Maniac's Curve

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I can’t hang the blame on road planners. It’s a reasonably engineered stretch. After a long, two-lane portion, the on-ramp jogs right and narrows to one lane as it approaches 275.


But somehow it brings out the Dale Junior in folks. There are moments when two drivers can be indecisive about who has the right-of-way. More often, though, you’ll find a guy, usually in a pickup truck, trailing on the left side who busts a heavy move to jump into the lead. I’ve been pushed off the road by these maniacs a few times.


On the worst occasion, a company box truck crowded up behind me in the left lane, bogarted the merge lane and pushed me into the gravel shoulder, where I had to lock up my brakes. I missed a light pole by a few feet.


I followed the truck on 275, got the name of the company, called up and told the supervisor that one of his drivers almost vehicular-manslaughtered me. I got a letter the following week apologizing and informing me that the driver no longer worked at the company. I really, really hope that I got him fired, or at least had a hand in it.


Unfortunately, I can’t drop a dime on the pickup-truck-driving lunatics that put who-knows-how-many people in jeopardy on Maniac’s Curve.

A couple of busted up cars and emergency vehicles were arrayed on the side of the 4th Street on-ramp to I-275 in St. Pete this morning. It was bound to happen — actually, it’s probably happened a bunch, I just happened to witness this particular wreck. I take that on-ramp most every morning, and from now on I’m calling it Maniac’s Curve.

About The Author

Eric Snider

Eric Snider is the dean of Bay area music critics. He started in the early 1980s as one of the founding members of Music magazine, a free bi-monthly. He was the pop music critic for the then-St. Petersburg Times from ‘87-’93. Snider was the music critic, arts editor and senior editor of Weekly Planet/Creative...
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