Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Why some people hate cyclists

A city bus giving me my 3' of distance in Daytona 
Let me start bragging a bit. Since 2007, my line of work has been one way or another related to the transportation field. I've driven hundreds of thousands of miles, mainly in Miami Dade and Palm Beach counties. My driving record is perfect and I've never been at fault at an accident. I've got hit many times from behind at red lights and one time from the left side while waiting at a stop sign on Dixie Hwy in Lake Worth. 

In South Florida, someone like me is considered an idiot. Yes, I said that. Lots of people can't care less about the rest. It's the me-me syndrome of psyco-narcissism and selfishness so spread nowadays. I've felt that more while cycling though. 

As a cyclist, I've ridden thousands of miles all over the state. As the matter of fact, I've authored five books (and counting) about bike touring and history of Florida. I've covered 41 out 67 counties so far and close to 10,000 miles in 125 routes. Oh, why no one knows me? That's a story for another day. I just been a little ostracized, that's it. Outside that, I do hundreds of miles a month on the road, MTB (another Florida joke,) Gravel, BMX and everything you can imagine. I got hit once by a car while on the bike lane on A1A near Manalapan, FL! Many close calls... Maybe I'm somehow qualified to talk about it?

The first thing is obvious, I said it already. Lots of people think that the universe revolves around them. Entitlement, ignorance, the inability to foresee consequences, the superiority complex... you name it. For someone burnout of spending half of his life on the road, it's easy to detect. If you were oblivious to this, I'm really happy for you. 

Why the hate?

While a bicycle is considered a vehicle, not every cyclist follow the rules of the road. From the driver point of view, many are a hazard. Not to mention those who ride in between cars, in and out of traffic or expect the driver to have a million eyes and sensors protruding from their a$$. It's worst at night because unless you follow the Florida Law and carry lights or reflectors, it is impossible to see you. Most roads here don't have sidewalks and streetlights. Then you have the ones who ride against the flow of traffic. Nonetheless, 3' of passing distance is another sick joke. If you're on a bike lane, you're just a speed bump.

Critical Mass Rides

These rides happen in many cities once a month. The point is to raise awareness of the right of bikes to use the streets. Is it? These events are normally at night. In Miami the ride is huge, on the last Friday of the month? Here in Palm Beach County, I'm guessing it's like the 3rd Wednesday or something like that. The group consist of a bunch of kids mainly, without lights and popping wheelies between the cars. That's what I call being seen as something positive by the ones that already hate us.

When you combine all these factors together, it's not a coincidence that Florida ranks #1 in pedestrian and cyclist fatalities nationwide. You can sum it up simply with: "It's due to the lack of care for your own an others lives." Being a D-head is a fashionable hobby in the Sunshine State! Middle fingers to everyone else but me! MEEEEE! Yep, I'm sick and tired of this place and I'm too poor to go anywhere else. Last time I tried, I almost got murdered by a bunch of cultists in a ranch in Tennessee. True story.