Ross: Motorcycle Banditos are more respectful drivers than most Seattleites

May 1, 2023, 7:57 AM | Updated: 8:26 am


Banditos motorcyclists (Photo by Fairfax Media via Getty Images/Fairfax Media via Getty Images via Getty Images)

(Photo by Fairfax Media via Getty Images/Fairfax Media via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Its been a rough week on the roads — the worst being a head-on collision caused by a distracted driver with a cell phone.

But I wanted to take a moment to salute the people I consider the real highway heroes — the ordinary drivers who demonstrate day in and day out that they were raised by their parents to have manners.

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There was a car in West Seattle that waited patiently while the pedestrians continued to cross even though the light had turned green. He gave them a little punitive honk — but at least he waited.

And the drivers on northbound I-5 yesterday who actually obeyed the variable speed limit sign and slowed down so they didn’t slam into the traffic ahead.

That kind of conduct always warms my heart, those little details that show a driver is paying attention and has developed basic freeway skills.

But what especially impressed me was the motorcycle platoon that passed me on I-405 Saturday.

Usually, when I see a motorcycle on the freeway, it’s treating traffic like a slalom course. Weaving, revving the engine in the tunnels — crazy.

But Saturday, we were driving along, and suddenly there they were — 17 bikers, riding two abreast with one guy taking up the rear, gently passing me at a reasonable 65 miles an hour. No weaving, no revving, no wheelies. And on their jackets — it said Banditos.

I know nothing about motorcycle clubs, but according to Wikipedia, Banditos do “not fear authority and have a general disdain for the rules of society.”

And yet that platoon was a demonstration that it is possible to operate a motor vehicle in a controlled manner that respects other traffic.

True, they were not maintaining a four-second following distance, but they seemed to know exactly what they were doing.

And I thought to myself — how weird! That the real road menace are drivers glued to smartphones, while the drivers behaving like gentlemen call themselves “Banditos.”

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Ross: Motorcycle Banditos are more respectful drivers than most Seattleites