Shared Commute

I’m a creature of habit, I take the same route to work every day along with many others. I recognize many people on my commute. There’s the girl with the gold helmet, her guy friend who wears plaid shirts exclusively. There’s the middle-aged woman with the very large panniers who always dresses for rain. There’s the girl with a straw-basket-bag rigged as a back pack. There’s the girl with the old rust-orange bike who always insists in biking faster than me no matter what. Of course these are all bicyclists.

I’ve always suspected I’m biking alongside the same drivers everyday too. But it’s hard to tell since cars are pretty anonymous looking. Only the unusual cars ones stand out. Or the dangerous ones.

One day last May I was riding home in the rain. Because of the weather, the crazy traffic, the door zone, and the collective mood of the street I didn’t feel comfortable filtering and wanted to stay as visible as possible. Even if it was slower. So I took the lane.

Shared Commute

I ignored it. They always honk. But then:

Shared Commute

I tried to ignore her. Yelling is just honking but with words.

But she was wrong and I couldn’t hold back. I started to give a well-researched explanation about road rules. She rolled up her window fast and…

Shared Commute

…used her car to forcibly pass my in the left half of the lane.

I was pretty shaken. The light changed immediately after and she wove through the dense traffic. I never got a plate and I regretted it. Even if I had, I didn’t know if I could do anything with it since I was not physically injured.

But like me, she apparently is a creature of habit. Because 10 months later…

Shared Commute

…which gives me a small bit of satisfaction. There may not be anything I can do but now I’m even more researched and know that I have a right to file a police report for aggressive driving if something like this happens again.

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61 Comments on "Shared Commute"


March 22, 2012

One time a driver in the opposite lane of a five lane road actually pulled over into the center turn lane in order to roll down her window and tell me I should be on the sidewalk.

pecosdave
May 14, 2013

I was pulled over by a cop and told to ride on the sidewalk.

March 22, 2012

I think if she tried to “squeeze” past me like that her wing-mirror could possibly get caught on the sole of my shoe causing it’s removal from the car. I would feel ever so guilty but this is just how accidents happen ;^)

March 22, 2012

Been there. Fortunately there’s a tiny bit more understanding of a cyclist’s rights here, and the law is a bit more on the cyclist’s side in the event of an accident which does make a noticable difference to driver behaviour, but there’s always a few, and it’s often the same drivers.

(And one drives a car just like the one in your picture, funny that…)

Andy
March 22, 2012

Hey, from another Andy in Germany, with one of those cars and a cyclist. It isn’t the car!

March 22, 2012

Not to be chauvinistic but, I think its that women drivers feel empowered when they are behind the wheel, women and kids seem to be the ones that most often blow through my flashing red lights when I’m driving the school-bus.

David
March 22, 2012

Good job. File a complaint. Get it going and write her up.

Good Luck.

 
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