what am i?

Discussion in 'rec.sport.unicycling' started by Golden Chicken, Aug 24, 2004.

  1. Going around town on my uni I am not sure what I am and where I should
    ride. I sometimes ride on sidewalks and on pedestrian paths, sometimes
    on bicycle paths. I don't feel very good on either. The pedestrians look
    intimidated as I come on my 24" helmet and all. They keep themselves on
    the fringes and gaze at me with fright in their eyes. On bicycle paths I
    become worried for my own safety. It is not always easy to check up
    behind my back before doing sideways movement (also known as a wobble)
    and if there is a fast bike coming up from behind in that moment ...

    I e-mailed the authorities here in Sweden and they claim that a uni is
    to be counted as a one-wheeled bicycle. That should take care of my
    identity crisis but I will probably continue to ride where it feels
    best. Sometimes even the streets are the best option.
     
    Tags:


  2. nickjb

    nickjb Guest

    I always ride where I consider it to be most sensible. On the road if
    it is quiet, on the pavement if the road is busy. Cycle paths are ideal
    but not very useful over here. These days I mostly ride off-road anyway
    :)


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  3. hecklar

    hecklar Guest

    I have pretty good control now so pedestrians don't - and have no reason
    to - panic when i ride by them on the sidewalk. If you aren't that
    comfortable on the uni, maybe you should practice some more before
    riding close to people.

    So, when i'm on busy streets, i stick to the sidewalk. When i'm on side
    streets, i usually use the road, but the sidewalk is just a good.

    Just practice so that you are comfortable riding perfectly straight,
    making quick turns to get around people, and riding slow enough so that
    when you can't get around people you can tail them without falling
    off.

    That's my advice anyway.


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    hecklar
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  4. Mikefule

    Mikefule Guest

    If you search the forum, you will find various threads on "Unicycling
    and the law" and that type of thing. The law varies from country to
    country, and from state to state, or province to province, so there is
    no universal answer except to use common sense.

    My rule of thumb is: if you look like a cyclist, and act like a cyclist,
    you will be treated like a cyclist. If you look like a pedestrian and
    act like a pedestrian, you will be treated like a pedestrian.

    You must always bear in mind that you are the unexpected. You might
    frighten pedestrians, or you might irritate motorists. The onus is on
    you to avoid coming into conflict with other people who are going about
    their normal business in a legitimate way.

    I tend to act as follows:

    Back lanes and quiet roads: Coker or 28, with cycle helmet and, where
    appropriate, fluorescent top. Ride sensibly, with plenty of margin for
    error, and dismount if in any doubt at junctions or crossings.

    Cycle paths: pretty much the same.

    Pavements/sidewalks: OK on a 24. Always give way to the pedestrians.
    Dismount if in any doubt.

    I have ridden a 24 with very short cranks on the road. It attracted
    hostility from the less highly evolved motorists.

    Too much safety equipment can give a bad impression. I think commuting
    or road riding requires a helmet and wristguards. I think if you were
    armoured like a knight of old, you'd attract adverse reactions.

    And if a police officer or other person in authority stops you, don't
    try to give a clever legalistic answer. An apology and a smile will
    keep you out of trouble more often. Look like you're meant to be there,
    look like you're riding safely, and look like you're being courteous and
    considerate, and you should be OK.


    --
    Mikefule - Roland Hope School of Unicycling

    Everyone should be fatuous for 15 minutes.
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  5. Naomi

    Naomi Guest

    "Golden Chicken" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    >
    >
    > Going around town on my uni I am not sure what I am and where I should
    > ride. I sometimes ride on sidewalks and on pedestrian paths, sometimes
    > on bicycle paths. I don't feel very good on either.



    I think the idea is to keep the pedestrians on your side. Let them think you
    are an interesting novelty. If you are not super smooth or if the pedestrian
    is old and/or likely to be frightened easily then, if at all possible, stop
    and lean on a fence or tree until they have passed by . Certainly do not
    weave expertly and rapidly between them: they have no idea of your
    competence, and inherently regard a unicycle as a piece of circus
    equipment., And circuses are where people do dangerous things. Therefore
    what you are doing is dangerous. QED. You can see their logic and you
    cannot blame people for their lack of knowledge, why should they have any
    reason to understand or research this pastime?

    It may offend some unicyclists, but if told off for riding on the
    pavement by the authorities I would emphasize to them the dangers of riding
    a "wobbly toy" on the roadway. If told off for riding on the road then I
    would suggest that it is frightening to pedestrians to be riding on the
    pavement. Convince everyone that you care, as indeed you should, but
    exaggerate and twist the argument in your own direction. And ride where
    you think there is greatest safety for all. Choose if possible lightly
    populated walkways. Choose your machine carefully: a coker at full blast on
    a pavement would worry a fully grown Brahma bull, were it walking along that
    same pathway. Unicycling seems to be growing in popularity, and if it gets
    any sort of status amongst teenagers then Roger is going to make a fortune
    and we will need to have the ground rules established. A skateboard is I
    think far less threatening than a unicycle to Joe Average, and look at the
    bad press the boarders have managed to achieve.
    Lets not get ourselves that bad reputation, once (if the teenagers en masse
    arrive, it will happen anyway: one reason that I, for one, am not too keen
    to see the sport expand rapidly. I do not want the local council to spend
    my council tax building me a unicycle park, an indian reservation for one
    wheel.



    Naomi
     
  6. In article <[email protected]>,
    "hecklar" <[email protected]> wrote:


    > Just practice so that you are comfortable riding perfectly straight,
    > making quick turns to get around people, and riding slow enough so that
    > when you can't get around people you can tail them without falling
    > off.



    Good point. Especially about being able to go real slow. I am not there
    yet.



    >
    > That's my advice anyway.
    >
    >
    > --
    > hecklar
    > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
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  7. Klaas Bil

    Klaas Bil Guest

    On Tue, 24 Aug 2004 11:56:14 GMT, Golden Chicken wrote:

    >I e-mailed the authorities here in Sweden and they claim that a uni is
    >to be counted as a one-wheeled bicycle.


    Firstly, that is a contradictio in terminis, and secondly, it doesn't
    help unless either the law explicitly states that that one-wheeled
    bicycles have to follow the rules for regular bicycles, or if there
    are specific rules for one-wheeled bicycles (but the latter I dare to
    doubt).

    In the Netherlands, formally, a person riding a unicycle seems to be a
    pedestrian, the unicycle being a toy. However, I tend to behave as a
    bicyclist, especially when I am on the 29'er since I go at bike speeds
    with it.

    Klaas Bil - Newsgroup Addict
    --
    "The more you think, the less you have to do. - Leo Vandewoestijne"
     
  8. evil-nick

    evil-nick Guest

    When in doubt dismount. Sometimes I juts stop riding and walk past the
    pedestrain coming the other way. If there's space I ride on the grass
    next to the sidewalk. If the road isn't busy I ride off the sidewalk.
    I'm lucky to live in a small town, and people are starting to get used
    to me, and what I do on and off road... but the fall semester is
    starting, which means a whole new bunch of university students to amaze
    (or at least sing the circus song ;))


    --
    evil-nick - Going Through Uni Withdrawal!!!

    Never kick a unicyclist in the groin... it will only make them grow
    stronger...

    My gallery:
    http://evil.linuxfreak.ca/uni.html
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  9. I use a rear-view mirror fastened to my glasses to see behind me. That
    may help with the bicyclists. You can also get them that attach to a
    helmet.


    --
    kokomojuggler - Coker Rider

    Kokomo Juggler
    -All Glory to God
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  10. In article <[email protected]>,
    [email protected] (Klaas Bil) wrote:

    > On Tue, 24 Aug 2004 11:56:14 GMT, Golden Chicken wrote:
    >
    > >I e-mailed the authorities here in Sweden and they claim that a uni is
    > >to be counted as a one-wheeled bicycle.

    >
    > Firstly, that is a contradictio in terminis,



    Not in Swedish where a bicycle is called a cycle (cykel).


    > help unless either the law explicitly states that that one-wheeled
    > bicycles have to follow the rules for regular bicycles, or if there
    > are specific rules for one-wheeled bicycles (but the latter I dare to
    > doubt).



    I guess legislators have little experience from unicycles, what they are
    and how they behave. And the range makes the phenomena even more
    complex; a uni being anything from a 16" up to a coker. Or a giraffe!
    Now, where are you supposed to ride a giraffe through town?

    This wide diversity in itself speaks for dealing with unis the way you
    deal with bicycles from which there also are many kinds; tricycles,
    tandems, velomobiles, recumbents, tallbikes, kids bikes, special models
    for disabled persons etc etc



    >
    > In the Netherlands, formally, a person riding a unicycle seems to be a
    > pedestrian, the unicycle being a toy. However, I tend to behave as a
    > bicyclist, especially when I am on the 29'er since I go at bike speeds
    > with it.
    >
    > Klaas Bil - Newsgroup Addict
     
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