A Note For Bike-Haters:

Hey anti-cyclist Drivers – the angry ones shouting at me from behind to get out of your way – the ones tossing empty McDonalds cups at me – the ones honking at me because I’m riding my bike down the middle of the lane instead of riding in the gutter or on the sidewalk like you’d prefer:
I know this seems counter-intuitive, but maybe the easiest way for you to make sure you’re never stuck behind me is for you to become an advocate for bike facilities – to provide a safe place for me to ride next to you so that you are free to pass me as quickly as you like. How does that sound?
Maybe next time somebody proposes a set of high-quality bike lanes on a roadway you should support it, you know, so I’ll get the hell out of your way. Because I’m ok with you supporting bike lanes only because you want me out of your way. Turns out, I don’t like riding in front of you any more than you like driving behind me, because I don’t trust you, and your behavior (you know, the tossing, screaming, and honking) makes me a little depressed for your children. And I like being depressed about as much as you like being angry.
In fact, if you really want me out of the way, you could advocate that all unused (or underused) rail corridors be immediately transformed into grade-separated bike facilities to try and lure me off the roads. You could even advocate for a special set of bicycle traffic lights at intersections and for painting all the bike lanes blue or green so we’ll both know exactly when to pay special attention to each other.
Ok, Thanks.

11 comments to A Note For Bike-Haters:

  • Do they make bumper stickers for bikes? You might need to condense it a little. Or wear the message on one of those giant sandwich board things whenever you're riding. Yep- you need to get the message out. Woot.

  • awesome!! (post, and comment)

  • Anonymous

    People do not understand till they ride!!!! Good idea with painting
    the lines different color.

  • Tara

    Good logic, I like Melanie's ideas.

  • I agree that something needs to be done, I am with you on that. However, when bicyclists are in the lane going 20 mph under the speed limit, I get pissed off too.

    Don't get me wrong, I respect bicyclists (as long as they aren't in the lane going 20 under, that is). However, I'm not the one that is responsible for the lack of bicycle lanes. I also don't think that pissing me off and making me late is going to make the lack of bicycle lanes change any time soon. I do think it will make me less tolerant of bicyclists, if anything. I am extremely unlikely to call a city council member to request something nice for a group of people pissing me off. I am more likely to cuss at them. Say of me what you will, I think it is human nature.

    If there were bicycle lanes, and pedestrians were walking in the middle of them to protest there not being adequate sidewalks, I think you would be angry too.

    Again, I agree with your objective, just think there are probably better ways of going about it.

  • Scott,

    I hope it's clear that when a cyclist chooses to ride in the middle of a lane because there are no bike lanes, it is not a form of protest. It's the only place cyclists can safely position themselves.

  • Quick question; is it technically illegal to ride a bike on the sidewalk?

  • It varies based on location, usually regulated by municipalities. In most cities, riding on sidewalks is legal unless specifically prohibited. Many cities prohibit cycling in business districts, although the definition of business district also varies based on location.

  • Quick note it seems like the locals know the respect between driver and cyclist to a point. The suburbanites have no clue. "This is not Plymouth this the city so put down the cell phone and drive.

  • Anonymous

    Can I complain a bit about pedestrians too? The jaywalking is a hazard to all, but the worst is when they walk and run on the bike path. You know – the clearly marked bike path right next to the equally clearly marked walking path.

    Last weekend this jogging chick plowed right into me like it was her privilage to stay her course against traffic and in the wrong path. I hate her.

  • Anonymous: BAAAA!!! That's funny. Thanks for commenting.