The "Minneapolitans are terrible drivers" posts were criticized on the "Minneapolis is awesome" blogs.
The "cyclists have a portion of responsibility in traffic safety" were decried on the "cyclists can do no wrong" blogs.
Nobody brought the discussion to me, because Minnesotans don't do that. If they don't like what you're doing, they talk behind your back. If they like what you're doing, they announce it around you: not to your face and ostensibly to one of their friends, just as you're passing by. Once, a guy on a stage with a microphone at a trivia contest told me to fuck off because I called him out on a bad trivia question. After the show he approached my table, turned his back to me, and apologized to all of my friends in case he offended them: "No hard feelings? We'd really like to see you guys come back again." I'm forming a theory that anyone who looks you in the eye is from Chicago or Madison.
But I'm biking again, Rebecca and I bought year-memberships to Nice Ride, Minneapolis' awesome-freakin' bike-sharing program. I can commute to work: there's a Nice Ride rack a block north or south of my apartment, and another half a block from where I work. It is the height of convenience, great exercise, and a great excuse to indulge in choccy milk.
|Is it low of me to be so uncharitable?|
After all, she was preoccupied with
multitasking: driving her pricey car,
yakking away on her iPhone, and
putting an uppity cyclist in his place.
|She shoved me out of the bike lane|
today: she nearly clipped me going
down the street, then she parked
her BMW in the bike lane to prepare
for a right turn, two car lengths ahead
of the indicated lane merge.
Most common, however, is aggression from other cyclists. I stop at red lights, per MN Statute 169.222, but most cyclists do not. They ride through them and, half the time, they ride a little too close to me to teach me a lesson: you need to get out of my way, nerd. Hipsters and professional cyclists have two things in common: they're profoundly image-conscious, and they have complete disregard for law, safety, and community. I suppose those are both forms of deep self-interest, but it's useful to underscore each manifestation of it.
And I know I'm a broken record, but no one reads this blog anyway so I can go ahead and bitch about it on occasion here. Nothing makes a difference: polite conversation, citing the law, leading by example, or shouting at strangers. Nothing makes an ounce of impact, not one joule, so let me shout into my own void, thanks.