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Feeling exposed on the road, need to vent.

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Feeling exposed on the road, need to vent.

Old 08-08-14, 12:17 AM
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Feeling exposed on the road, need to vent.

So, I know that people are rude to cyclists, but I've had three incidents in the last two weeks, and I'm starting to feel a little down about it.

First was on a Sunday morning commute; a bunch of older teens or early 20-somethings threw beer cans at me. Like... they had to run down the road and hurl them. I didn't get hit, but one was very close. I ran a few stop signs after that to make sure they weren't still following me.

On my commute in today a big dump truck swerved over from the left lane on a two-lane road, where I use the shoulder, into the right lane hugging the shoulder and blasted his horn right next to me. No one else was around, I work second shift so there is very little traffic; they did it to make me jump. I did.

Then on the way home tonight I was just waiting at a red light and a car on the crossing street was going by and the guy in the back seat was yelling something about Lance Armstrong and fat a**, but the details were a little lost to me.

Obviously, since I'm posting in the c/a forum, I'm overweight, so the last thing actually made me feel down. And I've read all of the horror stories on this forum, so I know that this is just part of the game, but I'm having trouble shaking it off tonight. Do you ever just feel like when you ride out there you are a sitting duck for mean people? I mean, I would grow a thicker skin, but that's just going to tic the scale up a bit, isn't it? Seems heavy.

Aaaaaanyway. Just needed to vent.
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Old 08-08-14, 12:49 AM
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What, are you missing a middle finger?
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Old 08-08-14, 01:20 AM
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Dunno... living in Kentucky, I don't think it's the middle finger I'd be wielding.

People are a-holes. News at 11. Feel free to vent though, we've all been there. Maybe get a handlebar camera so you can go visit the sheriff next time it happens.
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Old 08-08-14, 01:27 AM
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You're having a bad run, that's all. People being dickheads is more their problem than yours. Keep riding.
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Old 08-08-14, 05:09 AM
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Rule #1 - There will always be more horses arses than horses.

Rule #2 - Only one thing comes out of a horses arse.

Rule #3 - If you want to be in the rodeo, you gotta deal with the (stuff).
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Old 08-08-14, 05:23 AM
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Call the cops on people who throw things at you.

Smile and wave back at the other idiots.
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Old 08-08-14, 05:51 AM
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I think you just had a bad 2 weeks.

Bill
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Old 08-08-14, 06:03 AM
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You should feel down! As others have said, you've had a bad stretch. I would worry about your humanity if things like this did not upset you. Don't feel badly about how you feel.

But... don't let them win. You'll have many more good days than bad days. And you are also doing something that is good for you. Just hang in there and don't give up.
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Old 08-08-14, 06:16 AM
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I agree with the other posters. The one thing I might add is to try to find others to ride with. This will probably eliminate many of the incidents, and for the rudeness that still happens, at least there will be others to experience it with you and that will make far easier to handle.
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Old 08-08-14, 06:32 AM
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Maybe it's just Kentucky?
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Old 08-08-14, 07:03 AM
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We all have those weeks when people are monsters. I do have a gopro mounted on my helmet. I have noticed that when I point to the cam or they see I have a cam on...their behavior is radically changed. They are expensive but in my opinion well worth the money. I have sent multiple videos to the cops, insurance companies, and the mayors office. The money is worth peace of mind and insurance when something does happen. Rather than yelling and flipping them off and feeling bad, I usually just point to the cam and smile at them. The looks I get from just that simple gesture are priceless. I have had people actually stop and apologize after seeing that I have the entire incident on video.
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Old 08-08-14, 07:12 AM
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It's not a game. Having things thrown at you is assault, and possibly battery. Those idiots need to be reported. The camera idea is excellent. I found the GoPro to be terribly expensive, so I got this...



It's the Mobius Action Cam. They cost about $65-70 on eBay (more elsewhere) and the video quality (1080p) is just as good as a GoPro, IMHO. I have two: one for my helmet, and one mounted under my saddle facing backward.

Don't take this lying down. Find a friendly police officer who will go talk to these dolts and send him brownies for Christmas.

The large truck might be business owned. Call the business. Complain, very loudly.

If you let these instances go, it only positively reinforces the actions, possibly encourages thoughts of escalation, and potentially harms other cyclists or even yourself again.

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Old 08-08-14, 07:21 AM
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+1 to mkadam68 - I hear people in these forums say let it go, it is just the way it is, and so on. Call their business owner, report them, send them videos, put it on youtube. We are not toys on the road. We have families that depend on us.
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Old 08-08-14, 07:40 AM
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That sucks. Know that you are doing something good for yourself and them harassing you are doing no good. Keep pedaling.
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Old 08-08-14, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by thrllskr
Call their business owner
Good point I forgot to mention. I have done that on several occaisions in connection with cycling and walking. Once I even called the number on one of those "How's my driving?" bumper stickers.

I have told the employers that they have now been put on notice about their employee's negligent behavior and that if he causes an accident down the road that any prior complaints about the employee will be asked about during the discovery phase of the law suit that will surely follow, possibly opening the door for punitive damages. I at least like to think that gets their attention.
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Old 08-08-14, 08:06 AM
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I have had some pretty bad experience with people yelling at me, flick cigarettes at me...ect

I have had "Look at the ****** riding a bike" type comments several times.

Whenever I have an incident I have found that if I look at them with a big smile and say, "thanks for the support" and wave in a friendly way it utterly befuddles them.

If they do something to intentionally try to intimidate me by swerving right in front of me, pushing me over to the side or rund me off the road, I call the cops because that sort of stuff is what kills cyclists every day.
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Old 08-08-14, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by mcrow
I have had some pretty bad experience with people yelling at me, flick cigarettes at me...ect

I have had "Look at the ****** riding a bike" type comments several times.

Whenever I have an incident I have found that if I look at them with a big smile and say, "thanks for the support" and wave in a friendly way it utterly befuddles them.

If they do something to intentionally try to intimidate me by swerving right in front of me, pushing me over to the side or rund me off the road, I call the cops because that sort of stuff is what kills cyclists every day.
"Smile, you're on Candid Camera!" while pointing to your camera tends to work even better, as noted above.

If you wind up stopped next to them, follow it up with, "Search for your license plate on YouTube in a few hours. Also enjoy your visit from the local police after I give them a copy and file a complaint. Have a nice day."

Being filmed does wonders for improving courtesy. Especially for someone in a work-owned vehicle.
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Old 08-08-14, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by achoo
"Smile, you're on Candid Camera!" while pointing to your camera tends to work even better, as noted above.

If you wind up stopped next to them, follow it up with, "Search for your license plate on YouTube in a few hours. Also enjoy your visit from the local police after I give them a copy and file a complaint. Have a nice day."

Being filmed does wonders for improving courtesy. Especially for someone in a work-owned vehicle.
Yeah, I thought I might put a cam on the helmet so that when these morons do this sort of stuff I can shame them on youtube or something.
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Old 08-08-14, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by modelmartin
Maybe it's just Kentucky?
No way, it's not just Kentucky. You want to see crazy stuff, go to areas with higher demographics where people feel entitled to do what they darn well want all of the time because of the money they make. That desire translates into all kinds of aggressive activity towards other people, including cyclists.

Personally, I don't think the pacifist approach works, even though it sounds sensible. The reason I say that is because, for better or worse, we've become so accustomed to aggressive behavior that we don't respect people who don't defend themselves/give it back. The other alternative is for someone to make and market a jersey that basically says "This ride is being videotaped for my protection and to aid law enforcement" and market that to GoPro users.

If enough of this bad behavior was captured and publicized, it would stop. People aren't motivated by doing the right thing anymore. In many cases, they only seem to respond to consequences.
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Old 08-08-14, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by mcrow
Yeah, I thought I might put a cam on the helmet so that when these morons do this sort of stuff I can shame them on youtube or something.
Especially the dump truck.........acting out when driving anything is not good, but a dump truck or any other large vehicle ?? I guess I am very fortunate here, I can ride 30 miles and maybe see at most a half dozen cars sharing the road I'm on.

Bill
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Old 08-08-14, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by mkadam68
It's the Mobius Action Cam. They cost about $65-70 on eBay (more elsewhere) and the video quality (1080p) is just as good as a GoPro, IMHO. I have two: one for my helmet, and one mounted under my saddle facing backward.
I almost bought a go-pro after a run in with some cars this spring but ... too pricey, battery life too short and I really don't like the big box on a stick. Then I almost got a sackful of the mobius cams but got distracted. How's the battery life and have you been able to rig an external battery for one? How much of a memory card have you found that you actually need?
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Old 08-08-14, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Willbird
Especially the dump truck.........acting out when driving anything is not good, but a dump truck or any other large vehicle ?? I guess I am very fortunate here, I can ride 30 miles and maybe see at most a half dozen cars sharing the road I'm on.

Bill
Yeah, I lived in Uptown in Minneapolis for 15 years. Biked everywhere in the city, no car. Traffic is crazy there. Now they have the Greenway that is like a bike highway that is off the road completely that runs all the way out through the suburbs in the west through Minneapolis to St. Paul, all without being on the road. The Greenway was just finishing up construction when I moved out to the country. I went from almost getting killed twice a week on the streets in Minneapolis to riding around a small town and rural trails. I don't think I have had any close calls since I moved out here about 8 years ago.
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Old 08-08-14, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse
I almost bought a go-pro after a run in with some cars this spring but ... too pricey, battery life too short and I really don't like the big box on a stick. Then I almost got a sackful of the mobius cams but got distracted. How's the battery life and have you been able to rig an external battery for one? How much of a memory card have you found that you actually need?
The battery life will get me to work and home for my commute. about 2.5 hours recording. The batteries are very light and compact and on long rides a carry a couple of spares. With three charged batteries I can go 7-9 hours. As I mentioned above, having a big bulky GoPro mounted to my helmet sends a clear message, you are being recorded (helmet mount cost me $6). I have a 64G memory card which is plenty. I have found about 15 minutes is 1.5G which comes out to around 8-10 hours of recording.
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Old 08-08-14, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Willbird
I guess I am very fortunate here, I can ride 30 miles and maybe see at most a half dozen cars sharing the road I'm on.
Same. But I'm paying attention just in case that changes. I like the little camera idea.
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Old 08-08-14, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Willbird
I guess I am very fortunate here, I can ride 30 miles and maybe see at most a half dozen cars sharing the road I'm on.

Bill
I was going to say the same thing, but half a dozen cars in 30 miles? Dang, that's a lot of traffic for that distance, LOL. I ride way back on country roads. If I would get a little faster on the hills, I'd ride the bigger roads, but since there isn't any shoulders and the right tire track is broken up pavement every couple feet, I wouldn't feel comfortable riding 3 mph slogging up the hills in the left tire track with a car coming up behind me should I even encounter one.
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