CHRIS BARTLETT THE COURIER-MAIL NOVEMBER 29, 2013 3:19PM
Source: Herald Sun
Cyclist captures road rage 0:27
Brisbane cyclist is sick of aggressive motorists so he mounts two cameras to his bike and posts the incidents on YouTube. Courtesy Dominic Flynn/YouTube
THEY’VE been described by some haters as “cockroaches of the road”, a two-wheeled menace and a threat to civilisation and the Australian way of life.
When they’re not gathering in massive groups on our roads and our coffee shops, they’re polluting our vistas with an endless horizon of gaudy lycra.
Cyclists. Here’s why we hate them.
CYCLISTS ARE ROAD HOGS
It’s one of the most common complaints about cyclists. They ride in large groups and clutter up the roads, delaying law-abiding motorists on their daily commute by up to several seconds.
Solution: Seal off an entire country – France, say – and let them loose there.
CYCLISTS DON’T OBEY RULES
People on bikes go through red lights, overtake at inappropriate times, speed up the left lane, don’t indicate their intentions and generally ignore most of the Traffic Code. Unlike motorists.
CYCLISTS ARE TOO FAST
There is nothing worse than crawling through traffic at 10km/h and being overtaken by some creep on a bike. Nothing.
CYCLISTS ARE TOO SLOW
See reason 1. Motorists are always frustrated when confronted with a person on a bike exercising their legal right to use a public thoroughfare going 20-30km/h slower than the posted speed limit. We won’t mention some Camry drivers.
CYCLISTS USE ROADS
One of the most common anti-cyclist refrains from online commenters and bloggers is that they use the roads at all. This is tricky. But the Queensland Traffic Act is pretty clear on the matter:
Under the Queensland Road Rules, bicycles are considered vehicles. By law cyclists must obey all the general road rules. As a legitimate road user, a cyclist has the same rights and responsibilities as other road users.
CYCLISTS USE FOOTPATHS
There is a common misconception that footpaths are for the sole use of people walking or running, or large trucks making deliveries. Cyclists are allowed to use them as well, but must give way to pedestrians, even if that doesn’t work both ways when pedestrians cross roads.
CYCLISTS DON’T PAY THEIR WAY
If the government collected $1 every time an online commenter or blogger ranted about making cyclist pay rego, it would have a massive surplus to boast about. The usual complaint goes like this: “Cyclists shouldn’t use roads unless they pay rego …” This is actually a good idea, for it would stop all those complaints in one swoop.
CYCLISTS WEAR RIDICULOUS CLOTHES
It’s the whole lycra thing. You’re not riding the Tour de France, you’re too old and fat. We can see your toolkit and really, we’d rather not … But, stop and think for a second, the alternative could be a lot worse.
CYCLISTS ARE DELUSIONAL
When cyclists are cruising through our streets they think they look like this:
The reality, however, is somewhat different:
CYCLISTS DRINK COFFEE
One activity guaranteed to upset the anti-cycling brigade is the habit of bike riders to indulge in a flat white or two after a ride.One social commentator even asked: “. how many cyclists does it take at coffee shops in the prettiest locations before there is no longer room for non-sweaty civilians?” Indeed. Cyclists, listen up: Stop sweating, and stop supporting small businesses.
CYCLISTS ARE TOO LOUD
When they’re not lounging around coffee shops bellowing about sprockets or somesuch, cyclists disrupt the suburban idyll as they prowl the streets shouting at each other. “Pothole!” “Corner!” “Dog!” “Tree!” (Don’t they have eyes?). Not only are they loud, they choose inappropriate subjects for sensitive suburban ears. Sex. Apparently, sexually explicit banter is common when cyclists gather and people in some riverside Brisbane suburbs have launched a petition about it.
CYCLISTS ARE TOO QUIET
Just ask any pedestrian with an iPod glued in their ears who’s been hit by one.
CYCLISTS ARE SMUG
And self-righteous. Nobody cares if you’re saving the planet by not contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. And we know cycling is cheap. And gets you fit. And can be fun. But motorists don’t get soaking wet when it rains, and we are blessed with the likes of Kyle Sandilands to entertain us as we sit in traffic jams, so there.
But you know the real reason we hate cyclists?
Because we secretly ENVY them.
We envy their freedom. We envy the fact that while our muscles are withering away from non-use as we sit stock-still in a stinking traffic jam for several hours each day, cyclists are able to breeze through the snarls with nary a care in the world.