Saturday 10 May 2008

Suffer the little doggies

Another tale of woe from the road, but in this case, it was not car vs bike. It was car vs pedestrian walking two dogs. I just happened to be right there on my bike when the action occured.

It was the day after the big car vs 50 bike prang down near the airport. Just to show that it is incredibly hard to change someones behaviour, not 24 hours after that prang, I was riding towards a pedestrian crossing when I heard a car fanging up behind me. I was not too bothered, as the lanes are wide and I was in a separate bike lane. But there was a woman walking across the pedestrian crossing, and she was walking two dogs on leads.

The driver clearly saw her, but gave no indication that he was going to stop. As one of the dogs was lagging, it looked to me like he was going to blast across the crossing and take out the rearward dog.

The lady just stopped in the middle of the crossing and turned to face the car. The driver slammed on the brakes and screeched to a halt. She gave him the glare of death, yelled something about stopping at pedestrian crossings at him, and then threw back her shoulders and marched the remainder of the way across the road.

I really should have applauded her. The driver was not a happy chappy by any means, and to show his displeasure, he floored it and flew up the road - which was a 50 zone. I was looking forward to him losing it on the roundabout at the end of the road, but curse him, he was driving a Subaru.

The only upside from this story is that whilst us poor bike riders often feel that we bear the brunt of aggressive, idiotic driving, this episode reminded me that pedestrians often cop it even worse. Which is bizarre, given that at some point, everyone has to get out of their car and walk somewhere. By definition, all drivers are pedestrians at some point (even those in wheelchairs, for those of you that want to be smart about it).

Fuckwit was clearly in a hurry, and thought his time was more valuable than that of anyone else. I've heard of some cyclists carrying pliers that they use to snip the valves off car tyres in instances like this. If I can't carry a handgun, I guess pliers are the next best thing.

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