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Old 09-22-09, 08:37 PM   #1
JoeyBike
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I'm a Victim of Pick-up Truck Agression! (Long)

First, no video. It was dark. Too bad.

My riding bud and I were commuting home from work just after 7 PM in the dark. We are both lit up with hundreds of dollars worth of lights, so nuff said about that. The roads are wet after a nice rain, I'm on my LHT, my bud on a fixie. We are riding down a 4-lane road divided by a median - 2 lanes each direction. Traffic is very light. No more that one layer of cars at each intersection on an arrow-straight road 3 miles long (Esplanade Ave) with a 30 to 35 mph limit and a God-awful surface.

You have all seen my vids probably. Same ole stuff buzzing along between 20 and 25 MPH pretty much hogging the whole right lane (avoiding door zones gives us no choice really). I don't think we encountered 10 cars the whole 3 miles. But we are running all the red lights and some cars are overtaking us between lights. Again, we are in the right lane and those few cars are having no trouble passing us in the left lane. Standard Operating Procedure for us.

I can only guess that we passed this dude in a ratty pick-up at the first light and made him mad. We most definitely did not cut him off or anything, just blew through the light while he sat there waiting. Up the road a bit I hear a horn blowing and engine revving. The left lane is clear, so we ignore it. We get buzzed. Fine.

He catches the next red light. We blow through again. This time I am up front, my riding bud several bike lengths back. Here comes the truck again and brushes by me REAL CLOSE. Like inches. I don't even flinch (watching him in my helmet mirror during his approach). Now he slows down in the right lane. Again, not many cars around. I draft him from a safe distance for a few blocks. He slows down more, so I move to the left lane to pass. He continues speeding up to near 30 mph maintaining about a car length from me. I thought he might want to say something to me but he never lets me get next to him. Now, here comes another red light. He tries to block the road. Laughable. I pass in the car parking lane first - which sucks him over my way - and my bud passes on the driver's side. I think words were exchanged but I could not understand them.

When his light turns green he roars up to us again, passes, then slows down in the right lane again. So I just follow along as if on a motorcycle at about 25 mph, my bud behind me a few lengths back. As we approach the next intersection (yes, ANOTHER red light) I get the sense this guy will try to block us again or throw his door open if I split the lane. There are three cars at the light already. Two in the left lane. The pickup will be second in the right lane. There is an unoccupied right turn lane. NO WAY am I getting near his drivers side door (he is alone in the truck). So with my Night Rider light on high beam, I act as though I am going past him on his left (lane split) but at the last instant I rock to the right. He actually hits the gas and tries to block the right lane and the right turning lane as I squeeze between his bumper and the curb with plenty room to spare. Then, of course, run the red light (at this point I assume that behavior is KILLING him).

Keep in mind that at any intersection I could have stopped next to him and filled his car with Capsicum bear spray.

So off we go again. He roars up past us, gets in the right lane and FINALLY gets to his turnoff. He stops part way through his turn to yell something of which I did not catch even one word. I still don't know why he didn't roll up next to us yell at us. So I am not even sure what was his problem.

After he turns off, a van comes up behind us, blows the horn and yells at my bud, then rolls up next to me and yells at me. This time, it is a friend from work who left just after us and was just having some fun with us - but he did witness the whole ordeal and my riding bud memorized the pickup plate for "future reference" which does not include police action believe me.

Just a story of interest. Some will say we deserve it and I can't argue. After the mayhem my bud rides up next to me and says "That was fun!" It sure turned a boring drudge ride home into a real "storyteller" anyway!

Cheers all!

Last edited by JoeyBike; 09-22-09 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 09-22-09, 08:43 PM   #2
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lol
Also, you are going to need one of these while reading the responses.
I hear your old one is getting a bit tattered.

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Old 09-22-09, 08:46 PM   #3
JoeyBike
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lol
Also, you are going to need one of these while reading the responses.
I hear your old one is getting a bit tattered.

I'll need the model with the groin plate no doubt.
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Old 09-22-09, 08:47 PM   #4
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This would've made for one interesting video.
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Old 09-22-09, 08:54 PM   #5
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Though it's not for me, I've come to enjoy your renegade style. Your last paragraph hopefully thwarts the usual forum pick-aparts since you acknowledge culpability on your part, but I do have two questions:
"I draft him from a safe distance for a few blocks."
How is it possible to effectively draft anything "from a safe distance"?
And why would you draft knowing the driver was clearly hostile?

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Old 09-22-09, 08:57 PM   #6
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oh... I forgot about the timing on those lights. I went to university down there. Those things sucked.

As for the truck, sorry but can't see we didn't see that type of BS coming in NOLA.
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Old 09-22-09, 09:27 PM   #7
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I do have two questions:
"I draft him from a safe distance for a few blocks."
How is it possible to effectively draft anything "from a safe distance"?
And why would you draft knowing the driver was clearly hostile?
Just two questions? I have a third. Why didn't we just pull over to the curb and stop altogether? Let the guy be on his way? I don't have that answer.

To answer your questions tho:

The road was wet. Really wet. At 25 mph, you can gain quite a draft advantage behind a car from several car lengths back. I was thinking about him jamming on his brakes for sure, but if he wanted to kill me, he would have already run over me from behind. And since the road was so wet, jamming on the brakes would not have stopped him. I had several escape lanes. And I thought he might slow down enough for me to get next to him. I was really curious about his issue. Why did he slow down to 25? Silly. Why not 10, or 15?
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Old 09-22-09, 09:31 PM   #8
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As for the truck, sorry but can't see we didn't see that type of BS coming in NOLA.
Not exactly. This is really one in a million. I never have issues like this, although most times the cars never catch up either.

Cyclists here run red lights. It is expected by almost everyone. Except ONE apparently. He had some ax to grind. I would love to find out what.
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Old 09-22-09, 09:41 PM   #9
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Joey,

The important question is: Did he have one of those calvin-peeing-on-something stickers on his back window?
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Old 09-22-09, 09:57 PM   #10
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The important question is: Did he have one of those calvin-peeing-on-something stickers on his back window?
That is funny!

I gotta tell ya - the streets were wet, the surface SUCKS, there was some other traffic, parked cars, cross streets and all I could really see of the road ahead was what my NightRider light was illuminating.

I know the truck was dark, maybe green. I think it had a different colored driver's door, maybe white. It was a piece of trash and perhaps had a headlight burned out too - I was having some trouble interpreting what I was seeing in my helmet mirror when he came racing up behind us. The driver was a thin white guy. Did not see his face, just his arm out the window as he yelled from his turnoff.

The way we ride our bikes (I have discussed this at length with other aggressive city riders) our eyes are seeing gaps and spaces, not cars and objects. That's the best I can explain it. I was so focused on my line, the road surface, possible escape routes, and gaps between cars/curbs/parking that I sort of missed the boat on identifying marks.

But I will ask my bud. He rode behind me at a safer distance and probably had moments to look around. Like I said, he caught the Louisiana plate number and actually recited it to me afterward. When I asked if he was calling the cops from home he said: "Nah...I'll see that truck parked around town somewhere" whatever THAT means.
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Old 09-23-09, 04:00 AM   #11
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Not exactly. This is really one in a million. I never have issues like this, although most times the cars never catch up either.

Cyclists here run red lights. It is expected by almost everyone. Except ONE apparently. He had some ax to grind. I would love to find out what.
I'm surprised to read that you don't get more hostility from drivers. When I lived in Lake Charles, getting harassed by drivers was a daily occurrence on my commute.
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Old 09-23-09, 04:22 AM   #12
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This story is so fascinating and exciting. What a wild adventure!
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Old 09-23-09, 06:01 AM   #13
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Hey Commuting forum, I got in a pissing match with a driver and couldn't help but keep escalating the situation. Why was he so mad????
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Old 09-23-09, 06:18 AM   #14
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Hey Commuting forum, I got in a pissing match with a driver and couldn't help but keep escalating the situation. Why was he so mad????
Not exactly how I took it.

This is more of how I read it:

Hey Commuting forum, I had a run in with an angry driver and in the end I made it home safely. Here is the story that some of you may enjoy reading.

**story here**


I'm certainly not going to lose any sleep over it, but, what I'm still trying to understand is why was he so mad????
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Old 09-23-09, 06:26 AM   #15
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But we are running all the red lights and some cars are overtaking us between lights.
This is where I stopped giving a ****.

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I'm certainly not going to lose any sleep over it, but, what I'm still trying to understand is why was he so mad???
What you mean you don't know?
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Old 09-23-09, 06:54 AM   #16
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This is where I stopped giving a ****.



What you mean you don't know?
I'm not saying that running red lights is the smartest thing to do but I most certainly don't see why it should make anyone, going in the same direction as he was, mad at him for it. If the truck was going perpendicular to his direction and he was cut off by the bike running a red, then I could understand a little anger.

I guess driving a truck gives you an excuse to prove you have a truck sized phallus perhaps. Congrats truck driver, you are indeed a bigger man than any bicyclist that I know...

So to answer your question, its not that I don't know...I just can't grasp the mentality of the driver, and it seems that you may have a similar thought pattern.
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Old 09-23-09, 06:55 AM   #17
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I'm sure he had a similar story about a couple of so-and-sos on bicycles...

I know your riding style works for you, but come on, you can't get surprised when some hot-head calls you on it. You poke the bear enough times, it's going to bite you.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:02 AM   #18
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I'm not saying that running red lights is the smartest thing to do but I most certainly don't see why it should make anyone, going in the same direction as he was, mad at him for it. If the truck was going perpendicular to his direction and he was cut off by the bike running a red, then I could understand a little anger.

I guess driving a truck gives you an excuse to prove you have a truck sized phallus perhaps. Congrats truck driver, you are indeed a bigger man than any bicyclist that I know...

So to answer your question, its not that I don't know...I just can't grasp the mentality of the driver, and it seems that you may have a similar thought pattern.
I'm not saying I would behave like that if someone cycled past me through a red, but damn if it isn't annoying as hell.

Anyways the OP seems to have a history with red lights, he seems to consider himself above the idea of obeying traffic laws. So this is pretty pointless.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:09 AM   #19
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Nice story.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:15 AM   #20
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This is where I stopped giving a ****.

What you mean you don't know?
Yeah, I don't think "victim" means what JB thinks it means.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:28 AM   #21
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Good story. I like the way you kept your cool, pretty much ignoring the guy.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:36 AM   #22
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IMO, I don't believe that the OP or the driver in the truck acted completely appropriatly. However, that is just personal opinion that Im sure neither person really cares to know about but I do know that it did make for an entertaining story. Bravo.
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Old 09-23-09, 07:40 AM   #23
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Hey Commuting forum, I got in a pissing match with a driver and couldn't help but keep escalating the situation. Why was he so mad????
That would be the short version!
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Old 09-23-09, 07:49 AM   #24
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joey, i love reading your stories- keep them coming
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Old 09-23-09, 08:01 AM   #25
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Ditto - not sure what's more entertaining - JB's stories or the reactions of forum members.

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