David Thompson
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April 07, 2019

Comments

Alice

As the repair man rummaged around in my gas oven, I tried to explain something to him about cyclists.

"Did I mention I'm vegan?"

Mark in Mayenne

People are often referred to by their vehicle. "We sank a ship", "I shot down a plane" kind of dehumanises the occupants, no?

The Phantom

Should we be refering to them by their scientific designation "Verminacious Roadkillicus" or in the vernacular, "speed bumps"?

Asking for a friend. ~:D

Mike

hints at what may be a factor

That. I get that every week.

David

That. I get that every week.

Horse riders, which we often encounter on those same country roads – and which, being even slower and requiring lots of clearance, you’d think might be more aggravating to motorists – don’t seem to attract the same level of opprobrium. Though, in my experience, horse riders are much more likely to be considerate than cyclists, especially groups of cyclists, and to have that courtesy repaid.

Karl

Leftists. Changing the world one collective noun at a time.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Well, courtesy towards other road users is a necessary social lubricant and, generally speaking, something to be encouraged.

Indeed, it should be encouraged particularly among cyclists, both pedal and motor, neither of which group seem to understand that a gaggle going below the speed limit with a mile long trail of cars unable to pass on a two lane road is not the best way to win friends and influence people. Here in civilization we are largely spared the sight of throngs of silly hatted people in Lycra who shouldn't be, but we are afflicted with antediluvian Walter Mitty geezers in "biker" uniforms on their tarted up 900 pound (weight, not money) cruiser Harleys imagining themselves to be be Sonny Barger.

People are often referred to by their vehicle.

"I'm a tanker", said the Person of Armored Tracked Vehicle; "I'm a trucker", said the Person of Semi...

A solution for the average driver, though the response of the Person of Repair should have been, "I'm not here for a lecture, fix your own damn oven."

RNB

Many years ago (when my sons were still small), my family used to ride our (very low-tech) bicycles on a nearby biking path, that used to be a railway right-of-way. After finishing our ride one Sunday morning, we packed up the bikes in the back of our van and headed home. At one point, the biking trail crosses a highway and I stopped at the traffic light there. When the light turned green, something made me hesitate before pulling across.

And a bicyclist -- spandex leotard, 'Alien' helmet, and very expensive, high-tech bike -- flashed by, about a foot from my front bumper! If I had pulled forward in a normal fashion, he would have smeared himself across the right-hand side of the van at 35 or 40 miles an hour, possibly breaking out the side window and ending up in my younger son's lap, most likely killing himself.

I recovered enough in a couple of seconds to lean on the horn. And the bicyclist, climbing back up to the path, stood up on his pedals, turned, and gave me the finger. He could not be bothered to stop for a red light, showed no concern for his own life or that of a child in a car, but he could take the trouble to give me the finger. If I could have chased him up the path in a Honda Odyssey, I would have.

This guy is not all bicycle riders, but he is too many of them. I hate him because I do not want to have to live with having killed someone, not even accidentally, not even an arrogant fool.

Ian

I used to live on the Coast to Coast route in Cumbria, and they would frequently ride two or three abreast on narrow country roads, then signal for one to overtake when one couldn't see the road ahead and what might be coming along at a high rate of knots. They would often seem to get annoyed if one didn't, then, overtake.

Another form of entertainment at the local pub -- "besides humorous references to violence against cyclists" -- was bitching about motorists who drive at 40mph on 60 roads then carry on at 40mph through villages. The commonality was and is the inconsiderate behaviour of these road users, not what kind of exhibitionist clothing they wear in front of children at the pub.

David

This guy is not all bicycle riders, but he is too many of them.

It occurs to me that if you were to suggest that a significant number of motorists are aggravating and inconsiderate, this would be unlikely to provoke much denial from other motorists, who doubtless spend a fair amount of time faced with this reality. But to suggest that, say, an equal proportion of cyclists are aggravating and inconsiderate seems more likely to result in denial – often quite indignant denial – from other cyclists. There is, I think, a broad difference in attitude. Cyclists, in aggregate, seem to regard themselves as loftier and more pious. As if an air of piety – which is to say, self-flattery - somehow disproves selfish inclinations.

Jon

Is this one of those threads that start claiming that since you've once met a bad cyclist, all of them deserve to die?

If riding a bike is how someone pursues life, liberty and happiness, why should anyone else be able to interfere with that just because they're in a car?

If might is right, as many suggest when it comes to cyclists, every car driver is free meat to anyone driving a truck.

Consider the world you really want to build.

David

Is this one of those threads that start claiming that since you’ve once met a bad cyclist, all of them deserve to die?

[ Raises eyebrow. Checks thread. ]

Are you feverish?

pst314

Cyclists, in aggregate, seem to regard themselves as loftier and more pious.

"Holier than thou" is a perennial justification for evil.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Are you feverish?

Cyclists, in aggregate, seem to regard themselves as loftier and more pious.
Sam

Should we stop using the word ‘cyclist’?

I once worked for a company on its dying breath and some days business was so slow we’d just close shop and have a few beers. The guardian should really consider such an approach.

Forbes

We could do as Sarah Storey suggests in her new role as Sheffield’s cycling and walking commissioner

There's your problem, right there...a cycling and walking commissioner!

We joke around using the euphemisms of 'speech police' and 'thought police' for fascist tendencies seen in public life, but a commissioner for cycling and walking is straight out of Monty Python (if not actually envisioned by them).

Daniel Ream

Is this one of those threads that start claiming that since you've once met a bad cyclist, all of them deserve to die?

No. Next question.

I grew up in a college town, and every couple of years or so the local Cyclist Community would get het up about some damn thing and decide to engage in a disruptive ride where the mob would slowly cycle from one of the universities to the town hall (a distance of somewhat less than 5 km).

The local police force's response was to show up fifteen minutes before the (well-publicized in advance) event and inform the cyclists that the second they hit a public road, they would be ticketed for any and all violations of the Highway Traffic Act that applied to bicycles, such as failure to have bells, lights, rearview mirrors, etc. Since these are HTA violations, they count as points on your driver's license. Stopped the protest before it even started.

PiperPaul

"Cyclists, in aggregate, seem to regard themselves as loftier and more pious."

Well, they are saving the planet, after all.

/sarc

MC

@Jon - you might want to get the lycra pants in a larger size mate; constriction is clearly affecting the bloodflow to your brain.

aelfheld
[...] because they often dress differently and move in a mechanical way, and drivers cannot see their faces [...]

Interesting.

I always thought cyclists were subject to distain & ridicule due them being smug, pretentious prigs who don't think traffic laws are any of their concern.

pst314

Instalanch:
https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/326880/#respond

Hide your valuables and put down extra sawdust on the floor.

Killer Marmot

I used to comment on The Guardian all the time. It was a great place to do battle with the loony left. But I removed my account about 18 months ago.

Why? First, the number of articles you could comment on greatly diminished, and the time window for commenting on those few articles that were open was reduced to a few hours. Not enough time for an on-line debate to even get warmed up. Also, their moderation became draconian, clearly in violation of their own stated standards.

This is a case in point. This article is so off-the-charts stupid that it would normally be inundated with critical posts. But the editors -- likely suspecting this -- declined to subject it comments. That's too bad. I think having one's views exposed to criticism improves one's thinking and writing over time. Without constant feed back, you can become increasingly untethered from reality, drafting ever further into a fantasy world.

pst314

Killer Marmont: "Comment Was Free".

David

No. Next question.

To avoid further confusion, or fits of lurid supposition bordering on paranoia, I don’t in fact spend my evenings wishing for the destruction of cyclists as some notional group. When I encounter them in traffic – which isn’t often, at most once a week - I generally assume that, like most other road users, they’re just people trying to get from one place to another. However, it has been my impression that cyclists, at least those I encounter, are a little more inclined to inconsiderate behaviour, and the frequency seems high, relative to their numbers.

Again, this isn’t the result of decades of traffic analysis, merely an impression, and one that may have been amplified by the fact that any aggravation is likely to be slow-moving and therefore lingering. As mentioned in passing here.

Killer Marmot

The left is obsessed over language, as if 1984 were an instruction manual. They seem to believe that if a word carries a negative connotation then all you need do is change the word and the negativity evaporates. Thus "moron" because "mentally retarded" becomes "special needs" becomes "learning disabled."

But if the root cause of the negative connotation continues, it's futile. People quickly escape the language straight jackets that the left wraps them in by changing the perceived meanings of things.

David

Instalanche

Shred these. Flush that. And for God’s sake, hand out the breath mints.

WTP

Is this one of those threads that start claiming that since you've once met a bad cyclist, all of them deserve to die?

I used to enjoy long bike rides, especially out in the country away from traffic. Used to do short triathlons and such. Gave it up about 10-15 years ago as it somehow, like what seems like everything else, became political and boorish. I still do open water swims and many of the regulars that do so are also bikers. I can tell them from the other swimmers by the lofty, pious way they can't shut up about themselves, their diets, and their equipment. Nattering, nattering, nattering. I'm tempted to run them over after swims not because of the menace that they make of themselves on the road but because THEY CANT SHUT UP about themselves.

WTP

However, it has been my impression that cyclists, at least those I encounter, are a little more inclined to inconsiderate behaviour, and the frequency seems high, relative to their numbers.

And I might also note per my comment above, as more people who once enjoyed cycling as exercise decide that it's not worth the hassle of being associated with such jerks drop out of the hobby or whatever, the concentration of jerks increases. Combine that with the image they project and the downright commie/fascist attitudes of many in the "Critical Mass" movement (see their variously themed fisty logos), the poor reputation of cyclists as a group is more and more deserved.

Darleen

My neighborhood consists of quite a few families with kids. I see them riding bikes and scooters and having a good time. I see kids biking to school in the mornings.

I used to enjoy biking for recreation, but some of the costumed adults who don't want to share the road, but dominate it, soured my interest in keeping up with it. Leave it for the joy of the kids.

Darleen

Though, in my experience, horse riders are much more likely to be considerate than cyclists

I live at the north end of Corona bordering on Norco aka HorseTown USA. Lots of riders, especially in the mornings and I agree. They are some of the most polite people who share the road (lots of horse trails through out the city but they do have to cross at intersections).

David

[Horse] riders… are some of the most polite people who share the road

That may be related in part to the fact that, so far as I can see, there’s little piety attached to horse-riding. Here at least, it doesn’t seem to have any obvious or self-elevating political connotations. In contrast, some cyclists seem to regard their cycling almost as a form of activism.

[ Edited. ]

Ten

Anyone who drives knows cyclists are assholes, and any cyclist who encounters traffic knows drivers are assholes. That vicious circle is rivaled only by bikers, the biggest assholes there are probably due in part to how they choose to comport themselves.

But then that vicious circle has a way of entertaining one and all through the duality of a most excellent karma. https://youtu.be/qVpIxfwGDtI

Sort-Of-Mad Max

silly hatted people in Lycra"

...complete with Tour de France-style numbered Lycra shirts. I've dubbed such poseurs 'Bike-o the Clown', and it seems to resonate.

My best Bike-o the Clown story involves me pulling my car up to a stop sign, and watch as a bicyclist in full motley slowly blew through the stop sign to my right, all the while glaring and wagging his finger at me to not dare make the right turn I intended(complete with blinky light thing flashing), which would have affected him not at all.

He didn't like my obvious mirth at his idiocy in the least.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...the poor reputation of cyclists* as a group is more and more deserved.

Like the old lawyer joke, 99% give the other 1% a bad name...


*Pedal or motor

pst314

The left is obsessed over language, as if 1984 were an instruction manual. They seem to believe that if a word carries a negative connotation then all you need do is change the word and the negativity evaporates. Thus "moron" because "mentally retarded" becomes "special needs" becomes "learning disabled."

Thus "homeless", which once meant "suffered some catastrophe such as house burning down" now means "bum" plus "lazy or insane or just plain bad".

pst314

as a bicyclist in full motley slowly blew through the stop sign to my right, all the while glaring and wagging his finger at me to not dare make the right turn I intended(complete with blinky light thing flashing)

I almost killed a cyclist that way, as I slowed to turn right on green and was swiftly overtaken on the right by a clueless cyclist. A two-wheeled Darwin Award waiting to happen.

Darleen

Then there are homeless cyclists.

Forbes

As I cyclist, I find most of the remarks here disturbing--if only because they are mostly true regarding many cyclists inconsiderate (and often reckless) behavior. It's also why I'm a bit like Groucho on joining clubs--their reputations for nattering on about their hobby horse makes joining even less appealing.

I learned long ago not to play dodge ball with cars in traffic...

Smallish Bees

Please note: Laker referred to the "repair man." She did not say, "the man who owns his own business repairing drains so I (who am incompetent with all things material) do not have to do it." She did not say, "The man whose physical labor is equal to or superior in value to mine, a person who taps keys for money." She said, "repair man." I can almost see his butt-crack and inappropriate views from here.

Demanding you change YOUR language is a hallmark of the left. It has nothing to do with the dignity of the people being defended; it has everything to do with putting you on your back foot, in defensive position, trying not to appear backward, uneducated, and boorish.

I had this experience not too long ago with my (very happily) EX-brother-in-law, who tried to shame me for referring to a slave, rather than "a person who had been enslaved." Because, you see, I was dehumanizing the human being who had been enslaved, and was thus implicitly condoning or taking part in the enslavement.

My (very happily) EX-brother-in-law, who is intolerable in 10,000 ways, loves to make everyone around him uncomfortable. He's been diagnosed with the DSM-IV personality defect of narcissism. Making others uncomfortable is his "kibble," which makes him happy, even if--or especially because--it's unpleasant and makes others feel terribly about themselves.

I hate when people try to put me on my back foot in this way. It's a tactic of warfare, not one of sensitivity, nor inclusivity, nor of humanizing the other. It's an intolerable behavior.

And not only that: It's almost textbook Phariseeism. Matthew 23:4 describes the Pharisees and the lawyers in this way: "They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger." Our modern Pharisees will put linguistic weights on everyone else, which they wouldn't dream of bearing themselves. Hence it's an horror to refer to "cyclists," but A-OK to say, "repair man." Ms. Laker, show me how the two terms are substantively different.

Smallish Bees

Well, that was quite a rant there. My apologies. Two pots of tea to wake myself up in the afternoon, and the prolixity becomes a bit unmanageable.

David

Well, that was quite a rant there. My apologies.

I almost fainted.

Pogonip

I had to flutter my fan.

Unlike our host, I have only one fan, and the poor guy just hates being fluttered.

Sort-Of-Mad Max

"I almost killed a cyclist that way"

Oh, I described the interaction in a easily-misunderstood fashion; my sooper jeenyus was running the stop sign at the intersection ninety degrees to my right, crossing my front from right to left. Since I was turning right, I couldn't possibly have anything more to do with him.

And it was a him. It's always been men who pull this baloney. You guys!

Your incident sounds much more dangerous.

pst314

Your incident sounds much more dangerous.

It felt like my heart and stomach dropped through the car seat onto the pavement.

Smallish Bees

I almost fainted.

I always keep smelling salts on hand for just such situations as these. It's part of my bug-out kit, in case of natural catastrophes, acts of war, or social awkwardness.

Ten

I almost killed a cyclist that way, as I slowed to turn right on green and was swiftly overtaken on the right by a clueless cyclist.

A moped operator - deploying the term loosely - did this to me from down the curb-side bike lane. I had rights to merge right on red, but Moped crossed mine and then four more lanes of cross street at a now-constant velocity of 30mph at the precise instant the light turned. Passing on the right at-speed because why not.

And it was a him. It's always been men who pull this baloney.

Not this one. Probably had a live cell phone up her helmet.

Darleen

She sounds happy.

pst314

She sounds happy.

Thomas Sowell has pointed out how racial and tribal quotas have often led to war. Our moral betters on the left do not seem to realize this...or else that is their goal.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

She sounds happy.

Muffet McGraw.

Perhaps if she just changed her name, sued her parents, had a Snickers, or didn't coach a sport no one watches, she would be.

juliaeryn

I live in an inner city area that is slowly being 'gentrified'. There is the combination of govt housing and hipsters. Most of the people in Govt Housing are a delight, but there are a handful of households just full of the worst people ever who are constantly, brazenly, commiting burglaries, setting fires and attacking people. Consequently there are always police around (what they actually do is beyond me, but they are 'around.') This has made for a great 'cycling' culture as all the cyclists and motorists (who tend to be the hipsters and are cautious of the police) know there is a 33% chance you will come across a police car when out and about. Therefore no one engages in too much stupid or obnoxious behaviour.

My husband used to live in Melbourne in a very trendy inner city suburb that is exclusively populated by hipsters, enviromums etc etc. He told me a story where he at a busy intersection and a motorist (a young woman in a mid range car wearing smart casual office wear) had to slam on the brakes (they would have been travelling at about 50-60km) because a dozy hippychick had ridden off the footpath to cross against the lights at a pedestrian crossing right in front of the motorist and into two lanes of oncoming traffic. The motorist was understandably shocked at pissed and yelled out the window the girl on the bike. Who then, with her two idiot hippy friends proceeded to circle the car screaming 'Just chill, I love yooou!!" meanwhile the motorist s in the car, while traffic backed upbehind her, just seething and waiting for the hippies to continue to their drum circle or whatever.
Its not the worst thing I've heard, but certainly the most infuriating!
That's

Schnapps

The problem cyclists are those who conceive of themselves as urban warriors.

There are badly-behaving Mr Toad drivers, but they've been flagged in the culture for 100+ years as Mr Toad drivers, and driver education tries to nip it in the bud. The urban warrior cyclists on the other hand, see themselves as fighting the good fight against the Mr Toads, even if it looks pretty 50-50 to neutral onlookers.

The warrior cyclists are all the more on their high horse, to mix a metaphor, because they can recast petty disputes over square yards of tarmac as a crusade for environmentally friendly Jane Jacobs urbanism against the suburban gas-guzzlers.

Penrod

Take a cue from the people who drive tanks: bikers and pedestrians are properly referred to as ‘crunchies’.

As a truck driver, though, I believe I shall settle for hooking up a snow plow blade and going about my business.

Pogonip

What the coach is doing is flagrantly illegal under U. S. Federal law.

Richard Cranium

I beg to differ. 'Crunchies' are mechanized infantry. The ones you mentioned are 'squishies'.

Chester Draws

Does the original author think that if we stop using the term "cyclist" we will think of them in some different way? That would be gruesome if true, because it would apply to all things.

A political party of the really extreme right could call itself "The Centrist Party We All Vote For" and it would come true? We could stop calling it the electric chair -- call it "the fun seat" say -- and support for capital punishment would rise?

The reality is that language doesn't shape thought in that way. For a start we can, and do, reason without using words. Moreover we apply our emotions to words, not vice versa. So if I don't like cyclists, calling them speople on bikes won't change my view on them, it'll merely carry my dislike across to another word.

[+]

As the repair man rummaged around in my gas oven, I tried to explain something to him about cyclists.

Worst. Porno. Ever.

David

So if I don’t like cyclists, calling them people on bikes won’t change my view on them, it’ll merely carry my dislike across to another word.

It does sound rather implausible, a glorified make-work project. And judging by this small sample, cyclists aren’t entirely swayed by the idea that the word ‘cyclist’ is the cause of their ills.

David

The urban warrior cyclists on the other hand, see themselves as fighting the good fight against the Mr Toads, even if it looks pretty 50-50 to neutral onlookers.

Well, quite. My own impression is largely based on country roads and especially groups of cyclists. The grouping does, I think, tend to engender a certain disregard for other road users.

At times, the obliviousness is quite extraordinary – to a degree that suggests wilful obstruction. On one occasion, at a junction near Chatsworth House, a group of six or seven cyclists decided to stop and chat, and laugh, at length, grouped abreast so as to obstruct the entire lane, and seemingly indifferent to both opportunities to move on and to the growing queue of cars trapped behind them. This went on for some time, maybe 30 seconds or so, an eternity in traffic time, until a lively sounding of horns reminded them of the normal courtesies. No acknowledgement of error was forthcoming. If anything, the air was one of petty triumph.

[ Edited. ]

grimble grumble

I am a cyclist, a pedestrian and an occasional driver. As a driver, I know that I have been careless around cyclists. Because of that, I know to be very careful around drivers.

When I go cycling, it is generally around Vancouver. I normally ride in traffic but I do plan my route to minimize my interaction with drivers. Also, I try to be courteous towards drivers (it seems safer that way). Since I always ride on roads, I constantly watch for dangers (hazards on the road, car doors, drivers/pedestrians/cyclists entering the roadway from the right, etc.) and plan accordingly. I have noticed quite a few drivers that actually look for cyclists and will wait for me to pass. They always get a wave in thanks for their attention and consideration. I do not wear earbuds or listen the music, etc., while riding so that I can hear vehicles coming up behind. I pay close attention to who is passing me, the frequency and the manner and, where possible, move over to make passing me easier.

I ride by myself and I completely understand the hostility towards cyclists that block the road. Group rides should be single file and I too get pissed off at those cyclists that ride shoulder to shoulder or who seem oblivious at the possibility that someone else might actually want to use the space with them (like the couple I ran into yesterday, or the girl that nearly rode head on into me today). Too many times I have had to dodge cyclists talking on their phones, taking selfies and/or recording video.

Of course, I do ride through the odd stop sign (and traffic light) where it is safe to do so. I have also noticed that drivers tend to expect me to run a 4 way stop sign, and they often wait for me to do so. They seem quite confused when I stop and wait for them to proceed (I follow driver rules in such situations) before I take my turn. Of course, if it is safe (i.e. there are no cars approaching), I will slow down but generally not stop for a red light or a stop sign. I know some drivers get upset at that. I am sorry that they have to stop (traffic laws and licenses and all that) but if the situation is safe, I am going to proceed.

Too date, I have been knocked off my bike by a pedestrian walking in a bike lane. That caused me to smack the back of my head on the concrete path (no helmut then). I woke up in the hospital with a hell of a concussion and required some staples to the back of my head. I had another pedestrian look at me as I approached before he then stepped out in front. That required immediate evasive action to avoid hitting him. That pissed me off and led to a physical encounter with him (which didn't work out well for him so I doubt he will ever do that again). As a result, I tend to avoid bike lanes (the segregated, walled-in kind) nowadays because I find them more dangerous than riding in traffic (they are so narrow and often filled with riders of various ability and focus).

I have had an altercation with one driver (same driver on 2 separate occasions in 2 different parts of Vancouver) who wanted to yell and scream at me while I was cycling. I had no idea what that was about but each time he was very irate and aggressive about something and then he just ran off. I have had other drivers cut me off by making unsignalled right-hand turns as I am approaching to pass. I have a habit of smacking the car hoods to get their attention (and the dents are there to remind them). I often have drivers pull onto the shoulder to pass driver(s) waiting to make a left turn, and who do so with out bothering to check whether it is safe to do so (one driver apologized profusely to me, which was nice). I have learned to watch traffic to anticipate that.

I could go on and on but I think you get the point. I know that cyclists often piss drivers off, and sometimes I may act like one of them. At least I am starting to look good (better?) in my spandex.

Hippogryph

I would have said "Pedal Vermin".

MC

He's been diagnosed with the DSM-IV personality defect of narcissism.

I remember when they were just called arseholes.

Congratulations to your sister!

Farnsworth M Muldoon

And judging by this small sample, cyclists aren’t entirely swayed by the idea that the word ‘cyclist’ is the cause of their ills.

The semantics are a smokescreen for the real problem that is poor driving.

Yes, a smokescreen for poor driving, as seen in this video, that has everything summed up by the driver. The whole video has lots of smokescreen (and instant karma) if you have the time.

David

as seen in this video,

[ Triggering intensifies. ]

David

as seen in this video,

I’ve now fallen down a rabbit hole of Why Cyclists Have A Terrible Reputation compilation videos. Curse you, Muldoon.

Setting aside the Ducking-And-Diving Stealth Contingent - who seem determined to make their trajectories impossible to predict by other road users (or indeed pedestrians, or even the most powerful supercomputer) - what grates are the, as it were, political cyclists, the ones who seem to relish obstructing and frustrating other people, as if they were making some selfless and heroic point.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...the ones who seem to relish obstructing and frustrating other people, as if they were making some selfless and heroic point.

That, and their utter contempt of the traffic laws by which they are supposed to abide. By contrast, where I live and travel, frequently on two lane roads, there is an abundance of agricultural vehicles which, by the laws of my corner of South Flyoverlandia, have the right of way. All of these vehicles are slow, sometimes take up most of both lanes, but I have yet to see one oblivious to traffic behind and which didn't pull over when possible to give way to let others behind pass, signal to let the vehicles behind know it is safe to pass, or otherwise try to accommodate faster traffic.

There is no reason, other than rampant dickweedery, why members of the organ donor class who form road clots as in the video can't do likewise and form a single (even double) line and let normal humans pass.

Curse you, Muldoon.

David

agricultural vehicles… are slow… but I have yet to see one... which didn’t… try to accommodate faster traffic.

That’s been my experience too. I’ve seen plenty of mutual acknowledgement, which goes a long way.

WTP

what grates are the, as it were, political cyclists,

Y’all are aware of the Critical Mass movement, yes? Not sure where that is on people’s radar as some fairly conservative friends of mine who cycle a lot seem oblivious to the more nefarious aspects of this organization/group/whatever.

David

Y’all are aware of the Critical Mass movement, yes?

There is, or was, a monthly clustering of them at the local university. The claim is that “resisting the problem culture of the car” – i.e., gratuitously blocking traffic for a couple of hours or until the police eventually move them on - is some noble environmentalist crusade; but I see the usual pile of misfits, inadequates and career-agitators, for whom any cause will do as long as it entails grandstanding and being an irritation to random people.

[ Added: ]

On what I assume is the main UK website, they present themselves as right-on and happy-clappy, as if it were only a good-natured lark, a kind of mobile outdoor rave. But if you poke through their own videos, you’ll see them gleefully using force of numbers to obstruct and frustrate everyone else for as long as they can get away with it – blocking major roads, riding on pavements, causing minor accidents and harassing drivers, and generally exulting in the sense of mob power.

Same old same old.

Darleen

This should go well.

TomJ

Speaking as a vehicular cyclist who is infinitely more likely to be seen wearing tweed than Lycra, it is probably worth pointing out that when a chap on a bike encounters an inconsiderate driver he is much more likely to be (very briefly) in fear for his life than suffering irritation as the motorist encountering an inconsiderate cyclist is wont to do. This probably contributes to the radicalisation. As does the hyperbole of the sort seen in some of the posts above. Yes, some of the holier-than-thou types can be as irritating as the le Tour de Suburbia types, but I would contend that so are the "cyclists are a lower form of life" mob.

Nikw211

causing minor accidents and harassing drivers...

The video embedded in that website includes a scene that starts around 13:19 that is likely to raise a few questions about their behaviour, not to mention an eyebrow or two.

Firstly, the video editor(s) evidently thought the scene so important that it needed emphasising with a slow-motion effect as it starts off.

But what we are then treated to is the sight of four tall, fairly well-built scruffy-looking white men blocking in the driver of a car who soon turns out to be a well-dressed black woman on her own.

While I am not suggesting the Critical Mass activists in that scene are racists (I don't imagine they are), it is nevertheless striking how the optics do not cast them in what I suspect most people would consider to be a good light.

Yet rather than leave this shameful embarrassment to their cause on the cutting room floor of the editing suite, they seem to actually have seen it as some kind of victory worthy of celebration.

... and generally exulting in the sense of mob power

While the woman gives as good as she gets, you're still left with the image of four fairly big guys behaving like the worst kind of football hooligan, jeering and cursing at a lone woman who they have almost completely surrounded and whose path they have blocked.

One of the men seems to be complaining that she ran into him deliberately - but given that the video shows the cyclists swarming around the moving traffic such a minor collision must have been inevitable (and not a deliberate attempt to knock someone down, which seems to be their assumption).

The fact that all this is going on while dozens more of them are sweeping by whooping and cheering only makes it worse.

How they could ever imagine that this ugly, thuggish and barbaric episode would actually gain sympathy for their cause is quite the mystery.

David

How they could ever imagine that this… would actually gain sympathy for their cause is quite the mystery.

Well, yes, and much the same applies to the broader movement, or “unorganised coincidence,” or whatever those involved like to call themselves. Going out of your way to “outnumber the cars on the road” and aggravate other people – to make them late and miss appointments, flights, job interviews, etc. - isn’t an obvious way to make friends, or to persuade others of your imagined righteousness. Which may explain the shortage of sympathy among the wider public, on whom they like to impose.

But I’m sure the thrill of mob power is some compensation.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Y’all are aware of the Critical Mass movement, yes?

If you are not from South of the Line of Mason and Dixon, don't be culturally appropriating "y'all". However, regarding Critical Mass why is there never one of these around when you need it ?

Meanwhile, completely off topic, another charming and fetching young miss, a proud member of The Lunchables, offers us a new leftist casus belli*.


*(John Wayne Gacy was unavailable for comment)

David

another charming and fetching young miss,

Don’t fancy yours much.

Darleen

fetching young miss

Unless she's in clown college ... oh wait, most colleges qualify so ignore that ... that makeup is a warning, like the coloring poisonous frogs.

Jeff Mauney

"all the while glaring and wagging his finger at me to not dare make the right turn I intended"

That sort of behavior is why I carry a collapsible baton in the car as an instructional tool.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Don’t fancy yours much.

Oh come on, now, you wouldn't go arm in arm to war with her over a meme frog ? Turning Pepe into a clown is some serious Archduke Ferdinand level stuff.

(Meanwhile on the other side...)

"Gentlemen, hold your fire, don't shoot till you see the whites, no reds, make that greens, red or green, oh the hell with it, shoot before the neon blinds you"

David

Oh come on, now,

Another blessed maiden to enliven your dreams.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Another blessed maiden...

Not nearly polychromatic and pierced enough to be taken seriously, I'm afraid.

jabrwok

Not nearly polychromatic and pierced enough to be taken seriously, I'm afraid.

Based on the video, the face needs no such accoutrements to warn off any would-be suitors.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Speaking of lovely madamoiselles, this comely charmer brings her A game to smashing the patriarchy via biohazard by bleeding in a men's room.

...any gender can get their period...

Woke, man, woke. (finger snapping ensues)

David

this comely charmer brings her A game to smashing the patriarchy via biohazard by bleeding in a men’s room.

And once again the line between woke politics and mental illness shrinks to the thickness of a Rizla, as seen from space.

jabrwok

Meanwhile, the fabric of racism!

Nate Whilk

Trying to change the term is peak Orwell. And I guess they've never heard of the euphemism treadmill. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euphemism#Evolution

A few years ago, the Chicago NPR station posted a surprisingly reasonable article about cycling. http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/how-strictly-do-chicago-police-enforce-bike-traffic-laws-112992

Here's the end:
Lowy lives in Uptown, but drives his cab all around the city. And over the years, he’s seen quite a few accidents of bicyclists hitting cars, cars hitting cyclists, cyclists hitting pedestrians. “A majority of them,” he says, “was not the car's’ fault.”

[snip]

“Depending on the situation, bikes are a different story than cars,” Lowy says. He believes crowded and highly trafficked thoroughfares should be tightly enforced. But side streets, during off peak hours when there is little traffic, not so much.

“I'd be lying if I said I never disobeyed the law,” Lowy says. “[But] I don't run red lights. I'll run neighborhood stop signs, but I slow down dramatically and look…common sense is a big part of this.”

Steve E

(finger snapping ensues)

I'm told finger snapping can trigger anxiety among woke snowflakes. Can we please use "jazz hands" instead?

Daniel Ream

I am sorry that they have to stop (traffic laws and licenses and all that) but if the situation is safe, I am going to proceed.

That's interesting. Here in Ontario, regardless of whether you're on a bicycle, motorcycle or in a car, you are obliged to follow the HTA. Sailing through a stop sign on a bike can in theory get you nailed just as badly as running a stop sign in a car (i.e. points off your license, etc.) In practice it's rarely enforced, but it's possible and I've seen it used to shut down aggressive cycling activists. In high school, a friend of mine decided to remonstrate with a pair of beat cops who warned him about running a red light on his bike, to the point that they simply charged him with running the red. The result was that when he got his driver's license a year later he started three points in the hole.

Darleen
Using quantum theory to shape a theory of self-touching, Barad explains how a particle touches itself, and then that touching subsequently touches itself, releasing an infinite chain of touching touches.

Ok now, someone needs to fess up. Which group of people are submitting parody papers to embarrass publishers this time?

David

Ok now, someone needs to fess up.

It’s marvellous, isn’t it? In a demented and contemptible way, I mean.

David

Right, another episode of The Borgias and then I expire.

Play nicely. Use coasters.

jabrwok

It’s marvellous, isn’t it?

I should've known better than to think I'd encounter such a sterling example of Academia-speak before Our Gracious Host.

Steve E

Right, another episode of The Borgias and then I expire.

The last time you did that I ended up binge watching the entire Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes oeuvre.

Steve E

In practice it's rarely enforced..

And yet, in this same Ontario, I've seen cops pull kids, under 12, over for double-riding while riding on the sidewalk.

Daniel Ream

And therein lies the rub: it's entirely at the whim of the officer, which lends a certain capriciousness to the whole thing.

I should also note that in general in Ontario it's not legal to ride bicycles or motor scooters on the sidewalk, any more than it's legal to ride a motorcycle on the sidewalk. Again, indifferently enforced.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Can we please use "jazz hands" instead?

The ability to wave hands is abelist, so no, perhaps gentle ovine lowing ?

Marone !

This co-mingling that felt performs enacts what Alaimo...calls transcorporeality. Connecting felt with theories of touch and transcorporeality becomes a way to open up and re-configure different bodily imaginaries, both human and nonhuman, that are radically immanent and intensive; as an assemblage of forces and flows that open bodies to helices and trans connections.

Her mind is a raging torrent, flooded with rivulets of thought cascading into a waterfall of creative alternatives.

According to her curriculum vitae, Springgay has received $1,244,992 from the council since 2011 for research on various topics.

Sorry you folks up in The Great White North who have to wait a year to get your hip replaced because of budget woes, there is Important Research to be done.

The entire paper runs 11 pages plus two full pages of references, in which she cites her own previously published work...

I have this strange sense of deja vu.

There have been a number of publications taking up the concept of proceduralism in qualitative research. Manning (2016) has written from a research-creation perspective arguing that we need to let go of procedural driven methods.

I wonder if that might be because procedural driven research, what with that whole "reproducability" thing, can tend to prove or disprove some phony baloney theory ? Nah, couldn't be, this lot are straight shooters.

Lancastrian Oik

Cyclist.

I spent nigh on thirty years of my life driving fast cars in competition (that's despite my hailing from "some heathen backwater"* and having fuck-all money to spend on a dangerous hobby but making it happen anyway).

I suppose that makes me a racist.

*Band name.

Hopp Singg

I suppose that makes me a racist.

Better band name.

WTP

Heath N. Bakwaddrr - band name...misspelling was serendipitous so thought it best to keep it that way. Also note, a la Lynyrd Skynyrd or Molly Hatchet, no one in the band is named Heath or even Heathcliff...for obvious reasons. Some Heathen Backwater is an album name.

Steve E

I should also note that in general in Ontario it's not legal to ride bicycles or motor scooters on the sidewalk...

In general yes. Burlington, where I live, is the only municipality in Halton and one of only a few in Ontario that allows bicycles to ride on the sidewalk anywhere there are no bike lanes provided. Driving a bike on the sidewalks on the main street downtown is also prohibited. There are many more municipalites that allow children to ride on the sidewalks.

Steve E

...no one in the band is named Heath or even Heathcliff...

Yes, but which one's Pink?

Adam

They are all pink when getting out of the shower.

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