20130807

Being A Jerk While Riding to Work

I had an encounter on my ride in this morning that's stuck with me all day.

It was a beautiful morning, and there were hardly any people on this particular part of the trail, so I slowed down and pulled over to the right to take a photo.  I was fumbling with my camera a bit and a guy passed me in the usual way - I wished him good morning, and he went on his merry way.  

Yeah the photo doesn't really do it justice.
After putting my camera away and getting back to my normal speed, a few minutes go by and I notice I'm about to overtake the guy that passed me before.  And yeah, I get competitive, but I wasn't racing anyone at the moment - he just happened to be going slower than my cruising speed.  

At this point, there are more people on the trail, and he looks over his shoulder before passing a pedestrian and sees me right behind him.  I wasn't drafting him, but I was certainly close.  Immediately he goes into full sprinting mode, which still wasn't faster than my current pace, so when there's a clear area to pass I give him a friendly "passing on your left" and start to pass.

Well, this guy would have none of it.  He goes into all out beast mode to keep me from overtaking him, and remember how I said there were more people on this part of the trail?  I lost my window and had to get back behind him to not hit any joggers or other pedestrians.  As soon as I was behind him, his pace slowed, and then the second time I had the chance to pass, he wouldn't let me by again.

Finally the trail was clear of people and I was able to sprint out.  That was the last I saw of him.

The reason it stuck with me, per se, is that even though he was being a bit rude, I realize that I might have been coming off as not the nicest person either.  Here he had passed me before while I was taking photos, and maybe he just thought I was trying to one-up him...really, I'm sure that with his bike he could have kicked me to the curb, but the speed he was cruising at would have made me late for work.  If he had maintained his speed that he was keeping when I was trying to pass, I would have gladly stayed back! 

So if you're reading this dude-who-probably-hates-the-girl-in-the-orange-jersey, I'm sorry if I ruined your day :/.  

As far as the photos go, I'm getting a little better at the whole panda thing.

The rule of thirds isn't exactly my priority here.

Well, okay, maybe not.

3 comments:

  1. Mmmmm, I don't think you did anything wrong at all!

    Myself and other female riders have found that some guys just don't like being passed! Maybe it's a male ego thing? Or maybe they are competitive? Who knows.

    I also find that if I'm wearing a skirt/dress, the number of guys who think they are faster than me and pass me at red lights instead of lining up behind me increase.

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    1. I think in general people dislike being passed, but I think that it amplifies if you're a woman and/or you're riding a certain type of bike that some people deem as "lower level," (basically anything other than a racing bike.)

      Your observations while wearing a dress are spot on, though the tradeoff around here is that motorists seem to treat you nicer if you're dressed up :P

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    2. Agreed! Motorists DO treat you better when you are dressed in nice 'civilian' clothes :)

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