Fives Rules for Bicyclists

1). Bike with the flow of traffic, not against it. Sure, it’s nice to know when there’s a car coming, instead of having them sneak up from behind it, but you’re also a 180-pound guy riding two wheels on a small metal frame without a helmet. And when you terrify the driver of the car by heading straight at him and he swerves the car in panic and accidentally drives right into you, you’re still a 180-pound guy riding two wheels on a small frame without a helmet. Except now, you’re not only dead, you’re a dumbass.

    1a). Biking the wrong way down the bike lane  when there are (1) directional arrows painted on the pavement specifying the direction in which you are supposed to be biking, and (2) other bicycles going the correct  way down the already-narrow lane — which means they are also heading straight at you and oh yeah if you swerve into the next lane to avoid them you’re going to ride straight into the headlights of an oncoming car — is, well, also pretty stupid.

2). The Idaho Stop is a wonderful new concept, wherein bicyclists adhering to state regulated traffic laws are allowed to treat Stop signs as Yield signs, and red lights as Stop signs.

    Things this means: bicyclists are allowed to continue through a stop signs without making complete stops, only if they are certain there is no other traffic coming. Bicyclists are also allowed to continue through red lights, only after coming to a complete stop and making sure that there is no oncoming traffic from the cross street that currently has the green light.
    Things this doesn’t mean: Whatever fuck those cars anyway man I’m on a bike dude I can totally kick your ass and blow a perpendicular path through six lanes of traffic during rush hours ’cause those stupid cars are gonna stop for me anyway and I don’t care if they have to slam on their brakes or whatever and totally get rear-ended by the guy behind them because he thought they were going ’cause I’m on a fucking bike with a fixed gear and no protection whatsoever so obviously I have the right of way and all you stupid polluting dumbass cars should stop for me anyway ’cause you’re stupid and stuff stupid cars

3). Helmets. They totally fuck up your mohawk, amirite? Just like splitting your skull open on the pavement and having your brains smeared under vulcanized Good Year tires then wiped off like road kill and tossed into a grassy ditch next to the freeway.

Totally sucks, brah.

4). There is nothing wrong a leisurely bicycle stroll on a quaint and lovely Sunday afternoon. There is everything wrong with a leisurely bicycle stroll down the middle of the designated bicycle path with no way to get around you on either side when I’m trying to get to work right now, asshole. There is even more than everything wrong with doing this on a major road without bike lanes during commuter rush hour when I’m stuck behind you and surrounded by a gazillion angry cars with blaring horns of destruction.

    4.5/2). It’s okay to bike at a moderate pace. I realize that not everyone has the same incredibly toned calves that I do. And I do appreciate your efforts to keep to the right and allow me to pass you, like I did on the last block. But see how I’m stopped at a light right now? Oh — wait, no, you just blew through the light and zipped right past me. That’s okay, I’ll just pass you again on the next block, because you’re slow as hell and it’s easy for me to catch up with you. Oh, look! Here I am, stopped at yet another light like a good bicycle. Why, hello there, friend that that I have already passed twice in the last 3 blocks! How are you? Oh, nevermind, you just biked right past me and ran through another red light and caused a three-car pile-up.

    And here I am, passing you again, because even when you’re endangering the lives of others, you’re still fucking slow.

5). But seriously? DON’T BE A DICK.

2 responses to “Fives Rules for Bicyclists

  1. Pingback: Rules of the Road | thom dunn

  2. I feel like you should write a column for the Dig or the Globe. Look into it, then credit me for the idea.

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