Tuesday, June 14, 2011


This morning on my ride in to work I was called out by a motorist for blowing through a stop sign.

I have been really lax lately about stop signs and lights, especially in residential areas when nobody is around. But I have been allowing that laziness to pervade into even the portions of my commute that travel through higher volume areas. Today I approached a four-way intersection where a truck was pulling up to make a left hand turn into the same direction that I was traveling. He was arriving to the intersection slightly ahead of me; had I been in my car I would have yielded right of way to him. However, on my bike, I was bringing a lot of momentum into the intersection (Already having chosen to run the sign) so I just blew on through without slowing down.

I heard the driver let out a shout through his rolled-down window. Knowing that the truck would overtake me quickly, I quickly began to calculate escape routes, not knowing what to expect.

He rolled up next to me and shouted out his passenger window, "Hey! Bicyclists are supposed to stop for stop signs too, you know!"


Rather than angry expletives or senseless ranting, he hit me with solid, burning conviction. I was in the wrong, and there was no two ways about it. As I watched the guy drive away, I realized that the moment was lost and that I will never have the chance to convey to the guy that no, I'm not one of those scofflaw jerks who plays by his own rules and cites traffic law only when it suits him. I couldn't do that because that was exactly who I had been being.

I completed my commute in a legal fashion and have resolved that I will make a greater effort to obey all traffic laws (Particularly signs & semaphores) in the future. I can do more to become a better commuter, a better cyclist and a better person.

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