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  1. #1
    contre nous de la tyranie
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    Chastised, yet again

    I'm used to having other cyclists admonish me for blowing through stop lights, going the wong way on one way streets, drinking rum from an open bottle, talking on a cell phone, or doing all of those things at once, while cruising along the minneappleton byways, but two days ago I was truely shocked.

    I was riding along an almost deserted residential street, when another rider yelled out, "Helmet." I ignored him and he yelled out "HELMET" even louder. Outwardly, I ignored this too, but inside I was thinking that this guy is a bit too effusive in his desire that I live a long and healthy life. Ordinarily, I would have turned to ride next to him, to explain that I lost my helmet, and that I will soon buy another, if I don't locate the old one, but darn, I had several pressing engagements.

  2. #2
    Feral Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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    I don't care about Godwin's Law, I'll spill it on post #2 cuz it really belongs here.

    Now *that's* a helmet nazi.

    You do all that other stuff? damn.

  3. #3
    Senior Member sggoodri's Avatar
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    Many years ago, before I knew better, I was riding against traffic on a sidewalk (actually a designated bike path by the city but a bad location nonetheless) as it began getting dark, and I had no lights.

    Two young women rode past me on the roadway, operating in the vehicular manner and with lights, which I would soon learn to emulate.

    They shouted to me: "Helmet!"

    Well, at least they cared....

  4. #4
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    I am a helmet advocate, but I have never resorted to shouting helmet... although it probably is as effective as anything else I could do.

    Since the state I moved to has selected to make helmets mandatory for only those 12 yrs old and younger (I think this is the most stupid of laws BTW - I may need to search for a thread on schizo helmet laws).

    I cringe when I see people without helmets, the young, the old, and even in one case those who had them hanging on their handlebars)... But unless I have another reason to speak to an individual, I (so far) see no reason to do more than set an example and wear my helmet properly.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  5. #5
    Calamari to go cc_rider's Avatar
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    The first yell - the guy was concerned with your welfare but was being somewhat meddleing.
    The second yell - the guy was being a jerk.

  6. #6
    Geosynchronous Falconeer recursive's Avatar
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    If I see you riding the wrong way on a one way, I might have to take you down with a well placed frame pump.
    Bring the pain.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Keith99's Avatar
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    I always wear a helmet. Unlike others I will consider not wearing in on a highway, but NEVER on a MUP. If a truck cleans me out I'm dead either way. If some fool on a MUP causes me to go down a helmet can be the diference between dead and riding home almost unhurt.

    But I can think of only two conditions where I start a helmet conversation with someone on a bike. If they have one but are using it wrong. There I assume they desire the protection, they have made the choice and executed it poorly. I think in that case they may desire the advice. The second is someone with kids where the kids have helmets and they do not. Sometimes in that case I bother to point out that the kids learn more from their example than from the helmets that they make the kids wear.

  8. #8
    Senior Member va_cyclist's Avatar
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    Maybe he thought you were his friend Helmut, and he was trying to get your attention.

  9. #9
    Commuting Horrorshow wheezl's Avatar
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    That's it. I am just going to start shouting "Helmet!" everywhere now. I'll shout it at work. I'll shout it at dinner. I will shout it everywhere.

    I think I might need a little hand signal and pose to go with it however.


    I might also take to wearing my helmet even when I am not on the bike. I think wearing a helmet in my daily life may lend credibility to shouting "Helmet!" all of the time.

  10. #10
    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by va_cyclist
    Maybe he thought you were his friend Helmut, and he was trying to get your attention.
    yeah, he could be friends with famed fashion designer Helmut Lang and got you to mixed up. hey, it could happen.

  11. #11
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheezl
    That's it. I am just going to start shouting "Helmet!" everywhere now. I'll shout it at work. I'll shout it at dinner. I will shout it everywhere.

    I think I might need a little hand signal and pose to go with it however.

    I might also take to wearing my helmet even when I am not on the bike. I think wearing a helmet in my daily life may lend credibility to shouting "Helmet!" all of the time.
    This would solve the problem.... if your problem is that nobody notices you.

    I do think that sometimes loud is not the right way...

    May I suggest knees slightly bent, tilted forward at the waist (be sure to be just slightly too close for the other person's comfort) make really solid eye contact (a crazed expression would make this more effective ) and in a very animated way point to your helmet with both hands... Then quietly say "Helmet."
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

    People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.
    - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  12. #12
    Rides again HiYoSilver's Avatar
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    It may have been a well intended shout. 90% of bike deaths were of unhelmeted riders. 10% were of helmeted riders.

    I don't buy the arguments that govt's need to Nanny Mom their citizens and treat them as children by passing helmet laws. However, bike helmets don't get in the way much and the visor is a nicer sunblock than sunglasses alone. It's all part of the unending risk/benefit assessments we make during life.
    Hi 'o Silver away

  13. #13
    1.9lb/in pseudobrit's Avatar
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    What's the point of yelling "helmet"? It's not like you stopped for water, stashed it in a jersey pocket and forgot to put it back on.

    Maybe you should have knocked him off his bike, taken his, and thanked him for the advice.

  14. #14
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
    I don't buy the arguments that govt's need to Nanny Mom their citizens and treat them as children by passing helmet laws.
    I appreciate this stance, but I have a hard time with it pragmatically based on the other things that are mandated... such as seat belts, safety glass, brakes...

    If it is OK for the government to ensure the safety of motor vehicle operators, then logically it makes sense that they also work to protect cyclists by reasonable restrictions. Of course, in PA it would be really silly to have bicycle helmets required, since they don't require them for motorcycles.

    However, they do require bicycle helmets for children under 12... So just as soon as you convince little Jimmy to use the toilet instead of his diaper... all the time convincing him that it will make him a "big boy" then you say he has to wear a helmet because he is a "little boy" meanwhile, if it is so important, then why doesn't daddy wear one?

    DANGER .... THE FOLLOWING CONTAINS AN ATTEMPT AT HUMOR.... NOT A GOOD ATTEMPT, BUT AN ATTEMPT NONE-THE-LESS...

    I had trouble with understanding the arbitrarily dropping the helmet requirement at the age of 13, until I realized at about 13 is when kids tend to act in such a way that they don't seem to have brains worth protecting anyway!

    I TOLD YOU IT WAS A BAD ATTEMPT...

    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

    People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.
    - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  15. #15
    contre nous de la tyranie
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    OK, now for a little discloser. I almost always wear a helmet. I ride the wrong way on a bike path almost every night, for one block, when there is almost no other traffic, and have rightly been chastised for this. Alas, I am boring, and do not have those other life shortening habits.

    I didn't think that I would get any serious discussion here, but I'm glad it was generated. I have kids, who I hope will emulate my usual helmet use, but I see almost no teens using them. I will start another post about this.

  16. #16
    Ride the Road Daily Commute's Avatar
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    I always wear a helmet, but it's a waste of breath to yell out "advice" like that while riding. People who don't wear helmets won't be persuaded to change by shouted advice. The general debate on the value of helmets and helmet laws should be directed to another thead.

  17. #17
    Commuting Horrorshow wheezl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daily Commute
    I always wear a helmet, but it's a waste of breath to yell out "advice" like that while riding. People who don't wear helmets won't be persuaded to change by shouted advice. The general debate on the value of helmets and helmet laws should be directed to another thead.

    Go ahead and yell anything but "Hotties" we have all learned that is one thing you should NEVER yell

  18. #18
    Senior Member slagjumper's Avatar
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    I wear a helmet. But if you don't that's OK. True that if people really cared about safety, they'd wear their helmets in the car as well, since more people die there. I have a wife and 3 kids and so have decided that this is one thing that I can do since I allready am partaking in a somewhat dangerous activity. Of course this might only mean that instead of dying, I linger around as a gorp. Pay your nickel, make your choice and take the consequences.

  19. #19
    Picnic Queen Mr Bear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
    It may have been a well intended shout. 90% of bike deaths were of unhelmeted riders. 10% were of helmeted riders.
    oooooh statistics, damn lies and. This stat probably doesn't account for overall helmet uptake.
    I am not young enough to know everything
    -Oscar Wilde

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