20120217

Stop Signs

Alright, there's gonna be a rant.  So for those of you who prefer something a bit more light hearted on this lovely Friday, here's a hilarious video of freestyling with an old steel step through frame.


Now that you've seen that masterpiece, I'll rant.

It seems like what we need is more education.   For both motorists and cyclists, really, because lets face it - there are an equal number of ignorant people out there on both sides.  Yes, there are plenty of angry motorists who rage at the cyclist legally taking the lane, but there are also a fair share of stop sign running loonies who cut off otherwise people driving perfectly legally. 

Yesterday I was riding and something interesting happened.  I stopped at a stop sign and was honked at by the car behind me.  There was another stop sign a few feet further up, and I stopped again.  The car behind me angrily honked twice before speeding off after I proceeded through the intersection.  This was not the first time I was honked at for stopping at a sign when I was legally supposed to.  I don't run stop signs. 

So we've got a class of motorists who get angry at cyclists for stopping at signs and obeying the law.  Fantastic.

We've also got a class of motorists who are obviously (and rightfully so) miffed at the cyclists who blatantly run the stop signs.  Now, there's a difference in running a stop sign when there's no one else at the intersection...and running them when the four way intersection is full and backed up.  And to be fair, these cyclists royally piss me off too, whether I'm in my car or on my bike.  People seem to expect cyclists to run signs - I can't tell you how many times I've come to an intersection and motorists wait, despite the fact they have the right of way, and seem completely baffled when I come to a stop and wave them through.  It seems to completely throw them off.

When I do happen to be riding with another cyclist who I see running stops, politely informing them that they should be stopping usually yields little more than a rude gesture or ignorant shrug.  I've only ever met one other cyclist who stopped at the stop signs with me - and we exchanged mutual respect for each other.

We need more education.  Cyclists need to know that bikes have to follow the same rules as cars, for stop signs as well as other things.  Motorists need to know that we are not only supposed to stop, but stopping and waving us through when it's not our right of way (though appreciated) can be dangerous. 

Come on guys, we're better than this.  If we demand the same rights as cars, we need to follow the rules.  Stop at the stop signs.  If that's too hard for you because it is so difficult to get moving once I stop then at least freaking stop at intersections where there are cars.  Have I mentioned I hate that argument?  That it takes too much energy to stop?  Really? 

And motorists: we have certain rights to the road.  Yes, I know some of us can be pretentious dicks, but every time you blow a sign, go over the speed limit, cut one of us off, or don't signal, you're disobeying the law as well. 

2012 Distance Count: 309 Miles | 497.3 Kilometers

No comments:

Post a Comment

Tell me your bike related thoughts!