I’m about to bash bicyclists in the city of Portland. Yes. Even with the “bikes are sexy” photo over there (they are). Even though I love that Portland is a bike friendly city. Even though I adore that we have a city you can get around without a car. I’m about to say something bad. Are you ready?
Bikers, you are not the only ones using an alternative form of transportation. Don’t hog the sidewalks!
In my experience many bicyclists treat pedestrians the way they accuse motorists of treating them. Without a fucking care. Like the fact that they are bigger and faster than you (you being me. or any pedestrian.) means they have more rights.
Not that I’m enamored with the way many motorists treat walkers either but that is not what this post is about. Usually the cars aren’t rolling up on me on the sidewalk. There are laws that apply to both bicyclists and motorists. There are laws that apply to pedestrians too. So when I’m walking down the street on the sidewalk where I belong as a pedestrian I don’t think it’s out of line for me to expect at least most people to follow the posted regulations and traffic laws.
So say you’re crossing a little two lane bridge with a sidewalk on only one side of the bridge and there is a clearly posted sign on each end of the bridge telling bicyclists to walk their bikes… Wouldn’t you think that the poor abused put upon cycling community would make an effort to respect that? I mean it is for the safety of not just themselves but pedestrians too. Yet every time I cross the Sellwood bridge on foot I nearly get run over by multiple bicyclists. It’s so ridiculous that I want to stop the few cyclists that are walking their bikes and thank them just for doing what they are supposed to do.
So bikers, don’t be the dicks you accuse motorists of being, please. I really don’t like getting pegged in the hip as you speed by unannounced. Or at the very least? Get a damn bell.
7 thoughts on “transportational outcast in pdx…”
As someone who is still transitioning from “Mom walking with stroller” to “Mom biking with kids” I hear ya! I’m working very hard as a new cyclist to be EXTRA careful of pedestrians. It’s very easy to focus on those huge cars that I’m worried are going to plow us down (or even just me when I’m alone) and to forget to stop for pedestrians. Luckily I’m going so slowly — it’s a bakfiets so I’m not racing — that I can apologize. It’s only happened twice. The new thing that I’m experiencing is pedestrians insisting on me taking the right-of-way. I think I look exhausted and they are taking pity on me.
All that said, there are times when I have had to have that thing up on the sidewalk and it totally weirds me out. If there are any pedestrians at all I’m walking it and I’m only there if I have to be anyway. Here’s hoping the bicyclists who comment are more polite than the ones not being careful enough around the walkers!
I’m seriously pro-bicycle, but I’m with you on this 100%. In Seattle it is really bad, especially being the cyclists have “rights” to the sidewalks too. In PDX technically – at least I thought – cyclists are supposed to walk when on sidewalks, ride when they’re in traffic.
I won’t get on a car rant, cuz that’s a whole different ordeal for me. Suffice it to say the most angelic person becomes a neanderthal of a dipshit when behind a wheel of a car, but cyclists do need to watch what they’re doing. If they’re going to break the laws (and thus likely be serious douche bags) they need to at least be respectful and not hurt/run into/smash/slash/gouge or otherwise injure people. I’ve seen more than a few run ins while riding and I myself make a point to ride where I’m supposed to (emphasis on “try”) and I make a point to keep myself and others safe. It’s really frustrating dealing with the other cyclists (or whatever mode) that deems it upon them to not obey rules, laws, or simple common courtesy.
May we all have good trips in the future without any side swiping. ;)
If people in general just learned to be more considerate…Well, now – that’s just crazy talk.
Carry a water gun and spray them. Fuckers.
Agree about the cyclist, but what startles me more are skateboarders on the sidewalk. Especially when I’m walking with a very rambunctious five year old boy.
What you are complaining about are ASSHOLES. Please remember…
Not all bicyclists are assholes
Not all assholes ride bicycles
I like the water gun idea. Except fill it with red kool aid so it leaves a mark :)
Ah. So cyclists are the same the world over then.