BikePGH!

Plea to a fellow cyclist….

This topic contains 15 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  Vannevar 9 mos, 1 week.

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
 
Author Posts
Author Posts

Swalfoort

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 12:38pm #

Fellow cyclist,
It was nice to see you riding in this morning. I was a little surprised to watch you blow through that red light at the end of the business district, but I recognize that many consider the “stop” element of a right on red to be optional. Still, you took it at considerable speed. I was sort of envious of that speed. Nervous, but envious.

Then, due to some interesting routing choices, five blocks later I see you just one block ahead of me. You’d ridden twice as far, and more than twice as fast, but you were still only a block ahead of me when you pedaled through that stop sign at the start of the downhill run.

We apparently opted for different routes into town, and my route must have been a bit shorter, as I had to ask myself “are you kidding?” when I saw you just a block ahead of me as we entered downtown. Again, you had ridden somewhat further, and somewhat faster, but you were still only a block ahead of me.

I only wonder how quickly you might have made it into town with better routing choices. And how you might have been able to arrive downtown in exactly the same amount of time while obeying traffic signs and signals, with better route information.

I know, how you ride should be a matter of personal choice, and none of my business. But it is my business, because many of those cars that saw you behaving irresponsibly this morning then saw me just a minute or two later, and may have expected me to behave in the same way.

Between my sightings of you, I also shared the road with a gentleman who chose to a) pass me on the right with no audible warning, b) ride opposing traffic on two different streets, and c) run a red light and a stop sign. I seriously don’t want motorists to think that I intend to ride like THAT either.

I believe that the more predictable we all are as cyclists, the better equipped motorists will be to share the road with us. I was very pleased at the 4 ft. yield rate that I received today — clearly in excess of 90 percent. I was less pleased by the behavior of my fellow cyclists.

Oh, and to the two of you I reference above, you’d be cuter in a helmet!

Ride on (safely)!


Mikhail

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 1:40pm #

TDC ride last Tuesday. 9 riders of TDC ride stopped at red on Northumberland (?). A guy approached from behind rode around, took first position and then without waiting just ran red light. In front drivers from opposite directions and a couple of them behind us. I just shook my head.


stefb

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 1:49pm #

Is this the guy Marko yelled at haha?


Mikhail

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 2:56pm #

Stefb,

Nope. We were behind you around a 1.5 mile. I believe you guys exited the second cemetery shortly after we entered it, and we waited for people at exit. We got Marko to our group in the middle of loop at the third cemetery.


StuInMcCandless

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 3:34pm #

This new thread reminds me of this old thread.


WillB

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 3:55pm #

Seems like as good a time as any to share this:

Sorry for the swearing. Also, he was wearing headphones.


buffalo buffalo

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 4:24pm #

I saw an unusually-high seven riders on my way to work this morning. Most were being safe and sane…and then there was the guy riding, slowly, in traffic on Fifth Avenue near Craig with headphones on–and not just earbuds, but the big ones that cover half your head.

Walking back from lunch today, almost got run over by some idiot riding up the sidewalk. On Forbes Ave, in Central Oakland…


Pierce

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 5:09pm #

On a somewhat related note…

A lady was walking her bike through the parking lot between Macys and the Waterfront stacks and I kind of stopped and asked if she was okay

First she had to take her headphones out (with bud in left side ear) and I repeated myself

Then she gave a dismissive “Yeah, WHY WOULDN’T I BE?” I responded “Because you’re walking your bike through the middle of a parking lot.” She replied “Yeah, I’m looking for something” and shook her head in a “you’re an idiot” kind of way.

So I road off and gave her the finger to my back (and she was heading in the opposite direction, so probably didn’t see it either)


Marko82

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 6:10pm #

@stef, I didnt yell at anyone this week. I politely asked a twentysomething female driver to please be patient. She was trying to pass fifteen cyclists going uphill to a stop sign. I will say that the middle aged lady pedestrian who yelled at her about the 4-foot rule was an extra bonus.


Mick

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 6:56pm #

Every cyclist has a different way of dealing with the same problems.

This morning, coming towards town on Fifth, coming down to the 5th/Birmingham/Kirkpartrick intersection, there was a red light with a bicyclist stopped at it.

The light was green for the traffic coming down Kirkpartick but there weren’t any cars coming down it.

Some people say I should have stopped and waited at the light. That would give the impatient drivers on Fifth a chance to right-hook me at the intersection. And the drivers there seem kinda eager for that kind of chance.

I prefer to be safe, so I passed the cyclist (giving him a “hey how ya doing” as I passed, because I’m a friendly guy) and blew through the light.

A little later going up the rise on Fifth, I was in the middle of the lane. The cyclist passed me – on the right – with no warning or greeting. I might be projecting, but I got the idea he might have had a superior expression on his face: not only did he wait at the light, but he rode faster than me, too.

He proceeded up the street, totally in the door zone. for as far as I could see him.

Lots of in-and-out on that block. Even though it’s a rise, its no big hill, so I was going faster than I want for a dooring and he was going much faster than me.

It totally squicked me to watch him going in the door zone in front of what seems to be a drug-trade building up towards the rainbow kitchen. Hard to find an attentive, responsible driver there.

But then, I’m the law breaker.

So, yeah, other riders will do thing I wouldn’t. And that’s true for all of us.


Drewbacca

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 7:44pm #

Mick wrote:Some people say I should have stopped and waited at the light.

Motorcycles and bicycles are actually allowed to move on red (after a complete stop) in Illinois… this is due to the inability for some to trigger the sensors for the light. I think the law was just passed within the last year… either way, I hope I haven’t picked up a bad habit if I permanently move back home to PA.


jonawebb

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 7:50pm #

I totally wait at traffic lights, except for maybe at a quiet T-intersection, but probably even there. It is easier not to have to make a decision about whether it’s safe to wait or not. And I don’t worry about drivers right hooking me as I pull out — I would take the lane and eliminate the possibility of this happening if I thought it could.
OTOH I mostly ease through stop signs. And I think the argument that motorists see naughty cyclists running stop lights, then think we are all law-breakers is silly. Any motorist who is inclined to think that has no problem coming up with examples they saw years ago, or making them up. That horse left the barn long ago.
What we need, actually, is enforcement. I.e., cyclists who break the law getting tickets. And we also need laws that make more sense, i.e., the Idaho stop sign and traffic light laws. I don’t think a bunch of (I’m guessing middle-aged) cyclists tsk-tsking other cyclists for running red lights is going to make that much difference.
But I don’t think any real enforcement is going to happen. The police barely enforce the traffic laws. Notwithstanding the occasional misguided efforts Mr. M and I have encountered, I doubt they have the resources to make an impact on scofflaw cyclists.


Italianblend

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 8:00pm #

Other cyclists pass me as I wait at a red light all the time. I get used to doing the “right thing” and watching others not.


Swalfoort

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 8:01pm #

I want to be clear here. I did not start this thread to “out” any particular individuals, or to “flaunt” my own behavior. I try to be predictable in my actions, but that does not mean I come to a complete, foot down, stop at each stop sign. I am likely to jump a signal change to green if it takes me away from a possible threat or impediment.

My observation today were more about the fallacy of the argument that cyclists can’t/won’t/don’t obey traffic signs and signals because of the “inertia” that results from having to start up after each stop. This guy was riding circles around me in terms of speed. To do so, he pedaled harder and blew through lights and stop signs. In the end, after 5+ miles, he arrived downtown one block ahead of me. If he rode smarter (as in making better routing decisions) he could have shaved a good 10 minutes or more off his time. If he made better routing decisions AND obeyed the major stop signs and signals, he could have shaved 6-8 minutes or more off his travel time.

He wasn’t actually the guy that pissed me off this morning tho. The other guy was. This was a cyclist who seemed less to be flaunting the rules of the road as ignorant of them. I just had to comment on both of them, for whatever reason.

For what it is worth, I love to see all these cyclists on my way in. I used to see none on the way in, maybe one or two on the way home. These days I seem to see 2-4 on the way in, and often twice that on the way home. That’s encouraging.


Mick

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 8:02pm #

@ janwebb

jonawebb wrote:What we need, actually, is enforcement. I.e., cyclists who break the law getting tickets.

I would totally be OK with paying fines for my misbehaviors. Totally.

As long as they outlawed speeding somehow.


Vannevar

Private Message

Jul 11 2013 at 8:11pm #

Pierce wrote:On a somewhat related note…

A lady was walking her bike through the parking lot between Macys and the Waterfront stacks and I kind of stopped and asked if she was okay

First she had to take her headphones out (with bud in left side ear) and I repeated myself Then she gave a dismissive “Yeah, WHY WOULDN’T I BE?”

+10 to you Pierce.

I was riding in that exact same place with srpit last week, between Macy’s and the stacks, and we encountered seven cyclists acting as if something was wrong; three were walking their bikes as the other four were slowly orbiting the cluster.

So we asked. They’d gotten lost on the GAP between the main Sandcastle gate and Costco (!) and were kind of aimlessly acting as if they’d never see their loved ones in West Newton again. We led them over to Mitchell’s Fish Market.

I think you did a very nice thing and I think your analysis was spot on,

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
 

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.