Saturday, February 03, 2007

Community and bicycling

One of the big benefits of bicycling is that it puts the cyclist in closer touch with his surroundings and with other people.

So, why are so many of us so rude? We're rude to pedestrians and slower cyclists on paths. Many of us are pretty rude to motorists we want to share the road with. Others are rude to pedestrians as we blow by them on the sidewalk.

Andrea @ Velorution makes a call for courtesy. "Do Unto Others" doesn't mean cowering in the gutter, of course, but pay attention, yield the right of way if it's not yours, and be nice. That's all I'm saying.


uncadan8 said...

I always try to call out and let someone know I am there and give them sufficient warning time. I usually get a "thank you" or "hello" for doing this. People appreciate it and the next time they are driving a vehicle past a cyclist, maybe they will remember that nice cyclist who gave them some warning and some space. Most likely they will return the favor.

Paul Tay said...

While impersonating the average joe, ie NO Santa suit, I was rude to a cager the other day.

He laid on his horn, all the way to the red, while smoking his wheels, as he passed me.

When I caught up to him, I really laid into him. Gave him a piece of my mind, flipped him off, and made all sorts of obscene gestures related to my netherlands.

When the whole show was all over, I really didn't feel all that better. Then, all of the SUDDEN, it hits me like a TON of bricks.

The civil engineers who designed the roadways CONDITIONED cagers to speed RECKLESSLY between intersections, only to catch a red. Cagers don't realize the signals are timed for 25, NOT 40, the posted speed limit.

Every year, 43,000 die from motor vehicle crashes. A fully-loaded 747, crashing every two days for the whole year.

The legal case against AASHTO and all other related roadway engineering organizations might parrallel the massive legal case against the tobacco companies.

The roadway engineers KNEW millions will die because of their design, yet, they continue their MURDERING ways.

Any legal eagles out there want to take on the hegemony of a CONSPIRACY to kill Americans and maybe fund your retirement in a BIG way?

Anonymous said...

I find bicyclists and pedestrians to be equally rude. For every bicyclist ignoring right of way, there's a pedestrian wandering into both lanes of a mixed-use path. Perhaps bicyclists, because they move faster, seem ruder by virtue of their speed. A bicyclist wandering into the oncoming lane is an agressive hazard, while a pedestrian wandering into the oncoming lane is merely a passive obstacle. However, the careless attitude is common to both.

Fritz said...

I guess I expect walkers to wander on the path, so I cut them slack. I think of it as expected and understandable, rather than rude.

When I'm on my bike on a path, the walkers impede my way, but so what? That's my attitude. If I want to go fast, I hit the street.

Paul Tay said...

Uniform Vehicle Code grants pedestrians the SUPREME right-of-way. That means EVERYBODY else has to watch out for them, even if they are stupid enough to dart out mid-block. That's why EVERYBODY slows down in school zones. Peds aren't being RUDE. They are on foot, FERCHRISTSAKES.