November 7, 2014

Dear Person on a Bicycle

Dear person on a bicycle,

Hi, how are you? I hope you are doing well, enjoying your day today and the privilege you get while riding your bike. You looked rather chipper and just filled with joy while almost losing your life the other day.

You probably noticed I chose not to address you as a bicyclist. I chose not to address you that way because in my eyes you are not one. You think you can sit on your bike and ride along, enjoy the brisk fall morning hours on your vehicle of choice, get a little tan in as well since the sun decided to show up earlier than anticipated, and just be as free as a bird. Let me tell you one thing, and one thing only. Obey the traffic rules. OBEY the traffic rules!!

I don't care where you are from, who you are, what you do, and why you ride a bike to work or school or just for fun. I get it, I love to ride my bike as well. I do. It is indeed a fantastic feeling to be physical, outside, and moving instead of sitting in a car, polluting the area, paying for stupid {yet, decreasing} gas prices and being stuck in traffic. I know it. I feel and hear you. This feeling doesn't give you the right or permission to be stupid, it also doesn't give you the permission to not care, and it certainly doesn't give you the permission to just think you can do whatever while riding your precious two-wheeler. 

Driving is a privilege, not a right!!!! 

As a person driving anything, and in this case riding a bicycle, you should and actually must obey to traffic rules. A stop sign is a stop sign. A red light is a red light. A yield is a yield. Look and signal before you turn or change lanes. You get it. Right? It is very easy. You feel protected by whoever came up with funny ways of saying "three-feet distance to bicyclists is a must, and if not, then slow down" and "oh, it is never your fault, because cars are bigger and heavier and blablabla". Oh yes, we should share the road. I totally agree. And yes, cars are bigger, heavier, and could destroy you. You don't want that. No car driver wants that. No pedestrian wants that. So think before you hop on your bike next time and ride along in total denial of traffic rules and oblivious of what is around you.

I saw you. There was a four-way stop area. Everyone stopped and my turn came to turn. I saw you. I also saw you didn't give a crap about even slowing down, or thinking you should stop for a stop sign. There were at least eight cars around all waiting for their turn. I saw you. You? You just kept going.  You didn't see me. You didn't see any other person. You just smiled and kept going. I love life, and I will never harm anyone or anything, but oh my, was I glad I had my window down yelling at you and giving you my two cents of what you should and shouldn't do. You think you have the right to just ignore rules, drive through everything you feel fits your schedule and size, and think you are the boss. You are wrong.

I don't care what others say. I learned that when we learn traffic rules early on {and in this country you learn them early enough}, whether or not you are in a car, on a bike, or any other vehicle you must obey the law and follow traffic rules. This then means you must stop at a stop sign, just like everyone else. You also must stop at a red light, and not think you are genius by disobeying laws and color and signs just so you can get to your next appointment a few minutes earlier. You put yourself in danger. You may not realize this but you do. You play with life and with death. I don't know if you have a death wish but the way you looked like you certainly enjoyed your moment and were not thinking of leaving this crazy planet behind. So, next time you come to a stop sign and red light, please stop. Please obey the rules. If you are late, then please leave five to ten minutes earlier because, yes, traffic happens and you are not the only one trying to get to an appointment. You have no right to think you own the street. You own your life, and nothing else. 

So, dear person on a bicycle, reconsider stepping on that pedal if you cannot obey rules. Please don't drive your bike thinking you own the streets and nothing can happen to you. Think before you ride you bike. Obey the freaking rules just like everyone else is trying to. I will yell and honk at you again, and I will use my favorite word again if need be. I have no problem with that. Don't get offended. You live. You will get verbally hurt, and in all honesty, I have no problem with that either. You deserve the words I yelled at you. You really really really did.

With that being said, our roads are for whoever can and wants to drive a vehicle...may it be a car, a bicycle, a big heavy motorbike or tractor or what not. We should all obey traffic rules. It it my responsibility to be a good driver and a good pedestrian. It is yours as well. Rules are rules. They are made for a reason. I just feel that it has gotten out of control with people trying to protect bicyclist and blaming auto drivers for reckless driving. While those drivers are partially responsible when something like that happens, I know from experience and history that it is always the fault of two parties, that includes the lovely bicycle driver as well. Both parties need to look out, slow down and obey rules. Neither one has more or less responsibility. Neither one is better, and neither one has the right to think he or she is God. Just not happening. 

So, stay safe, obey rules, and share roads.
You are not the boss of the streets. No one is.

Until next time. I am sure.



images via 1 | 2 |


and yes, this all happened and yes, my window was down. it might not have been my finest moment but i was sooooo happy to have my window down and finally telling that one misbehaving, irresponsible and careless bicycle rider what i thought about him.


Krysten Quiles said...

Ugh. Try living in a college town. They all ride bikes and yet they don't seem to understand that they must obey the laws as well. It's ridiculous.

Sierra said...

Oh gosh. I'm sorry you had to deal with this crazy bicycle person. They do think they own the road sometimes! It is quite annoying and they are putting their life in danger. I would never trust a driver when I'm on a bike and ride in the middle of the street. I'm always stressed to do it because of the dangers.


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