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Old 02-20-07, 10:42 PM   #1
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JAM's.

For the record JAM stands for Jack Ass Motorist if anyone did not know this already. We have all had to deal with them while riding at one point or another. If you haven't trust me you will at some point. JAM is also another word for cager.

But for those of us who drive a car as well as ride bike when you see other drivers while you're driving who cut people off, tail gate, speed, put themselves, you & others at risk because of their reckless driving do you often think "I hope I don't encounter this JAM while I'm riding."? Or do you think "I wonder how this JAM acts around cyclists."? What else do you think when you see a JAM while you're driving? Have you ever had an encounter with a JAM while driving then the same one while riding? Was there any differance?

I always think I wonder how they react around a cyclist or it would not surprise me if this JAM did the same if not worse around a cyclist. I have had the unfortunate encounter with the same JAM while both driving & riding. The JAM was worse around me when I was commuting home from work by bike then he was when I would drive home.

BTW when I have a JAM tail gate me while I'm driving I have a handy device on my vehicle that get's them to back off. It is called the brakes. I use it all the time by tapping on it, flashing the brake lights & they back off. On the interstate I do this until they can safely pass. On 2 lane roadways where they can not pass I do this until they either stay back, until I have to turn or until they turn. Bottom line, don't tail gate me.
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Old 02-21-07, 02:07 AM   #2
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I don't use the brakes. I use 2nd gear plus popping the clutch to lock the rear differential. I give fair warning before this happens. I see stupid drivers every single day. Even though the majority of drivers are at the very least decently cautious and courteous drivers, there have to be quite a few jackass drivers out there for me to see several each day.

Annoyance rates low with the drivers who just have to floor it from every light and get antsy in their pantsy when I don't do the same [I want to actually get decent gas mileage, ya know?]
Annoyance runs middle with the drivers who absolutely have to pass you and nearly run off the road trying to pass you right before you both get off at an exit.
Annoyance rates high with the drivers who have to weave through traffic and then tailgate when they hit a spot they can't weave through.
If I saw a JAM swerve at a cyclist, I'd probably call the police. I hate to think about it, because it would seriously piss me off.

When I see JAMs while driving, I can only think "This seems to be the kind of person who buzzes cyclists." If they're so important and so much in a hurry that they can't work with the other drivers, well I'd hate to be passed by them.
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Old 02-21-07, 08:41 AM   #3
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This is a topic that I constantly think about when either driving or cycling - watching people drift to the right where I'd be cycling, tailgaters, speeders, etc. These are impatient or angry people and who I am most concerned about.

IMHO, the inattentive motrorist is probably the one that will get you but I'm not so concerned about inattentive motorists, because I think my style of cycling and constant awareness will help me avoid this type of motorist. For example, in December a cyclist was killed (rear ended) by a pickup driver who was temporarily blinded by the sun. It was late afternoon on a weekday, the sun was low in the sky and both driver and cyclist where heading into the sun. I NEVER ride in the eveings when they start to get short and the sun is low in the sky. So, what I am trying to say is that my awareness of my surroundings or ability to anticipate what may or may not happen helps keep me safe (not 100% safe, but it helps greatly).

I also NEVER ride on Friday afternoons. It probably is paranoia but I feel that people are more impatient on Fridays.

**My** greatest fear however, is to encounter the JAM who, for whatever reason, is angry that day and may cause me some harm and take it out on me. They aren't necessarily bad people, but in a moment of 'seeing red' they made a bad choice and may regret it after. I'm worried about becoming a victim of someones flare of anger. For this, I have no avoidance technique. I regularly see the way people treat each other in their vehicles and wonder, what would happen if this person were to encounter me as a cyclist. Would they buzz me? Get behind me and lean on the horn? The more I see and the older I get, the more I just don't want to know - ignorance is bliss.
As far as I know I have not encountered the same motorist when driving or cycling.

As to hitting the brakes for tailgaters, I use to do this (which is a form of road rage). One time, a white panel van came up behind me and stayed on my tail, this was on a 100kph road and I was doing bewteen 100 and 110. I tapped the brakes, well he didn't like that, he passed me, got in front of me and slowed down to 60kph and stayed there for 10 minutes until his exit. Makes you wonder why he was in such a rush in the first place huh?

It angered me and I realized the next day that I escalated the situation. Yes, he was tailgating me, endangering both of us, and I retaliated by flashing my lights, hence scaring the bejezus out of him and angering him.

So he decided to 'teach me a lesson' and sacrafice his precious time by showing me just how iritating it is to have someone drive slow. Well, I WAS doing the speed limit or just a little over. The point is, no matter what I do, he is going to have a problem with it, he probably considers himself a great driver and in constant control no matter how fast he drives and doing that speed is not a problem, if I was doing 150kph he probably would still tailgate me.

So, now I still do right round the limit (less if conditions warrant it) and let 'em tailgate me and hopefully they pass. It was just a male ego thing that caused the situation and I cannot go around and 'teach' people how to drive.

Just try and avoid the jerks and don;t let 'em drag you down. Calling the police is useless because the first thing they'll ask is "are their any witnesses" or state that since there were no deaths, injury or property damage there's nothing they can do.

I've always said this planet would be a great place to live...if there were no humans on it.
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Old 02-21-07, 08:57 AM   #4
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I see JAMs all the time. Much like Chip, I feel the majority of driving public is out there trying to do the right thing... they queue up in merge lanes, they occasionally remember to use turn signals, they try to drive the speed limits and they actually stop before turning right on red.

Then there are the JAMs... they tend to be selfish drivers that constantly push the envelope... they pass needlessly, swerving in and out and with little margin, they often run stop signs, they only slow to make right turns on red lights, they tailgate, and they do not queue up to merge. These are the motorists that drive on the shoulder to get around slow traffic, overshoot lane lines on curves, use the car pool lane at metered on ramps to avoid waiting in the queue and basically drive as if they own the road and they feel the rest of us are just "sheep." Out of the car, they probably cut into lines at theaters and talk loudly on cell phones in restaurants.
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Old 02-21-07, 09:35 AM   #5
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Where was JAM originated? I first saw it used by recursive. I'm of the opinion that JAM applies only to those who deserve it, and not to all motor traffic, so to that extent I think it is distinct from cager, which I view as a "lovingly" crude jab at all motorists.
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Old 02-21-07, 10:09 AM   #6
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I'm with digger on the Friday thing; I don't ride on Fridays - and sometimes Thursdays are bad as well.

As for tailgaters, I found that flashing the brake lights just pisses people off. I did this one time when the fog was real bad and the guy was tailgating me; I flashed the brakes, and he retaliated by turning on his brights. I'm in a Prius, and he is in a pickup, so kind of uncomfortable for me. I had to adjust all my mirrors away, then I took my rearview mirror off the "dim" setting and positioned it so it shined back into his eyes. That got him to back off, but I was guilty of escalating the situation too.

Now, I just start slowing down slowly (just let up on the gas) - they will either pass, or more often, they will back off a bit, and I will "reward" them by speeding up. It seems to work and doesn't result in escalation.
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Old 02-21-07, 11:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digger
I'm not so concerned about inattentive motorists, because I think my style of cycling and constant awareness will help me avoid this type of motorist.
I agree. It seems much easier to get the attention of the inattentive motorist while cycling than to calm or control the aggressive and impatient ones. The latter are the ones who most often will buzz me, no matter my lane position, available sight lines or the presence of oncoming traffic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff
As for tailgaters, I found that flashing the brake lights just pisses people off. I did this one time when the fog was real bad and the guy was tailgating me; I flashed the brakes, and he retaliated by turning on his brights. I'm in a Prius, and he is in a pickup, so kind of uncomfortable for me. I had to adjust all my mirrors away, then I took my rearview mirror off the "dim" setting and positioned it so it shined back into his eyes. That got him to back off, but I was guilty of escalating the situation too.

Now, I just start slowing down slowly (just let up on the gas) - they will either pass, or more often, they will back off a bit, and I will "reward" them by speeding up. It seems to work and doesn't result in escalation.
This has been my experience exactly. "Brake checking" tailgaters only infuriates them more. Slowing down slightly works much better. Besides, I refuse to use my car as some sort of battering ram.
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Old 02-21-07, 01:27 PM   #8
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The go after each other too apparently:
http://www.azcentral.com/community/p...rage21-ON.html

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Old 02-21-07, 10:13 PM   #9
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there are a fair percentage of "JAM"'s in Boston. Probably because we have so many traffic JAMS (sorry).

They are a big reason I hate to drive here and I feel like I encounter them less on the bike than in the car but I still deal with my fair share. In my earlier cycling days I used to be quite an aggressive rider. I can even remember catching a car at a stop light, breaking his antenna and whipping his hood with it. I was a maniac on the bike then and I don't do that kind of thing anymore.

It's amazing what I'll put up with nowadays. So long as their vehicle and I never make contact I do my best to just let it go and move on- but sometimes it's a struggle.

When in my car and someone tailgates me I do not hit the brakes nor do I gear down. I hit the emergency flashers- works like a charm and is less likely to cause an accident or incite an incident.
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Old 02-22-07, 09:56 AM   #10
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Oh I forgot my favorite kind of JAM. You're on a two lane road and one lane ends. There's a line of traffic. Instead of merging ahead of time, they fly by everyone who is lined up and then try to force their way in as the lanes merge together, and guess what? I don't ****ing let them in.
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Old 02-22-07, 10:54 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falkon
Oh I forgot my favorite kind of JAM. You're on a two lane road and one lane ends. There's a line of traffic. Instead of merging ahead of time, they fly by everyone who is lined up and then try to force their way in as the lanes merge together, and guess what? I don't ****ing let them in.
Please tell me this is when you're driving a car, not riding your bike. If you do it while on your bike I gotta hand it to ya, pretty gutsy. Most JAM's will likely just hit you if you're riding a bike, compared to maybe not hitting you if you're in a car.
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Old 02-22-07, 11:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N_C
Please tell me this is when you're driving a car, not riding your bike. If you do it while on your bike I gotta hand it to ya, pretty gutsy. Most JAM's will likely just hit you if you're riding a bike, compared to maybe not hitting you if you're in a car.
Actually I do this on a bike. There is a particular spot on my commute where 3 lanes merge into two across an intersection... on the 3 lane side of the road, there is also a bike lane... across the street there is no bike lane and there are cars parked along the side. I have no choice but to take the lane across the intersection. If I passively ride the bike lane, motorists will cut me off as I cross the intersection. What I usually do is time my approach to the intersection to meet a red light. I then leave the BL and put myself squarely in the left edge of the soon to be ending lane. When the light turns green, I hold my postion, signal left and merge over to the soon to be remaining right lane. I purposely allow the traffic that was waiting on the three lane side to move past me before I assertively take the lane.

However anyone that comes up in the 3rd lane and thinks they are going to squeeze by the waiting traffic into the two remaining lanes is held back by me.

It is not a comfortable situation... as those motorists tend to be jackrabbit aholes... but I am very assertive at that point... and traffic is moving at my speed when the light turns green.

If my timing is not right, I work to merge into the back of any pack of moving traffic.
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Old 02-22-07, 05:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlmostTrick
This has been my experience exactly. "Brake checking" tailgaters only infuriates them more. Slowing down slightly works much better. Besides, I refuse to use my car as some sort of battering ram.

I may give that a try or try the flashers as someone else suggested. I hate having them tailgate me like that, yes, It'll be their fault if they hit me, but I really don't need the pain.

Most of the anger i experience is a male testosteroine thing....stupid testicles, damn things are gonna get me in trouble.
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Old 02-22-07, 05:42 PM   #14
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I tried the emergency flashers tonight on the way to get my wife from work. I never tapped the brakes, or even slowed my speed, just put the flashers on & the JAM backed off. Worked like a charm. Thanks for the idea.
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Old 02-22-07, 07:24 PM   #15
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As a good complement to JAM, I advocate:

MARMELADE

Motorist Anticipation Really Makes Everyone's Life Easier Accidents Decrease Everywhere



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