Road warrior

I’ve been patient, I’ve been tolerant, but I’ve reached my limit. This goes out to all the motorists who have been trying to kill me on a nearly daily basis.

I ride my bike at least 5 days a week. I wait until after the morning rush is over to head out, and I follow all the traffic laws ~ I signal turns, come to complete stops at intersections, I even pull as far to the right as I can when I know there is a car behind me. I have even gone off-road to avoid lane hogs.

My Trek is a street legal vehicle. If there was a bike path, I’d be on it. I’m not riding on any main highways, and I spend most of my circuit pedaling through area neighborhoods and stay off high traffic roads.

There’s a geek mirror on my handle bars so I can see you come up behind me. It is not funny to see how close you can get to my back tire before passing me, or to see if you can take me out with your side mirror. Not the least bit amusing.

The speed limit is 30 mph. Granted, I’m not moving nearly that fast. On a downhill stretch, I could maybe get up to speed. It is not okay to drive 60 mph to make up for my lack of momentum. Your bow wave is literally picking me off the road.

Don’t pass me to only stop in front of me to turn left, I won’t fit up your tailpipe. Don’t pass me then immediately turn right across my path causing me to brake hard enough to throw me off the bike. My regulation helmet probably won’t protect me against breaking every bone in my body slamming into the side of your car at full speed. I’m on a 15-pound alloy bike, you’re in a 2,000 pound steel SUV, there is no doubt who will win in a pileup between us.

Your encounter with me will last for mere moments. Are you really in so much of a hurry that you’re willing to risk my life over a 5-second delay in your drive to wherever you have got to be RIGHT NOW?

I’m feeling a little stabby… as in I will cut your tires the first chance I get.

http://twitter.com/#!/Tara_R/status/91148234059300865

Author: Tara R.

I believe all good fiction includes an element of truth, and all good photography includes an element of fantasy. In this journal I hope to give voice to the stories swirling around in my head, and to capture the images I see through my camera’s lens.

10 thoughts

  1. Once, my husband gestured (not rudely) at a sheriff who passed him too close on a double yellow in the country. Naturally, deputy decided to pull him over and “discuss” my husband’s attitude. Then, my husband educated the deputy on the uniform vehicle code and what it said about passing on double yellows and what “as far to the right as PRACTICABLE (not as POSSIBLE)” means. The deputy then apologized and all was right in the world for at least one day.

    Too bad most motorists aren’t as sane.

    Like

  2. When I see someone on a bike, I’m so afraid of hitting them, I’ll get into another lane. I’ll slow down. Whatever it takes. It’s so dangerous for bike riders! Be careful! Oh and what you said about cell phones, etc – I agree completely!

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  3. I’m not a bike rider, so this was certainly an eye-opener! My community is “bicycle friendly” so we’ve got paths everywhere, but I do occasionally encounter the odd cyclist on the downtown streets. I’ll be much more aware in the future.

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  4. YES. Jim is a cyclist and the horror stories I hear from him are, well, horrifying.

    It’s not funny to take a cyclist’s life lightly. Everyone needs to just respect each other.

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  5. First of all, I LOVE your picture. I’d like to be a road warrior too, but there’s absolutely no way I’m riding in my area. I’m even afraid to let my kids learn to drive here. People have no patience anymore.

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  6. One suggestion I have, from riding my bike in Oakland, is to ride toward the LEFT side of the road, not the right. Many people don’t check their right-hand mirror before they go to turn, and instead look in their left mirrors. This avoid you being hit by right-turners. It’s intimidating, but take up as much space on the road as you can – ride in the middle – MAKE cars aware of you!

    But don’t get run over because I would be sad.

    Like

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