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View Poll Results: Your opinion: what is going on in this motorist's mind?
I want you to get on the sidewalk! 8 25.00%
I want you to get closer to the curb so I can squeeze by you! 5 15.63%
I don't want anything specific and am just a jerk/want you to know you're bothering me 14 43.75%
Other 5 15.63%
Voters: 32. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-02-11, 08:00 AM   #1
yammay
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Poll: what do you think is going through this motorist's mind?

Here is a part of my commute. It's a suburban road (speed limit is 40), 2 lanes each direction with light-to-medium traffic. (Note: this is just a picture from Google, not my actual picture so ignore the pickup that's there.)
Street View.JPG

I have been honked at the last two times I've been in this spot. I've been experimenting with different lane positions; yesterday I was riding in the right lane, about 3 feet from the right curb. I know this is an age-old question on this forum, but I came up with some specific options for why this idiot honked. I thought it might be interesting to post a poll. What do you think?

Last edited by yammay; 07-02-11 at 08:07 AM.
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Old 07-02-11, 08:43 AM   #2
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Idiots honk. Sometimes when people see a cyclist, they just do. No rhyme or reason in my head anyway. I have people honking at me from the opposite side of a six lane expressway sometimes. Anyhoo...you've gotta take the lane in this instance and force traffic to overtake. Riding three feet out here almost puts you there anyway, so just ride the middle of that sucker. If you give them room to "share" that lane they're gonna do it and squeeze you. Let 'em honk.
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Old 07-02-11, 08:44 AM   #3
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I own the road, so stay off.
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Old 07-02-11, 09:08 AM   #4
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The other day as I was riding home, I heard a honk and just assumed it was another motorist being a jerk. Then she passed me and I saw a bike rack with a bike on it. The lady in the car was honking so I would look over so she could wave at me. She waved in her rear view mirror.
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Old 07-02-11, 09:38 AM   #5
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Honking terrifies me. Every time I hear a honk, I'm convinced I'm about to be smacked and all you can do is grip a little tighter and pray to god. I have friends who say "I say you and I was going to honk to say hi" I always reply with "Please don't"
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Old 07-02-11, 10:03 AM   #6
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the only thing I can think of other than he's a jerk, is-- it looks like the road may curve back to the left of the picture? if they come around that curve without seeing you ahead and come upon you suddenly, that could scare them and make them honk, otherwise motorist=jerk.
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Old 07-02-11, 10:08 AM   #7
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I like to think that the people that honk as they come up on me are doing it politely, to let me know that they are there..............That's what I like to think anyway.
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Old 07-02-11, 10:13 AM   #8
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other
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Old 07-02-11, 10:17 AM   #9
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Most of the people who will honk at you while you are being perfectly OK are the type that want you on the sidewalk. I've had a girl yell "GET ON THE SIDEWALK!!" at me as I was literally riding over the large white painted bike on the road indicating that the road I was traveling on was a bike boulevard.
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Old 07-02-11, 10:22 AM   #10
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most of them just want to richards about it, there is really nothing much to it. Enough is never enough for most cagers.
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Old 07-02-11, 10:24 AM   #11
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most of them just want to richards about it, there is really nothing much to it. Enough is never enough for most cagers.
Yeah. I think part of it is: being a cager is a miserable way to live. A lot of times I get passed by fat people in their BMWs who just seem angry about the fact that they have a hard time tying their own shoes and thus take it out on me.
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Old 07-02-11, 10:28 AM   #12
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Dean you have nailed it. Its very that most of those people are filled with frustration. And there is nothing more that pisses them off like seeing my riding in between their gridlocked cars with a big smile on my face =)
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Old 07-02-11, 10:38 AM   #13
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Dean you have nailed it. Its very that most of those people are filled with frustration. And there is nothing more that pisses them off like seeing my riding in between their gridlocked cars with a big smile on my face =)
Every time there's a Blazer's game the rose quarter and surrounding 1-mile radius basically turns in to a parking lot. I have to admit that it puts a smile on my face to cruise by all those cars.

Anyway, I've had friends actually tell me that it pisses them off that bikers can pass them, etc. I always say something along the lines of "ummm... ok... if you think that bikers have all these advantages and it makes you mad, why don't you just start biking it?" to which they usually scratch their heads for a while and say nothing.

The absolute biggest irony of this whole situation is: drivers get mad at cyclists because they think they slow them down (we don't... they just race up to the next red light after they pass us and the whole exercise is pointless). However, it's us riding bikes that will decrease traffic and ultimately lead to them spending less time being stuck in traffic (which will way more than offset them having to change lanes or wait 'till it's safe to pass a biker).
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Old 07-02-11, 10:42 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Dandankennedy View Post
Honking terrifies me. Every time I hear a honk, I'm convinced I'm about to be smacked and all you can do is grip a little tighter and pray to god. I have friends who say "I say you and I was going to honk to say hi" I always reply with "Please don't"
It's the honk that you DON'T hear that will be your last. Just sayin.
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Old 07-02-11, 12:30 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by rex_kramer View Post
Anyhoo...you've gotta take the lane in this instance and force traffic to overtake. Riding three feet out here almost puts you there anyway, so just ride the middle of that sucker. If you give them room to "share" that lane they're gonna do it and squeeze you. Let 'em honk.
Usually I take the lane, but I was experimenting to see if I'd get honked at less if I looked like I was being considerate to drivers (obviously, my safety is the most important). Clearly that isn't the case, so I'm going to go back to taking the lane.
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Old 07-02-11, 01:44 PM   #16
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A person operating a bicycle on a roadway who is moving slower than the other traffic on the roadway shall ride as near as practicable to the right curb or edge of the roadway.

However there are exceptions to this law. Under the following conditions the law allows bicyclists to take the full lane of travel when:
  1. The person is passing another vehicle moving in the same direction.
  2. The person is preparing to turn left at an intersection or onto a private road or driveway.
  3. When there are unsafe conditions on the roadway, including fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, pedestrians, animals, or surface hazards that prevents the person from safely riding next to the curb or edge of the roadway.
  4. The lane is of substandard width (less than 14 feet in width and not having a designated bicycle lane adjacent to that lane) making if unsafe for a bicycle and a motor vehicle to safely travel side by side.
In this case its your call about whether you want to ride as close to the curb as practical, or take the lane. <this was taken from the Texas State Bicycle Laws>
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Old 07-02-11, 02:53 PM   #17
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In this case its your call about whether you want to ride as close to the curb as practical, or take the lane. <this was taken from the Texas State Bicycle Laws>
Yep, exactly. I know that I have the legal right to take the lane (and do take the lane for a good portion of my commute). I'm just doing some experimenting to see if it makes a difference in the way motorists respond. I think I'm going to go back to wearing the sign on my back.

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...more-courteous!
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Old 07-02-11, 05:05 PM   #18
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other: Honk = "Nice butt."
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Old 07-02-11, 07:03 PM   #19
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Drivers get weird on multi-lane roads. There's one north of Burlington (VT) that I ride sometimes. Drivers are surprisingly polite, but once in a while I get one in a 20 year-old American sedan with doors a different color than the body who can't figure out that it's okay to just pass me in that empty left lane.

I was stopped at a red light once (I know, shocking!) and a woman honked at me. She was trying to turn right and apparently I was in her way. If I was in a car, she'd still have been stuck. I know it was a woman because I turned around to look at her and she was gesticulating in annoyance.
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