighborhood

  • Started 1 year ago by ElizabethElaine
  • Latest reply from WSB

  1. ElizabethElaine
    Member Profile

    ElizabethElaine

    I was just road-raged at for the third time this week, all within a mile of my house (Fauntleroy/Fairmount Park neighborhood). The first two times it happened, I was just mad and annoyed. This time, I was rattled and upset. Is this something that has become normal in West Seattle?

    The first two episodes included honking, giving the finger, screaming at me, and flashing headlights with aggressive tailgating. The incident today was a man who pulled up next to me at a light on 35th, rolled down his window, and told me to "get over to the other side of the road, you stupid f***ing b***h." What does that even mean?!? Folks, I'm a rational, reasonable person, and I can't wrap my mind around this.

    Any insights?

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  2. WorldCitizen
    Member Profile

    zgh2676

    Not to be rude, but maybe your driving skills or decision making leave a bit to be desired?

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  3. ElizabethElaine
    Member Profile

    ElizabethElaine

    No, I'm a safe, competent, and assertive driver. I signal, go the speed limit, and am extremely aware of my surroundings. I don't drift, meander, go too slow, block traffic, or any of the other habits than many drivers have that make other drivers around them act aggressively. That's why I was so surprised each of these times that the other driver could be acting the way they did.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  4. I hate to say it, but three times in a week by (I am assuming) three different people might mean it's time to look yourself in the mirror.

    Signaling? Driving slow in the left lane?

    None of it justifies road rage, however.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  5. SarahScoot
    Member Profile

    SarahScoot

    Agreed that road rage is not justifiable.
    I would consider that maybe you're doing something to irritate other drivers--and maybe not consciously! One of my biggest pet peeves is when someone in front of me stops to turn left without signaling, as I would have gone around them had I known what they were planning (or not planning, as it were) to do. You say you signal, but is it possible that your signal light is out? Then you would think you're doing everything correctly, when really you're not...

    That said, I also live in Fairmount Park, and unfortunately we're sandwiched between 35th and Fauntleroy, both of which have high concentrations of angry/crazy drivers.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  6. shihtzu
    Member Profile

    It's not just you. Yesterday I was at a red light waiting to turn right (by the way people, you don't HAVE to turn right on a red). There was traffic so I couldn't go. The guy behind me didn't like that so was honking, etc.

    When the light turned green, he wasn't even going right, but straight! I see stuff like this numerous times a day...

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  7. ElizabethElaine
    Member Profile

    ElizabethElaine

    During the first incident, I was in an intersection at a traffic circle when another car pulled up on the right. I was already in the intersection (and had therefore gotten there first, and had the right of way) but the car didn't slow or stop to let me continue through the intersection, and instead continued driving at me as though she would hit me. I tapped (not laid on, but TAPPED, as a warning of danger) to make sure she saw me. She slowed to keep from hitting me, but then followed me through the traffic circle, screaming at me and giving me the finger. Sound rational to you?

    The second incident happened when I was driving down Fauntleroy (going between 35-40) and got into the left turn lane. I signaled. Another car got behind me in the turn lane, and started flashing his lights at me. I turned left (in a speedy manner, and while signaling) and the car followed at an aggressively close distance while continuing to flash his lights. I drove up the residential street going 25 mph (THE SPEED LIMIT) until I parked a few blocks later. He followed behind, aggressively tailgating and flashing his lights the whole way. Bizarre, right? I can only guess he was in a hurry and couldn't control his impatience.

    The third incident, today, was when I was sitting, STOPPED, at a red light on 35th, in the left lane. No one was behind me, or next to me. A car pulled up next to me, rolled down his window (mine was already down) and yelled at me to "GET TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD! STUPID F***ING B***H!" The light was STILL RED. I hadn't been driving in the left lane long, was going between 35-40 mph, and was going to turn left soon, so needed to be in the left lane. Also, I was just sitting still!

    The reason I'm venting about this is because this kind of thing never happens to me. I'm a rational person. I don't drive absentmindedly. I pay attention. Do these occurrences not seem odd to anyone else?

    And thanks, shihtzu, glad to know it's not just me encountering the lunatics.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  8. ElizabethElaine
    Member Profile

    ElizabethElaine

    And even if I were a crummy driver, would these reactions really seem appropriate for adults? Shouldn't we not drive if we can't control our emotions?

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  9. Where is everyone in such a hurry to go? My lord, none of this is justifiable, NONE of it! I often get tailgated and angrily driven around on 35th for going between 30-35 (THE SPEED LIMIT) by people in the morning going between 40-50. This changed for a while during the speed traps, but has picked up again. I feel like people treat 35th like a highway (slow drivers should be on the right, fast on the left) and that fast is defined by going almost 50. It is bizarre.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  10. melissa
    Member Profile

    No, it's NOT just you. Although I haven't been on the receiving end of any of that idiocy, I have noticed an uptick recently in people in a huge freakin' rush. I've seen more egregiously aggressive driving and a whole buncha people who seem to think that red lights indicate that stopping is optional.

    I, too, am puzzled. And nervous. I keep thinking of bicyclists and pedestrians....

    Hey, people! Be careful out there!

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  11. Genesee Hill
    Member Profile

    Genesee Hill

    35th is a freeway. Didn't you know? The Seattle cops can't/won't patrol it. Call the Washington State Patrol. lol

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  12. velo_nut
    Member Profile

    velo_nut

    When was the last time you checked the condition of your running/ turning indicators?

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  13. So..what's up with this "blame the victim" thing? Nothing justifies the behavior of road rage, anytime, any place, ever. Yet a few GUYS on here are questioning the driving or car maintenance of the FEMALE victim. Is there a pattern in this?

    Methinks the questioning should be aimed at the mentality of the road rager....geez!

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  14. Car drivers are funny. I am "car-free". And ride a bike. And run. And take the bus. And water taxi. And ferry. And roller-blade. And use a scooter. And kayak. Maybe I'm a hardcore "busser". Or a "water-taxi-ist". How about "scooter-ist"??

    Bottom line...WTF is everyone's problem? I love asking that when people try to do stupid $h!t. Doesn't matter if they're in a car, on a bike, or on foot. People just do stupid $h!t every day. I'm just glad I have a GoPro and capture video of it. ;-)

    In any case, I'm happy and enjoy getting around, ESPECIALLY NOT IN A CAR. I honestly don't know how much gas is right now, or what (car) traffic is like around Seattle. Cars make people evil. I would love to hear how they don't.

    Let me know if you are interested in better transportation methods in/out of West Seattle. Time to downtown Seattle via bike is 20-25 minutes (from Alaska Junction), at ANY TIME OF DAY. No joke. I can't wait to hear the "rhetorical" responses. Let 'em flow! ;-)

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  15. velo_nut
    Member Profile

    velo_nut

    Jan, get over yourself. No one is blaming the victim. If I was consistently getting honked at I would check my lights.

    I'm tired of your high and mighty ness

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  16. velo_nut
    Member Profile

    velo_nut

    Jeff... No argue with you there. Commuting to work by bike is THE BEST.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  17. FionaEnzo
    Member Profile

    I often think 1/3 of drivers are drugged, 1/3 are sleep deprived so also judgement-impaired and the last third are left trying to avoid making contact. Seriously, it is stressful driving during rush hour. I avoided 3 accidents last week. One guy speeding up and refusing to move behind me as his lane ended -- and willing to smash his BMW into me. Crazy. It's not you but you can't escape "them"!
    I was hit on my bicycle by a driver speeding up in the right lane to turn left ahead of the left lane of cars. Went through the windshield. Better than going under a car but I don't trust drivers enough to commute on a bike again. Getting hit on a bike really hurts.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  18. Speaking as somebody who learned to drive in the Type-A, hyper-aggressive, east coast urban wasteland...

    That all reads as nuts to me. I doubt it's anything you're doing, and I think it's a little weird that people here are assuming that it is. (Y'all think that dude down in Spanaway provoked the reaction he got, too?) People in this country drive like they're the only people on the road, and everyone else are temporarily animate obstacles in their path. A little patience would go a long way.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  19. Keeping with the original topic...

    Poster asked about people (in cars) being aggressive, and borderline "assaultive". I live at Findlay & Fauntleroy.

    I ride a bike most days. And I push the button to trigger the light at Findlay/Fauntleroy every morning. I LOVE that it triggers instantly. Cars hate this! Too bad...so sad. ;-)

    But jeez...I get aggressive when I drive a car (maybe a few times a year). I get "assertive" when people do stupid things in a car around me, whether I'm driving, running, biking, walking, on the bus, etc. This is maybe a few more times per year.

    It all boils down to the car. Just remember that people aren't necessarily evil, but it's just about the car making people evil. No car = no evil.

    I love to smile and wave at people doing stupid $h!t in cars. I know that I'll eventually catch (and pass) them on bike (or even when running). Getting it on video makes the day very enjoyable. I spent less than $200 for a GoPro camera. One day I'm going to put together all the clips of "interesting" maneuvers and reactions of (car) drivers.

    The point is...just relax, smile, and wave at the people who are "more important" than you. And cameras are cheap. If you're really in a hurry to get to work (or wherever), then I would recommend riding a bike...MUCH faster (and cheaper) to get around Seattle. And will make you much happier.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  20. One way to trigger road rage is to drive 30mph down the Admiral hill, from the viewpoint to the bridge.

    Sure, that's the speed limit. But stick to it and you'll see lots of examples of human behavior.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  21. JKB...I try to keep it at 35mph down Admiral....and I am tailgated, and people pass in the right lane around me going at least 45-50 mph, and then swerve back into the left lane. I don't want to be the one getting the ticket....so they'll just have to get pissed...as one said"too bad, so sad"...

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  22. Yup..."too bad, so sad"...for drivers. I gotta say though...I do get pissed when cars hold me up going downhill on a bike (Admiral, Avalon, California, etc). It does give me a little "ride rage" thinking how cars are in the way. Funny how in the grand scheme of things that bikes are generally faster than all other modes of transportation. Not sure why more people don't get this...errr...rather don't take advantage of this.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  23. WorldCitizen
    Member Profile

    zgh2676

    Not blaming the victim, it just seems 3x in a week is a bit much. It might be good to look at yourself or your car. The fact that she's a she doesn't mean anything. I hardly ever see road rage in West Seattle so it seems there may be something else afoot.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  24. Jeff H. I appreciate that you all like bikes. I am 65, walk with a cane, and riding a bike is well, not in my repertoire these days - lol. So, it's my car or I don't go. I promise I will try my best to not slow you down on Admiral WAy. You stay in the bike lane, I'll stay in the left lane, and we'll both be happy :)

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  25. @Jeff H, try to get from West Seattle to Redmond in 25 minutes. Good luck (car or bus).

    As to the original poster. It's probably you. One maybe two drivers in a week, you might be able to chalk it up to someone having a crummy day. However three is indicative of something else.

    Clearly the person experiencing road rage is the worst offender, however there are levels of culpability (as with anything). Your tapping on the brake, was probably perceived as a brake check. Sending the driver of that car into an Oh S# moment.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  26. I like to think that me biking (or running) is one less car on the road and one more seat for someone on the bus. Getting to Redmond in 25 minutes is a little absurd via bike, but AVERAGING 15mph is pretty normal for most people riding bikes (in my opinion).

    I don't understand why people live so far away from where they work, but it's their choice I suppose. I like to choose where I live and work, and for me it's wherever it's easiest to bike, walk, or run. I love living in West Seattle!

    I'd love to help people live closer to where they work, or work closer to where they live. Or figure out how to get around faster without a car.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  27. Jeff, I admire your choices - but am guessing you are single and/or without children and/or rent?

    It answers a lot of your inquiries. Kids to/from sports, picked up and dropped off for school, etc. Two very simple answers to why people choose to drive.

    As for long commutes, companies move locations quite frequently, and people with children rooted in a community/school often times choose to let them finish out and make the commute. Not to mention some homeowners are "under water" on their mortgage and moving at the moment is not a financially viable option. No shame in that.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  28. anonyme
    Member Profile

    While I agree that there's no excuse for road rage, it does seem likely that there's something amiss with the OP's driving skills. Too many coincidences. Most people don't know how to navigate traffic circles, so I wonder if one or both parties were at fault there. And it's a Seattle tradition to never use turn signals until you've actually begun to make the turn.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  29. thansen
    Member Profile

    thansen

    Why are people blaming the recipent of the rage? Why not the blame the people that keep their rage/emotions under control?

    I have found when I'm feeling that rage at another driver, it's usually because I'm upset about something in my life that I have no control over and raging in my car at another drives is the outcome.

    When it happens to you, just lock you car door and never get out of the car!

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  30. thansen, that was my question, too, and I got a negative reaction from on of the blamers...sigh...

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  31. @ #19, JeffH -- that's what I do -- was at Costco on Thursday and someone was waiting for my parking place (decided mine was the best spot right as I parked a FULL cart to unload). Just as I finished unloading and closed all my car doors he apparently got pissed and gunned it down the drive lane when he saw I was going to put my cart in a corral, 20 feet away (I know, how DARE I!?!?!?!?!).

    I noted who he was and slowly drove by him as I was leaving, rolled down my window, smiled my best corncob smile and yelled, "Happy Valentine's Day!" Made me feel better at least.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  32. jissy,

    MAJOR peeve of mine! If someone is "hawking" my spot I typically take even more time.

    Lazy butts don;t want to walk an additional 50 feet!

    As to the beginning of this thread, I don't think people are excusing the road rage, but rather wondering if someone has been the recipient of rage multiple times over the last week that there "might" be more to it. Broken signal light, etc........

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  33. happywalker
    Member Profile

    happywalker

    Smitty, sometimes it isn't a matter of walking 50 feet...sometimes there are no other spots and why drive all over a full parking lot in search of...? You can unload even take your time if you have that much resentment for ??? me waiting? Sounds like a "quiet rage" to me. Take a deep breath and breathe out slowly.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  34. Even if ElizabethElaine had a burned out tail/headlight/whatever, that is no reason to tailgate her and flash bright lights for a few blocks! If I notice someone driving without their lights on I give a quick flash of my brights and if they don't notice it, then that's their own fault. I'm an impatient driver sometimes but the worst I'll do is honk my horn or shake a fist at the offending driver, then go about my way. Anything more than that is a bit ridiculous and embarrassing for the person exhibiting such behavior. I once dated someone who would pull that crap and turns out he was bi-polar so while I try to be sympathetic, it's still not pleasant witnessing it or being on the receiving end.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  35. Being married with kids in the near future, I used part of Uncle Sam's tax return to buy a cargo bike. I love seeing kids stare while I pedal with my wife on the back, and we're smiling, talking, waving. I can't wait to haul my own kids around...it's so much fun!

    I've noticed that as I ride slower, I become happier. Not much I can do to make a cargo bike go faster, so might as well enjoy it. People know cars can go fast, and maybe it gets them irritated that they can't always use this "speed".

    Cars aren't always the right "tool for the job". Neither are bikes (like for those who are physically disabled). I'm just on here sayin I know how cars make me feel, and I find biking to be a much more enjoyable form of transportation. Friendly honks welcomed from cars who see two people on a big cargo bike riding around West Seattle! ;-)

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  36. velo_nut
    Member Profile

    velo_nut

    Jeff, you aren't alone. We're a tandem with trailer family. Our lives revolve around bikes wether it be racing training commuting or grocery runs.

    It can be done :-)

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  37. Love your attitude.

    To be honest, I treat bikers like a treat busses. With nothing but respect and courtesy. I figure they are all leaving more pavement for me, so the more busses and bike riders the better.

    I wish everyone had your attitude Jeff, hopefully it is contagious!

    (you too velo!)

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  38. Genesee Hill
    Member Profile

    Genesee Hill

    I treat all vehicles on the road with respect.

    Buses and bicyclists.

    The buses, though, generally stop at stop signs.

    The bicyclists: not so much. Or, more aptly, never.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  39. Genesee Hill
    Member Profile

    Genesee Hill

    I hasten to add, most cars don't either. So, I just remain vigilant about driving and walking. I avoid rage.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  40. velo_nut
    Member Profile

    velo_nut

    By the by.... I stop at all stop signs and lights on my bike.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  41. SeekingEuros
    Member Profile

    What - you are surprised at the tailgating? Happens regularly to me, and I just pull over, if I can, to let the speedier go ahead if me. I am more surprised when it DOESN'T happen. Last week I was going east across the tall bridge and I was going 50 (speed limit is 45, yes I was speeding), and a "Lady" in a red car came up upon me and seemed like she was inches away from my bumper. I slowed down so she could go around me on the Spokane merge lane (unsafe, but there wasn't anywhere to pull over on the ramp to 99). Regularly on California and also on Admiral, I see people passing in the turn lanes. I've come to believe that WS has a lot of "entitled" (or at least those deluded to believing that in the somewhat anonymity of their car they can show their form of Seattle niceness). Its not worth getting your panties twisted over.... Not something per se you are doing. My suggestion, just get out of their way in a safe manner. Karma is a b$&@h.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  42. Ah, the cyclist attitude...

    Today, 44th Ave just up from Alaska. Bicycle northbound in the travel lane, blocking traffic behind him. I was on the sidewalk, walking.

    Me: 'Ride next to the curb!'
    Cyclist: 'Aw, shut up!'

    mmmm, nothing tastier than a little attitude.

    The part of this that's relevant to the thread is about how motorists agree that some other motorists are irresponsible, but cyclists close ranks and pretend they're all perfect.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  43. JKB - if you actually yelled a command at someone, regardless if they were on a bike or driving a car, I wouldn't be surprised that they reacted negatively.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  44. WSratsinacage
    Member Profile

    I've seen a lot more road rage in neighborhood West Seattle areas vs even just 4 or 5 years ago.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  45. Escondido
    Member Profile

    So I was recently talking with a fellow who admitted he was a pretty impatient driver and would find himself driving a bit aggressively. He asked how I approached driving and this is what I told him: when I see someone driving poorly I remind myself that 95% of the people out there are not malicious or selfish. They are just trying to get through their day. I simply send a blessing their way and continue on. I truly try to be a good, safe driver and if someone else is impatient with me, then they are only making their life miserable, not mine.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  46. Agree that drivers have gotten crazier and cars create evil. I have been driving 2x/week this winter (I have a 25-mi bike commute, and it does take a LOT more time than driving), and I have been harrassed and witnessed some terribly aggressive and selfish driving. Being insulated by a hunk of metal with dark windows breeds self-centeredness. I do think it's gotten worse. Jeez, would you want someone to treat your mother that way?
    .
    I choose to take the OP at face value and believe your driving was just fine. Ignore the accusations, veiled or otherwise.
    .
    JKB - If you shout some command (presumably ignorant, as cyclists have plenty of reasons for not hugging the curb) at me on my bike, you will be lucky to get a mere "shut up."

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  47. Wait... if I stop at all red lights and stop signs, and yet cyclists "never" do... do I exist in an alternate universe? Nah, I think the other guy does.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  48. WorldCitizen
    Member Profile

    zgh2676

    Why is pointing to the possibility of an oversight by the OP "blaming the victim" or an "accusation"? Just because road rage is never justified, doesn't mean the OP was in the right...what if it was a tail light out or some other not so obvious situation causing these aggressions? Those incidences of road rage, unjustified as they most definitely were, may have an actual root in a reality not understood by the OP. Pointing this out is what the original post asked with the plea for insight into the situation.

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  49. Bicyclists need to have their bikes licensed. They are getting a "free" ride. Enjoy it while it lasts.

    I don't care whether you bike, drive a car, or bus. There is such a thing as patience and courtesy. Sadly, our society is deteriorating and common sense is going along with it.

    Don't you love it when you are a Pedestrian, cyclist, or car driver, stopped at an intersection and you start to turn or go across the intersection and some idiot who is going way over the speed limit goes crazy and honks their horn or yells, or flips the bird. Part of the reason for speed limits is to give people a chance to join the traffic flow safely.

    Do non motorized commuters get tickets for going through camera traps when the light is red?

    Posted 1 year ago #         
  50. Uh oh, the "free ride" straw man! I'm not going to bother knocking it down, because I'm pretty sure everyone already knows the truth about who exactly is getting the free ride.
    .
    Enjoy the fruits of my property taxes peacefully :)!

    Posted 1 year ago #         

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