"It never gets any easier. You just go faster." ---Greg Lemond
"Don't buy upgrades. Ride up grades." --- Eddy Merckx
"You drive like shit." ---The Car Whisperer


Thursday Hate: the right (of) way

Fuck you, Edens!

If one more conscientious and gracious driver smugly waves me through a stop sign at which I so very obviously do not have the right of way, I am going to start carrying a megaphone and a huge, cartoonish arrow.

This goes for pedestrians, too. Which is ironic because they get the shittiest end of the deal, as said driver will nearly kill a pedestrian while turning through a crosswalk not 30 seconds after acquiescing to a cyclist. You'd think they'd be the most militant players in this drama, as the most vulnerable.

These people are enablers. They are the reason so many asshole-douchebag bikers are conditioned to blow through stop signs. Every time they slow down to yield the right of way, a driver will wave them, or a pedestrian will stop right in his tracks...so why stop at all? They're the only people in the world anyways, right?

Today, in the span of three miles between Kedzie/Granville and home in Edgewater, I had to unclip and almost-petulantly stomp my foot down on the blacktop, jerking my head at both the stop sign and to gesture the driver continue on, no less than five times.

And when I left with Jack on our return-home walk, I was nearly plowed into, right in front of a stop sign, by a so-conditioned cyclist. The look of panic on his face as he shuddered and stuttered his handlebars, while not even thinking of braking to yield, enraged me.

Someday soon, one will near-miss us close enough that I reach out and jerk him right off his goddamn bike.

"Doesn't anyone give a shit about the rules anymore?!"

Determining the right of way isn't hard. Bikers: ride like a vehicle. Drivers: bikers are vehicles. Pedestrians: stand up for your goddamn rights. Hey, if you're not killed, you'll get a helluva'n insurance settlement out of it.


Matt said...

Love the image and quote you selected at the bottom.

I agree with you. Mostly.

Yield the right of way to cyclists "incorrectly" (stopping when there is no stop, etc.) My view is that these folks have yielded the right of way, As long as I've obeyed the traffic control, I have no qualms about crossing in front of them, with some limits.

Around here, especially on the bike paths, normally mostly-responsible road cyclists get riled when a car doesn't incorrectly yield right of way.

I see 2 types when I'm out - The people afraid to step off the curb into a crosswalk and the people who walk out anytime, anywhere without looking.

brianfmorrissey said...

Cyclists should treat stop signs as yield signs. The risk inherent in a 200# bike/rider is far, FAR less than than a 2,000# car or heavier truck. Still, this doesn't give them carte blanche to not stop at all, simply because they are not in a car. If a car has reached the intersection first, you should stop, because the rules of the road, which every 15-year-old learns, give that person, driver or cyclist, the right of way.

If people would just do the right thing for other people, whether walking, biking, or driving, life would be a lot less hateful and enraging.