Monday, April 5

Never Take the Lane

I hear the phrase "take the lane" often. I only hear that phrase in conjunction with cyclists. I DON'T ever "take the lane." Taking the lane, to me, sounds like petty theft. I ride where I ride, and the principle of "first come first served" is observed by myself, and the other users of the road. The lane I'm in is mine while I'm there. I don't need to "take" it. Yes, sometimes I allow motorists to "Lane Split" a lane I'm in if it's a wide lane or boulevard. That's my choice, and is made in accordance with the law, the rules of the road, and what is safe for myself and the motorists in the vicinity.

Really, it's pretty simple. Traffic is not a war. Traffic is a dance (good link, though I HATE the picture, with its sloppy signal). It's a cooperative endeavor. I DO take the lead, because I have a lot more experience dealing with motorists than motorists have dealing with cyclists. That's probably going to remain the case for many years to come.

Below is the preferred vehicle if traffic were otherwise. I don't think many motorists are truly ready for "might makes right."

My Vehicle of Choice if Traffic is War Instead of Cooperation. Just Pass the Ammo...

5 comments:

cycler said...

Ha! That would get people's attention- and I bet it doesn't move any faster than the average bike! I bet no one honks at it though...

Lizzylou said...

How about showers... do you 'take' them? :D
(Sorry, I couldn't resist!)

But I understand what you mean, just because a cyclist happens to be riding to the LEFT of that white line doesn't mean they are attempting to exert their dominance over cars.

Steve A said...

I did a google search on "take the lane." lots of cycling references. Not much else.

Steve A said...

Sometimes I take a nap after I take a shower!

cafiend said...

Take the Lane is a handy catch phrase for timid cyclists to remember. A huge number of pedalers feel they DO NOT belong on the road. They submit to the notion that you don't belong out there if you can't compete on an equal footing with motor vehicles. It may not be a war, but it is a race in many people's minds.

Those of us who have been herding traffic for decades have a "handlebar view of the world." We forget what it's like to step out of the familiar shell of a motor vehicle for the first few times. Many cyclists never get past the first few times because they are intimidated by traffic.

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