Cycling in Sydney Australia
I'd like some thoughts on how you go about engaging car drivers who drive like [insert derogatory epithet of your choice here].
Eg I have to ride down Bourke Road cycleway, and when a car just completely obliviously turns into the bike lane and nearly knocks me off, I usually give them a good dose of loud Anglo-Saxon, generally as a warning (To get them to stop their manoeuvre) and also to make them realise that they just very nearly caused an accident. Hopefully next time they will think before they manoeuvre. Usually this results in a sheepish "sorry" gesture.
I have no problem with this (obviously avoiding any likely conflict, or going over the top, pick your battles!) However, in my opinion, those who cut you up, show no regard etc are generally of the opinion that cyclists are an annoyance and "the enemy", so it doesn't do us any favours being seen as another bastard on a bike.
I always try and be overly polite to any (decent) drivers and pedestrians wherever possible, esp if they've let me go etc.
What are your thoughts? Let people know the mistakes they made, or to keep calm and carry on, hopefully making people think cyclists are nice?
There seems to be a fairly strong concensus here that being polite is the right thing to do but actually doing it in the heat of a life-threatening moment is very hard to do!
Yep, don't whatever you do, leave the motorist with more resentment, which might get taken out on the next innocent rider they come across.
Imagine the driver is your son or daughter - how would you advise them they'd made a mistake?
When I was riding to work yesterday there was a soft-roader (a nominal 4WD but not a tough one - Hyundai) waiting at traffic lights, but blocking the cycle lane (for NO reason that I could see).
As I rode up behind it I knocked on his back window and signalled for him to move to the right - there was plenty of space in front of him. He didn't move, so I dismounted and walked my bike beside him and he wound down his passenger side window. I asked him politely but with annoyance to please move out of the cycle lane. He said OK and moved.
I thought at the time he looked familiar, then the penny dropped. His kids were at preschool and primary school with mine, I have been to his house and I know his wife but I haven't seen him for a few years. Sh##.
Oh well, I wasn't rude and it was him doing the wrong thing.
Every single day someone "tailgates" me then overtakes in a plume of exhaust smoke, only to stop at the red lights up ahead. I don't make any gestures, but I make sure I am in front of them at the red lights in the vain hope that they may one day get it through their thick heads that wasting that fuel did.not.get.them.anywhere.
"we are not blocking traffic, we are traffic".
Another reply to that comment: "No, that is another of the tens of thousands of other cars with only one person in them."
Or perhaps: "Maybe if you used a mode of transportation that wasn't so wide you would have been able to get past."