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There were never any "good old days" — they are today, they are tomorrow
The state of the streets 
11th-Mar-2011 02:46 pm
Victor bicycle ad - purple background
It's been a bit dicier than usual riding on the streets of Oakland lately — the sort of thing where I get to work and think, "Well, two honks but no death threats and no screamed obscenities* — good ride!"

So it's worth making note that I had an utterly boom-de-yadda ride home the other day after work:
  1. Waiting in the right lane (far left lane position, of course) for the light to turn green at the corner of 13th Street & Jackson, a guy in a pick-up truck scooted by on my right to make a right turn and called out "have a good day!" I blinked at him in disorentation** for a second before hollering "hey, you too!"
  2. Rounding the south end of the lake I got up to 23 mph without feeling like I was straining.
  3. When I got to the light at 15th Street and 1st Ave, just past the cluster of construction equipment, there was a construction worker with a handheld stop/yield sign waving vehicles on 1st Ave through the intersection. He saw me waiting, flipped his sign 90 degrees, and waved me through. "Bikes first!" he said with a smile. I gave him a thumbs-up and a *ding ding* on my bike bell.
  4. Riding home from there, at least two other vehicles yielded the right of way and waved me across the intersection in front of them so I wouldn't have to stop.
  5. I think the people on the street I ride every day to & from work recognize me. I got a couple of nods & smiles from people I don't know and have never met, but have ridden past a kazillion times.
Good ride. More of them should be like this.

*Direct quote from the cager screaming at me for not running the red light: "I should run you off the motherfucking road, bitch!!!" God DAMN do I wish I'd had a helmet cam. I just kept shouting back "STATE LAW GIVES BICYCLISTS THE LEGAL RIGHT TO THE FULL LANE! YOU NEED TO LEARN THE LAW! STOP HARASSING BICYCLISTS! LEGAL RIGHT TO THE FULL LANE! LEARN THE LAW AND STOP HARASSING BICYCLISTS!" until the light changed and he roared off.

** Dear drivers: If you say something to me and I seem not to understand, it's probably because I was braced to hear "get off the fucking road!" or "goddamn bicyclists!" and it took me a moment to realize that you were saying "have a nice day" or "excuse me, how do I get to [whereever]?"
12th-Mar-2011 01:13 am (UTC)
Direct quote from the cager screaming at me for not running the red light

Wow. "Why didn't you break the law?".

I think the people on the street I ride every day to & from work recognize me.

I've been recognizing more and more people as I walk and bus. It's fun, albeit scary in the introverted sense.
(Deleted comment)
13th-Mar-2011 03:09 am (UTC)
I do my best to obey the relevant Road Cyclist's Commandment: "If thou runnest a red light, it shall be as the tree falling in the forest."

14th-Mar-2011 11:22 pm (UTC)
A number of years ago I got rear ended in my car by someone who assumed I was going to run a red light. Fortunately I was not injured and my vehicle was not perceptibly damaged (it was in pretty sad shape already by then).
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