Thursday, October 14, 2010

When Bicycling Dreams turn into Doubt

The last thirty-six hours have presented a watershed of events, exposing raw bicycling karma. Tuesday I was left by the cycling team on a no drop ride miles from town. Last night, I was nearly hit by a Mustang rolling through a stop sign downtown and this morning, honked at for merging to make a left turn.

If, in a place like Davis, a platinum rated bicycle city, cannot escape angry drivers rolling through stop signs and motorists honking horns, in the belief of a slightest cycling error – what place is actually safe for cyclists? Motorists are not the only culprit, cyclists ride erratically in bicycle lanes, fail to signal or stop at stop signs and oppress the pedestrians to a level of absurdity on campus. I moved 2,700 miles to be mowed down by a barrage of cyclists entering a roundabout on the UC Davis Campus. . .

Is safe cycling an oxymoron? Are we asking for too much, to share a sliver of the road and have the ability to make left turns, safely reaching our destination and becoming an integral part of the urban fabric? Is safe cycling synonymous with Moore’s Utopia, brilliant on paper and yet a fallacy? If Davis is the best for cycling, then why do so many people still drive, and further more – why is it still unsafe to ride a bicycle?