I am a menace to society. People have hatred towards me. When people see me I honestly think that it must make their blood boil. I’m as heinous as they come. I should be locked up put away for my crime. What’s my crime, you ask? It’s because I legally ride my bike on a roadway.
After another close call with the car driving public, the thought of this is how life is for a cyclist passed through my mind. This is my life can have different meanings, such as:
- This is my life… It can be positive, just like this blog in which I post things about the amazing experiences that running, triathlon, and life have provided to me.
- This is my life… The things I do day in and day out. Mostly the same as everyone else, but from my perspective.
- This is my life… Or possibly something that occurs occasionally that can be burdensome, such as doing laundry nearly every damn day.
- This is my life… But my intended purpose of that statement today is that THIS IS MY LIFE YOU ARE ENDANGERING!!! DOES A HUMAN LIFE NOT MATTER TO YOU IN YOUR FUCKING CAR AS YOU TRY TO PASS ME IN A DANGEROUS SITUATION?
I was riding my bike on a road that within less than a mile I would hope off of to catch the adjoining trail. I just needed to be on it shortly. But to people in cars, I might as well have purposely gone out of my way to plan my ride to coincide with their trip to Starbucks or whatever.
I get being inconvenienced. I don’t like it either. But I am a life out there on a bike, exposed to the world and your one-ton enclosed, all steel, with numerous safety features vehicle. It blows my mind to think that a driver would go out of his way to avoid crashing into another vehicle, but some old guy in tight clothes on a bike is open game. I probably wouldn’t even scratch your car as you hit me.
I wasn’t really intending to make this post an argument for sharing the road with cyclists. I could tackle the arguments about why cyclists shouldn’t be allowed on the road, or give a counterpoint to “just because I can doesn’t mean that I should.” I’ll save it for next time if the next time doesn’t kill me.
So as luck would have it, I have a video of this incident. I have gotten to the point in my cyclist life that I feel it necessary to document my ride so that in the event that something happens to me, the authorities can look at the video and say “Yep, he was doing it right when he got run over.”
I was riding up some hills, the road was striped with double yellow, no-passing zone markings, and I was taking up a little more of the middle than the far right as safely possible just to give the impression that there wouldn’t be enough room to pass. She attempted the pass anyway. Watch the video. Form your own opinion. (Warning – The audio is quite loud – turn it down before hitting play.)
All I ask is that you think about that person on the bike when you drive. They are someone’s family. And it’s someone’s life that you put in jeopardy by not passing with caution.
This is my life.