Friday, August 27, 2010


What will it take to get cyclists to be accepted on the streets of our cities?  Heck, what will it take to get them accepted on the paths in our cities? Apparently the bicyclist is pretty much despised everywhere you turn.

This article in the Guardian claims that police go after cyclists because the public demand it.  "Anti-social" biker behavior is as much of a concern as "more serious crimes". So in England bikers have pissed off enough people that they now get the kind of attention usually reserved for the more unsavory among us.

The fact of the matter is (and by fact I mean my opinion which I often consider to be factual, even if the facts don't add up) people who are moving don't want to slow down. If you see runners at lights they run in place.  Bikers will circle or just run the damn thing.  Cars will stop when it's pretty clear the light is red like 20 yards before they get to it. 10 yards is to close to call - don't start crossing that street just yet.

If you're going the speed limit and a car behind you doesn't think that's good enough they'll tailgate you. They may even honk or flash their lights. Bikers will simply resort to the MPL.  I don't know what runners do because I'm always flying by them but I'm sure their human nature isn't that much different than the rest of us. That is if you consider it human nature to go out and put a pounding on your knees and ankles and hips every chance you get.

Pedestrians are guilty as well.  True, when compared to the rest of this group they have the speed and mobility of Bill Buckner at first base, but their unpredictability still makes them a danger.  Even though they are probably the most innocent in so far as they're not going to hurt very many people, they do some pretty stupid things. They're like Whak a Mole, you just never know when or where they're going to pop out.

So the answer is it's never going to happen.  As long as people are moving they're not going to want to stop.  And with the trend toward brakeless bikes cyclists won't be able to stop anyway.

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