as a cyclist I ride in a fashion where I attempt to put myself where I am most safe
it is my feeling that no one is concerned about my health or well being other than me
which forces me to think not only for me but I must also think for those around me
all the while attempting to put myself where I am most safe
this may aggravate the aggressive drivers around me
car drivers have proven that they can not be trusted to behave
their actions are often ignorant and dangerous
as well as illogical and ineffective
for the most part... I ride on the street
but... there are times when the sidewalk makes the most sense for me and for those on the road
it is a matter of efficiency... while also being a matter of keeping myself safe by putting myself where I am away from the danger
this notion of putting myself where I am most safe is expanded when I ride with my two children
in the situation of cycling along side my children I am forced not only to think for myself and the cars around me but I also have to think for my six and nine year old sons
things happen too fast for them to anticipate all the variables
kids can often be more focused on fun that the dangers around them
they are small... if car drivers are blind to my Sasquatch sized presence... well... then they are not likely to see my hood level children
so... I try to anticipate things for them
when we traverse the city we move in such a way to put ourselves where we are most safe
no matter where we are... the people around us feel that we are in the wrong place
if we are on the bike path or Beach Drive closed off to cars... sport cyclists get agitated by the young cyclists
if we pedal on the streets the car drivers bark at us saying we should be on the sidewalk
and well... you guessed it...
when we are on the sidewalks... pedestrians point us to the street
often when we are on the sidewalk we get attitude from the people that we encounter
hmmm.... I beg the question... where should young children be when on their bicycles?
no this is not me ranting about making the dirt trails of Rock Creek Park legal for mountain biking
this is a question of WHERE SHOULD WE BE ON OUR BICYCLES?
my neighbor told me that they should not ride in the alley behind my house
people on the sidewalks bark to us that we need to take it to the streets
and of course as said... the cars on the street tell us to get out of their way and get off the streets
where are we to ride?
well... the answer... we must ride where we are most safe
much of our pedestrian frustration is actually caused by a contribution on the part of the walker as we meander through the city on the sidewalks
the pedestrians repeatedly walk blindly about never anticipating the approaching bicycles
never looking any further than the tip of their shoe or more likely... not seeing any further than their smart phone
my boys impress me with their ability to weave through the people on the sidewalks
the pedestrians moving in an illogical fashion stopping and standing where ever they choose
walking as many people abreast as they care
not concerned with anyone else's right to space yet offended if anyone enters their personal space
sometimes there is an exchange of words
sometimes there is the flawed logic of Steven Wright
people try to use the word SIDEWALK itself to argue about where we should or should not be on the bike
well... I get the idea... SIDEWALKS are for WALKING
but... then what do we do when we get our car on the PARKWAY?
or if we find ourselves on the DRIVEWAY?
never when on the BIKEPATH do I object to the people on foot
with this logic I do think it is interesting that someone can be so shocked by the presence of a bicycle on the BIKEPATH
enough with the comedy...
the other night when pedalling back from the fireworks display the family weaved their way through the mass of people on foot a good number of people took a quick response of offense when they felt the bicycle at their side
but when the people saw the children... the majority of the people dropped their attitude and accepted our polite... "excuse me... on your left" but there were those few realistically... we can not allow our decisions to be directed by those select few
but cool... STREET STENCILS