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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 11-26-07, 10:23 PM   #1
RT
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First winter commute this year/Idiot drivers

So, got myself all bundled up and embarked upon my first commute to the new place of business. Graveyard shift, less traffic, colder weather. I'm ready. The temp was 24 degrees, skies clear, no wind (except the wind I made, and no, not flatulence).

Seven o'clock at night seems like a decent time to be out, what with rush hour slowing to a trickle and street lights on. It is also the end of happy hour, so the idiots come out in record numbers. I'm not sure who's heard this, but Colorado Springs was recently labeled as the third drunkest city in the nation. I moonlight at a sports bar as cook, and know what happens at the witching hour of six or seven in the evening.

So I'm approaching a major intersection where the highway meets a main road (I'm on the main road). I'm especially wary - having negotiated this intersection hundreds of times in a car, I knew what to look for. As I look behind me, I see a minivan driven by a 21 year old who was either texting or playing with his wiener (interchangable behavior whilst operating a motor vehicle). He didn't see me until the very last minute, and didn't even make an effort to slow down. He just barrelled through the intersection and gave me the "What, me worry?" shrug. I felt I owed him the "Are You Blind" finger. After all, he earned it, and I was sufficiently pissed off to handle a gang of Hell's Angels.

Bicycling magazine's most recent issue contains an article about a fellow cyclist who was mowed down in Sonoma County, Calif. No drugs, no drinking, no cell phone, just a lady who was reaching back to grab something from a grocery bag. Chilling stuff.

Tonight's commute reminded me that no matter how good of a cyclist you are, and no matter how closely you follow the rules of the road, you can never account for the person behind the wheel of a large automobile.

Other than that, it felt good to breathe the air again
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Old 11-27-07, 07:54 AM   #2
CsHoSi
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Nice story-telling. Glad you won this round. I'm guessing he buzzed you, you said he didn't slow down, did he swerve at all or did he leave that to you?

I work 22:00 to 08:00 on the weekends so it's not too bad. I just don't pedal the 15 miles in much on my mtb because I make up excuses. Like whai, the extra hour and a half commute time over the moto on top of my 10 hour workday. And it's so much fun and cool riding the dirt bike. I think I need to unwind somehow and not worry so much about time management.

I didn't know that about CS, I wonder why? I was looking for work there but it's more abundant in Denver. I'd like CS for its proximity to some prime dirt biking trails. My brother's been in Boulder for a few months now, crazy.

Suppose I'll hold on to my comfortable lifestyle in Kansas City until Sprint swings the axe. I heard they don't put salt down in CO, but gravel. That'd be sweet, I could stud the moto tires and ride all through the winter. I put it up when it snows and ices here because they lay down so much salt.

That should cue me I need studded bicycle tires and labor in instead. Co-workers already think I'm crazy for riding the moto in single-digits and the occasional bike ride in. Combine those with ice and snow, should make for complete loon status. I just need to find the drive, the time's there but I'm too stingy with it.

Thanks for the story and stay safe out there with the inattentive and unskilled motorists.
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