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Old 08-15-10, 11:21 AM   #1
jppe
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Confronted in a Grocery Store of All Places

Yesterday I set out to do a solo 100 miler and stopped a mile from the house at our local grocery store to pick up a couple bananas. A fella in his 40's in front of me in the check out line turned after he had paid and asked "Are you going to be riding in the road?" I quickly and happily replied Yes Sir!! His snide comment made in an unfavorable tone was "Well I guess you'll be stopping traffic".

It ticked me off that he didn't even have the guts to look at me when he made the remark. He had turned and was walking away. I somewhat mockingly hollared back "you have not seen how fast I ride!".

Maybe the fella was just upset because his wife had sent him out to buy groceries.

I fear it's not getting any better in these parts. There have been more editorials in the local paper with both cyclists and motorists exchanging blows. I guess I'm not helping but just had to vent a little. I'm personally very careful and attentive to not be a bother to traffic for my own personal safety reasons but recognize I'm identified by the group at large.

And I suppose that when doing larger organized group rides I DO contribute to the issue....
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Old 08-15-10, 11:57 AM   #2
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It's something that we all have to deal with from time to time. We're not going to educate people who hate cyclists. The best we can do is obey the rules of the road, ride defensively, and hope for the best.
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Old 08-15-10, 12:01 PM   #3
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"I won't be 'stopping' traffic, I will BE traffic."

"I'll use exclusively 'bicycle' facilities when you use exclusively the Interstate."
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Old 08-15-10, 12:29 PM   #4
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Fortunately, my commutes are short enough that I can wear street clothing, and then I can have a minimal of cycling outerwear that I can leave with the bike when I enter a store. I've noticed the difference in clerks' and customers' attitudes when I wear cycling gear inside a store, and when I don't.
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Old 08-15-10, 12:47 PM   #5
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There's nothing you can do. If you engage the person in any way you are only fueling the rage.

You won't have any opportunity to reason, or otherwise persuade anyone, so why try? You are better off saying "have a good one, see ya later" than starting a talk with an "RC........."
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Old 08-15-10, 12:50 PM   #6
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"Yes, sir, don't worry about that! I've read the law carefully, and you won't catch me riding unsafely- I promise you that I'll ride on the road, like a safe cyclist should. Thanks for your interest in bike safety- are you a cyclist, too?"
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Old 08-15-10, 01:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
"I won't be 'stopping' traffic, I will BE traffic."

"I'll use exclusively 'bicycle' facilities when you use exclusively the Interstate."
The Interstates are for defense and Interstate commerce. The cars are the "bikes" of the Interstate. They are allowed and, despite them being the root cause for a large amount of tractor trailer crashes, the truckers don't have that same uneducated attitude....if they did the Interstate would be a very, very ugly place.
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Old 08-15-10, 01:42 PM   #8
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Yes - I'm getting in early start for when we run out of gasoline. Care to join me?
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Old 08-15-10, 01:48 PM   #9
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We need to rephrase the issue.

"Actually I have no conflicts whatever with the overwhelming majority of motorists."
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Old 08-15-10, 01:55 PM   #10
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Old 08-15-10, 02:01 PM   #11
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"Yes I am, you better buy a paper to read while you are waiting on me"
I dunno but there really isn't anything to say that will change the minds of the mindless.
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Old 08-15-10, 03:27 PM   #12
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"I won't be 'stopping' traffic, I will BE traffic."

"I'll use exclusively 'bicycle' facilities when you use exclusively the Interstate."
Wouldn't work around here.

With our sparcity of roads over our mountain passes and north and south along the front range, a lot of mileage on the interstates is open to bicycle traffic, being the only way to get from point A to point B
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Old 08-15-10, 04:59 PM   #13
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I bet the wife sent him to pick up some "feminine hygiene" products. That makes me irritable. Kinda like when my dad would send me out for his "cigs."

I like hitting the stop lights at the same time as the petro burners do. If I make 4-5 lights with traffic, its a minor victory.

BTW-how was the personal century?
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Old 08-15-10, 05:05 PM   #14
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I guess I have it better than some , Arcata is a town that promotes alternative methods of transportation ...
Its a very bike friendly community , but head north or south and all bets are off ...
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Old 08-15-10, 05:31 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AmericanMade View Post
The Interstates are for defense and Interstate commerce. The cars are the "bikes" of the Interstate. They are allowed and, despite them being the root cause for a large amount of tractor trailer crashes, the truckers don't have that same uneducated attitude....if they did the Interstate would be a very, very ugly place.
Having driven a 18 wheeler over the road I can state with authority that commercial drivers look upon four wheelers as dangerously stupid and totally untrustworthy. This is demonstrated many times on any truckers workday. Truckers do have a LOT of patience with autos. They can be less tolerant of incompetent fellow truckers.
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Old 08-15-10, 05:56 PM   #16
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Having driven a 18 wheeler over the road I can state with authority that commercial drivers look upon four wheelers as dangerously stupid and totally untrustworthy. This is demonstrated many times on any truckers workday. Truckers do have a LOT of patience with autos. They can be less tolerant of incompetent fellow truckers.
How do truckers feel about cyclists?
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Old 08-15-10, 05:56 PM   #17
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Yesterday I set out to do a solo 100 miler and stopped a mile from the house at our local grocery store to pick up a couple bananas. A fella in his 40's in front of me in the check out line turned after he had paid and asked "Are you going to be riding in the road?"
If it was me in line I would have said "you're not going to throw the banana skins on the side of the road are you?" This is a real pet peeve of mine ...
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Old 08-15-10, 06:02 PM   #18
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Old 08-15-10, 06:13 PM   #19
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When I do take the lane and cause a trailing car to slow down momentarily, I give them a "thank you" wave as they go by. I think that helps.
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Old 08-15-10, 06:20 PM   #20
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jppe- Interesting timing on your post. Yesterday, while eating my post ride lunch at the Blue Ridge Brutal, an organized century in West Jefferson, NC (this for the benefit of those who don't know the ride or area, jppe is very familiar), I had occasion to speak with the ride director. Among the many things we discussed, she brought up the fact that she felt like the ride organizers needed to do a better job informing the local folks that it was OK to pass riders on a road with a double yellow line. She also mentioned how grateful those same local folks were that we, as riders, traveled to the area for the ride and to do training rides as well. They recognized that we were helping to support the local economy. So perhaps all hope isn't lost...
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Old 08-15-10, 06:30 PM   #21
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Don't take his animosity personally, JPPE. Chances are he has a long list of people, things, ideas that he hates. You may be only, like, maybe #237 on the list. Above brussels sprouts but below his mother-in-law or ex-wife. Your remark maybe moved you up a few notches, but it wasn't pointed enough to break #200. You're just too nice a guy.
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Old 08-15-10, 06:46 PM   #22
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Jerks can be found anywhere.
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Old 08-15-10, 07:10 PM   #23
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It's really bad here, too. In case I don't see it enough on the road, one of my other hangouts, the Texas Fishing Forum, has to be pretty much the most anti-cyclist place around. The typical forum member drives 50 miles each way to work, then drives 100 miles to fish on Saturday, then 100 miles the opposite direction to fish on Sunday. They pretty much live in their vehicles. My practice of riding to work and fishing close to home is definitely not the norm.

Anyway, I made the mistake of visiting the Off Topic section regularly, and there was almost a weekly rant about cyclists. I finally just gave up reading there, but before I left, I posted A Cyclist's Counter Rant. I was a bit surprised that none of the anti-cyclist ranters had to guts to reply. Give it a read, if you dare.
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Old 08-15-10, 07:15 PM   #24
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If you reply with "Why do you ask?" you might get more information you can use to make him feel stupid. The one who asks the questions controls the conversation.
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Old 08-15-10, 07:52 PM   #25
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It's really bad here, too. In case I don't see it enough on the road, one of my other hangouts, the Texas Fishing Forum, has to be pretty much the most anti-cyclist place around. The typical forum member drives 50 miles each way to work, then drives 100 miles to fish on Saturday, then 100 miles the opposite direction to fish on Sunday. They pretty much live in their vehicles. My practice of riding to work and fishing close to home is definitely not the norm.

Anyway, I made the mistake of visiting the Off Topic section regularly, and there was almost a weekly rant about cyclists. I finally just gave up reading there, but before I left, I posted A Cyclist's Counter Rant. I was a bit surprised that none of the anti-cyclist ranters had to guts to reply. Give it a read, if you dare.
Holy smokes, BB, you're really givin' it to 'em. Nice rant! Aren't you worried about a brick through your window at home, or even worse...an Easy Rider encounter?

I really admire your bal...um...I mean - guts.
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