selfish and naive

Dan, of the blog “Tired of Sharing the Road,” has dropped by here long enough to post a comment on the post, “Commute By Bicycle.” A firm believer in dialogue and diversity, I approved his comment. But my ideological idealism does not mean I’m above taking advantage of my role as publisher of this blog to point out what an asinine position he represents, and to invite you share your thoughts on the matter — here on my blog, there on his blog, and elsewhere in public forums where it really counts.

Not surprisingly, Dan doesn’t share anything about himself on his blog. He prefers instead to hide behind a mask of anonymity. Dan, moreover, makes no argument for his position, nor does he offer any worthwhile counterargument to the many good reasons why cyclists can and should make use of public streets (not least of all being state laws), let alone the plethora of benefits to riders and non-riders alike when more citizens go by bike.

This remark from Dan, which I’m sure was intended to be clever and sardonic, is nevertheless quite telling:

Today, while commuting to work in my car a bike pulled in front of me.  I was reading my paper and drinking my coffee, and did not see him until it was almost too late.  I spilled my coffee on my new blue shirt, and ruined my paper.

As someone who’s been nearly run over on more than one occasion by distracted drivers, I don’t find this humorous at all. What Dan and so many of these inattentive and, at times, angry, motorists fail to recognize when they get upset with us for being on that road and when, worse, they try to teach us a lesson as it were, is that they threaten not only my individual physical well-being and even life; they also threaten my family. Your attempt to scare me straight risks leaving my children fatherless. That takes some kind of gall, and betrays an almost unimaginable degree of arrogance on your part.

What do others think?

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12 responses to “selfish and naive

  1. If he really wants bikes off his roads then he should hand over a bunch of dough or be sure to be out in full force voting for every infrastructure bill in his local government that will fund separate public bike lanes along every public road. Works for me!

  2. I think it’s great that man invented the built-in-camera phone. That way when someone is hostile towards me while I’m on my bicycle, I can take a picture of the vehicle’s plate and get a description of the driver and call the authorities. I don’t put up with that sort of stuff, and bicyclists shouldn’t have to. When I’m driving I make a point of giving bicyclists and pedestrians equal space for obvious reasons, not only because they have the right of way, but because I don’t want to put my truck in a body shop. (wrong context for humor? exactly your point made here).

    In summary, take it from our friend Forrest Gump. Stupid is as stupid does. They come in all kinds.

  3. I would paraphrase what I read in the Pedal Revolution and other current literature: If more people use their bikes for transportation on the streets, the larger presence we have in the flow of traffic. The larger our presence, the fossil fueled traffic will begin to notice us and treat us with respect and share the road. Of all the drivers I have met on the road over the years, the vast majority did not want to injure me. Unfortunately, it’s the jerks, immature, and self-important persons that I remember most. Most people are unaware or are willing to share the road. Get more educated folks on bicycles! That is the key action.

  4. Did anyone else notice the posting “need bike trailer” on Dan’s blog? Under “contact information” on the right side. Fishy…

    • I did, and I found it fishy, too. After a couple of reads, I took it to be another lame attempt at wit, i.e., a sarcastic jab at transportation cyclists who use their bikes as utility vehicles.

  5. Yeah, and also his WordPress name links to another blog of sarcastic scree. Clearly a troll. Don’t take the bait.

  6. While “Dan” very well might be a troll, I rest assured that there are by far too many people out there that may feel this way towards cyclists, or anyone else that may inconvenience.

    I am going too opted for a quick answer as apposed to a meandering rant and say that if everyone would just fallow the rules and treat each other with mutual respect, we would all get along better…

  7. See, this is what irks me: drivers that do that crap but then heckle and verbally assault cyclists to get off the road even though we have every legal right to be there and most of us follow the rules of the road. How is it our fault that the driver is too freaking dumb to pay proper attention? I agree that if drivers don’t like us then they need to ensure proper bike lanes get put in so we have our own spot on the road that’s legally protected as well. It reminds me of an idiot driver a few days ago telling me to get off the road while I was waiting for traffic to clear and he was behind me.

  8. Please check out the link and video report – but be sure to take your blood pressure medicine first.