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Old 12-13-08, 09:57 AM   #1
San Rensho 
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Cop gives me a ticket for STOPPING at light!

All right, it was a ticket of appreciation for following the law. And its good for one empanada, woo hoo!

As I have posted before, I am a firm believer in running red lights whenever its safe. Today I was riding along on Key Biscayne, a notorious anti bike neighborhood that has some of the most expensive real estate in Miami where the overpaid cops have nothing better to do than stop cyclists for the slightest infraction because the rich people that live there don't like cyclisists riding on "their" roads.

I was talking to another cyclist, when we come up to a red light and he announces he's going to stop. Normally I wouldn't have stopped for the light, but this time I stop in order to continue the conversation. We proceed on green and notice a cop pass us.

A little up the road, the cop pulls over, gets out of his car and does the arm straight out signal for us to stop. My first though is WTF? Is this cop actually going to give me a ticket because I strayed over the bike lane line a couple of times? I'm just about to go into full @sshole mode on this cop when he announces he's giving us a ticket for stopping at the stop light. He explains that there is a police campaign to compliment good driving and hands us a certificate of appreciation good for an empanada at a local restaurant.

I have to admit that I can't remember the last time I made a fullstop for a light on Key Biscayne, and today I do it completely by chance and I get rewarded for it!
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Old 12-13-08, 10:13 AM   #2
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Ha! Will it change your stopping behavior in the future?

You just reminded me that I was once "ticketed", with a ticket good for a donut, for signaling a left hand while riding my bike,

Speedo
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Old 12-13-08, 10:42 AM   #3
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positive reinforcement has statistically better effect than punishment!
and
use the laws to back your moves = win/win situations!

(acting a fool, or going into "full *****hole mode" as discribed pending in OP, always is counter-productive to say the least...)
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Old 12-13-08, 11:07 AM   #4
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I do it myself. At times I have a few spare cheap blinkies which I pass out to good, as in well behaved, cyclists who need one.
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Old 12-13-08, 11:45 AM   #5
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Ha! Will it change your stopping behavior in the future?
You just reminded me that I was once "ticketed", with a ticket good for a donut, for signaling a left hand while riding my bike,

Speedo
You know, I was mulling over whether it would change my behavior and I know that I will at least remember the "award" next time I approach a red light. Whether I stop or not, I can't say for sure.
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Old 12-13-08, 12:07 PM   #6
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...hands us a certificate of appreciation good for an empanada at a local restaurant.
Well I'll be go to hell!

I wonder if the cops in NOLA would be so kind as to hand out certificates to the local hoodlums for NOT punching me in the throat and taking my bike at a red light? That would drastically increase the odds that I would stop for some of them.

At least you were in a nice neighborhood. I often act differently when my life is not in danger too.

Nice story. I would probably get the uncontrollable giggles while the cop was explaining the thing to me.
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Old 12-13-08, 01:40 PM   #7
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You're such a goodie-goodie two-shoes!
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Old 12-13-08, 01:47 PM   #8
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I do it myself. At times I have a few spare cheap blinkies which I pass out to good, as in well behaved, cyclists who need one.
This didn't make sense until I reread the post. "Blinkies" does not equal "Bikinis".

Judy
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Old 12-13-08, 02:09 PM   #9
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This is a really cool idea. I wish more police departments would try this.
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Old 12-13-08, 02:14 PM   #10
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You're such a goodie-goodie two-shoes!
Why thank you Chip, but I'm far from it! Now every once in a while, in spite of myself, I'm good by mistake.
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Old 12-13-08, 02:54 PM   #11
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How was the free meal?
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Old 12-13-08, 04:00 PM   #12
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Your ticket may have actually been a punishment, depending on what is in the empanada.
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Old 12-13-08, 06:26 PM   #13
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Please don't run red lights. Traffic lights are usually in places where traffic engineers have decided that personal discretion is not sufficient in order for vehicles to safely share the intersection.

Yeah, I'll roll stop signs, but traffic lights are way over the top, and I'd really appreciate it if you would regard them the same way.
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Old 12-13-08, 06:48 PM   #14
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I have to admit that I can't remember the last time I made a fullstop for a light on Key Biscayne
What did the cop say when you told him that?
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Old 12-13-08, 08:36 PM   #15
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Wow I am impressed

HI,
Most of the COps in VA Beach are real friendly if your bike riding they seem to watch for problems, I always try to be friendly, who knows he may roll on your crash with a car, I 'lld like him on my side if I am a little stunned from the fall.
I feel that when your ride bikes there's a pretty good chance you may have some type of problem with cars.
Doug
my neighbors are cops, and they see me pulling out at 0630 in the morning on one of my bikes with all the blinky lights and stuff, most police are rude because most people are either drunk, angry at someone or their significant other, or just ticked off at the COP. you couldn't pay me enough to be a COP..We have had Police officer , blown away at least 2-3 times a year at routine stops.:
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Old 12-13-08, 09:13 PM   #16
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What did the cop say when you told him that?
THAT did not come up in the conversation.
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Old 12-13-08, 10:16 PM   #17
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Now for the $64,000 question: What would the officer have done had a fixie hipster practiced his "Uber Trackstand Skillz" at the red light rather then doing foot-down?

(I know, I know, there isn't anything in Florida 316.2065 that says one has to do a foot-down stop).

-Kurt
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Old 12-13-08, 11:08 PM   #18
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uggh I have to stop again.
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Old 12-14-08, 08:58 AM   #19
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Now for the $64,000 question: What would the officer have done had a fixie hipster practiced his "Uber Trackstand Skillz" at the red light rather then doing foot-down?

(I know, I know, there isn't anything in Florida 316.2065 that says one has to do a foot-down stop).

-Kurt
The officer probably would have arrested the fixie rider, since the fixie rider would have gotten all "critical mass" on the cop, protesting about having his "rights violated."
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Old 12-14-08, 09:09 AM   #20
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1 time I was out in a boat, and a Police boat asked us to come over, we were scared sh*(less. But they just wanted to give my friends young sister a T-shirt for wearing her life-jacket.

Turns out Police can be nice guys, except for my brother
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Old 12-14-08, 09:41 AM   #21
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1 time I was out in a boat, and a Police boat asked us to come over, we were scared sh*(less. But they just wanted to give my friends young sister a T-shirt for wearing her life-jacket.

Turns out Police can be nice guys, except for my brother
Was the t-shirt wet?
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Old 12-14-08, 11:41 AM   #22
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positive reinforcement has statistically better effect than punishment!
Since you'd said it's statistical, I'm sure you have a citation to back this up? It would of course to be simple to find a situation where a reward works better than a punishment, but it would also be simple to find a situation where the opposite happens. As I see it, it's going to depend on the situation more than anything else, and cliches about `catching flies with vinegar' and `the carrot and the stick' are useless.

And in this case, the reward (< $10 worth of food) is likely to be much smaller than the punishment for breaking the law (no idea what running a stop sign costs there, but here it's $167 I think.) Somehow I doubt it's going to have a significant impact on his stop-sign-stopping ways, as he'll do exactly what he did before -- if he sees a cop, he stops. If not, and he can safely do so, he'll probably run it. And besides, in most cases (but not this one), the people being rewarded will be mostly the people who don't have to change anything -- and if they obey the law today, they're likely to do so tomorrow too.

It's a fun story, and the police giving out `good' tickets makes a nice blurb on the news, but it doesn't seem very effective in stopping people from breaking the law. (It might encourage people to be nice, however -- letting people merge into traffic when they don't have to, stuff like that -- because the cops can't give tickets for failure to do that, as it's not illegal.)
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Old 12-14-08, 03:51 PM   #23
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The officer probably would have arrested the fixie rider, since the fixie rider would have gotten all "critical mass" on the cop, protesting about having his "rights violated."


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Old 12-15-08, 12:57 PM   #24
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Well I'll be go to hell!

I wonder if the cops in NOLA would be so kind as to hand out certificates to the local hoodlums for NOT punching me in the throat and taking my bike at a red light? That would drastically increase the odds that I would stop for some of them.

At least you were in a nice neighborhood. I often act differently when my life is not in danger too.

Nice story. I would probably get the uncontrollable giggles while the cop was explaining the thing to me.
Okay, i have run lights as well...
back in 1985, finishing a paper lit search (before internet searches...), i used to ride to Philly to thomas jefferson hospital from NJ using the ben franklin bridge walk-way. Going through Camden, NJ was simular to riding in NOLA (1997 tour). i did not want to stop anywhere in camden....
it felt safer to ride in philly!
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Old 12-15-08, 01:05 PM   #25
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For the latin american impaired, he means a donut or turnover.

They probably go to the Dunkin Empanada to get their coffee too.
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