|Harwood Road, a Bit East of the "Sidewalk Ride"|
That is when it happened.
Down the sidewalk, from the wrong direction, a person on a bike shot off the sidewalk and directly into my path. Fortunately, my bike was a lot narrower than the typical SUV and so I was able to avoid the person without too much drama. I was, however, too startled to even yell out any inappropriate remarks in the direction of the sidewalk rider. In any event, I suspect that talking to such a person would NOT represent a "teachable moment."
Still, if you read this, and ride on sidewalks, PLEASE ride on the sidewalk where traffic is going in the same direction as you are. That at least gives people riding or driving on the road a fair shot at seeing you before a conflict situation arises.
Had I, instead have been driving an automobile and had we collided, it might well have been tagged as the motorist's fault, since I was beginning a right turn from a stop sign - "Motorist pullout." You might not care for your own life, but MY motorists deserve better. They ought not be tagged as scofflaws simply because of your ignorance. There are more than enough careless motorists to go around. Heck, even if you don't care a whit about MY motorists, show a little consideration for CYCLISTS that operate in a predictable and lawful fashion. Thanks, in advance. For those NOT reading this, well I've avoided inappropriate remarks so far and you aren't reading anyway.
PS: And PLEASE use lights in the dark, while you're at it! I'm running out of cheap lights to give to people who feel their life is worth less than the cost of one. Even riding WITH traffic down a sidewalk in the dark is a pretty questionable practice. Even a cyclist who is more careful on his commute than most will have trouble picking you up in the dark. Car-Free PVD has some good recommendations but even the ones NOT liked give me a shot at seeing you. Just sayin'.
PPS: Maybe I'll chill out a little next week when DST FINALLY ends. Right now, I'm feeling a little threatened by people on bikes...