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Riding Solo Safety

Old 05-21-20, 08:57 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
Interesting history. So much time to think riding solo and I did wonder where the term "redneck" came from.

So, hopefully the flag idea is well accepted by the right and OK with the left too. No harm or silliness with that.

Not that it matters, but I sorta want to defend my beloved state of New Hampshire and say that every one of these incidents happened in California. Southern California. In fairness, CA has way, way more traffic and way, way more cyclists. Wish I could get to NH right now ... I would feel so much safer.
Yeah I always just used it in the derogatory sense until I started studying more IWW history and learned more about the term.

If you want to go the jersey route I would go with a Cookie Monster or Elmo jersey: https://brainstormgear.com/collectio.../Sesame-Street or something in that vein, have fun with it.
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Old 05-21-20, 09:13 PM
  #27  
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I do understand this - about being seen (honking) vs not seen (texting) etc. It's just far more unnerving when these things happen and I'm alone.

Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
I think flag is probably not going to hurt.

Note that when people yell, honk, blow smoke, and spin tires at you, that means they saw you, which is a good thing. They are not trying to kill you, so they probably won't kill you, which is also good. Even the intimidation-passers are actually trying quite hard to *nearly* hit you, which means they are more or less trying to not hit you, which is a good thing.

So that's all good.

People texting, posting on FB or BF, watching videos, or chatting up with their friends and family will not honk, yell, blow smoke, or spin tires at you. They might not see you, which is bad, and they might kill you, which is bad.

On narrow twisty hilly roads, drivers actually need to spend most of their time looking out the windshield, which is very good for you. As opposed to straight flat wide roads, where they can and do spend a considerable amount of time not looking out their windshields.

In conclusion, don't fear unsocial angry people, and don't fear social people on twisty hilly roads. Fear (and avoid) social people on flat, straight, wide roads. That's where you're gonna die.
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Old 05-21-20, 09:15 PM
  #28  
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I also wanted to say I think it's assumed I'm a guy and I sorta think rednec**, I mean ignorant white men, tolerate men wearing tights much less than girls (women) wearing tights - that's why I thought the "Mom" idea might be better for me. I also thought about putting a fake pony tail with a pink ribbon on the back of my helmet.
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Old 05-21-20, 09:15 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
...when cops say stuff like "well, what do you expect riding a bicycle on the road?" ...
Although it's not wise to talk back to a cop, even if you're the one filing the complaint, I would have thought that I'd expect people with valid drivers licences to still obey the Highway Traffic Act.

And furthermore about wearing the flag, if you're in redneck territory wear the Confederate flag.
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Old 05-21-20, 09:52 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by rseeker View Post
In my state it's alcohol stores *and* gun stores. That's a special kind of brilliant.
I've had the fortune to ride thousands of miles in Indiana/Ohio/Kentucky/Tennessee, in the Carolinas, in Florida, in west Texas, in the PNW, and a smattering of miles in other states. The friendliest drivers by a wide margin, in terms of giving space, waiting patiently, and apparent general concern for my safety have been in Tennessee. On an incredibly hot day in arid west Texas, the lone car we saw for hours passed us, and came back an hour later having gone to the nearest town, fetched water and gatorade, and brought it back to us out of the kindness of their hearts. Granted that's one data point, but it certainly made an impression. Rural Texas drivers generally drive fast and give room. The most hostility I've faced on the road was in my home state of Indiana.

Perhaps topping Tennessee was Soweto, South Africa, where this middle aged white guy on a bike was treated with more genuine kindness than just about anywhere I've been in the world. Knowing this history of that space, it is rather remarkable to contrast that treatment against what I encounter in my home state by people who look much like me. But I guess that's another storyline.
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Old 05-22-20, 03:17 AM
  #31  
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It is my theory that crowding tends to bring out the worst in some folks. Southern California definitely has its share of crowding and now that things are opening up in Ventura County I suspect it will be back to more of the poor behavior. I have almost always ridden solo and for all the miles I ride, I have to say , very little trouble. I have mostly ridden vehicular style and occasionally get the look from motorists when I am using the turning blocks to make left or right turns ( mostly left). I use a flashing light helmet(Lumos) and sometimes ,while waiting for a light , someone will roll down their window and tell me they like the helmet. We need to be seen to be safe , as far as the jerks there will always be those that want to make a statement at the cost of someone else’s safety. Joe. joesvintageroadbikes.wordpress
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Old 05-22-20, 05:56 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
I've been riding solo since covid and it's getting sketchier out there. People are angry and frustrated and I've had a few incidents recently where I've been the target of their anger. It's mostly macho guys and their big trucks (one actually had "redneck" on the window that I saw after he came too close to me and spun his wheels to spit sand at me) but today it was a sedan with christian symbol on the back (blared horn long before and after going by me despite my being on the right shoulder on a straight road without traffic). While I ride I think about what I could put on the back of my jerseys to make these rednecks think I'm almost one of them - I wear plain safety yellow, so there's room for a message. Ideas welcome! Here's what I've come up with so far:

"Make America Great Again"

"World's Greatest Mom"

"Jesus Loves You"

[the fish symbol]

"Mom, Nurse"

Do you think it might help? Any other ideas? I could stop riding but riding is saving my sanity!
With a post like this, it's likely that you're emotionally underdeveloped with a smidge of a wild imagination. Take the time to grow up.

And, nobody really cares about you riding your bike. You should at least be thankful if they notice you.
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Old 05-22-20, 06:24 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by MattTheHat View Post
Interesting. I‘ve found just the opposite.
Me too. I have had no issues of any sort even though I am riding on the roads more.
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Old 05-22-20, 06:51 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Paul Barnard View Post
Me too. I have had no issues of any sort even though I am riding on the roads more.
MANY MORE older riders out on the roads, especially couples, compared to before C-19 so it seems that drivers are now more aware of cyclists presence and as a result many more are moving over
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Old 05-22-20, 07:01 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Phil_gretz View Post
With a post like this, it's likely that you're emotionally underdeveloped with a smidge of a wild imagination. Take the time to grow up.

And, nobody really cares about you riding your bike. You should at least be thankful if they notice you.

Wow, that's really uncalled for. You should apologize.

I ride solo all over the southern half of NH, and there are definitely places where harassment is a lot more likely than your neck of the woods in the urbane part of VA. Guess you missed the part of the thread where she said someone pulled a gun on her. Is she supposed to be thankful for that?

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Old 05-22-20, 07:05 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
I've been riding solo since covid and it's getting sketchier out there. People are angry and frustrated and I've had a few incidents recently where I've been the target of their anger. It's mostly macho guys and their big trucks (one actually had "redneck" on the window that I saw after he came too close to me and spun his wheels to spit sand at me) but today it was a sedan with christian symbol on the back (blared horn long before and after going by me despite my being on the right shoulder on a straight road without traffic). While I ride I think about what I could put on the back of my jerseys to make these rednecks think I'm almost one of them - I wear plain safety yellow, so there's room for a message. Ideas welcome! Here's what I've come up with so far:

"Make America Great Again"

"World's Greatest Mom"

"Jesus Loves You"

[the fish symbol]

"Mom, Nurse"

Do you think it might help? Any other ideas? I could stop riding but riding is saving my sanity!

Are you riding in NH? I ride solo all over the bottom half of the state, and there are definitely places where I think solo riding is better for this than others. PM me if you want to compare notes on locations.
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Old 05-22-20, 07:33 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
I've been riding solo since covid and it's getting sketchier out there. People are angry and frustrated and I've had a few incidents recently where I've been the target of their anger. It's mostly macho guys and their big trucks (one actually had "redneck" on the window that I saw after he came too close to me and spun his wheels to spit sand at me) but today it was a sedan with christian symbol on the back (blared horn long before and after going by me despite my being on the right shoulder on a straight road without traffic). While I ride I think about what I could put on the back of my jerseys to make these rednecks think I'm almost one of them - I wear plain safety yellow, so there's room for a message. Ideas welcome! Here's what I've come up with so far:

"Make America Great Again"

"World's Greatest Mom"

"Jesus Loves You"

[the fish symbol]

"Mom, Nurse"

Do you think it might help? Any other ideas? I could stop riding but riding is saving my sanity!
That is like the "Baby on Board" signs. Is someone suddenly going to start paying attention because of some sign that may or may not appeal to them? And I can certainly cite a number of instances where riding in groups (clubs in dedicated lanes, not some of these kids out weaving in the street) has not ended too well, either. As a non-xtian independent voter in a red state with a church on every corner and in between, if I were not a decent person you just gave me a number of reasons to run you over. I always like neutral stuff when I am out there riding, it keeps us all friendly.
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Old 05-22-20, 07:38 AM
  #38  
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definitely something that says they are being videoed. "Smile your on camera!". Make people either aware they are being watched or think they are being watched
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Old 05-22-20, 07:42 AM
  #39  
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I ride on Long Island so every road has cars and none ever drive the speed limit or lower.

No one is going to read anything on your jersey. But the time they're close enough to read it, they'll be past you.

Make yourself visible with bright colors and flashing tail light.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:06 AM
  #40  
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Riding Solo Safety
Originally Posted by BNB View Post
I've been riding solo since covid and it's getting sketchier out there. People are angry and frustrated and I've had a few incidents recently where I've been the target of their anger.

It's mostly macho guys and their big trucks (one actually had "redneck" on the window that I saw after he came too close to me and spun his wheels to spit sand at me) but today it was a sedan with christian symbol on the back (blared horn long before and after going by me despite my being on the right shoulder on a straight road without traffic).

While I ride I think about what I could put on the back of my jerseys to make these rednecks think I'm almost one of them - I wear plain safety yellow, so there's room for a message. Ideas welcome! Here's what I've come up with so far:

"Make America Great Again"
"World's Greatest Mom"
"Jesus Loves You"
[the fish symbol]
"Mom, Nurse"

Do you think it might help? Any other ideas? I could stop riding but riding is saving my sanity!
Originally Posted by Daniel4 View Post
Open Carry
Stand My Ground
Stand Behind Our Troops
Just on my way to pick up my Humvee
Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
American flag colors.
Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
Nothing will help.
”Frankly my dear, I don’t think they will give a damn.” IMO, as a belligerent driver sees a slow poke cyclist ahead, their irritation will fester as they get closer, well before they could read your message, which would probably not appeal to their own sense of self-worth anyways...it happens fast...

Cyclist Rear Ended at 55mph

Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
People are generally arseholes and there is no redemption. We have been seeing tons of nasty people these days at the shop, nobody seems to understand their is a global crisis going on and a little respect and decency is what we need right now.

They are pissed off at anyone and will take it out on someone as soon as they are out. It is rather a sad affair.

Ride safe and know this isn't a time for silly slogans and name calling. Even if trashy generally light skinned middle class southern people have taken the term. ...
Originally Posted by Oneder View Post
Get a metal pole that sicks out 3 feet from the frame to the left.
The use of some sort of projection from the bike has been suggested previously. While a rigid metal pole might function to knock you off the road, the pros and cons have been discussed (link) to use a flexible pool noodle.


"All hail the [pool]
noodle"



˅˅˅˅

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 05-22-20 at 08:23 AM.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:06 AM
  #41  
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˄˄˄˄

Actually, IMO in these discussions about rearward traffic, I consider my main defense the use of a rearview mirror. Recently I participated (link) in a thread, to answer this complaint:
Originally Posted by Daniel4 View Post
It's not a matter of how much more carefully you are riding. It's a matter of bad drivers being just as careless as before. Some drivers are even driving worse since there are so much fewer cars and people on the road.

Will there be another white bike memorial soon?
Besides avoiding the careless driver, I think wearing a rearview mirror would be unexpected to the antagonistic one, and if your spidey sense recognizes danger, you could pull off and thwart (his) intentions.
Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
...Note that when people yell, honk, blow smoke, and spin tires at you, that means they saw you, which is a good thing. They are not trying to kill you, so they probably won't kill you, which is also good. Even the intimidation-passers are actually trying quite hard to *nearly* hit you, which means they are more or less trying to not hit you, which is a good thing.

So that's all good.

People texting, posting on FB or BF, watching videos, or chatting up with their friends and family will not honk, yell, blow smoke, or spin tires at you. They might not see you, which is bad, and they might kill you, which is bad.

On narrow twisty hilly roads, drivers actually need to spend most of their time looking out the windshield, which is very good for you. As opposed to straight flat wide roads, where they can and do spend a considerable amount of time not looking out their windshields.

In conclusion, don't fear unsocial angry people, and don't fear social people on twisty hilly roads. Fear (and avoid) social people on flat, straight, wide roads. That's where you're gonna die.

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 05-22-20 at 04:02 PM. Reason: added quote by downtube42
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Old 05-22-20, 08:07 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by FlMTNdude View Post
That is like the "Baby on Board" signs. Is someone suddenly going to start paying attention because of some sign that may or may not appeal to them? And I can certainly cite a number of instances where riding in groups (clubs in dedicated lanes, not some of these kids out weaving in the street) has not ended too well, either. As a non-xtian independent voter in a red state with a church on every corner and in between, if I were not a decent person you just gave me a number of reasons to run you over. I always like neutral stuff when I am out there riding, it keeps us all friendly.
An aside here. I find a certain irony in seeing the "Baby on Board" sign only to see the driver with their face buried in their phone and drifting all over the place.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:14 AM
  #43  
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Maybe riding facing traffic so you can see them coming
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Old 05-22-20, 08:21 AM
  #44  
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Ride off road. They (mostly trophy wives in SUV's) chased me off the streets too.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:32 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by BNB View Post
I've considered this many times but when cops say stuff like "well, what do you expect riding a bicycle on the road?" I sorta don't think they will be bothered with video footage unless I'm actually hit. And, even then, the cyclist is 99% blamed. Years ago we had a guy pull a gun on us and the quote above is from the county sheriff that day.
thats insane and should have been addressed with the department.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:32 AM
  #46  
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I've had more trouble with ****** entry level BMW drivers than trucks personally. I bought a Garmin Varia.

I will say, the faster you ride the nicer folks seem to be. I average around 20 including all the hills on my routes, meaning I cruise flats around 22 to 23mph. Folks seem to have less issue with that than when they encounter somebody going like 12mph.

Not sure why. So maybe, train up!
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Old 05-22-20, 08:42 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
I ride on Long Island so every road has cars and none ever drive the speed limit or lower.

No one is going to read anything on your jersey. But the time they're close enough to read it, they'll be past you.

Make yourself visible with bright colors and flashing tail light.

I'm pretty sure I ride in some of the same places as OP. She's describing something quite different than you are--these are drivers who actually are going out of their way to harass you. I agree they probably won't read the jersey and that this is unlikely to help, but I've experienced a lot of this in this area and it's definitely not a matter of not being visible.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:45 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
thats insane and should have been addressed with the department.

The county sheriff is the department in these parts.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:47 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Wow, that's really uncalled for. You should apologize.

I ride solo all over the southern half of NH, and there are definitely places where harassment is a lot more likely than your neck of the woods in the urbane part of VA. Guess you missed the part of the thread where she said someone pulled a gun on her. Is she supposed to be thankful for that?
I get where you're coming from, and normally, I'd agree completely.

But no, I never saw any mention of a gun. At this point, I can find no references by the OP to any gun.

In fact, I'll double down. I call BS on the entire string of posts by the OP. Some narrative meant to spark discussion. My question for the OP is whether she ever filed a police report if a gun were brandished.
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Old 05-22-20, 08:55 AM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Paul Barnard View Post
An aside here. I find a certain irony in seeing the "Baby on Board" sign only to see the driver with their face buried in their phone and drifting all over the place.
Fortunately, the "Baby on Board" fad of the 80s and the proliferation of phones and texting we see nowadays didn't have much overlap. But there are still some stragglers.

I recently saw a whole display rack in a store; they had everything: Baby on Board, Puppy on Board, Mother-in-Law in Trunk, Open Liquor on Board, etc.... It was a flashback to 1986!
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