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Vehicular Cycling (VC) No other subject has polarized the A&S members like VC has. Here's a place to share, debate, and educate.

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Old 03-31-08, 04:50 PM   #1
Ed Holland
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Let's forget names....

OK I'm tired of VC versus non VC, effective this, adaptive that. I think this subforum is too important to have been filed away as an eclectic and eccentric niche. But I know why this is the case...

It might be helpful to loose the "Vehicular Cycling" title label here in favour of something less divisive e.g. Cycling Road Users. Then we could all settle down into a sensible discussion, sharing good ways to operate our bikes legally and safely in the big wide world.

Anyone agree?

Ed
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Old 03-31-08, 05:06 PM   #2
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Old topic. Search for "adaptive cycling".

There are various methods to ride on the road, and only some of those are consistent with the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles. I think it's important to differentiate those methods that are consistent with the rules, from those that are not. And vehicular cycling seems to be better than any other I've seen, certainly better than "cycling in accordance with the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles", which means the same thing, only is much longer.
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Old 03-31-08, 05:43 PM   #3
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With respect HH this is what I want to avoid, because it has become a mire of entrenched viewpoints. I was there for "adaptive cycling".

Even the "rules of the road" have seemed to divide us. Plus I think this is a pretty vague term, albeit a staple of advocacy language.

I'd call it Road Cycling, but that has gone already...

There is too much an attempt to turn cycle usage into a theoretical excercise for the academic instead of the cyclist. This has frightened most of the rest of bikeforums away - even the commuters.
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Old 03-31-08, 05:46 PM   #4
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With respect HH this is what I want to avoid, because it has become a mire of entrenched viewpoints. I was there for "adaptive cycling".

Even the "rules of the road" have seemed to divide us. Plus I think this is a pretty vague term, albeit a staple of advocacy language.

I'd call it Road Cycling, but that has gone already...

There is too much an attempt to turn cycle usage into a theoretical excercise for the academic instead of the cyclist. This has frightened most of the rest of bikeforums away - even the commuters.
Uh, the topic of this subforum is Vehicular cycling.
The only academic/theoretical discussions here are threads like this one.
Pretty much everything else is practical.
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Old 03-31-08, 05:48 PM   #5
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With respect HH this is what I want to avoid, because it has become a mire of entrenched viewpoints.
HH's particular brand of mire is why this sub-forum was created in the first place. I think it should stick to it's roots.
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Old 03-31-08, 05:56 PM   #6
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Uh, the topic of this subforum is Vehicular cycling.
The only academic/theoretical discussions here are threads like this one.
Pretty much everything else is practical.
Yes, and I don't think that that is doing advocacy any favours. So I wondered if a change to a broader scope on riding technique (and perhaps a change of name) would enhance our appeal and reach. That might open up the debate a bit.

Never mind. I'm off home, on the bike. I'll probably use a variety of legal methods to make this as safe and pleasant as possible, but will be sure not to discuss them here unless they are VC.

lots of love,

Ed
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Old 03-31-08, 05:57 PM   #7
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Interesting effort, but ultimately pointless in my estimation. Folks will still attack the person presenting ideas instead of the ideas themselves no matter what the ideas are called (for example see post #5)

Anyway, some folks, including me, sometimes use 'vehicular cycling' to describe/discuss the practical and 'Vehicular Cycling' to discuss the ideas related to vehicular cycling.

Al
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Old 03-31-08, 06:13 PM   #8
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Interesting effort, but ultimately pointless in my estimation. Folks will still attack the person presenting ideas instead of the ideas themselves no matter what the ideas are called (for example see post #5)
You thought that was an attack?

It's nothing more than a simple fact.
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Old 03-31-08, 10:42 PM   #9
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Interesting effort, but ultimately pointless in my estimation. Folks will still attack the person presenting ideas instead of the ideas themselves no matter what the ideas are called (for example see post #5) Al
You may well be right...

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Anyway, some folks, including me, sometimes use 'vehicular cycling' to describe/discuss the practical and 'Vehicular Cycling' to discuss the ideas related to vehicular cycling.

Al

I've no problem with using the term vehicular cycling in postings, I'm not opposed to many of the principles under its purvue myself. However, I feel the forum might benefit from an attempt to broaden horizons here and attract some fresh thoughts.

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Old 03-31-08, 11:17 PM   #10
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OK I'm tired of VC versus non VC, effective this, adaptive that. I think this subforum is too important to have been filed away as an eclectic and eccentric niche. But I know why this is the case...

It might be helpful to loose the "Vehicular Cycling" title label here in favour of something less divisive e.g. Cycling Road Users. Then we could all settle down into a sensible discussion, sharing good ways to operate our bikes legally and safely in the big wide world.

Anyone agree?

Ed
totally agree.

I hate to burst the bubble but I tried this route just about a year ago in this thread, which I titled "Name Your Cycling Technique".

Unfortunately, it degenerated when it eventually fell prey to a hijack (guess who?).

I fear Allister may be correct when he suggests that since this sub-forum was created to allow for the more dogmatic among us, who prefer the moniker of "VC" and hold those truths to be self evident till death do them part, to have a place to blow their horn and some of us tag along for entertainment value it should go on as is. Eventually some of us depart out of rage, boredom or frustration but others continue on to fight the good fight. It's fun to watch as new people join and we get to watch the same dialogue devolve into the broken record that seems to play in here.

this is the part of bike forums that's most like riding a trainer. You work really hard and the wheels are spinning furiously but you never actually get anywhere.
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Old 04-01-08, 09:40 AM   #11
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Nice try Ed.

I may not have had the shortest naive commitment to forums, but I'll bet it's close.

Since it appears that a very small number of folks actually participate, and when they do it's pretty rigidly defined repetition of 'I'm right and you are wrong therefore there is nothing to change my position"; I'm going back to doing the things I used to do before finding this fourm... Riding in my own unlabeled way- trying to observe the rules of the road and ignoring the craziness that defines the knowledge of the average American rider.

Honestly, My biggest takeaway is the observation of how extreme certainty can crush any opportunity for cooperative progress. There are those out there who have tried...Ed, buzz, bek, Alister, etc., but it still seems like the pig refuses to learn to sing.
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Old 04-01-08, 10:24 AM   #12
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Script, buzzman - Thanks

Especially the trainer analogy. It's a good job I don't have my morning coffee yet...
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Old 04-21-08, 11:34 AM   #13
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Let's forget names....
I forget names all the time!

How about this name: "The Cycling Technique Formerly Known as..."
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Old 04-21-08, 12:34 PM   #14
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Ha! I like it.
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Old 04-21-08, 12:47 PM   #15
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I think VC is a fine name, and just needs to shed it's baggage. VC is also a fine way of biking. My contention is that in the hands of some people, it became an ends and not a means. When something refuses to entertain the possibility of future evolution (i.e. the rules of the road, which have in fact evolved successful exceptions, and will no doubt change in the future - are seen as a sort of perfect constitution by some). The goals are safety and convenience - whichever method best takes you there is best. And there's certainly nothing wrong with being pro-VC, provided you don't lose sight of those goals, and reasonableness. Many of our pro-VCers on this forum do that successfully.
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Old 04-21-08, 04:12 PM   #16
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I forget names all the time!

How about this name: "The Cycling Technique Formerly Known as..."
Wait, don't you have to propose some inane symbol too...
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Old 04-21-08, 05:08 PM   #17
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I think VC is a fine name, and just needs to shed it's baggage. VC is also a fine way of biking. My contention is that in the hands of some people, it became an ends and not a means. When something refuses to entertain the possibility of future evolution (i.e. the rules of the road, which have in fact evolved successful exceptions, and will no doubt change in the future - are seen as a sort of perfect constitution by some). The goals are safety and convenience - whichever method best takes you there is best. And there's certainly nothing wrong with being pro-VC, provided you don't lose sight of those goals, and reasonableness. Many of our pro-VCers on this forum do that successfully.
Can you give some examples of where the ROTR have "evolved successful exceptions"? I'm not sure what you are referring to.
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Old 04-21-08, 05:21 PM   #18
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Can you give some examples of where the ROTR have "evolved successful exceptions"? I'm not sure what you are referring to.
LOL I have to laugh at this... Can you give examples of the ROTR?

Chipcom challenged HH to cite these in the past... and the truth is that there are no universal ROTR... There are laws in cities and states and countries that define specifics that are the actual Laws of the Road, but there are no ROTR per se.
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Old 04-21-08, 05:29 PM   #19
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LOL I have to laugh at this... Can you give examples of the ROTR?

Chipcom challenged HH to cite these in the past... and the truth is that there are no universal ROTR... There are laws in cities and states and countries that define specifics that are the actual Laws of the Road, but there are no ROTR per se.
There are plenty of universal rules of the road. It is true that there is not a universal vehicle code though. So what? The vast majority of the every day rules of the road are the same no matter where you drive.
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Old 04-21-08, 06:45 PM   #20
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There are plenty of universal rules of the road. It is true that there is not a universal vehicle code though. So what? The vast majority of the every day rules of the road are the same no matter where you drive.
tell me a universal rule of the road.
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Old 04-21-08, 07:07 PM   #21
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Can you give some examples of where the ROTR have "evolved successful exceptions"? I'm not sure what you are referring to.
A successful change is the right turn on red. I can remember dire predictions that the right turn on red would be the end of civilized society. At least in some ways, the change was successuful (at least until some people began using RTOR as an excuse to run over pedestrians).

Actually, the rules of the road have undergone tremendous changes in the rather short time since automobile use became common. It's only about 100 years since driving on the right (or left, as the case may be) became the norm. Historically, that's a very short time-- a short period during which there have been many successful changes to the ROTR: yield signs, stop signs, electric traffic signals, laned roadways, left turn lanes, RTOL lanes, to name a few.

The suggestion that the ROTR have a long established history, that they do not change and that they have achieved anything approaching a state of perfection is utter nonsense.

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Old 04-21-08, 07:10 PM   #22
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tell me a universal rule of the road.
Stop on red.
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Old 04-21-08, 07:20 PM   #23
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A succssful change is the right turn on red. I can remember dire predictions that the right turn on red would be the end of civilized society. At least in some ways, the change was successuful (at least until some people began using RTOR as an excuse to run over pedestrians).
That's a good example of an evolution.

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Actually, the rules of the road have undergone tremendous changes in the rather short time since automobile use became common. It's only about 100 years since driving on the right (or left, as the case may be) became the norm. Historically, that's a very short time-- a short period during which there have been many successful changes to the ROTR: yield signs, stop signs, electric traffic signals, laned roadways, left turn lanes, RTOL lanes, to name a few.
Those are also good examples of evolutions.

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The suggestion that the ROTH have a long established history, that they do not change and that they have achieved anything approaching a state of perfection is utter nonsense.
I think the important thing to remember is that none of the evolutions you listed drastically (or even somewhat) contradict rules of the road that had been developed before the evolution came about. They were devised as a "better" way of doing things, not a whole new way, throwing out completely what came before it.
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Old 04-21-08, 07:21 PM   #24
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I think VC is a fine name, and just needs to shed it's baggage. VC is also a fine way of biking. My contention is that in the hands of some people, it became an ends and not a means. When something refuses to entertain the possibility of future evolution (i.e. the rules of the road, which have in fact evolved successful exceptions, and will no doubt change in the future - are seen as a sort of perfect constitution by some). The goals are safety and convenience - whichever method best takes you there is best. And there's certainly nothing wrong with being pro-VC, provided you don't lose sight of those goals, and reasonableness. Many of our pro-VCers on this forum do that successfully.
Riding according to the rules of the road is a fine way of bicycling but 'VC' is about as far from a fine name as you can get. It emphasizes the most ambiguous and least important part of the phrase "vehicular rules of the road" and ignores the most important part.

Granted, "rules of the road cycling" is a bit cumbersome (but "ROTR cycling" isn't bad).

The term "vehicular cycling" was a good try at finding a shorthand but I don't think it has worked out all that well.

I used to call myself a vehicular cyclist-- back before I became aware of the extent to which "VC" was little more than a brand of cycling know-it-all-ism and obstructionism. VC is an ill-defined brand, to be sure. Far worse than being ill-defined, though, is the bad image VC has acquired -- due partly to an association with radical anti-facilities-ism and partly to the incredible arrogance and condescention associated with at least some (but certainly not all) proponents of VC-ism.

Because of the many negative connotations that the term "VC" has come to have and, since getting people to accept a distintion between "VC" (which has come to represent a radical anti-facilites ideology) and "vc" (meaning riding according to the rules of the road) is an exercise in futility, I no longer call myself a vehicular cyclist.

I cringe if anyone calls me "VC" (them's fightin' words )

I have taken to calling myself a "rules of the road bicyclist," a phrase which far more accurately describes what I do and what I advocate.

VC-ists might do well to look for another name-- that is, if they want to disassociate themselves from the more ridiculous social, psychological and political theories of the person who founded the VC brand.

But, heck, VC-ists can adopt whatever silly brand name they want for the ideology which I and many other life-long ROTR bicyclists find at least a little offensive.

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Old 04-21-08, 07:48 PM   #25
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Stop on red.
Good luck enforcing that one in my neighborhood.



Example: my wife pulls up to a stop sign, slows, then rolls into the intersection. Next, she sort of crawls through it, as if to say, "I meant to stop back there."

Whatever works for you.

( )

(At least she has part of the cycling technique down. She just needs to work on the confidence thing, where you look both ways and hammer)

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