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Old 05-17-07, 08:28 AM   #1
comradehoser
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A Case of CIC

I don't really believe in Forester's Cyclist Inferiority Complex, but this may qualify.

In today's Washington Post District Extra Dr. Gridlock article, Dean Nguyen, a mountain biker and assistant manager at a shop near Springfield, Virginia, declared in no uncertain terms that the *only* place for cyclists was on trails and paths; never on the roads. Oy.

wish I could find the exact quotation. There's a couple anti-cyclist letters in there.
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Old 05-17-07, 03:18 PM   #2
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Here you go:

"Dear Dr. Gridlock:

I strongly oppose cyclists sharing the road with motorists. It is not only unsafe, but inconvenient for drivers.

Cyclists tend to act as though the rules of the road don't apply to them, and as though they possess the same presence on the road as automobiles. It is amazing that there are not more cycling-related fatalities in our area. Cyclists belong on paths, and nowhere else.

Before you chastise me for being anti-cyclist, I would like you to know that I am an avid mountain biker who rides more than a thousand miles a year, and I have been an assistant manager at a local shop for years.

I do not believe that I or any other cyclist should be sharing the road with cars. It's unsafe and irresponsible.

Dean Nguyen"
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Old 05-17-07, 03:20 PM   #3
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The last sentence of the letter sums up the CIC (or whatever you want to call it). Cyclists are sitting ducks out there, on the verge of death at any moment, with nothing they can do about it. Right
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Old 05-17-07, 06:33 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by joejack951
The last sentence of the letter sums up the CIC (or whatever you want to call it).
What I call it is provincialism; a self centered mountain biker who has no interest in other types of cycling or cyclists and presumably doesn't make any effort in selling any other type of cycling.
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Old 05-17-07, 06:44 PM   #5
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Ooooh, and he rides about 20 miles a week! Hardcore!
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Old 05-17-07, 06:44 PM   #6
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That's the letter of a guy whose girlfriend just left him for a bike commuter. Perhaps he will meet someone else on the trails or path.

R.
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Old 05-17-07, 08:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
What I call it is provincialism; a self centered mountain biker who has no interest in other types of cycling or cyclists and presumably doesn't make any effort in selling any other type of cycling.
He apparently has some interest in other types of cycling; it's just that it's all negative. It's hard to tell if he's trying to get more cyclists on the paths or if he just wants all cyclists off the road. My guess is the latter, probably after having to spend 30 seconds behind a cyclist on a narrow road.
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Old 05-17-07, 08:12 PM   #8
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1000 miles a year? I did almost 1000 miles last month. Not much of a biker.
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Old 05-17-07, 08:16 PM   #9
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Local cyclist in DC should call the shops in the area, ask for the guy, then when you know what shop he works at, picket the shop.
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Old 05-17-07, 08:33 PM   #10
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Local cyclist in DC should call the shops in the area, ask for the guy, then when you know what shop he works at, picket the shop.
Oh yeah!
Do that! The manager of the shop will fire him!
Manager certainly doesn't want people picketing in front
of his place, will see what kind of employee he is and
boot his @ss!
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Old 05-18-07, 03:47 AM   #11
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Dear Dr. Gridlock:

I strongly oppose cyclists sharing paths with hikers. It is not only unsafe, but inconvenient for pedestrians.

Cyclists tend to act as though the rules of the path don't apply to them, and as though they possess the same maneuverability on the path as hikers. It is amazing that there are not more cycling-related fatalities in our area. Cyclists belong on roads, and nowhere else.

Before you chastise me for being anti-cyclist, I would like you to know that I am an avid road biker who rides more than a thousand miles a year, and I have been an assistant manager at a local shop for years.

I do not believe that I or any other cyclist should be sharing a path with pedestrians. It's unsafe and irresponsible.

Grumpy Road Cyclist
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Old 05-18-07, 04:28 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Nguyen
I have been an assistant manager at a local shop for years.
How much to you want to be that he's really just an "assistant to the manager"?
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Old 05-18-07, 10:18 AM   #13
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that guy must get held up on his way to his mountian biking trails by bicyclists. I bet he honks at bicyclists. In that he kind of reminds me of helemt head, in a way, but twisted.
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Old 05-18-07, 12:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daily Commute
Dear Dr. Gridlock:

I strongly oppose cyclists sharing paths with hikers. It is not only unsafe, but inconvenient for pedestrians.

Cyclists tend to act as though the rules of the path don't apply to them, and as though they possess the same maneuverability on the path as hikers. It is amazing that there are not more cycling-related fatalities in our area. Cyclists belong on roads, and nowhere else.

Before you chastise me for being anti-cyclist, I would like you to know that I am an avid road biker who rides more than a thousand miles a year, and I have been an assistant manager at a local shop for years.

I do not believe that I or any other cyclist should be sharing a path with pedestrians. It's unsafe and irresponsible.

Grumpy Road Cyclist

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Old 05-18-07, 01:34 PM   #15
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talk about tunnel vision!
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Old 05-18-07, 02:05 PM   #16
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20 miles a week? Wooo-Hooo, hardcore.

Let's see...If I rode only 20 miles a week...I could commute to work and back 1.5 times using the shortest route (actually, that would put me a little over). For everything else I would have to take the car. Not gonna' happen.

He seems to be someone who sees a bike as a mere toy, rather than a viable vehicle for transportation.

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Old 05-18-07, 02:40 PM   #17
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I see a significant number of spandex-clad mountain-bike riders on sidewalks in my city, riding to and from the trailheads, sometimes wearing their team jerseys. There are far more spandex-clad road-bike riders on the roadways, but it seems that most of the time I see a spandex-clad mountain biker on a public highway right of way, he's on the sidewalk, often riding contra-flow.

I have spoken to some avid mountain bikers who are not road cyclists, and they have said that they are afraid of traffic.

On the other hand, the road cyclists I know who also mountain bike tend to ride to the trailheads on the roadway. They appreciate trails, but when traveling on public highway corridors, they prefer to use the roadway.

I do both mountain biking and road cycling, in spandex, but no team affiliations. I am generally much more afraid of falling on my mountain bike when riding over roots and logs than I am afraid of traffic on the way to and from the local trails. I think it comes down to practice and experience to become comfortable with one or the other.

What concerns me is that this particular writer isn't just afraid of traffic himself, but he wants other cyclists to give up riding on the roads. This is the type of mindset that promotes designating sidewalks as bike paths, combined with mandatory sidepath-use laws.
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Old 05-18-07, 02:53 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by sggoodri
What concerns me is that this particular writer isn't just afraid of traffic himself, but he wants other cyclists to give up riding on the roads. This is the type of mindset that promotes designating sidewalks as bike paths, combined with mandatory sidepath-use laws.
What I have concluded is that, whether they realize it or not, motorists who believe cyclists should not be on the road, are not so much concerned for the safety of the cyclist as they are afraid of their own lack of competence while driving.

Competent motorists, who are the vast majority of all motorists, demonstrate no problem with safely passing a cyclist, regardless of the cyclist's road position, as long as the cyclist is visible and riding in a predictable manner.

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Old 05-18-07, 05:15 PM   #19
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I see nothing in his statement that claims that "a cyclist (the person) is in any way inferior to a motorist (the person)".
ILTB summed it up best.
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Old 05-18-07, 05:31 PM   #20
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Then I'll disagree with CommuterRun - it's also a matter of not wanting to be inconvenienced, as much as worrying about their competence. Don't get in my way forcing me to slow down, requiring me to move body parts by pressing the brake and turning the wheel and, lord forbid, having to actually think! I got a bingo game to get to at the church! I am a disagreeable cuss, aint I?
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Old 05-18-07, 05:35 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CommuterRun
20 miles a week? Wooo-Hooo, hardcore.

Let's see...If I rode only 20 miles a week...I could commute to work and back 1.5 times using the shortest route (actually, that would put me a little over). For everything else I would have to take the car. Not gonna' happen.

He seems to be someone who sees a bike as a mere toy, rather than a viable vehicle for transportation.
So very true!
Just because the guy likes to go Mountain Biking does not mean he is not the same kind of motorist to throw a half full can of beer out of his car window at a road cyclist or commuter.
As far as I'm concerned, this guy is just a motorist spouting off the same dribble as the rest of the vocal ones about how commuters and road cyclists inconvenience him, only this guy hides under the umbrella of "gee, I'm a cyclist too".
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Old 05-18-07, 07:31 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipcom
.....it's also a matter of not wanting to be inconvenienced, as much as worrying about their competence. Don't get in my way forcing me to slow down, requiring me to move body parts by pressing the brake and turning the wheel and, lord forbid, having to actually think!.....I am a disagreeable cuss, aint I?
Bingo! and Bingo!
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Old 05-18-07, 08:32 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pj7
I see nothing in his statement that claims that "a cyclist (the person) is in any way inferior to a motorist (the person)".
ILTB summed it up best.
I don't know that Forester meant that one person is inferior to another. I think at least part of it has to do with the equal validity of modes of transportation. Mr. Nuygen clearly infers that cycling is a less valid mode of road transportation, in fact that it is a completely invalid mode. I think most of us would take exception to that.

Where I see the "inferiority" coming in is when the cyclist him/herself feels they are less important road users, because they do not see their vehicles as having an equal right to the road, and therefore must take care to never inconvenience a car driver.

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Old 05-18-07, 08:40 PM   #24
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I'm amazed that so many people are ranting about this Nguyen character. Most people I've talked to (outside these forums) seem to agree with him.
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Old 05-18-07, 08:45 PM   #25
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I'm amazed that so many people are ranting about this Nguyen character. Most people I've talked to (outside these forums) seem to agree with him.
Yep. I don't think anyone would dispute that the majority of the population consider the roads dangerous for driving, let alone cycling. I don't agree, but I don't have any illusions that mine is a majority view.
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