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Driver Repays a Kindness—Breaks Stereotype

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Driver Repays a Kindness—Breaks Stereotype

Old 08-20-19, 12:03 PM
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Driver Repays a Kindness—Breaks Stereotype

Every once in a while, a driver does something nice for a cyclist. That happened to me yesterday.

I was in foggy Sky Londa in the Santa Cruz Mountains, at the summit of Highway 84, ready for a speedy descent back to sunny Woodside. 84 is a nice, twisty road with excellent pavement — a fun and fast ride if you enjoy technical descents. And I do.



CA-84 from Skyline Blvd to Portola Rd, Santa Cruz Mountains, California


I often catch up to motorists on the way down 84, so it's nice to ride this road on weekdays when there's little traffic. But as I'm riding the straight and flat upper section, I hear a "honk honk" behind me. It's a white pickup truck, wanting to pass. Drat! Do I pull over and let him pass, only to ride his bumper? Or do I stay in the lane and prevent him from passing?

Thinking it's better to have a boring ride than an angry truck driver, I pull over immediately, and he passes.

Of course, I catch up with him after a couple of curves. I keep a respectful distance of a few car lengths, resigned to completing the descent at a slower page.

But then something I never expected to happen, happens. The truck driver pulls over and signals me to pass.

Amazing! A pickup truck driver giving way for a faster cyclist.

Kindness repaid. Stereotype broken.

It almost makes up for all those other pickup truck drivers who yell insults, hurl things from their opened windows, "teach me a lesson" with a close pass, or simply raise their middle fingers.

Almost.
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Old 08-20-19, 05:21 PM
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Proper canyon etiquette is always a nice surprise.
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Old 08-20-19, 06:12 PM
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Unheard of and awesome!

Imagine what he told his family over dinner...
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Old 08-21-19, 04:47 AM
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Bad news seems to be way more attention getting than good news. I'm happy to see good interaction between people.

Just a few days ago I was riding the bike in town when approaching an intersection to a small street, a pickup was signalling a turn in front of me. He was towing a large Cigarette type speed boat from the town launch ramp a few hundred feet away. I stopped and waved him through which momentarily made his life easier. I got a friendly wave in return and maybe as he encounters cyclists on the road he will see them as considerate human beings. I grew up in a rural and agricultural town and consideration was part of living in such a place. This is called building community. I'm appalled at the behavior reported every day in the news. I suppose such reported antisocial behavior is due to a feeling of being passed over and disenfranchised by society.
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Old 08-21-19, 06:42 AM
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Love hearing that!

My club has more positive encounters than negative - cars waving our group through 4-way stops, etc. But the best...

... on our weekend ride a while back - same route every Saturday; 60-mile suburban to rural route - 12-15 of us got passed by a county cop. He had to gun it and pass on a double yellow. One mile later, we see him - sitting in the intersection where we have a stop sign, cross-traffic does not. Blue lights on - waves us by. He passes us again - blocks another intersection. Last time was where the road dumps into a 4-lane. He was there, blocking only the south bound lanes - he knew we were turning right/south. Only thing missing was a helicopter overhead. Felt like pros.

We considered posting on the department's FB page - thanking him. Decided there was a chance he'd get in trouble from his captain... and definitely would catch hell from local non-cyclists. Our waves had to suffice.

Last edited by Zaskar; 08-21-19 at 06:46 AM.
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Old 08-21-19, 08:05 AM
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Motorists on gravel frequently allow cyclists to pass.


-Tim-
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Old 08-21-19, 11:21 AM
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Kudos.

Most motorists are reasonably patient and respectful. IMO only 1% might be French Showers. Problem is that on a given ride you may interact with 100+ cars so more likely than not to have a problem.
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Old 08-21-19, 11:23 AM
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#NotAllPickupTruckDrivers
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Old 08-21-19, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Motorists on gravel frequently allow cyclists to pass.


-Tim-
This has been my experience, too. Sometimes I wouldn't even use the word allow, they're just crawling because they don't want to ding their car.
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Old 08-21-19, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
...But then something I never expected to happen, happens. The truck driver pulls over and signals me to pass.

Amazing! A pickup truck driver giving way for a faster cyclist.

Kindness repaid. Stereotype broken.

It almost makes up for all those other pickup truck drivers who yell insults, hurl things from their opened windows, "teach me a lesson" with a close pass, or simply raise their middle fingers.

Almost.
Yeah, I've had this happen a couple of times this summer. What a pleasant surprise! They got a friendly wave as I pulled ahead.
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Old 08-21-19, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Clipped_in View Post
Yeah, I've had this happen a couple of times this summer. What a pleasant surprise! They got a friendly wave as I pulled ahead.
What the heck, throw in a toothy smile as well for a bonus.
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Old 08-21-19, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post

But then something I never expected to happen, happens. The truck driver pulls over and signals me to pass.

Amazing! A pickup truck driver giving way for a faster cyclist.
And then he proceeded down to Sand Hill Road, parked his truck at the office, and jumped on his custom Pinarello.
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Old 08-21-19, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Zaskar View Post

We considered posting on the department's FB page - thanking him. Decided there was a chance he'd get in trouble from his captain... and definitely would catch hell from local non-cyclists. Our waves had to suffice.
Yeah, probably. Although perhaps a generic - "Thanks officer X for looking out for our cycling group this afternoon!"
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Old 08-21-19, 05:39 PM
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Consider this....no more stereotypes.
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Old 08-21-19, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Zaskar View Post
Love hearing that!

My club has more positive encounters than negative - cars waving our group through 4-way stops, etc. But the best...

... on our weekend ride a while back - same route every Saturday; 60-mile suburban to rural route - 12-15 of us got passed by a county cop. He had to gun it and pass on a double yellow. One mile later, we see him - sitting in the intersection where we have a stop sign, cross-traffic does not. Blue lights on - waves us by. He passes us again - blocks another intersection. Last time was where the road dumps into a 4-lane. He was there, blocking only the south bound lanes - he knew we were turning right/south. Only thing missing was a helicopter overhead. Felt like pros.

We considered posting on the department's FB page - thanking him. Decided there was a chance he'd get in trouble from his captain... and definitely would catch hell from local non-cyclists. Our waves had to suffice.
now that is a cool story.
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Old 08-21-19, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by berner View Post
Bad news seems to be way more attention getting than good news. I'm happy to see good interaction between people.
Then there's confirmation bias for everyone who's been trained to respond to the outrage ecosystem much of the online world is a part of... For instance, YouTube keeps recommending stuff to get me riled up. I don't do facebook, that joint is the pits.

Originally Posted by berner View Post
I suppose such reported antisocial behavior is due to a feeling of being passed over and disenfranchised by society.
Yeah, divide and conquer. It's the cookie gif. And when the culture is degraded past a certain point, game theory dictates that courtesy is a liability...

Last edited by Kimmo; 08-21-19 at 07:30 PM.
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