Thursday, April 19, 2012

And now, PEA #1

PEA = Public Education Announcement


Rules and ordinances vary, of course, from town-to-town . . . but, interstates withstanding, it is generally legal for cyclists to travel along the same roads and highways as that of our motorized vehicular friends.

Please allow me, a triker, to pass on a few pointers on what not to do when encountering a cyclist.

Sure, our mode of transportation is significantly smaller than even the small roller skate cars that are zooming around everywhere now . . . but that doesn't mean that we should be treated as if we're not occupying space.  Please don't try to push us out of a lane by driving in our lane while passing us and please do not pass us and quickly pull over into our lane until you have actually driven far enough ahead to where you're not going to make us slam on our brakes.

If you get "caught" behind a cyclist, that is not our fault.  If traffic is heavy, then it is heavy; that's just the way it goes.  If traffic is not heavy, then if you're on a multi-lane road, common sense dictates that you choose another lane if you do not want to be behind a cyclist. 

And please, please, please - do not ever . . . never, never, never . . . slam on your horn while behind a cyclist.  If you feel you absolutely must use your horn, please lightly tap it.  Blaring your horn while driving right behind a cyclist could actually cause a wreck.  Maybe even a heart attack.  It sure scares the bejeebees out me.  Additionally, if a cyclist is observing all of the rules of the road, there really is no need to use your horn in the first place.  If you think you are going to hit a cyclist and you are in their lane, then perhaps you might want to consider improving your own driving skills.  If you are impatient because you are behind a cyclist, that is really no one's fault but your own.  Take a deep breath, calm down and relax.  It will do wonders for your blood pressure; not to mention the health and sanity of those around you - including the cyclists.

If a cyclist arrives at a 4-way stop before you, they have the right-of-way; just like with anyone else.  Please do not try to beat them through the intersection; especially if they are already in the intersection, itself.

If you are in a "left (or right) turn only" lane, then please do not continue to drive straight ahead.  Doing so can cause a wreck with the person in the lane that does have the right to go straight ahead.  You might not care so much; but cyclists do not have the comfort of being inside a car during a fender-bender.  They also have no fenders; if something is going to get bent, it is probably going to be the cyclist.

And lastly, please do not be a heckler.  Really, what's the purpose of that?
Yesterday, as an example, there was a particular hill that was just entirely too steep for me to trike up.  Perhaps had I not already triked to the pool, did a energetic water workout and had triked halfway home, I would have had the energy and wherewithal to actually climb every mountain and ford every stream.  As it was, however, after a couple of minutes trying to crest this particular hill, I chose to enter a parking lot and walk my trike up the hill.  As I was nearing the top of the hill, a man pulled up behind me (in the parking lot) and told me that I would get a lot more exercise if I were to actually get on "that thing" and ride it.

Doodle head.

Yep.  I just wrote "doodle head".  There ya go.

By the way, "you" and all of it's derivatives (above) are meant in the generic "you".  I'm not specifically talking to you . . . unless of course, you can see yourself in some of the examples I've given above . . . and if that's the case, you and I should get together for a cup of coffee so we can discuss traffic rules and etiquette.  Don't worry, it will be a blast; I'll even bring the horn.

Y'all be blessed . . . and remember, now . . . be safe out there - for yourself AND for others, as well.


  1. I agree...... Doodle head!! ;)

    So, speaking of bikes - I'm pretty excited. I sold my 1-speed a couple of years ago and just found me a secondhand 3-speed. A nice lime green cruiser with pink rims, white wall tires, white flowers, and a basket :) Wish we lived closer. We could drag the strip!

  2. Zoom Zoom Zoom! :)

    Amy, I would love it!

  3. Your bike sounds awesome! I'd love to see a photo of it . . .