Friday, 23 April 2010

Yellow Card

Like so many good ideas they appear simple, but it usuaully requires somebody else to do it. I stumbled along this post via the The Blue and The Red as he's moved to a new site. I really like the site as they (the Americans) bring the Punk to Road Cycling. Where Europe brings history, drama and passion. Being in the UK we tend to embody both parts and absorb all cultures while not forgetting the wealth of our own. But I digress as that is not the point of the post.

I lived in London for a long time, in many ways it feels like a lifetime. Commuting through London on a daily business I would have so loved one of these to throw at a car.


So often I used to get angry at the near misses thinking that they where trying to kill me. Near death experiences can envoke the 'Red Mist' and I have chased after cars and given them a mouth full. Age is a great mellower and you realise, it is much like the idiots who cross the road while looking at their phone, i-pod or whatever, that people get wrapped up in whatever they are doing. It's just with a car it's pretty scary at times as you can feel very vunerabal.

So living in West Sussex, is it a bunch of roses. No, but in general there is a different mood. In the week I commute much as I did in London except that the sounds of the city have been replaced on half of my journey by sounds of the countryside. The other half is urban sprawl and has many of the same issues as London, just in a micro version. Modern life can be stressful with people rushing here and there, so the same issues arise. Many drivers have no concept of how quick a cyclist can go, and if they are a quick fit person they can easierly keep pace with the traffic.

Some drivers love it, and I can remember on many occasions car drivers coming along and saying of you where doing X miles an hour. Of course you get those who think that you are the roadways version of a rat or a pigeon and so it is there job to rid you off the road.

Weekend riding around the lanes of West Sussex and Hampshire has been on the whole very respectful to cyclists. Maybe there are more drivers who consider themselves a cyclist, or is it that outdoor pursuits here are common place and for everyone?

Radical as it may seem but I think that the major cycling organizations in the UK should get these made, to spread the message that beyond the lycra there is a person, a father, mother, brother, sister or friend and that we all have to care for another. Pipe dreams maybe, but change doesn't come by doing nothing.

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