OT - So, has anyone asked

Joseph McAllister pentaxian at mac.com
Thu Oct 22 17:34:13 EDT 2009

On Oct 22, 2009, at 13:16 , steve harley wrote:

> On 2009-10-22 13:42 , Doug Brewer wrote:
>> yes, it has long been a belief of mine that getting a driver's  
>> license
>> should include a mandatory period of time operating a motorcycle on  
>> the
>> street. Forced awareness, as it were.
> i think getting a driver's license should be more like getting a  
> pilot's license; dealing with motorcycles is important, but far from  
> the most common area for deadly mistakes that could be avoided
> as for what road denizens are most malignly neglected, that would be  
> bicycles

Folks my age grew up being admonished to stay on the sidewalk with our  
bicycles. "Don't go in the street!" our mothers yelled constantly  
until we were about 9 or so when we could ride into the street in  
front of the house (in suburbia). A year later we could ride around  
the block in the street. Soon we could ride anywhere in the 'hood, but  
not out on Washington Street (a state route, busy, on which the Boston  
Marathon passed once a year, a day on which we could ride on that  
street). Now it's illegal to ride on the sidewalks in many places!

My point is that I, and many of my peers, were "programmed" at an  
early age. When we see someone riding in the road, out in traffic, or  
trying to maintain their cool and control squeezing between parked  
cars and the driving lane in a city, it triggers our distain, as they  
are "breaking the rules", as we knew them.

Before you get a bristly and try to chastise me, I want to state that  
this is the FEELING I have under those circumstances, and does NOT  
signify my actions, which are almost always cordial and respectful of  
anyone wishing to risk their lives putting themselves between multiple  
solid moving objects. I could not bring myself to do it.

In a factory, OSHA would not allow such circumstances to exist as  
being to dangerous to the workers because of the unpredictable  
movements caused by the blasts of air, the irregularities of the road  
surface, and the minimal precise control a rider has.

In my car (or my bus when I was driving one in the city) if a driver  
opened their door in front of me without checking their mirror, I  
would take their door off with no danger to me or my passenger(s). On  
a bike, depending on the timing, you could get killed, either by  
hitting the door/glass, or if avoiding that, by the car about to take  
the door off and get it out of your way!  :-)

I'll stick to automobiles, thank you.

Joseph McAllister
pentaxian at mac.com


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