It's coming up fast on Bike to Work Day in Denver tomorrow, a day when many fledgling cyclists will discover the joys of a commute on two wheels. But it's not all fresh air and feeling fine -- it can also be really scary -- so as a daily cyclist myself, I threw down some guidelines on how drivers and bikers alike can coexist in perfect harmony: Basically, don't be a dick.
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And that's all well and good, according to commenter Peter, but at the end of the day, it's the bicyclist's job to play nice -- because it's the bicyclist who's going to get his head popped like a grape if things go wrong:
I rode my bike as transportation in downtown DC for 2 years in addition to many years here and elsewhere. Colorado drivers are "peaches" in comparison. I've never gotten the finger, yelled at, or anything else from a driver. The reason is I follow one simple rule: between you and the car, the car always wins. Period. There is an attitude among some bikers that they are hot shit for riding in the city, as if its a tough guy event. It's not. Drivers will do what they do, they generally don't read articles like this, and if you are pissing them off then you are doing something that you shouldn't. As a cyclist, it's your job to be a f*cking ghost. Move in a way that drivers don't even know you are there, anticipate their bad behavior and remove yourself from bad situations (like riding in a car's blindspot), always yield - even if you technically have right of way. Trying to education someone on using a turn signal or whatever is a lost cause, instead assume no one will signal and vary your speed accordingly. It's not a competition, and if it were - you might win the court settlement for your bashed skull, but you really lost.
You're probably right, Peter -- but that doesn't excuse anybody from being a dick.