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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 10-07-07, 05:43 PM   #1
Marylandnewbie
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Very Long Commute Club: Week 24 2007

OK the topic for this week is: "Tell me how great my bike looks"

After talking about the bike for so long I thought I should post a couple of pics. Thanks to a thread over in "Classic & Vintage" I can now confidently say the bike was made in late 1983, so it is probably a 1984 model.

Now for the real topic for this week. What are the rudest or dumbest things you have seen other bike commuters do? We all have stories of cager abuses, but what about our fellow two wheeled citizens? I have encountered many bike commuters who when passing on an empty 10 - 12ft wide bike path zip by just a few inches from the tip of my handlebars. Not everyone likes to ride in a pack and it always seems like an accident waiting to happen. At the other extreme of these preceision fliers are those people who couldn't ride a straight line if their lives depended upon it. They are swerving all over and apparently oblivious to it all. So tell us of your two wheeled hazards.
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Old 10-08-07, 05:34 PM   #2
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I guess everyone must be celebrating Columbus Day today. Well commute safe in the AM. I believe we will be entering our 24th day without measurable rain in the DC area. Rumor has it that water might fall from the sky tomorrow night to break our string, but for now its one more dusty ride.
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Old 10-08-07, 05:55 PM   #3
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Well, I had to come in to work today. I've just been actually doing what they pay me to do instead of reading the forums

I've seen about all the bad things riders can do, I think. The ones I hate the most are the ones that come in too close to me for comfort. Maybe they're used to pack riding or something, but I like my space. Sometimes I have to swerve to miss things in the road and I can't do that if there's someone in the way. Most of the time they don't even say anything; they just fly on by like their a** were on fire.

The other thing that I see almost every day that ticks me off are the riders along Alaskan Way that use the MUP because they think that riding on that excuses them from having to stop at the lights. The MUP crosses over the same crossroads that Alaskan does and is governed by walk/don't walk lights. In fact, you're actually more likely to be hit on the MUP since cagers on the cross streets aren't looking for bikes that far back. Nevertheless, dozens of bikes every day cross over to the MUP and speed right on through the don't walk lights like they weren't there.

The stupidest ones I've seen are the ones that go around a railroad crossing guard because the train isn't *quite* here yet. If they fell or had a chain break or snagged their clothes or pretty much anything, they'd be toast.

All we can do is ride our best. Obey the laws and respect the power of the cagers to kill you, even if they're not trying. It only takes a fraction of a second and a single bad decision to take your life.
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Old 10-08-07, 06:34 PM   #4
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Most of the commuters give me room so I don't have to much to add to the topic. It's mostly the cars that pass me that give me very little room.
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Old 10-08-07, 06:41 PM   #5
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Nice looking ride there Maryland.

It was a good ride in today. About 60F, little wind, and noticably fewer cars on the road. 20-25 mph headwind most of the way home though. Glad it was Monday and my legs were fresh.

I see wrong way riders on the road pretty frequently. They are not much of a hazard to anyone but themselves though since they always seem to be riding so tentatively. It's the riders that fly off of sidewalks and paths into intersections without so much as a pause to check what kind of vehicles might be on the road ready to cream them that really bug me. They give such a bad impression of cyclists to cagers and are much more likely to cause a cager accident.
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Old 10-08-07, 09:19 PM   #6
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I worked today- very quiet in the DC area, but probably because of the holiday I had an incident with an idiot cyclist most likely out for his once in a blue moon ride on my ride home.

Caught and passed a guy on a road bike on the MUP who was obviously laboring, in way too high a gear and in the drops the entire time, no helmet either, natch. He was all over the path, and on each of the next 3 road crossings (one of them quite dangerous- Shreve Road on the WOD Trail) he passed or attempted to pass me on my right as I slowed or stopped.

It's morons like this who make it worse for the rest of us.
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Old 10-09-07, 08:19 AM   #7
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Due to the ongoing heat and humidity, today's ride in was a study in smells.
- Last night's food garbage from the local restaurants as I rolled through my neighborhood.
- At least two incidents of rotting roadkill, one of which was very pungent.
- A skunk lurking somewhere nearby (or dead)- glad I didn't run into him.
- And bizarrely, on the W&OD just west of EFC, a few hundred yards that smelled like some kind of manufacturing, like a paper mill or something. Someone whose yard backs up to the path must have received a huge load of fresh, wet mulch...
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Old 10-09-07, 07:51 PM   #8
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Knuckle -- I know wht you mean about smells on the trail. I actually find it kind of fun to navigate the trail smells. Fortunately, most of the smells on mytrip are fairly good (i.e. Chinese food, doughnuts, backyard BBQs) although there is an autobody shop I pass that sometimes gives off the most noxious smelling fumes.

Well water fell from the sky briefly this afternoon (about 12 whole drops). All the bikers on the MUP were so afraid we threw down our bikes and hid under the trees. Probably as a consequence of this strange meteorological event there were 4 bikers on last mile of trail which I often ride alone. I even met a new neighbor who has just started commuting. He does about 15-16 miles a day and plans to do it once or twice a week as he gets started. All in all it was a pretty good biking day.
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Old 10-10-07, 05:40 AM   #9
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The rudest thing another commuter has done to me, is my nemesis on the bike path who does not like my headlight. He has swerved at me and laid down his bike in the middle of the bike path. Luckily I have not seen him in a month.

Did not commute yesterday, as I distributed 20 cubic yards of mulch in my backyard on Monday and was a little sore Tuesday morning.

Nice ride in this morning, supposed to be much cooler tomorrow.
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Old 10-10-07, 07:59 AM   #10
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Today was about as close to a perfect cycling morning as I've seen. One of those days when a nice bike ride is ruined by work! It was so nice I made really good time, pushing just a little harder than usual in the comfortable temps.
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