Not a Sideshow

I’ve been taking the lane more and more. In the beginning I was timid and concerned with being polite. However there are drivers who think- no matter what- bikes should be as far to the right as possible. No matter the door zone, pothole, debris, or gutter situation. They’re always eager to push bikes further off to the margins of the road. There have been many moments like this:

The Sideshow

Which frequently resulted in large vehicles squeezing by me with mere inches to spare. But enough was enough- I got tired of being a sideshow act on the road. I take the full lane and stay safe. Of course that doesn’t stop the honking.

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49 Comments on "Not a Sideshow"

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Yeah, take it like you own it! 🙂 I don’t get much honking at here. Just drivers running oncoming cars off the road b/c they can’t be bothered to wait 2 seconds for the car to pass. I take the lane just to try and keep cars behind me until it’s safe for them to pass. Like I’m a roving safety patrol or something. :/

Seanna Lea

I have been honked at and sworn at. It wasn’t pleasant, but I got home safe. I really looking forward to seeing how you tackle the winter. I was thinking about doing it this year, but I’m still not very steady on the bike so it is all about taking it slow for me.


I kinda like honks now. When they honk it means they see me! 🙂 I used to wave “hello” when they honked. I stopped doing that because it fueled too much road rage.


Argh, this kind of thing is so frustrating! It’s really hard to take the lane when someone is being aggressive behind you (= all the time in Boston), even when you know it’s the right thing to do.

One surprising thing that helps is a super annoyingly bright strobe- like a Superflash, or a Radbot, even during the day- it seems to back people off a bit. I was having a morning of unusually close passes (while taking the lane mind you) and I realized I’d forgotten to turn the thing on.

Karl McCracken

I’ve found the same thing. When the light stopped working one evening, and I couldn’t keep up the pace of the traffic around me, it turned into The Scary Ride, where taking the lane just seemed to make things worse! 🙁


The drivers here either follower super slow, or blow past you and not much in between. Unfortunately in Idaho it is not agaist the law to ride bikes on the sidewalks, therefore everyone thinks that’s where we are supposed to ride. Hang tough, door zones are scary, and I would much rather upset a few ignorant people than eating car door 😀

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