Thick Skin

It’s not good to honk at a cyclist because, well, it’s startlingly loud:

Thick Skin

I can understand the need to communicate, but horns don’t do the trick. But even when some folks use their words, they don’t really do much better…

Thick Skin
So when find myself the target of horns or yells, I simply don’t respond.

Thick Skin

They’re not looking for a reasonable conversation. And engaging with them might make it worse. I don’t really want to see how unreasonable things could go.

After all, does this ever happen?

Thick Skin
So I try to let it go.

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53 Comments on "Thick Skin"

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Brian Stephens

My favorite line is “Can you tell me about any resources where I can learn more?” LOL! Yeah, I’ve had conversations that are the exact opposite of this one. One time it was a conversation with no words…it was just a Big Gulp flying towards my head. We didn’t talk much after that.

It’s very difficult to deal with impatient drivers who use their horn. You have the best policy, though…just let it go. Awesome work with the illustrations.

Anónimo Anónimez

The same thing holds true in Madrid (Spain). I have sometimes tried to talk to drivers, but they were always rude and often threatened me.

Bob Kastigar

If they made the horn as loud inside the car as outside things would be better.

Ian Brett Cooper

Great article!

For some reason, the honking and the bad driving have been increasing lately on my commute. Freaking annoying!

Ian Brett Cooper

This evening I had another motorist honk at me. I rant about it in today’s blog at The Desegregated Cyclist.


Except for the ‘Can you tell me about any resources where I can learn more?’, the last situation HAS actually happened to me! He was very profusely apologetic. So there is some hope…maybe?


Ignoring them is good advice. Nothing positive is going to come out of an exchange. The oddest, most startling, most disturbing thing I ever had anyone yell at me was the “N” word. Odd, because I could hardly be more white. Startling, because I couldn’t figure out what I was supposed to do with the intended insult. And disturbing, because I had to wonder what kind of mind has that insult at the tip of the tongue, ready for any occasion, even an entirely inappropriate one?


Strangest thing…I had that exact same thing happen, and thought the exact same thing. Hilariously, there was a neighbor (who happens to be black) out watering his lawn and heard it and he first said O…K…??, then looked at me. He started cracking up. Glad he could find humor in the whole thing! 🙂

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