Got screamed at for the first time today

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Sandy Christmus, Jun 23, 2003.

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  1. I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been impressed with how cars have treated me for the most
    part. I'm a conscientious cycler regarding the rules of the road. I was on the road this morning
    heading up a small hill at about 17-18mph, keeping up with traffic coming to a 4-way stop. I slid
    into the lane where there was a large gap so that I could make my left-hand turn at the stop. I
    signaled appropriately and this 40-ish woman in an SUV sped up to come to my right and stop next to
    me at the stop sign. I couldn't help but look over, chuckle and tell her I'm stopping at the sign
    and turning. As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail, idiot!"

    I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting heathier, etc.
    and then this chick really brings me down. I know others have had similar events, but I just wanted
    to vent a little.

    Thanks.

    Sandy
     
    Tags:


  2. Sandy: I'd suggest writing to your local paper. Of course, you're going to get a whole lot of car
    folk trying to tell the "other side" of the story, but the dialog might still be a good thing.

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles http://www.ChainReactionBicycles.com

    "Sandy Christmus" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    > trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been impressed with how cars have treated me for the most
    > part. I'm a conscientious cycler regarding the rules of the road. I was on the road this morning
    > heading up a small hill at about 17-18mph, keeping up with traffic coming to a 4-way stop. I slid
    > into the lane where there was a large gap so that I could make my left-hand turn at the stop. I
    > signaled appropriately and this 40-ish woman in an SUV sped up to come to my right and stop next
    > to me at the stop sign. I couldn't help but look over, chuckle and tell her I'm stopping at the
    > sign and turning. As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail,
    idiot!"
    >
    > I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    > riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting heathier,
    > etc. and then this chick really brings me down. I know others have had similar events, but I just
    > wanted to vent a little.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Sandy
     
  3. > I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    > trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been impressed with how cars have treated me for the most
    > part. I'm a conscientious cycler regarding the rules of the road. I was on the road this morning
    > heading up a small hill at about 17-18mph, keeping up with traffic coming to a 4-way stop. I slid
    > into the lane where there was a large gap so that I could make my left-hand turn at the stop. I
    > signaled appropriately and this 40-ish woman in an SUV sped up to come to my right and stop next
    > to me at the stop sign. I couldn't help but look over, chuckle and tell her I'm stopping at the
    > sign and turning. As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail, idiot!"

    Well, for passing idiots in cars, this one seems to have been remarkably polite. Most of the ones
    that have yelled at me tend to be less polite. In fact, their statements usually are not terribly
    logical. One carfull of passing geniuses suggested that I get off the copulating road. Only they
    didn't say copulating. I was a bit surprised that the road could do that -- that asphalt certainly
    doesn't look like it reproduced that way. This was on Maple (I also live in Vienna). Another person
    yesterday seemed to mistake me for a female dog, thus getting both my

    to these people.

    Peter
     
  4. Ahh, Vienna, Virginia: where cyclists and SUVs do battle in glorious array on some of the most
    congested roads in the county.

    You get a few hot-headed people out on the road there, particularly on 123 when it fills up. The
    worst idiots are the ones that never say anything to you. Last summer I was riding back to Fairfax
    through Vienna in a summer downpour. An enormous Lexus SUV rumbles next to me, then, totally
    oblivious of my presence, begins edging right without signalling. Thankfully traffic was crawling
    slowly enough for me to get his attention by banging on his door a few times.

    The logical case for anything doesn't move people driving through Vienna. They just want to get
    where they want to go as quickly as possible, damn everybody else. Just smile.

    As to staying on the trail, well--I do, if I want to get from Fairfax to Reston on a bike. Beats
    mixing it up with the SUVs on Hunter Mill Road (I know someone who commutes over that regularly, but
    he used to be a pro cycle racer, so he keeps his speed up a lot better than I do). Otherwise, I'm
    taking my lane. I actually like 123 through Oakton just before Vienna. It's fast enough on a bike
    with few enough hassles to be even enjoyable.....

    -Luigi

    temporarily in Fairfax
     
  5. Tom Sherman

    Tom Sherman Guest

    Peter Gardner wrote:
    > ... In fact, their statements usually are not terribly logical. One carfull of passing geniuses
    > suggested that I get off the copulating road. Only they didn't say copulating. I was a bit
    > surprised that the road could do that -- that asphalt certainly doesn't look like it reproduced
    > that way. This was on Maple (I also live in Vienna). Another person yesterday seemed to mistake me
    > for a female dog, thus getting both my

    > to these people.

    I have been called a bundle of sticks quite a few times by passing motorists, who then indicate that
    I am number one by extending their middle finger vertically with their palm facing inwards.

    Tom Sherman - Quad Cities USA (Illinois side)
     
  6. Matt O'Toole

    Matt O'Toole Guest

    "Sandy Christmus" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...

    > I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    > trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been impressed with how cars have treated me for the most
    > part. I'm a conscientious cycler regarding the rules of the road. I was on the road this morning
    > heading up a small hill at about 17-18mph, keeping up with traffic coming to a 4-way stop. I slid
    > into the lane where there was a large gap so that I could make my left-hand turn at the stop. I
    > signaled appropriately and this 40-ish woman in an SUV sped up to come to my right and stop next
    > to me at the stop sign. I couldn't help but look over, chuckle and tell her I'm stopping at the
    > sign and turning. As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail, idiot!"
    >
    > I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    > riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting heathier,
    > etc. and then this chick really brings me down. I know others have had similar events, but I just
    > wanted to vent a little.

    I would not take this personally, or even as a slight against cyclists. People who go around
    screaming anything at anyone, except in self-defense, are insane, at least temporarily. Feel sorry
    for them, they're pathetic. Imagine what they're like in the rest of their lives.

    Matt O.
     
  7. Matt O'Toole

    Matt O'Toole Guest

    "Mike Jacoubowsky" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    > Sandy: I'd suggest writing to your local paper. Of course, you're going to get a whole lot of car
    > folk trying to tell the "other side" of the story, but the dialog might still be a good thing.

    Mike, I disagree. Such "controversies" ought to die before they're born.

    Matt O.
     
  8. Jobst Brandt

    Jobst Brandt Guest

    Sandy Christmus writes:

    > As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail, idiot!"

    On a tour over Tioga pass in Yosemite National Park our group pulled over to the edge of the road to
    regroup on the long climb to White Wolf. As we waited we saw a huge Southwind RV with trailing jeep
    roll up the road with an old lady hanging out the right side of the cab yelling something. She was a
    white haired skinny gal repeatedly yelling at the top of her frail voice "Git off the raeode
    aesshoule" with a strong country twang. Oh ain't retirement a joy!

    > I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    > riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting healthier,
    > etc. and then this chick really brings me down. I know others have had similar events, but I just
    > wanted to vent a little.

    Ah ah ahhh! The self righteousness you express here may have been visible to this driver. I can
    understand how such smugness can overwhelm anything else you were doing. I see this on occasion with
    bicyclists who show how safe and law abiding they are by looking back for following traffic and
    finding none, before raising their right hand, as if to be called on in class, before, during and
    after executing a "perfect" right turn exactly four feet from the curb.

    My thoughts are "Stay on the trail, idiot!"

    Jobst Brandt [email protected] Palo Alto CA
     
  9. John'S Cat

    John'S Cat Guest

    On Tue, 24 Jun 2003 03:45:20 GMT, [email protected] wrote:

    >http://draco.acs.uci.edu/rbfaq/FAQ/6.1.html
    >
    >Jobst Brandt [email protected] Palo Alto CA

    "Europeans seem able to accept bicycling as a proper activity for all ages. That is to say,
    motorists do not treat bicyclists with apartheid"

    UK must have been excluded from your definition of Europe. It would appear that, once more, where
    the US leads, the UK follows.
     
  10. Pbwalther

    Pbwalther Guest

    > As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail, idiot!"
    >

    >I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    >riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting heathier,
    >etc. and then this chick really brings me down.

    I have mixed feelings about bicycle trails. One of the big reasons is if I am riding on the road
    within a couple of miles of one of these, I tend to get more harrassment from mentally deficient
    drivers. Drivers seem to thing that once some money was spent on a trail used by children on
    tricycles and people walking unleashed dogs, then all cyclists should confine themselves to these
    substandard facilities.

    I do a predawn ride during the week and the early morning drivers are very courteous. I wonder if
    using a headlight and tail light makes me an honorary motorist or something. I would have
    predicted that early morning drivers would be crankier but in 4 years I have received only one set
    of obscene epiphets.

    On the weekends, I ride secondary roads in the morning and hardly a weekend goes by without obscene
    epiphets from some motorist. Shoot, just last Sunday I was given the honk and slice by a guy driving
    to church. This is not to denigrate church attendence or church goers. Such behavior just seems
    striking for its lack of consistency.
     
  11. Chuck Davis

    Chuck Davis Guest

    People like this are either ignorant or trying to yank your chain. Either way, the best thing you
    can do to get back at them is to smile and wave like they're a long lost friend or one of the nicest
    people you've ever met. It drives them crazy.

    Chuck Davis

    "Sandy Christmus" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    > trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been impressed with how cars have treated me for the most
    > part. I'm a conscientious cycler regarding the rules of the road. I was on the road this morning
    > heading up a small hill at about 17-18mph, keeping up with traffic coming to a 4-way stop. I slid
    > into the lane where there was a large gap so that I could make my left-hand turn at the stop. I
    > signaled appropriately and this 40-ish woman in an SUV sped up to come to my right and stop next
    > to me at the stop sign. I couldn't help but look over, chuckle and tell her I'm stopping at the
    > sign and turning. As I turn, she rolls her window down and yells, "Stay on the trail,
    idiot!"
    >
    > I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me. I think I'm doing such a good thing
    > riding my bike: reducing local congestion, reducing pollution, losing weight, getting heathier,
    > etc. and then this chick really brings me down. I know others have had similar events, but I just
    > wanted to vent a little.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Sandy
     
  12. On Tue, 24 Jun 2003 08:38:39 +0100, John's Cat <[email protected]> wrote:

    >"Europeans seem able to accept bicycling as a proper activity for all ages. That is to say,
    >motorists do not treat bicyclists with apartheid"
    >
    >UK must have been excluded from your definition of Europe. It would appear that, once more, where
    >the US leads, the UK follows.

    Yes, well, the UK never considered itself to be in Europe, leading to the invention of the phrase
    "mainland Europe" for use by people who got confused about that, ie, non-UK residents.

    But anyway, you get morons anywhere. Cars here tend to be aware that such a thing as a bicyclist
    exists, though, and thus are generally better at looking for them. Okay, so we stand a good chance
    of not surviving a collision at speed, but their bodywork hardly gets away unscathed, plus it's a
    major hassle (and of course the 90% of the people who are sane just don't to kill people, rather
    than being put off by consequences).

    Jasper
     
  13. Sandy Christmus <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > I've been riding to and from work for 3 months in lovely Vienna, VA, USA. The ride is part W&OD
    > trail, and a small bit on roads. I've been .............. chick really brings me down. I know
    > others have had similar events, but I just wanted to vent a little.
    >
    > Thanks.
    >
    > Sandy

    Go ahead and vent, you've earned it. And ignore trolls like Jobst, who talk down to you about your
    "self righteousness" and "smugness".

    Your doing a good thing, commuting to work and doing it safely. I commute to work also, across the
    city of San Diego, and I have to deal with traffic all the way. Like you, I also encounter bonehead
    motorists. I don't have any recommendations other that what has already been said. Just keep riding,
    your doing a good thing.

    Tom
     
  14. In article <[email protected]>, Thomas Reynolds
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    > Like you, I also encounter bonehead motorists. I don't have any recommendations other that what
    > has already been said. Just keep riding, your doing a good thing.

    The way I figure it, you're one tiny little step on the way to their enlightenment. Especially if
    both you and they are commuters, you probably take roughly the same routes at about the same times
    every day--so they may see you once a month or so, and as a cyclist you're easy to remember.
    Eventually they can't help but realize that you aren't causing anybody any trouble.

    If I get a chance to talk back, I try to keep it light. In person they don't always seem so
    interested in pressing the point anyway.

    --Bruce Fields
     
  15. Jasper Janssen wrote:

    > On Tue, 24 Jun 2003 08:38:39 +0100, John's Cat <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > >UK must have been excluded from your definition of Europe. It would appear that, once more, where
    > >the US leads, the UK follows.
    >
    > Yes, well, the UK never considered itself to be in Europe, leading to the invention of the phrase
    > "mainland Europe" for use by people who got confused about that, ie, non-UK residents.

    Always heard it referred to as "continental Europe", and the Brits themselves always seem to promote
    the view they are not "European".

    SMH
     
  16. Pat

    Pat Guest

    x-no-archive:yes

    > > >
    > > >UK must have been excluded from your definition of Europe. It would appear that, once more,
    > > >where the US leads, the UK follows.

    > > Yes, well, the UK never considered itself to be in Europe, leading to
    the
    > > invention of the phrase "mainland Europe" for use by people who got confused about that, ie,
    > > non-UK residents.
    >
    > Always heard it referred to as "continental Europe", and the Brits themselves always seem to
    > promote the view they are not "European".
    >
    >
    > SMH

    Yes, they have called it "The Continent"--- that is, the British called it that. The US had nothing
    to do with what the British want to call anything. The larger question is: Why don't you know that?

    Pat in Texas
     
  17. Tom Keats

    Tom Keats Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Sandy Christmus <[email protected]> writes:

    > I have to laugh a little, but it's still disturbing to me.

    Don't worry about it. There'll be plenty more where that came from.

    The last time I got yelled at was for not being far enough to the right. I was stopped over a
    traffic light detector loop.

    cheers, Tom

    --
    -- Silence is Foo -- Daffy Duck Above address is just a spam midden. I'm really at: tkeats
    [curlicue] vcn [point] bc [point] ca
     
  18. Peter Gardner <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > One carfull of passing geniuses suggested that I get off the copulating road. Only they didn't say
    > copulating. I was a bit surprised that the road could do that -- that asphalt certainly doesn't
    > look like it reproduced that way.

    No, no, you misunderstood their intentions. The road does not copulate with itself. Rather, it is
    *you* who is partnered with the road.

    Have you not had a day, where you get out there on your bike, and there is the road before you,
    warm, inviting? It feels good, it smells good, it almost seems to taste good to be on it. Some days
    you start out eager, knowing what lies ahead. Other days you start out a little reluctantly --
    surely you have better things to do -- clean the house, mow the lawn -- but here you are anyway,
    your bike and the road together, and after a little bit you know its going to be a good time.

    There are days when you dominate the road. It does your bidding. You groove on your control. There
    are other days when the road is your master. You submit to its demands. You get a perverted pleasure
    from the pain of your burning legs, your oxygen-starved lungs screaming for air.

    In any of these instances, though, you with your bike, and the road, are lovers. The term, "get
    off" as we all know, is a slang term that means to "derive pleasure". Thus, the encouraging, if
    crude, words,

    and the road make beautiful love together".

    To take this a step further -- in many mystical traditions, the physical act of love is understood
    as a metaphor for the spiritual union of human with the Divine. Can you ride as if you and the
    Road are One?

    The mudra of the single upraised digit is a reminder of this oneness: unity in Christ Consciousness,
    being at one with the Tao, La illaha Il' Allah, Adonai Echad. Thus, when someone makes this gesture
    at you, you should understand that they are wishing you the experience of this ecstatic union.

    The horn that is honked as the mudra is made is a meditation bell. Like a church bell, like the call
    of the muezzin's voice, it calls you into this sacred space of union, of you, your bike, and the
    road, as One.

    Thus, when the motorist honks his horn, raises the single digit, and makes his sincere invocation,
    you have but one response: to smile, to wave, and return to the joy of riding your bike.

    Warm Regards,

    Claire Petersky ([email protected])

    Home of the meditative cyclist: http://home.earthlink.net/~cpetersky/Welcome.htm

    Singing with you at: http://www.tiferet.net/

    Books just wanna be FREE! See what I mean at: http://bookcrossing.com/friend/Cpetersky
     
  19. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On Tue, 24 Jun 2003 15:14:00 GMT, Jasper Janssen <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Yes, well, the UK never considered itself to be in Europe

    "Fog in Channel - Continent cut off"

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com Advance
    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
    between the engineer removing the BT service and the same engineer connecting the same equipment on
    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
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