Taming American roads is like taming Afghanistan

We went out yesterday on a long grinding ride and we did find some
improvements. I know change is coming, but nobody wants to die at the
end of a war --I heard that in a movie-- and I want to bring a
powerful metaphor here. We found ourselves riding on a "suicidal
mission" --taking the lane-- on the 71st ST causeway following Channel
7 because the sidewalks are broken up in so many places --but nobody
sees it. Then we found sharrows* --bike painted on road-- at the end
of the causeway entering Miami, saying some projects --served by
CONTRACTORS-- may be working or at least they are making an effort. It
may not be enough, or it may mean NOTHING if no enforcement --speed
cameras someday-- follows in its wake.

This is like Afghanistan. The enemy is invisible, stubborn, and
dangerous. They come at you from nowhere, there's a lot of CORRUPTION
going on, and you can't even trust the authorities to be there for
you. Funny, I heard the other day on NPR that Afghanistan was safe
under the Taliban. That may be their appeal.

* Nobody even knows what those sharrows mean. "Open to interpretation"

Q. But on some streets, bicyclists riding over this marking will take
the entire lane. Aren't they supposed to move to the right?

A. Not always. According to the California Vehicle Code (CVC) Section
21202, bicyclists are to stay to the right except to pass other
bicyclists or vehicles, to prepare to make a left turn, or when
necessary to avoid conditions that make it unsafe to continue along
the right, including fixed or moving objects, surface hazards, or
substandard width lanes too narrow for a bicycle and vehicle to travel
side by side.. Moving to the left in the lane to avoid car doors, for
instance, even if it means taking the entire lane, is permitted by the