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Rude behavior is normal?

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Old 08-04-18, 03:26 PM
  #1  
canerods
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Rude behavior is normal?

We are fortunate to have an extensive, paved bikeway in our area. Because of that, at this time of year, there’s lots of activity from various users on these public pathways. Question: why is it that most of the rudest people seem to be road bikers geeked-up in their professional equipment and expensive bikes? I realize they’re in their ‘groove’ and perhaps stressing from physical exertion. No one expects waves and smiles, but how much does effort does it take to say “passing on the left” or simply ring a bell when approaching from behind? Can't they realize it’s in there own safety best interests to let people know they’re passing? I’m wondering if these are the same breed of folks who never use signals when entering a freeway or when changing lanes? Is this rude behavior normal or is it just me?

Last edited by canerods; 08-04-18 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 08-04-18, 03:40 PM
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Hip check a couple as they pass. be the change you want to see.
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Old 08-04-18, 04:04 PM
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Don’t get me wrong, I think using a bell is a good idea. Someone ringing at me, I know near instictively what to do.

But as a frequent bell user, I can tell that the results can vary considerably. Success is far from guaranteed.
First there are the head phone/earbud music listeners. Getting through to them in a timely manner with a mere bell is a challenge.
Then there are the ones who interpret even the mildest peal as ”make way”, and turn to shout at you in anger.
Even among those supposedly receptive, a rational reaction may not always occur. A good fraction of them will jump, change direction or side in a rather random manner.
Let’s say 1/4 will take offense, 1/4 will do something random, 1/4 won’t react at all and 1/4 will react properly.
Choosing the ”stealth mode” of passing doesn’t make the angry ones angrier, prevents the skittish from doing something random and saves energy otherwise wasted on the voluntarily deafened.
In all, not ringing or calling out is rather rational, in a sad kind of way.
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Old 08-04-18, 04:08 PM
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What dabac said. On our local MUP, I only call out “on your left” if the rider looks squirrelly or skittish. If they look competent to hold their line, I usually just go around and give them a little wave or good morning as I go by.
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Old 08-04-18, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by canerods View Post
Can't they realize it’s in there own safety best interests to let people know they’re passing?
False. (and if someone isn't a competent enough rider to be passed without warning, maybe they should work on their skills rather than expect the world to accommodate them.)

Last edited by asgelle; 08-04-18 at 04:12 PM.
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Old 08-04-18, 04:14 PM
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Old 08-04-18, 04:15 PM
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I'm always conflicted whenever I approach people from behind on the MUTs. No matter if I very quietly say "Bicycle" , or "On your left" or ring a bell, it seems to startle if not panic them and they usually jump onto the shoulder even though I approach them at a speed barely faster than theirs.
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Old 08-04-18, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by John00 View Post
I'm always conflicted whenever I approach people from behind on the MUTs. No matter if I very quietly say "Bicycle" , or "On your left" or ring a bell, it seems to startle if not panic them and they usually jump onto the shoulder even though I approach them at a speed barely faster than theirs.
I am surprised how many people are startled and jump or screech a little when i call out "On your left."

I have learned tocall loud and from far away so i can adjust ... or just pass and say "Hi" as I go .... as Dabac said, there is no way to tell which way someone might flinch.
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Old 08-04-18, 05:00 PM
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I'm surprised at how surprised some cyclists are that people are surprised when we announce our presence behind them. Whatever they're doing or thinking, they may not be expecting us. so of course they startle. Surprisingly, I seldom get this reaction. More often than not I get a Thank You with a hint of relief in their voice for the courtesy.

Last edited by bargeon; 08-04-18 at 06:42 PM.
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Old 08-04-18, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
False. (and if someone isn't a competent enough rider to be passed without warning, maybe they should work on their skills rather than expect the world to accommodate them.)
Competency? Skills? First, I'm talking about passing in general, like kids, family pets and the public in general who have a right to use the same venue as the biker and who have right of way. Second, it's plainly posted on signage and in bikeway printed publications that warning must be given when passing. So, not only are they being rude, they are also breaking the posted rules. But, what the hell – for many people rules are only meant to be broken. In either case, it has little to do with honing a particular skill set or being accommodated by the world.
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Old 08-04-18, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by canerods View Post
Second, it's plainly posted on signage and in bikeway printed publications that warning must be given when passing.
Always? Every MUT? I've ridden plenty without such signage; and as far as I know, there's no uniform traffic code for bike paths.
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Old 08-04-18, 06:12 PM
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I ride the local rail/trails, which are multiple use, at times when there are few people on them. For the very reason that there are multiple users who don't always understand riding in the presence of others as I do. I typically encounter people walking, walking dogs, with kids on tricycles, with kids in strollers, on horses and more. Thus, the opportunity for confusion and problems is enhanced. When I do encounter others my rule is to be patient and communicative. So far, it's worked well.
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Old 08-04-18, 06:42 PM
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Only rule I’ve ever seen for a MUT is a speed limit of 15 mph. That’s in NYC. My local beach path (9 miles, not posted rifles of any kind) sees a lot of roadies and triathletes doing laps, usually near 20-25 mph some times. I assume they do MUT only as they are not comfortable riding with cars, not realizing they are far more likely to have an accident on the MUT with kid, dog, jogger, etc.... Is it good common sense to ride at that speed ?, hell no.

OTOH, I only occasionally call “passing”. More than half the time with runners, they are wearing ear buds and won’t hear it anyway. It really only seems to be effective with cyclists whose speed is just a bit slower than mine. Everybody else I’m usually past them before they can actually react to a “passing on the left”. Can’t count how many times the person I told I was passing on the left then moved left. Now it’s just “passing”.

Generally through I just stay off a MUT at times they are busy.
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Old 08-04-18, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Always? Every MUT? I've ridden plenty without such signage; and as far as I know, there's no uniform traffic code for bike paths.
There probably aren't uniform traffic rules for bike paths. BTW, some communities avoid the term 'bike' path and call them pathways or such to avoid the idea that they are solely meant for bike traffic. Anyway, our paths have straightforward safety rules. These are common sense which I personally try to follow. 1st for safety. 2nd for presenting a favorable opinion of bicyclists to the general non-bicycling public.
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Old 08-04-18, 06:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
I am surprised how many people are startled and jump or screech a little when i call out "On your left."

I have learned tocall loud and from far away so i can adjust ... or just pass and say "Hi" as I go .... as Dabac said, there is no way to tell which way someone might flinch.
So very true indeed!
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Old 08-04-18, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by John00 View Post
I'm always conflicted whenever I approach people from behind on the MUTs. No matter if I very quietly say "Bicycle" , or "On your left" or ring a bell, it seems to startle if not panic them and they usually jump onto the shoulder even though I approach them at a speed barely faster than theirs.
Yes, exactly.

If the person looks like they know what they're doing, I'll usually just go by.

It's when the person doesn't look like they know what they're doing or looks like they're going to do something unexpected, that I have to decide what I'm going to say and how I'm going to manage the situation.
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Old 08-04-18, 08:05 PM
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This is one of the signs on our Cycleway.

It would be really nice if other users would follow the "Keep Left" and "Move Off Path When Stopped" instructions.






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Old 08-04-18, 08:57 PM
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The MUP is no place for compitative riding. If you're looking for a "personal best" or some sort of Strava recognition, do it somewhere else.
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Old 08-04-18, 09:25 PM
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I hate to be Ki9nfg Richard but ... if you cannot manage riding on a bike path, don't.

Yeah,it is a tough world. it is filled with people who are not us ... and as such, they do things we would not do. And while some might ask, "Is rude now normal?" I would ask, "When did screamingly oversensitive become normal?"

Are there rude people? Yes. More than a few decades ago? Maybe .... I don't know, 30 years ago where i was living it was considered comical to throw trash at cyclists or run them off the road.

I would say morality in general is decaying, but the kids learn from their parents, so .....

But as for handling the high-stress world of the MUP .... If it is too intense, stick to circles in the driveway.

No, I don't warn every person I pass .... and you know, I have Never had a bad reaction from any body. Maybe it is because when I am riding I tend to be happy. Stuff like that matters. Maybe if the OP were a little less uptight and more secure in his own skills and more pleased with his life choices, he would find that every he passes smiles and waves, too.

Further, ti seems like the OP came here all outraged because He was startled by someone passing (and would have been just as startled had someone called out "On Your Left" in a loud voice) and was hoping some "Geeked-Out Roadies" would feel chastened, while the rest of you non-geeked roadies would join with him in righteous indignation.

When we didn't offer to form a torch and pitchfork parade, but instead said that in "The Land of the Free, the Home of the Brave" people should maybe be able to cope with MUPs, he got even angrier.

I think the problems here are the OP's and are much deeper than the MUP encounters which ostensibly sparked this post.

Dude .... Cope. There are children dying from starvation as you read this There are children being abused, as you read this. There are no doubt terrible things in this world. Deal with being passed on the MUP.

Or maybe, take your outrage and put it toward some project which will actually save lives or something.
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Old 08-04-18, 09:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
Further, ti seems like the OP came here all outraged because He was startled by someone passing (and would have been just as startled had someone called out "On Your Left" in a loud voice) and was hoping some "Geeked-Out Roadies" would feel chastened, while the rest of you non-geeked roadies would join with him in righteous indignation.
We had someone like that in the General Forum a while back.

Didn't like being passed, with no comment, on road, mup or anywhere because it was too startling for him.

Didn't like being passed, with comment (on your left or hi or whatever) on road, mup or anywhere because it was too startling for him.

Couldn't really identify what he did like.
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Old 08-04-18, 09:43 PM
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Are you centered in your lane , or like most people are you day dreaming running both lanes blocking the path with no awareness what so ever.
I cant tell you how many times people have got in my way . like if your on a slower pace you should be more aware that people will pass you . never make erratic moves without looking first .

i cant even name all the times i had to deal with a person blocking the path taking up both lanes , swerving back and forth , and its usualy young kids or old people . they just dont seem to understand they are on a bike path bikes are primary everyone else is secondary .
its not a dog walking path , a baby stroller path , a walk in a daze with your head up your butt path , dangerous flying objects will be passing , stay in your lane , use your mirors, heal your dog , its really not that hard .

we wouldn't need bike bell laws if you people would learn to be more aware and not fall into a spell of comfort then blame the other guy .
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Old 08-04-18, 10:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
When we didn't offer to form a torch and pitchfork parade, but instead said that in "The Land of the Free, the Home of the Brave" people should maybe be able to cope with MUPs, he got even angrier.
Where did you hear any anger? Seriously anger? You are reading much more between the lines than actually exists. It was a simple question, meant to gain some knowledge of standard practices. It was about why MUP rules are observed by some and not by others – and why it's OK at some times and not others. Your opinioned amateurish psychological interpretation of my motives are incorrect. Being new to this forum I'll just leave it at that and finish by saying it was an honest question and was posed with little idea it would be misunderstood as it has been.
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Old 08-04-18, 10:46 PM
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I think maybe it was the " road bikers geeked-up in their professional equipment and expensive bikes " part that evoked some ill feelings. When you single out a group (which some here may identify with) to blame that is a mistake. Sure, there are jerks on road bikes but there are jerks on cruisers, e-bikes, etc.

In over 180,000 miles on road bikes my worst crash was caused by an idiot on a mup, (he was helmetless on a mtb), so I avoid mup riding when I can. If I do end up on a mup I am extra careful around everyone else.
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Old 08-05-18, 12:11 AM
  #24  
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Every multi-use path devolves the same way. Always been that way. Always will be that way. Same in the 1970s in SoCal on the first MUPs I tried. Same now in Texas and probably everywhere else.

I minimize my use of the MUPs since my conditioning and speed have improved. But I do use it for convenience at times. I ride slower, leave plenty of room for pedestrians, and try to be aware of everything around me because many joggers and cyclists wear ear buds and are oblivious to their surroundings, and there will always be wannabe racers trying for personal bests and KOMs on Strava segments that should never be on an MUP -- but there's nothing we can do about that.

I use mirrors to watch for faster cyclists approaching from behind because many -- not most -- do pass without announcing. It's not just roadies on race bikes. There's no particular pattern. I keep my speed down to 15 mph or slower -- much slower when pedestrians are around -- so I expect to be passed by other cyclists.

So get a mirror. I can't turn fully to look over my shoulder due to neck and shoulder injuries, so the mirrors are a must.

I have Mirrycles on my hybrid handlebars -- not fancy or pretty but tough, functional and easy to adjust once set up properly. And I wear Take-A-Look mirrors on my helmet or safety glasses. Like the Mirrycles, the Take-A-Look is the most affordable, utilitarian and functional of the various helmet/eyeglass mirrors. There are many others but it's hard to beat the Take-A-Look. They come in two stem lengths. I have one of each -- the longer stem version is on one helmet; the shorter stem version goes on my clear or sunglass safety glasses. It's easy to swap and adjust, and the clamp holds securely on most glasses, although it can be too heavy and unbalanced on lightweight wire frames.

And to announce myself to pedestrians and cyclists I'm overtaking, I like continuous ringing trail bells. There are three popular models:
Coghlan's Bear Bell -- costs $5, more or less. It's the least loud of the various trail bells, but functional for MUPs.
The Timber Bell -- at $20 probably the best buy. Louder but not unpleasant, a better design than the Coghlan Bear Bell.
CBW Designs Awareness Bell -- Prices start at $40 (it's come down a bit over the past year or so), with additional fees for custom features. These are handcrafted beauties. I'm hoping to justify the cost someday.

All three can be muted for situations where you don't need or want the bell ringing. But continuous ringing awareness bells are the most practical solution I've found for crowded MUPs. Pedestrians and slower cyclists hear me approaching and gradually move over. No drama, startled or angry joggers, and the sound is reminiscent of an ice cream truck -- hard to get angry about that.

Around Christmas, I'll attach strips of jingle bells to my comfort hybrid for casual group rides. They're amusing.
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Old 08-05-18, 02:19 AM
  #25  
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I also recommend Take-a-looks ... and that continuous bell is interesting but might drive me even crazier after a while.

I only use the local MUP early in the morning and traffic is exceeding light---I might see six people in six miles, and half will be cyclists coming towards me. Visibility is excellent and one can safely go pretty fast. Max speed is determined by how far off one can spot a dog-walker.

If there were much more traffic I wouldn't ever get on the thing.

Oh, and OP .... Have someone read your own post to you so maybe you can hear it. You might not call it "anger," but the tone is definitely "peeved."

Originally Posted by canerods View Post
Question: why is it that most of the rudest people seem to be road bikers geeked-up in their professional equipment and expensive bikes? ……. how much does effort does it take to say “passing on the left” or simply ring a bell when approaching from behind? Can't they realize it’s in there own safety best interests to let people know they’re passing? I’m wondering if these are the same breed of folks who never use signals when entering a freeway or when changing lanes?
You definitely come off as offended, (and it seems everyone else here got that same vibe) and really … the “rudest” people? Don’t ever get close to New York City.

“How much effort” is a pretty scornful question … “Too lazy or uncaring even to ring a bell, the brutes.”

“Can’t they realize … ?” The ignorant idiots …..

Then you posit that these people don’t use signals while driving, which is actually a much more serious charge …. “Those rudest of all people are probably the ones responsible for all the 40,000 deaths on the road each year.”

Yeah, there is a lot of anger revealed in your post …. Not to mention that this is a forum where bicycle lovers discuss riding bicycles, and your First post, was this one. What made you join a site was the desperate need to vent about all those cyclists who don’t ride the way you wish they did.

I don’t know you, Sir or Madam, and I am not pretending I do. But based on what you actually did as opposed to your later claims …. Yeah, that is an angry post.

Maybe you didn’t mean it that way, and hopefully you can see better how others see you, now. Or maybe you didn’t realize how upset you were by some guy blowing by you on a bike.

In any case …. Apparently there was no collision, so maybe the person who passed you had the situation well in hand and judged that disturbing you was not the best course of action. Maybe this rider saw you holding your line and riding steadily and figured you knew what you were doing and didn’t need someone shouting at you..

I know some car drivers think it is courteous to honk their horns to let me know when they are passing my bike on the road. They don’t realize that I am Well aware of them, and that when they honk, my first instinct is to scan for the emergency---What is going wrong that they have to honk? They think it is a courtesy because they are clueless about riding on the street.

Imagine if cars honked every time they passed another car?

In any case, when on any road where traffic is moving at a wide range of paces, one need to watch the mirrors.

Sorry if I offended you---I hate to offend angry people, never know how they might react (Just kidding.) But you know, it seems I am not the only person who felt a lot of anger and frustration in that post. You can only say “It’s not me, it’s the world” so many times before it isn’t funny any more.

Also … after you have been here a while you will know who to take how seriously. Don’t stress overly about my posts.

By the way … while I might be wearing a jersey, bibs, gloves, and cleated shoes, my bike is not that expensive. Can I still qualify as “one of the rudest people?” I have been trying really hard to make the cut.

Got anything good to say about cycling?
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