I'm going to have one of those rants that addresses everyone generally, but really I'm only to talking about a few of you - and you know who you are. Actually, you probably don't, which makes it worse.
I'm talking about drivers. You know the people. They get into their protective steel one-ton boxes and fly across roads, talking on their cell phones all the while swerving into bike lanes, cutting into bike lanes when they want to turn right, and generally doing their best to kill me.
I am, of course, not in a protective steel box. I'm on my bike. So when I see a - faded black Honda Accord (shall I include the license plate?) - turning right as I make my way across the street just north of him, and then that person changes their mind, flips around to go left and almost nails me ... Well, I get scared and angry. I probably shout expletives. Yes, I shout a lot of them. And this really solves nothing. It only makes me more angry when the guy in the faded black Honda Accord shrugs and scoots around me.
I know a huge part of my problem is I'm simply not used to riding in a bike lane with cars whipping past me. The majority of cars are not trying to kill me. If anything they are trying to avoid me.
When I got my new bike and began practicing clipping and unclipping, I primarily stuck to this great carless biking and running path that runs behind our house. The path follows the Rillito, which is a riverbed, not a river because this is the desert. But on occasion a river runs through it so I suppose that's why the city built a path along its side.
I stuck to the bike path for far too long. For one, it is easy and convenient to jump on and off of. Plus, it is perfect if I can't get a ride in until around rush hour and the path is long enough to get 20 miles in or more. The problem is it's flat. The Wildflower, as we all are learning, is hilly.
I need to get used to what everyone else who cycles has had to learn. Cars, or more specifically the people driving them, will try to kill you. But that's OK because most drivers try to avoid cyclists and you just have to keep your eyes open for all the faded black Honda Accords out there.