Cycling in Sydney Australia
This morning I was riding a nice flat loop from Blacktown along Richmond rd, turn towards Windsor, stop at the bakery for coffee & pastry then return to Blacktown via Windsor rd.
Apart from the delicious pastry it was an uneventful ride. Perfect. Then as I approach the intersection of Windsor & Sunnyholt rd two tradies (big Leb looking blokes) thought it would be fun to scare a random cyclist.
So I'm cycling along in the bike lane minding my own business when the passenger of a tray top ute yells out something very loudly as they pass me very closely at high speed.
Yes, I'm startled but it's not the first time I've been heckled. Also with much glee, I realise I will be passing them - stuck in traffic in about 800 metres. So I ride on.
I take a quick sip from my 3/4 empty bidon. That won't be much use. I replace it in the cage & draw my 100% FULL bidon from the seat tube cage. I'm closing in.
Biding my time, I pull open the bidon valve. As I approach I can see the ute window is still wound down.
Timed to perfection I burst a nice steady stream of water in through the window into the lap of my assailant!
Of course the only thing funnier than scaring a cyclist is humiliating a tradie! Well maybe not in their view. They then proceeded to drive in the cycle lane to chase me. Their mission was short lived as I moved across into the right turn lane through the stopped vehicles.
Now they were stuck over to the left turning lane. The passenger wanted get out & come over. I think the sheer number of potential witnesses stalled him. The driver called out to invite me over. I smiled & declined (never try to fight in road cleats). Eventually my right lane got the green light & off I went. But not before hearing a glass bottle smash nearby.
Risky I know. But some satisfaction in not just copping abuse from cowards.
I rode the same stretch of road this morning with absolutely no incidents or harassment.
Any suggestion that the locals have been stirred into a violent, cyclist hating frenzy is purely in your imagination.
Carry on riding. Nothing to see here!
Let’s hope we don’t hear about a rider hit run in the Blacktown area in the next few days
Nice one .... now the ute driver/passenger is a 'victim' and therefore 'justified' to escalate their inherently abusive tendencies to endanger / assault / maim / kill someone with their 15x +++ weapon.
Sounds like something someone would pay a defence lawyer to come up with, along with 'in the midst of a bad relationship', 'ddn't have my coffee yet' ,'some cyclist scared me on a cyclepath some time in past".
So I guess you are right, we should be worried since the courts and the public here take these sort of 'excuses' seriously, that is if if it even gets to a court hearing and not swept under the classification of 'accident'.
On another note, what do you think the chances of "heckling / startling" would be if each and every cyclist is allowed the same death dealing capacity of a car/ute ? Ie all bikes are sold with a sawn off shotgun ?
These people, who swerve at you & shout, would do the same thing to almost every cyclist that they come across.
Regarding "Pity the next cyclist"? How about check up on the cyclist before who may not have had the skill to avoid the vehicle being driven at them.
It's about driver attitude. Like the woman that ignored my repeated very loud yells while I was stationary this morning. She just did not look - not glance & fail to observe, did not turn her head at all. Then she gets angry at me calling her a "stupid fucking bitch".
On a good note - the people in Pendle Hill are nice folks. Came up & asked if I was OK. Suggested getting number plate. Very cool to see some support for a cyclist
Short of putting them out of business, how do you make them learn or otherwise prevent the behaviour?
That's an advocacy/activism question, not argumentative.
Again, battered wife syndrome.
Cower & snivel - not here. If that makes me arrogant (or any of the other traits drivers dream up) - so be it.
I didn't knife the guy's tyres.
Yes Richard right behind you -- if it is good enough for drivers to get cranky and react with rage and fury it is good enough for us .
I too have used my water bottle as "a weapon".
While I only give a quick squirt across the windscreen, and then only to the rare a-holes who know they have been an a-hole (and when the a-holes means of transportation has stopped or is at walking pace so they don’t crash into someone or something or some me) it "startles" the driver back like some giant bird poo from the sky.
It works, it is only water and I will continue to do so. (but thinking about it, one bottle of water with a good dose of toilet blue may also work, better.... - Note to self; do not drink from the blue bottle....)
And how is the world a better place with two cranky road users?
If he sends one of ours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue.
Richard, too many die on the roads as it is, irrespective of “ours” or “theirs”.
You need to watch "The Untouchables"
If someone is mentally unstable enough to kill for the sake of a squirt of water after instigating an incident then it was going to happen soon enough.
I seriously doubt that my actions will add to the road toll.