As of late, when people irk me, I go into these writing fits. I've been commuting for months now, and this morning was the first time some one rolled down their window at a stop light and had at me. I wasn't in his way, nor he in mine. It was raining and there was some slush on the ground, so he apparently thought I needed a safety lecture. Because, with all the gear I was wearing: the reflectors, the lights, the big puffy gloves, the rain cover on my trunk bag, the water beading up on my attire--I apparently had no clue what I was doing. Oy vey!
Moving forward, To the unruly man in the white hostage van
I was half way into my commute on this joyous day, nestled in nature's nurturing bosom of wind, rain, sleet, and slush. My peroneus longuses pumping like au naturale pistons; the wind weaving through my spokes, teetering me to-and-fro; the sporadic gush and geyser of slush from passersby, dissipating against my waterproof attire. Yes!--An experience unbeknownst and otherworldly; a stark contrast to the stale enclosure of metal, glass, and the illusion of safety.
Then you came along: honking, preaching; your lips flatulently flapping across your facade, straining to keep pace with the holier-than-thou thoughts streaming through your misunderstanding mind. "Gasp! Someone is stepping out of their box! Stop them!" they seem to have cried.
The irony is, sir, that you, and you alone, were the only threat to my safety this morning. First, you held a honk as you passed by, interrupting my concentration. Secondly, you were incapable of thinking before you spoke, and rattled on and on, while I was trying to pay attention to the surrounding traffic, the upcoming terrain, and the change of the light. You were trying to apprehend my attention: the most vital element to safety itself!
I made it to my destination safely and without issue. I'm proud, happy, and I know that I've earned every breath I breathe today. I don't need to project my ignorance onto others, as you did. Instead, I smile, I question myself before I question others, and if I decide to inquire about their actions, I do so with respect, sir.
The A.M. cyclist that was prepared, decked in the proper gear, and abided by all written laws.
P.S. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 1,254 fatalities on Illinois roads in 2006. Only 25 of these were cyclists. Sir, why are driving a vehicle? It's not safe either. (Source)
With threats of winter worsening, we were allowed to leave the office early, and I did. It was snowing at a good pace, but the roads were fine. Between the salt, plows, and car tracks, it wasn't very much different from any other rainy day: it was as though hundreds of slushie trucks had lost their load. To offset this mornings tiff, a local newspaper guy chased me down and snapped a photo. Neat--mom will love
Bike on, I say!