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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

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Old 12-04-06, 02:00 PM   #26
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I've seen this guy's blog entry in a number of the forumss and my question is; who finds this stuff? Is there somebody over in A & S trawling the 'net for this stuff?
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Old 12-04-06, 02:02 PM   #27
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what a fraud. he writes a post like that and then in his personal questions area of the blog writes this:

What singular trait do you admire most in a person? Compassion and intelligence, but they must coexist. One without enough of the other makes you out of balance.



so, mr. whatever the eff your name is, where is the compassion and intelligence? i can't find evidence of either.
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Old 12-04-06, 02:05 PM   #28
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EDIT: here is the comment I left him:
"Most streets are bordered by sidewalks, and those sidewalks carry pedestrians, including school children, the elderly, public transit riders en route to or standing at a stop, and many other ordinary people going about their business. By your logic they are all fools to be siting themselves next to a roadway, where inattentive drivers can kill them for a slap on the wrist. If you're right that this driver was so far off the road she hit the cyclist with the left side of her car, she could just have easily have veered up on the sidewalk, cruised through a crosswalk or traffic light, run a stop light, or whatever. Are you proposing that all of society must move far away from the road to accomodate bad drivers?"

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Old 12-04-06, 02:10 PM   #29
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From the blogger's profile:

What is the meaning of life? We're fellow travelers on a one-way trip to the grave. We should look after each other.

yeah, right.
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Old 12-04-06, 03:28 PM   #30
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My reply in the form of my own blog is here.

I have included some of your excellent comments (I couldn't put them all in) but I did put a link to this thread and invited The Blogger to come here and read them. I asked him to try to see the other man's point of view.
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Old 12-04-06, 05:10 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipcom
Yes, we are vulnerable, but cycling is on the roadways is NOT a major risk...unless riding in oblivious bliss is your riding style. We're also vulnerable doing countless other things during the normal course of our lives...of which cycling doesn't even make the top ten - yet we do them anyway.
Cycling on roads would be a lot safer if more people did it. The roads around here are much safer because we have so many cyclists.

The whole, "riding on the road is crazy" is just giving in to bad car drivers.

What is crazy is that 6000 pound steel sleds are being considered like living room couches, with people eating, text messaging, listening to music, watching DVDs...this stuff is all legal, yet speed is supposed to kill.

If I had it my way, I would even ban automatic transmissions. You can't eat and talk on a phone while driving a stick.
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Old 12-04-06, 05:53 PM   #32
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I read 2 and a half paragraphs of that and now I want to slap him until the people watching are tired. Find me that guys address!
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Old 12-04-06, 06:15 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrPete
But because our psyche focuses on immediate things (getting run down by a motorist) we sort of ignore the comparatively tiny probability of that versus dying a long, protracted, painful death from, say, the complications of type 2 diabetes if you don't exercise.

Anyway, here it is--draw your own conclusions....
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ar...2978-1,00.html
The flaw in that argument is the assumption that it's an either or proposition. One can focus on BOTH things and decide to go work out in a gym.
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Old 12-04-06, 06:18 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by jeffreytaub
The flaw in that argument is the assumption that it's an either or proposition. One can focus on BOTH things and decide to go work out in a gym.
Nobody's ever hurt themselves in a gym?
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Old 12-04-06, 06:28 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by DrPete
Nobody's ever hurt themselves in a gym?
Hurt ? Yes. Run Over by a 19 year old teenybopper? Nope.

My whole point was that there are different degrees of risk.

1.There is a greater likelihood of something bad happening to you on a bike than in a gym.
2 There is a greater likelihood of something bad happening to you (in the long run) if you do no exercise than if you do get on a bike.

The two statements are not contradictory.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:09 PM   #36
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Let's see if ANY of that turns up on his website. My guess is that it won't.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:11 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by jeffreytaub
Hurt ? Yes. Run Over by a 19 year old teenybopper? Nope.

My whole point was that there are different degrees of risk.

1.There is a greater likelihood of something bad happening to you on a bike than in a gym.
2 There is a greater likelihood of something bad happening to you (in the long run) if you do no exercise than if you do get on a bike.

The two statements are not contradictory.
I see what you're saying, and you're absolutely correct in saying that the statements aren't contradictory, but I get far more pleasure from cycling. There's also a greater likelihood of me not getting killed if I just stop driving to work, but that would kinda take away a lot of nice things in life, like, oh, food and shelter.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:36 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrPete
Ahh... I did. Interesting read. In many ways it would seem to support what many of us believe about cycling, i.e. that it's overall a pretty safe activity, and that the health benefits far outweigh the true risks. But because our psyche focuses on immediate things (getting run down by a motorist) we sort of ignore the comparatively tiny probability of that versus dying a long, protracted, painful death from, say, the complications of type 2 diabetes if you don't exercise.

Anyway, here it is--draw your own conclusions....
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ar...2978-1,00.html
Cool article, DrPete. I have a few bones to pick with it, though.

1. They mention a lot of things similar to the following example, which I have used in class before. "Are you more likely to die from (a) stomach cancer or (b) skin cancer?" Most people answer (b), but (a) is actually the correct answer (in the year 2000, at least). They don't really mention a big reason why, which is the availability heuristic. The availability heuristic occurs when people estimate the probability of an outcome based on how easy that outcome is to imagine. For example, in the skin cancer question, people might search their memories for a time they heard of each type of cancer, someone they know with each type of cancer, and so on. The one that brings up the most memories wins. You can see how skin cancer would win. There are lots of warnings out there about wearing sunblock, and it's something you're more likely to hear about than stomach cancer, which I had actually never heard of and thought was made up when I first heard the question.

In a perfect world, the availability heuristic would work. More common events would be remembered more easily, and everything would be fine. The problem is that the news sensationalizes rare events, and they become more available than they should. Things like plane crashes, terrorist attacks, shark attacks, etc. make the news and things like stomach cancer don't.

Do these cell-phone examples make the news? We as cyclists have heard of them, but how much of the general public has heard of them? It would actually be nice for us if these things were madly sensationalized and people came to believe they were more common than that actually are, but I don't see that happening. Part of it is that they aren't sensationalized, and part of it is that people, like mentioned in the article, think they have more control over their cell-phone driving than they actually do. I actually know this for a fact because I give a cell-phone driving related article to intro psych students and I often hear them say things like, "I'm a better driver than most people," "I can concentrate more than most people," "I see people driving like idiots because of cell phones but I use mine and I've never had a problem," etc.

2. The conclusion to the article is a little bit misinformed.

Quote:
We can do better, however, and leaders in government and industry can help. The residual parts of our primitive brains may not give us any choice beyond fighting or fleeing. But the higher reasoning we've developed over millions of years gives us far greater--and far more nuanced--options. Officials who provide hard, honest numbers and a citizenry that takes the time to understand them would not only mean a smarter nation, but a safer one.
That's a nice idea, and I wish it were true. However, there's a little thing called base rate neglect. Quite simply, even if people are given base rates they are likely to ignore them and base their decisions on flawed decision making (by using the availability heuristic, perhaps).

So we can't simply tell people how many accidents cell phones cause and expect them to change their behavior. We need to tell a story instead.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:41 PM   #39
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Cool article, DrPete. I have a few bones to pick with it, though...
An excellent review... Heuristics often get discussed in the realm of clinical decision-making, and it really is an interesting process/concept. I'm not sure the conclusion is misinformed so much as a little idealistic. I mean, let's be real. Fear drives people, and when you're talking about a population like the American public there won't be enough people who will critically evaluate the stats given to them, so politicians and lawmakers still have to rely on fear to get results. I do think it's a noble goal to shoot for, though.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:43 PM   #40
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The major problem I see with the, "Well, the cyclist shouldn't have been on the road." argument, given that the driver was well over halfway out of her lane is this:

What if she had been halfway across the center divider? Would we blame the other driver for being on the road in the first place? After all, how dare that person occupy the road that this young woman was driving on?

Most everybody's done something dumb on the road before and we're all very lucky that nobody was in the wrong place when we did it. Accidents happen and when they do, we fault the person(s) whose actions or inactions resulted in the accident, if there were any. Cycling is a risk, poor diet and exercise is practically a guarantee.
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Old 12-04-06, 08:46 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by babetski
The major problem I see with the, "Well, the cyclist shouldn't have been on the road." argument, given that the driver was well over halfway out of her lane is this:

What if she had been halfway across the center divider? Would we blame the other driver for being on the road in the first place? After all, how dare that person occupy the road that this young woman was driving on?

Most everybody's done something dumb on the road before and we're all very lucky that nobody was in the wrong place when we did it. Accidents happen and when they do, we fault the person(s) whose actions or inactions resulted in the accident, if there were any. Cycling is a risk, poor diet and exercise is practically a guarantee.
Yeah, victim blaming is an interesting phenomenon. It's just another way that we fool ourselves into thinking we have control. If we believe that the cyclist could've somehow prevented this horrible thing from happening, we ourselves feel better. Hardly a healthy way to think, though, especially if something bad ever happens to him or the ones he loves.
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Old 12-04-06, 09:09 PM   #42
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7 hours later (at least from when I submitted a comment) and no new comments yet.
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Old 12-04-06, 10:45 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timmhaan
what a fraud. he writes a post like that and then in his personal questions area of the blog writes this:

What singular trait do you admire most in a person? Compassion and intelligence, but they must coexist. One without enough of the other makes you out of balance.



so, mr. whatever the eff your name is, where is the compassion and intelligence? i can't find evidence of either.
I see no fraud here. He seems to have a balance of compassion and intelligence.
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Old 12-04-06, 11:55 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Moulton
It's people with attitudes like this.

This guy is commenting on the cyclist who was killed by the 19 year old downloading ringtones.
His attitude is that the cyclist is a fool to put himself in danger by being on the road.
who/what scares me more than reckless cagers? Shrub, and then its back to reckless caging asswips on the road with me. The daily immediate danger they pose occupies most of my attention. This guy's webdrivel is only one more cyberfart in a swirling universe of intergalactic bad gas, and hardly worth a mouse click. when he takes to the local roadways and decides to act out, then he'll join the real scary brigade. For now he's pure troll. Don't feed trolls
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Old 12-05-06, 04:20 AM   #45
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To give credit to Lee, the person who posted the South Carolina Confidential Blog; he did post 31 comments the vast majority of which were pro cyclist. He has posted a follow up post http://scconfident.blogspot.com/2006/12/to-clarify.html and states that the only ones he didn’t post contained threatening or foul language.

This meant that he did read them all, which is good. I think we got our point across; and although he dosen't concede on all points, he does on some. Thank you for all the highly intelligent comments, I was extremely touched by them all.
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Old 12-05-06, 07:11 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DocRay
Cycling on roads would be a lot safer if more people did it. The roads around here are much safer because we have so many cyclists.

The whole, "riding on the road is crazy" is just giving in to bad car drivers.

What is crazy is that 6000 pound steel sleds are being considered like living room couches, with people eating, text messaging, listening to music, watching DVDs...this stuff is all legal, yet speed is supposed to kill.

If I had it my way, I would even ban automatic transmissions. You can't eat and talk on a phone while driving a stick.

Sure you can. You don't have to shift continously. What if you are on a highway?
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Old 12-05-06, 08:35 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Moulton
To give credit to Lee, the person who posted the South Carolina Confidential Blog; he did post 31 comments the vast majority of which were pro cyclist.
Good for him...at least he is somewhat open minded.

EDIT...although having read his "To clarify" comment, he still isn't getting it.

Last edited by cooker; 12-05-06 at 09:59 AM.
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Old 12-05-06, 08:40 AM   #48
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The blog was offensive and the work of the ignorant.
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Old 12-10-06, 06:34 PM   #49
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What about this comment from Shizniz:

"Ugh, I totally agree with this. Teens will always do stupid things, and people will always use their cell phones in cars. Sorry bikers, this is the way it is. You assume risk playing with cars so don't whine if you get killed because of it.

Almost every day some idiot biker decides to block the whole road making dozens of us wait behind them staring at their fat spandex covered butt. I think they get a kick out of it.

Roads were designed by cars, and bikers do not pay taxes to build or maintain these roads. Get a car or take the bus."


Let's see: I drive a car and I ride a bike and last I checked my household (wife and I) were taxed over $25K from State and Fed and paid out over $10K in property taxes. Also, I was always under the impression that people designed roads. How stupid of me not to know it was a car! I wonder which car? 10 bucks says this guy posted using web TV in the comfort of his aluminum 5th wheel.

Sorry for the rant. Anything about taxes gets me going. My Sunday is ruined.
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