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Thread: gettin cranky

  1. #1
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    gettin cranky

    ok, I'm gettin old, I admit it. I'm 61, been biking in Washington, DC since 1974. Seen a lot of changes since then, some great, some good, some, well, not so much.

    Heat advisory here, but went out for about 4 hours on Saturday on my folder and it wasn't so bad, little warm (103), but I kept moving and it was fun. So yesterday I figured I'll take the Trek Soho to Herndon from NW DC. Gonna be cooler (99). Got up early and headed out. Roughly a 45 mile round trip.

    Guess it was somewhere between 8 and 8:30 when I hit Vienna and started noticing more people out, probably trying to beat the heat.
    Between Vienna and Herndon and a few "real" bikers started passing me. I'm used to it; years of basketball and tennis have done their job on my knees so I'm steady but ain't settin no records. However this was different. These people were buzzing me. These people were haulin past me literally inches away from me. And all of them would wait til they were next to me to give that muffled "on your left" they call a warning.

    I was startled more than once. Then it hit me - they have a whole lane to pass me in. There's nobody out here! What the hail! Why were they passing so close?

    Closing in on Herndon and a guy buzzed me while yelling "move over", followed by 3 of his friends.

    Move over? Ok, you fly up on me and give no warning and I'm supposed to leap a foot to my right so you won't have to be bothered with going into that big empty lane over there? Sorry pumpkin, that is not gonna happen.

    For all you wannabe's out there trying real hard to set some kinda personal record, remember this; Your pace means nothing to me. Nothing at all. And I'm sure not going to change my line and break my pace so you can maintain yours. Ever.

    Some changes... not so much.

  2. #2
    17yrold in 64yrold body
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    I share your disdain for the 'hotrod' type rider that can not be bothered to move over to pass you. Just be glad they are not driving pickups with wide mirrors!

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    Pentapointed Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    I'm not sure (with the exception of a few) any one that posts here could do this. I don't think any of us would.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

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    Senior Member trackhub's Avatar
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    Nothing wrong with getting cranky once in a bit. We all need to vent. I have noticed that today's young riders, in their "full kits", just don't have the same level of respect
    that most of use had when we were young and on our "ten speeds" back in the 70's. I've had a few "On yer left!!!" types this season, do the very same thing yours did:
    blast up behind me, yell "on yer left", then pass with inches to spare.

    If this helps: We have had a lot of hot, humid days this season. Here in Boston, we are having a break from the humidity, but it's on tap to return on Wednesday. Thus, I've been doing most of my riding
    in the evening. Evening rides are great. You get the pleasure of riding in the hot weather, and you don't have to worry about sun screen. You do need bug repellent though.....
    "The People will believe what the Media tells them they believe". George Orwell.

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    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    I'm not sure (with the exception of a few) any one that posts here could do this. I don't think any of us would.
    Well, I could never catch you for starters....

  6. #6
    Pentapointed Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
    Well, I could never catch you for starters....
    You never know until we share the road. This is the internet. I could be a really cute but lonely and misunderstood 14 YO girl looking for a father figure.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

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    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    You never know until we share the road. This is the internet. I could be a really cute but lonely and misunderstood 14 YO girl looking for a father figure.

    So you were the girl on the trail for our first annual 50+ forum ride in Glenwood Springs last year!! Well, I never . . . .
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

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    17yrold in 64yrold body
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    DF: If you have kids, then you can't get away with that "Well I never...".

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    A friend and I were passed fairly closely by a couple of cyclists on TT bikes about three weeks ago. My friend could have and wanted to catch up with them and pass them, but he bit the bullet and stayed with me. Anyway, when the two fit young females passed us, one of them looked over and said, "Hi guys", and I thoroughly loved it!!!!!!

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    So I guess a nudge with your foot was out of the question Huh? LOL Seriously because they ride doesn't make them nice people. It takes all kinds.

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    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    You could always try the Mark Cavendish head butt routine.
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

  12. #12
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NOS88 View Post
    You could always try the Mark Cavendish head butt routine.
    You mean Renshaw, right?
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

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    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    You mean Renshaw, right?
    Yes, jet lag has not yet abated.
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright

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    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    I have noticed more (but not all) of the fast paceline riders on organized rides lately being less likely to announce their approach or give sufficient clearance when overtaking slower riders. I guess they are so caught up in an exaggerated sense of the importance of what they are doing that they don't realize what jerks they are being.
    I sometimes loudly call "on my left" as they pass. Other times a well-placed loogie or snot rocket helps get the message across.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  15. #15
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldLog View Post
    Seriously because they ride doesn't make them nice people. It takes all kinds.
    Alert: set rant shields on high.

    I just figured this out. Some of you fellers are dry drunks.

    Our Saturday morning ride attracts around 50-75 riders so parking spots can be at a premium. I got to the parking lot early and wanted to park next to another guy with my energy efficient sustainable sub-compact in order to make it easier for latecomers to find a decent space. I was in no hurry and was content to listen to the Velocast as I waited for the gentleman to do nothing more than take three steps to the side so I could pull my car in.

    The guy went into a rage that would have been appropriate had I run over his dog and then put the car into reverse to make sure I had finished the job, as he sputtered "There are 20 Godd@mn parking spots in this lot and you have to be a d!ck about parking here!" Gently delivered words to assure the guy that I wasn't impatient, that I was simply trying to be considerate to others only enraged him more. I was afraid he was going to get violent.

    Now this fellow may think he's sustainable, environmentally conscious, friend of the Earth but the truth is he was only a dry drunk jerk.

    And I think a lot of cyclists fall into this category.

  16. #16
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldLog View Post
    So I guess a nudge with your foot was out of the question Huh? LOL Seriously because they ride doesn't make them nice people. It takes all kinds.
    +1

    And it could have been worse. Wait until someone passes you on your right doing the same thing.
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
    www.photo395.com

  17. #17
    invisible friend seenoweevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    Other times a well-placed loogie or snot rocket helps get the message across.
    Hey Dawg, I have VERY active sinuses ! Sometimes a guy just has to let one fly! Ha! Courtesy CAN be taught! It just ain't pretty!
    Faster than a sundial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    I sometimes loudly call "on my left" as they pass. Other times a well-placed loogie or snot rocket helps get the message across.
    Yeah, I'm not shy. I mockingly say "on your left" all the time.
    I don't ride out on the W&OD much so maybe it's their way but it don't settle well. The problem I have is that I'm deaf in my left ear so an early warning is pretty much the only way I can really hear them. Yes, I use a mirror for that very reason but if you're enjoying the day it can get forgotten. Especially when it's almost 90 by 8 am and there's few people venturing out.
    When they're muttering "oyeweft" as I'm looking them in the eye, well, kinda defeats the purpose.

  19. #19
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Good points discussed.

    I'll admit to being one of those who might pass other riders closer than folks are comfortable with from time to time. However I'm not one of those who might shout "move over". I try and use good judgement when passing. If there is room to safely move over several bike widths and even into an oncoming lane I try to do so. Oncoming traffic, road conditions or sight lines might dictate how far over I can move. I've also startled some riders announcing when coming upon them to the point they instinctly jerk their bikes to one side or the other so I try and judge if that's going to be a problem. I'd hate to cause an issue with them unnecessarily. I'm comfortable with other riders passing me, even very closely but then again I'm comfortable riding in larger groups-rubbing shoulders, elbows, etc. I intentionally avoid cutting back in very quickly after passing as well. The main thing I try to do is pass safely-both for the other rider and myself.

    We had a really bad situation similar to what the OP described a couple weekends ago on a large organized ride. There were 800 riders total and I was in the lead group of about 30. We missed a turn at about 20 miles into the ride, and went 12 miles off the route before coming back to the turn and getting back on the route. By that time there were hundreds of riders on the route in front of us. To make it worse we were on 2 lane rural roads that were pretty rough and narrow but fortunately not heavily traveled-but there was still traffic to contend with. Our group was riding significantly faster than the other riders (23-25mph vs 17-19 mph). Our group went from riding in a "bunch" to pretty much riding single file. We wound up eventually passing all the other riders and I'm sure some might not have been happy when we rode by. I think we did the best we could but at times there was oncoming traffic or other issues where passes might have been tighter than folks would have preferred. I avoided being out front and was riding in the middle of the group so I don't know what kind of communications was going on to alert other riders. I certainly hope the folks out front were pleasant as they came upon other riders-but am willing to guess that our more aggressive riding style probably didn't please everyone.
    Ride your Ride!!

  20. #20
    Around now and then DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Was there any thought given by your group to simply riding along with others at 17-19 mph?
    DnvrFox - still bicycling, swimming, walking and weight lifting at 74yo is participating a bit in BFN 50+.

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    @OP: +1 on all counts.

    Round here, same nonsense appears to be on the rise, both in the streets and on the MUP. So-called "serious cyclists" (legends in their own minds, doubtless) who ride as if conditions (the riding environment, including other cyclists) should -- indeed, are under a positive obligation to -- morph themselves so as to maximize said "serious cyclists'" convenience. In reality, of course, they are not "serious cyclists" at all, but idiots.

    As to the exhortation "move over" you cite, there is really only one possible response -- a two-word phrase which consists of a word which cannot be repeated on this site followed by either "you" or "off" (user preference).

  22. #22
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
    Was there any thought given by your group to simply riding along with others at 17-19 mph?
    That definitely took care of itself as the miles went on. By mile 80 it was down to 4........
    Ride your Ride!!

  23. #23
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    I can agree with a lot of the observations posted, and I would agree that it makes no sense to be flying along a narrow MUP. I see a lot of this on the Galloping Goose in Victoria, BC during rush hour. Just today I was cruising along at about 32 kmh when this older guy comes flying past, tucked down, hands in the drops, and just hammering. I spun up behind him just to see how fast he was going - 38 kmh. I thought it was a bit fast for the conditions, but I just sucked his wheel for a while. He eventually slowed to about 31 kmh, which is typical. I'm sure he had never been a bike racer, but was probably some insecure old guy with something to prove. I find the old guys are the worst.

    But I think it is helpful to examine your own behavior, whether you are a passer or a passee. What I find irritating when I am passing people are guys who speed up when they're about to be passed, so now you are two abreast and racing down the path. Or, two riding abreast and occupying the entire lane. I usually give a piercing whistle when I'm about to pass. This "on your left" is so passe, arrogant, and patronizing. Usually they don't move at all, so I figure this gives me the right to buzz them. But if they do make an effort to give way, then I make sure to give them more than enough room as I pass. When I come upon peds, I usually ring a bell attached to my frame pump. The worst peds to pass are three females walking together and blocking the MUP. These I always buzz, as they tend to be very self-righteous and very much in your face with their right to use the whole width of the MUP, go figure... Peds or cyclists who ride far to the right and allow plenty of room to pass always get plenty of room from me.

    The other irritation is guys who ride down the center of the road, especially when they are approaching. I think of space as a matter of respect, so if I think a rider is taking more than their share of roadway, I will purposely try to brush them, or give a slight hook to move them over.

    One word of warning: usually, if two riders make contact going in the same direction, it's usually the rider being overtaken who will go down, so don't think you can crash an overtaking rider! But a last-second hook can be very effective, but just be sure he doesn't actually hit you.The hook should make him swerve in the direction of the hook. I've had over 35 years of racing experience, so you may not want to try this stuff at home unless you've had serious pack-riding experience!

    Luis

  24. #24
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    We don't all have the same abilities and priorities when we ride, but there doesn't have to be conflict. The key is cooperation and appreciating the other person's situation. I have been passed by many riders and I have passed many. Sometimes solo, sometimes in groups. Often all of the above on the same ride.

    Riders who are being overtaken shouldn't make it difficult for someone to get past them and shouldn't worry about why someone wants to ride faster than they do. Try not to be offended by how the overtaking riders announce their presence, just be glad they did (though yelling "move over" is pretty a-holish). Sometimes it can be hard to use a pleasant and friendly voice when you are riding hard and getting tired.

    Riders who are overtaking should make sure the riders they are passing know they are coming and they shouldn't pass unnecessarily closely. A ring of a bell, calling out "on your left", saying "good morning" or just carrying on a conversation are all good ways to announce your approach. Ordering them to get out of your way is not. The front rider of a long train of passing riders is not the only one who needs to warn the riders being overtaken. It isn't easy to judge how many riders are coming by if they don't make some noise. Be safe.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  25. #25
    Senior Member dynodonn's Avatar
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    Sounds like a mirror is in order, or maybe a better one.

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