Friday, 6 July 2012

Riding rant

I think we all know I’ve got just a tad obsessed with spinning lately. This week and the future plan now being to go to spin class every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday! In fact I’m even considering investing in a pain of padded cycling trousers – what with the bike and then the horse riding saddle on a Sunday – it is not comfortable!

Obviously my cycling exploits are limited to that of the stationary bikes downstairs in the gym and specialist spin machines in the studio upstairs, rather than venturing out on a ‘real’ bicycle. In fact the last time I settled my feet onto some actual bike pedals was around seven years ago when I was in Australia and participated in the Wobbly Wine Tour (great fun, really recommend it!)

Given the fact I hadn’t ridden a bike since I was a teenager (ah memories of cycling round the local estates with one of my best friends come flooding back), I was impressively wobbly before I’d even consumed any alcohol! Strangely enough that was my first and last return to riding a proper bike since.

What has my sudden love of spinning got to do with anything, you ask? Why am I typing away about this hobby yet again? I’m afraid the reason is I’m preparing to rant, as yet again something happened whilst I was out of the office at work today which is becoming a regular occurrence.

Those who do cycle and are very good at it, I have nothing against them, particularly people who do it for fitness - choosing to cycle rather than tube or bus it to work – or those who cycle miles for charity events.

However, what I don’t like is the seemingly growing number of cyclists who are a law unto themselves. You know the ones I mean, they undertake you in the car, they go storming across red lights and they travel on the road one minute and the pavement the next.

My rant is mostly aimed at those on standard bicycles, although I’ve had my share of moron motorcyclists too believe me. On a drive to the station to get to work my boyfriend and I had a motorbike try and come down the side of the car despite seeing my boyfriend signalling to go right, when they swerved past – and cut him up – the passenger turned round giving us evils and the finger! Nice.

At least I’ve found them to follow the rules of the road to the extent they don’t cut the lights though – or in my experience so far. Cyclists ever-increasingly, particularly in London just do as they please.

I noticed a colleague the other day on social media complain they were walking along and had headphones in and had stopped to look at their phone or something and a cyclist just missed them. Nearly every day when I go to cross Bishopsgate or Commercial Street on the way to or from the office I see a cyclist go speeding through a red light. Quite often they ring their bell continuously and have the cheek to shout out complaints at the pedestrians crossing over at the time too.

What angers me even more is the whole campaign about looking out for cyclists and how drivers should be careful not to run them down or knock them over. Perhaps if more people followed the rules of the road correctly that would help for a start (as a non-driver I acknowledge there are plenty of drivers out there who aren’t so good at this too granted).

Maybe a more realistic campaign would be to warn pedestrians to look out for cyclists as they may well be run down by them. If you’re not a child you need to ride on the road, if you’re going to ride on the road you need to follow the general rules of the road. Simple.

Why is it cyclists think they can create their own rules and do as they please? And as for those that go speeding along the pavement and nearly knock into you as you walk along, to then return to the road when they’re good and ready again? How is that acceptable?

How can people plead for more courtesy on the roads, when they don’t follow that form of behaviour themselves?

I’m going to stick to my bike that is firmly secured to the ground for now and just pedal as fast as I can in the dark to flashing lights and beat-filled music. As for investing in some bottom protecting cycling gear, perhaps I’d be better paying out for some protective equipment to keep me safe travelling to and from work as I cross the roads instead.

No comments:

Post a Comment