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  1. #1
    Planet Saver billwatson58's Avatar
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    Tonight I'm riding home from work, it's dark out, I'm about a mile from home on a residential street. The street has some rough spots near the curb so I'm maybe 5 ft from the curb instead of being closer to it. There is no oncoming traffic, and there's plenty of room for someone to pass me. A car comes from behind and passes me seemingly very close, maybe 1 ft. I catch up to the guy at the stop sign. He's about 70 yrs old with the wife in the car as well. I ask why he couldn't have cut me more slack. He says I should be by the curb and that he was staying in lane and not crossing the dividing line. I tell him Illinois law requires him to give me 3 feet, there was no oncoming traffic and he had plenty of room to go around me, and the dividing line in the street is not a solid line and he is within the law to cross into the other lane to pass me. He tells me to stay by the curb from now on and speeds off. This has happened on numerous occasions to me and tonight I just snapped. I mean WTF...this guy values staying in the lane more than my life? When I got home I contacted my local PD for what I described as wreckless endangerment. An officer came and took my information and to my surprise totally understood why I was upset. She is going to try and contact the driver and let him know he needs to change how he drives with cyclists present.

    I'm a believer in VC. Should I have been further out in the lane to force the guy in the other lane? I think no matter where I was, except for the far right, he would have buzzed me.
    Bikes are fun. And better.

  2. #2
    Sophomoric Member Roody's Avatar
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    I think I get buzzed less when I'm in the center of the lane initially. When I see a car is ready to overtake me, I move to the right IF I'm sure it is safe to do so. Maybe this shows them that I'm not trying to give them a hard time, but also I'm not going to let them push me around. But, really, I almost never get buzzed anyway, so I'm not sure I'm the right one to tell you.

    This guy sounds like a real hardhead. Maybe a talk with the cops will shake him up.

    Did you have good lights on? You're sure he saw you before he was right on your tail?

  3. #3
    Proud To Be An American EXCALIBUR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billwatson58
    Tonight I'm riding home from work, it's dark out, I'm about a mile from home on a residential street. The street has some rough spots near the curb so I'm maybe 5 ft from the curb instead of being closer to it. There is no oncoming traffic, and there's plenty of room for someone to pass me. A car comes from behind and passes me seemingly very close, maybe 1 ft. I catch up to the guy at the stop sign. He's about 70 yrs old with the wife in the car as well. I ask why he couldn't have cut me more slack. He says I should be by the curb and that he was staying in lane and not crossing the dividing line. I tell him Illinois law requires him to give me 3 feet, there was no oncoming traffic and he had plenty of room to go around me, and the dividing line in the street is not a solid line and he is within the law to cross into the other lane to pass me. He tells me to stay by the curb from now on and speeds off. This has happened on numerous occasions to me and tonight I just snapped. I mean WTF...this guy values staying in the lane more than my life? When I got home I contacted my local PD for what I described as wreckless endangerment. An officer came and took my information and to my surprise totally understood why I was upset. She is going to try and contact the driver and let him know he needs to change how he drives with cyclists present.

    I'm a believer in VC. Should I have been further out in the lane to force the guy in the other lane? I think no matter where I was, except for the far right, he would have buzzed me.
    Hang in there and keep riding.
    EXCALIBUR
    2004 Giant Cypress SX 2006 Giant OCR 3

  4. #4
    Drive the Bicycle.
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    Quote Originally Posted by billwatson58
    He says I should be by the curb and that he was staying in lane and not crossing the dividing line.
    --- The motorists we share the road with have had different influences from their original driver education. For many of them (us) it was hammered in that a driver must "STAY IN YOUR LANE". Sounds like your guy is from that era. Motorists need updates on their driving tests to show them their legal options when sharing the road with cyclists.
    "The bicycle is the perfect transducer to match man's metabolic energy to the impedance of locomotion. Equipped with this tool, man outstrips the efficiency of not only all machines but all other animals as well." Ivan Illich ('Energy and Equity')1974

  5. #5
    Planet Saver billwatson58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roody
    Did you have good lights on? You're sure he saw you before he was right on your tail?
    I use the Cateye HL-EL500 in front and the Cateye TL-LD1000 in the rear. The rear light is very bright...if he didn't see me he shouldn't have a license to drive.

    front light:

    http://www.rei.com/online/store/Prod...ory_rn=4500821

    rear light:

    http://www.rei.com/online/store/Prod...ory_rn=4500822
    Bikes are fun. And better.

  6. #6
    Planet Saver billwatson58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EXCALIBUR
    Hang in there and keep riding.
    Hey thanks for the encouraging words. I do plan to keep riding, and hope my original post doesn't come across as whining. It gets old though dealing with inconsiderate cagers that feel their right to the road is superior to yours.
    Bikes are fun. And better.

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    I was talking with some fellow riders about drivers and their little indispensible pearls of wisdom they feel compelled to dispense about our riding today. They always have something to say about our riding but generally don't drive that well and get all offended when we tell them so.

  8. #8
    Proud To Be An American EXCALIBUR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billwatson58
    Hey thanks for the encouraging words. I do plan to keep riding, and hope my original post doesn't come across as whining. It gets old though dealing with inconsiderate cagers that feel their right to the road is superior to yours.
    I understand how you feel. I had a similar encounter with a driver a few years back. When I confronted her about nearly killing me by cutting me off so she could enter a gas station, she replied, "You're a bike, you don't count."
    EXCALIBUR
    2004 Giant Cypress SX 2006 Giant OCR 3

  9. #9
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EXCALIBUR
    I understand how you feel. I had a similar encounter with a driver a few years back. When I confronted her about nearly killing me by cutting me off so she could enter a gas station, she replied, "You're a bike, you don't count."
    I'd have made a remark about it being safer on the roads if she was home barefoot and pregnant.

  10. #10
    Senior Member spandexwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EXCALIBUR
    I understand how you feel. I had a similar encounter with a driver a few years back. When I confronted her about nearly killing me by cutting me off so she could enter a gas station, she replied, "You're a bike, you don't count."
    Huh? Don't count because your on a bike?! I haven't had anyone come out and say it to me, but that is the attitude cagers have. There seems to be the sentiment that killing is okay if the person is on a bike. Which is weird. Maybe wearing a sign on one's back saying, "I key cars which get too close to me," is a thought. Not the best one, because you might have to make good on the promise at some point, and you'd probably do more jail time for nixing a paint job than the driver would for killing you. I wish there was a law where I lived about drivers having to remain so many feet away from my bike when passing. I've come close to making intimate contact with many a car mirror. VC is the best thing for this problem. Taking that lane makes the driver actually have to commit to going into another lane rather than playing "squeeze the cyclist."
    Urban Cycling Vocabulary
    Foreplay The efforts of a cyclist to locate and trigger buried sensors under the pavement that will cause the traffic light at an intersection to turn green. Like the real thing, occasionally there is no result from this activity, despite most sincere efforts.
    High A lateral position on a street more toward the center line. I.E., If you look like you are leading a funeral procession of slow moving cars, you are probably positioned too "high."

  11. #11
    Proud To Be An American EXCALIBUR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spandexwarrior
    Huh? Don't count because your on a bike?! I haven't had anyone come out and say it to me, but that is the attitude cagers have. There seems to be the sentiment that killing is okay if the person is on a bike. Which is weird. Maybe wearing a sign on one's back saying, "I key cars which get too close to me," is a thought. Not the best one, because you might have to make good on the promise at some point, and you'd probably do more jail time for nixing a paint job than the driver would for killing you. I wish there was a law where I lived about drivers having to remain so many feet away from my bike when passing. I've come close to making intimate contact with many a car mirror. VC is the best thing for this problem. Taking that lane makes the driver actually have to commit to going into another lane rather than playing "squeeze the cyclist."
    Those were her exact words. Yes, the thought of jail time was the only thing that kept me from reaching through the driver's side window and choking her out.
    Last edited by EXCALIBUR; 10-10-05 at 05:40 AM.
    EXCALIBUR
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  12. #12
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    The guy is just an old jackass. You did the right thing if you got his tag and called the cops. Following up with the cops to see what they did and reporting back to the Forum would be cool.

    I have contacted the local PD also about similar things and they say get the tag and call.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bshow1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billwatson58
    Should I have been further out in the lane to force the guy in the other lane?
    I would say yes, ride farther into the lane to avoid being buzzed. If you leave room to squeeze in, people will try to take it. If you don't leave room, they have to move left to pass you, like they would any other slower vehicle.

    Try it and see if it helps. But choose your battles; if the conditions are too dangerous, find another route.
    "I can't stop here all day; I'm on a cycling tour of North Cornwall!"

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  14. #14
    Planet Saver billwatson58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bshow1
    if the conditions are too dangerous, find another route.
    I would not call this a dangerous street at all. The speed limit is 25, there are a fair amount of stops, it's tree lined with cribs worth 500K to over a mil (I'm a mile away - south of the tracks where the commoners live) The most dangerous part is it's not terribly well lit, and close to the curb are surface hazards. It's a major north south arterial street through town, so it does have more traffic than streets to either side.
    Bikes are fun. And better.

  15. #15
    hill hater nova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bshow1
    I would say yes, ride farther into the lane to avoid being buzzed. If you leave room to squeeze in, people will try to take it. If you don't leave room, they have to move left to pass you, like they would any other slower vehicle.

    Try it and see if it helps. But choose your battles; if the conditions are too dangerous, find another route.
    Or they just slam in to you and say they didnt see you and this is why bikes dont belong on the road. In the old mans case hed buzz no matter where you were in lane. Hes to cought up on staying in his lane to be safe he would go just far enough in to the other lane to pass wtih safty for his car and thats it.

  16. #16
    Planet Saver billwatson58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nova
    ....this is why bikes dont belong on the road. I
    I see this thread is morphing into a VC vs anti-VC one and/or a ride on the street vs ride on paths or sidewalks. Bikes have a right to the road...it's a public space...I pay taxes that maintain the roads....can't we all just get along? I just had a funny thought...I'm should to try and ride on the sidewalks for my entire 13.5 mile one way commute. On second thought, no thanks. Can riding in the streets be dangerous? Of course. Are there ways to minimize those dangers? Certainly. Driving is dangerous too. 40,000+ car deaths a year doesn't seem to be discouraging a lot of cagers.
    Bikes are fun. And better.

  17. #17
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nova
    ...this is why bikes dont belong on the road.
    Yikes!
    I think it's more likely that a certain poster doesn't belong on this forum!

  18. #18
    Feral Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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    I understand your frustration.

    I remember thinking the exact same thing after a double-dooring in the UK: "I'm fed up!" I left the country. Sod it. Any culture that is so backwards and car-loving and barbaric that this is common practice doesn't deserve the benefit of my presence. I'm not going to change the system within my lifetime, so I might as well go somewhere where they DO have a clue.

    I understand that you don't necessarily feel the same way, and aren't considering leaving your country. But you have to admit - you're not "fed up" enough yet
    Quote Originally Posted by KrisPistofferson View Post
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  19. #19
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicodemus
    I understand your frustration.

    I remember thinking the exact same thing after a double-dooring in the UK: "I'm fed up!" I left the country. Sod it. Any culture that is so backwards and car-loving and barbaric that this is common practice doesn't deserve the benefit of my presence. I'm not going to change the system within my lifetime, so I might as well go somewhere where they DO have a clue.
    Boy, you sure picked the right place!

  20. #20
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
    Yikes!
    I think it's more likely that a certain poster doesn't belong on this forum!
    It's part of an entire sentence, and is put forth as what a driver would say if he/she hit a cyclist riding out into the lane to avoid a crappy road surface on the right.

  21. #21
    hill hater nova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
    Yikes!
    I think it's more likely that a certain poster doesn't belong on this forum!
    as i said i should have put qoutes around it like this
    Or they just slam in to you and say they didnt see you andsay "this is why bikes dont belong on the road." I thought i had orrignally typed say infact i know i did but it just didnt come up. Key board needs cleaned badly and its getting that cleaning after this post. Also it shoudl have been at least some what obvious was saying this is something a driver might say after hitting you. At least i sumed it would be.

  22. #22
    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
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    there is a huge difference in how it feels to drive a car and how it feels to be on a bike with cars surrounding you. from his point of view, he probably felt perfectly safe doing what he was doing. that's the problem with a lot of drivers. they don't put themselves in your shoes. they don't say to themselves "maybe this guy doesn't like a 2 ton machine passing within 12 inches of him". they're just self absorbed pieces of human trash. glad to hear the police will talk to him. i hope they take his license and beat him with their police sticks.

  23. #23
    misses the city
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    I agree that a lot of this kind of thing is ignorance.

    I once got into it with a guy who buzzed close to me and we did a back and forth for a few blocks. Finally we stopped at a light and I said, "Let me just say one thing," and he nodded and I explained that when he gets that close I get afraid that I'm going to fall under his wheels or get hit and it's my fear OF MY LIFE that makes me flip out and scream when someone gets that close.

    He nodded and told me to have a nice day.

    So sometimes all people need is to know that there are humans on bikes who have families and lives and friends and loved ones who deserve to live. Use your knowledge - tell your friends, your family members, your loved ones. Make them see every cyclist as YOU, not just as an obstacle between them and their destination.

  24. #24
    hill hater nova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dchiefransom
    It's part of an entire sentence, and is put forth as what a driver would say if he/she hit a cyclist riding out into the lane to avoid a crappy road surface on the right.
    Yeh i see where the confusion came from though. The post i made or thought i ade right after the first qoute never went through. Normaly forum lags and i go to reply again and double post. So i figured it would do this this time as well guess not heh.

    But still yeh it was part of a entire sentence and i should have put qoutes around it as well.

  25. #25
    Tiocfáidh ár Lá jfmckenna's Avatar
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    Your nothing more than a turtle. Some drivers will hit you on purpose, some drivers will hit you if they cannot move around you or have to slow down, some drivers will avoid you at all cost, some drivers will stop and pick you up and place you back in the woods where it is save.

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