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Friday afternoon traffic jam road RAGE

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Friday afternoon traffic jam road RAGE

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Old 06-10-06, 06:49 AM
  #1  
masi61
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Friday afternoon traffic jam road RAGE

Yesterday evening I was riding up to my regular training route where I leave a country road onto a busier road that approaches a limited access freeway. As I often do, I look both ways before the stop sign and if oncoming vehicles are far enough away, I slow, but do not stop at the stop sign. I did see a black Chevy Suburban off to my right about 150 yards away. Well after I cleared the stop sign, and made my turn, the suburban was right on my a** and crowding my, he then kind of did that macho move that motorists do where they slam the throttle making the rear wheels throw some gravel and riding to the right of the white line simultaneously in an act of animalistic stupidity. Well the macho Suburban driver was stopped at the traffic light up the the freeway and I couldn't resist the urge to ride beside him just to see who he was. Here's where Mr. Road Rage (with small child in the car by the way) became positively scary. Apparently just looking at him pi**ed him off so much he started revving his engine crowding me again, spitting and yelling non-stop expletives about my derierre and my "blow hole". I could not even speak a single word! The whole encounter took only about 10 seconds and the light quickly turned green and he peeled out in his 8,000 pound car, most likely burning several gallons of fuel just for the machismo of it all.
The experience, triggered my adrenaline and for the next few miles my relaxing training ride pumped into a different mode, kind of like being a player in "future cop" or something. I had a little trepidation, that hiding behind each blind intersection, there he would be again, Mr. I'm beginning my weekend dammit, and stay out of my way if you want to live, because My Suburban alway must travel 70 in a 45 zone.
Any advice on how I can re-claim my Ghandi-like composure, and abandon my fantasies of mayhem and counter-road-rage revenge?
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Old 06-10-06, 06:56 AM
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Jared88
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Road rage is really scary to me. More scary than a crash. I would never do something like staring at a driver , no matter how angry i am. The driver might have a gun.
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Old 06-10-06, 06:59 AM
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You are right. I should have hung back behind the traffic and waited for them to drive away after the light turned green. I guess my adrenaline was already pumping after he nearly ran me off the road half a mile before the traffic light.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:15 AM
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that is a very scary situation for anyone. when somone threatins you espishily with an suv. im not sure what the laws are in place that would aply to this situation, but if it happens again it might be a good idea to memorize the agressors license plate number and call it in to the police. the reason i think that there is a valid complant is the guy not only verbaly assulted you he also threatened your LIFE... a car is considered a wepon it many homicide cases, so there is legimate reason to fear for your life in this situation.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:19 AM
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I agree with the reporting of the license plate for obvious aggression with vehicle against you. Then you can find out what laws are in place of if your local cops are willing to pursue it at all.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:20 AM
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I did think about getting his license number. It almost makes sense to carry a baby spiral notebook and a pen in my seatpack for situations like that. When you're adrenaline is pumping if you stay focused you can memorize a license number for a few minutes until you can safely pull over (away from Mr. Crazy) long enough to write it down.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:37 AM
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Perhaps a more sensible approach would have worked better. Maybe you could have politely sat your bike down, walked over to the driver's door, opened it, pulled the guy out, and beat him to a bloody pulp in front of his young child.
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Old 06-10-06, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Eric_The_Jew
Perhaps a more sensible approach would have worked better. Maybe you could have politely sat your bike down, walked over to the driver's door, opened it, pulled the guy out, and beat him to a bloody pulp in front of his young child.
Yeehaw! Slap him 'til his ears bleed
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Old 06-10-06, 08:39 AM
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I really really really try to avoid riding during Friday evening commute. As bad as the roads are around here any time, Friday eve rush is absolute mayhem.
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Old 06-10-06, 08:43 AM
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I skip out on my bike commute on fridays. Everyone goes insane at the end of the work week.
Of course, driving a car is not that fun on fridays either.
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Old 06-10-06, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by masi61
...It almost makes sense to carry a baby spiral notebook and a pen in my seatpack for situations like that....

Not really needed, unless you usually have 16 violations to report on every ride! Just type/color of vehicle and any few characters on the plate that you can get. It isn't so hard to narrow it down with that info - if they want to chase it down that is.
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Old 06-10-06, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by masi61
I did think about getting his license number. It almost makes sense to carry a baby spiral notebook and a pen in my seatpack for situations like that. When you're adrenaline is pumping if you stay focused you can memorize a license number for a few minutes until you can safely pull over (away from Mr. Crazy) long enough to write it down.
I was thinking of getting one of those little voice memo recorders and carrying it instead ... just carry it in a pocket or strap it to the bike.

See a plate just grab the recorder, hit record, and just start talking ... License Plate, vehicle model, driver description, location, time, etc. If the "subject" sees you, he might think you are on a cell phone and realize he's getting reported. Either way, you have the info for later and/or his parade gets rained on.

Good Luck,
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Old 06-10-06, 09:21 AM
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Thanks for the support. I have to do my summer weekday rides after 5pm now since my 7 year old is home for summer vacation and I can't leave her until she comes home from work. (I'm an RN and work weekends and 12 hour weekdays but just 3 days a week). Anyway, often I'm just glad to have the time to ride so I jump on my road bike and go, not giving much thought to whether its evening rush hour or friday night or whatever. Somedays are definitely out of control though . I guess the back way where you avoid the major intersections can be a blessing.
Peace.
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Old 06-10-06, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by tippy
I was thinking of getting one of those little voice memo recorders and carrying it instead ... just carry it in a pocket or strap it to the bike.
You know, a lot of cell phones have a voice recorder that you can use to record short memos. That would be perfect for a situation such as this! I never thought of it before, but I use the voice recorder all the time to remind myself where I parked my car (I can never remember, and it saves me from walking up and down my parking structure looking for my Honda Civic, which everyone in the world seems to have.)

I always have my cell phone on me when I ride, in case of emergencies. It would be perfect for recording a license plate, make and model of a car.
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Old 06-10-06, 09:31 AM
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Ah, Ohio... I can't even remember the number of people who told me to "buy a car" or "get on the sidewalk" when i started road biking during college in Cincinnati...

Unfortunate though it may be, I try to avoid busier roads at rush hour. Here in the DC area people get downright homicidal (sometimes literally) at rush hour. A little route planning can go a long way.

As far as what to do with Mr. road rage, as much as I hate it I do think the best thing to do is just let it drop. I know I've had trouble doing that sometimes as well, but at the end of the day he has an 8000-lb behemoth he can use as a weapon and you don't.

Be safe out there.

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Old 06-10-06, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by rufvelo
Not really needed, unless you usually have 16 violations to report on every ride! Just type/color of vehicle and any few characters on the plate that you can get. It isn't so hard to narrow it down with that info - if they want to chase it down that is.
A lot of cellphones have a notepad feature.

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Old 06-10-06, 10:11 AM
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These people are so miserable that there's really nothing you can do to them. Even if you killed them you'd only be putting them out of their misery.

If anything, just smile or laugh at their antics and they might feel dumber (maybe).
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Old 06-10-06, 10:28 AM
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This is why you should always carry a baseball bat on your bike. Just strap it to the frame. Seriously this kid on my football team carries one in his car because one time he got into road rage.
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Old 06-10-06, 04:18 PM
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many phones also have cameras that can take a photo and that will record the time, you can remember the place. two photos would be better (license plate close up and large photo of the car)
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Old 06-10-06, 07:04 PM
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If you're carrying a phone...why not simply use it for it's primary purpose, and call the cops, tell them about psycho dickhead, and let him suffer his rage in quiet iron caged seclusion?
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Old 06-10-06, 07:07 PM
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This is terrible but I just haven't adopted cell phones at all. I guess eventually I'll need to get one for safety reasons for those bizarre situations that come up.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:10 PM
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Blow 'em a kiss next time.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Az B
A lot of cellphones have a notepad feature.

Az
or why not just take a picture?

not many phones dont have a camera these days
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Old 06-10-06, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by rufvelo
I agree with the reporting of the license plate for obvious aggression with vehicle against you. Then you can find out what laws are in place of if your local cops are willing to pursue it at all.
From my experience (at least in California) cops won't do jack ****. Their advice is going to be "next time just ride away." or some BS like that.
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Old 06-10-06, 07:58 PM
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Having lived in Ohio for 40 years before moving to NJ, all I can say is THERE IS NO PLACE IN SW OHIO THAT ANYONE COULD POSSIBLY GET TRAFFIC INDUCED ROAD RAGE!!!! I mean, your person excepted, of course. If you want to see - or experience - road rage, visit Central NJ. Last Friday was a typical commute for me. 45 minutes to work in the morning, and 1.5 hrs. coming home. The day before holidays here in nj, you can actually see people twitching in their vehicles as they anticipate the upcoming traffic jams. You just havn't lived until you see five lanes of traffic - in each dirction - of bumper to bumper cars (e.g., the Garden State Pkwy). Road rage in Ohio - pffftt! Seriously - sorry to hear about your experience. It's never pretty (or safe) when someone is losing it in their vehicle.
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