In the text, planners like to put these items (poles) very close to the edge of roadways..., where I (biker) might be nudged by a wayward vehicle into a shredding horror.

I tried to look up the word, but it always comes up as the present continuous tense of the word shred, which obviously does not fit the definition here.

  1. What does it mean?

  2. What other nouns can this adjective describe?

2 Answers 2


It might also be alluding to the dangerous conditions of so-called "extreme" sports, such that a shredding horror refers to an obstacle that is well beyond "gnarly". The word shredding is part of that subculture's slang.


"Shred" does mean various things in slang, but this use is a common metaphor. To shred something is to tear it into small pieces, such as with a paper shredder, a piece of office equipment used to destroy documents

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It's not clear what these "poles" look like, but the picture the writer creates is of a motorcyclist caught between a vehicle and the poles and shredded -- which is to say, severely injured by abrasion or laceration.

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