Friday, April 30, 2010

Updated Hits & (Near) Misses List

Riding home from work yesterday, I was on a nice twisty section of PA 841 near Springdell when I rounded a blind corner to find a partially-detached power line crossing my path at about a 45 degree angle relative to the ground with the high end on my side of the road.  The line was about helmet-high in the middle of my lane. With insufficient braking distance, I swerved to the right edge of the pavement and ducked. Pwang! as the line  lightly plucked the top of my helmet.  As I lifted my head up and rounded the immediate left-hander across a small open-grate bridge, I saw that the Miata that had been a couple of hundred yards in front of me had slowed way down, apparently the driver was wondering if the motorcyclist behind him had just been decapitated.   He must've either done some off-roading to avoid the line or  perhaps the Miata was just lower than me.  We pulled over just up the road at The Whip tavern (awesome Welsh Rarebit) and agreed he would call the authorities about the power line.  

This incident reminded me that I hadn't updated my "hit list" post since 9/07. Close encounters with automobiles aren't included; too many of those to count as my fellow motorcycle commuters know all too well. New stuff is in red.


  • 1 each (amazingly only one) squirrel; he must've been real old 'n' slow
  • a small bat that kamikazed into my left hand on I-95
  • 2 nails (only nails that punctured tires count here)
  • a brake caliper slider pin that some kid down the street lost during a curb-side brake job; guess whose rear tire found it?
  • several low-hanging tree branches following storms (helmet and arm strikes)
  • an electrical power line (glanced off my helmet)
Close calls:

  • many deer (live and dead)
  • a large turtle, and another one
  • 2 or 3 snakes
  • thousands of squirrels
  • a few dozen chipmunks
  • a few 'possums
  • the occasional turkey buzzard snacking on roadkill
  • a few dogs
  • very few cats (they're smarter than dogs)
  • a few dozen pedestrians (largely jay-walking college students)
  • 1 young bovine on the loose
  • a couple of ill-placed orange warning cones
  • a construction barrel blowing around in the wind
  • a large plastic kiddie-pool blown by the wind
  • various trash cans and bags of garbage blowing around in the wind
  • 1 water-cooler that flew out of the back of a tradesman's truck
  • the odd piece of lumber
  • dozens of beer bottles
  • lot o' squashed-flat waxed cups (ice has more traction) and soda cans
  • a few Amish buggies
  • a roof from a recently-collapsed small barn (!)
  • 2 foxes
  • some chickens crossing the road
Please share your own list or a few of your weirdest hits 'n' misses by clicking on "Comments" below.


Anonymous James said...

Holy crap dude! That certainly reinforces the need to leave some margin no matter how well you know the road.

May 1, 2010 at 2:15:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Doug Just Doug said...

Roger that!

May 1, 2010 at 2:41:00 PM EDT  

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