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Thread: Missed connection

  1. #3631
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    Two for today

    Situation #1
    Me: riding my bike on Wilson Blvd just about to enter the bike lane heading west
    You: driver talking on his cell phone on a cross street on my right; you look left, then right, then left, and then like I'M NOT EVEN THERE start to accelerate just in front of me
    Me: slamming on my brakes, I stop just in front of your front bumper and glare (sorry, but it was one that burned holes clear through the back of your skull)
    Dude, put the cell phone down, you obviously can't multitask talking on the phone and checking traffic to make a left turn!

    Situation #2 (about 2 minutes after Situation #1)
    Me: riding to the Westover Italian Store in shorts and a t-shirt to meet with my parents for dinner, having checked the weather forecast and radar, and seeing that there was no precipitation predicted for the next few hours
    You: the microburst that decided to open the heavens above me and soak me completely before I got there
    Me: I made it ANYWAYS and had some DELICIOUS PIZZA, even though I did have to wring out my clothes before entering the Italian Store. I curse the weather gods for this one

  2. #3632
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    From yesterday evening's commute home. To the guy in the gray shirt who decided to attempt a double pass on the straight away MVT stretch of trail adjacent to the Roosevelt Island parking lot: don't be a douchebag. The thing about the game of chicken is that at some point your luck with run out. Don't make stupid passes, don't make stupid passes with people coming at you, and if you're going to try something stupid, at least try to do so quickly.

  3. #3633
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    This is both a found connection and and missed connection for the rider who passed me this afternoon on 4MRT, near the GW Parkway underpass.

    Found connection: thank you for waiting until we were around the curve and then politely calling your pass. Your courtesy is appreciated.

    Missed connection: you needed to either pull your shorts up higher or pull the back of your shirt down lower, if you know what I mean.

    Should I have said something when I later caught up to him at a traffic light?

  4. #3634
    PotomacCyclist is offline I spend all day thinking about bikes and talking to people on the internet about them.
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    More evidence that it's very difficult to knock a CaBi bike over:

    I was riding near the Navy Yard Metro, mapping bike racks for RackSpotter. The neighborhood was very busy as the SF Giants were playing the Nationals at Nats Park a couple blocks away. People were still making their way to the stadium from the Metro and nearby parking lots. I was inching along very slowly on a sidewalk. (When I ride on sidewalks with people nearby, I slow down to a speed that would be comfortable for pedestrians. If it's really crowded, I'm rolling along at about 0.5 mph. I see it as an opportunity to practice my balance skills, and try to remain upright, even if I'm riding at 0.3 mph or slower.)

    Anyway, the sidewalk on that block was empty. Then I sense someone approaching from the left. I figure that he was an overly aggressive pedestrian, which happens, but I didn't think anything of it. Then I sense that he is getting very close to me. I see sudden movement. The guy rushes at me from the side, raises his leg and kicks the back wheel cover hard!

    I look over and see a scruffy-looking red-headed man in a dark/olive green jacket or overcoat. His hair is a mess and he looks very sullen, or high, or unbalanced, or drunk, or some combination of the above. This was in the early evening. There were about a dozen transit police and DDOT personnel directing traffic and keeping an eye on the crowds as they made their way to Nationals Park for the game. Most of the streets in Capitol Riverfront were very busy and active, but not that particular block of M St.

    I looked back at the guy, surprised at what had just happened. That's not something you would expect, so I didn't know what to think, at first. Obviously this guy is disturbed or angry or both. I decided not to say anything, because you never know if someone like that has a knife or a gun or another implement. Or if he would just rush at me again. I kept rolling along slowly, but making sure he wasn't following me. The guy never said anything.

    I rode up to the next intersection, where there were a lot of people. I mentioned that guy to the DDOT person who was directing pre-game traffic. She just said that you never know what a homeless person is going to do. I guess so, but I've never been attacked by a homeless person before. (But I have been attacked by a red-headed person before, namely my former boss, years ago.)

    I didn't panic but I made sure that the guy was not behind me or near me. He was just shuffling along, carrying a backpack. He never said a word, before or after he slammed the rear wheel of the bike. I rode around slowly until I passed by a group of police officers. I spoke to them and pointed out what happened. I didn't expect them to do much, but I wanted to point out that guy because he would probably be wandering around back and forth, and he could attack someone else in the large crowd. They said they would look out for him and thanked me for pointing it out. That was about all they could do, because the guy had walked down the block and was out of view temporarily. They asked if I was alright. I said that I was fine. The guy had only made contact with the bike and the wheel cover, not me. (If he had kicked me, he would have left a bruise. Maybe even a sprained hip or knee or possibly a broken bone. But he didn't kick me, just the bike.)

    I continued to ride around slowly. As I neared the Navy Yard Metro entrance, I happened upon the same guy again. I'm not sure if he recognized me. I sure recognized him. I gave him a wide berth and kept an eye on him without staring at him or directly looking at him, so as not to provoke him. (I had no idea how this guy would react to even an inadvertent glance or a misinterpreted stare.) I steered well around him until I was past him. I looked back until I was sure that he was continuing to walk in the other direction.

    So if you see a red-headed man wandering around the Navy Yard Metro or elsewhere in DC, beware. He had brownish-red hair, messy and dirty. He was wearing a long-sleeved canvas jacket or over-shirt, dark green or olive green in color. He was carrying a dirty blue backpack and maybe another bag. He had a light skin complexion but his face was grimy with dirt. I've never seen him before, and I hadn't encountered him before he kicked the wheel. (That is, I didn't cross him or cut him off before he attacked the bike. He just rushed out of the building just so he could kick the bike wheel, hard. It wasn't an accident.)

    After I had a chance to think about what had happened, I realized that if I had been riding another type of bike, he probably would have knocked me over. If you raise your leg up and kick a bike wheel from the side with a lot of force, the odds are good that you will knock over the bike and the rider. But not if the rider is on a CaBi bike. I'm not that heavy, so that wouldn't explain why I didn't tip over. It's the bike. I heard and felt the hard thud as he contacted the wheel cover. It was far more than just a tap. I wasn't in his way. He rushed out of a building as I was passing, just so that he could kick the bike hard from the side. I was only riding about 1-2 mph at the time, if that. Walking speed at best.

    Bizarre. I've ridden around some dicier areas and neighborhoods over the past couple months. I've ridden past and through the crowds of the homeless people at the Mitch Snyder shelter and the Central Union shelter. A lot of the people at the Mitch Snyder shelter appeared to be on drugs (looking aimlessly at the ground or at the sky, not focusing on anything around them). People frequently issue warnings about Anacostia. I rode past the Greenleaf public housing projects. No one ever attacked me or threatened me at any of these places. (That's not to say that crime doesn't occur in some of these areas, but nothing happened to me.)
    Last edited by PotomacCyclist; 07-05-2015 at 11:31 PM.

  5. #3635
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    Me: driving south on rt 202 in Bucks county PA
    You: riding on the other side. Wow! Major kudos for wearing a Wolverine costume complete with claws.

  6. #3636
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    KLizotte is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Potomac Cyclist,

    Unfortunately a large percentage of homeless have mental health issues, some researchers report that it is the majority. There is also a high rate of substance abuse as well, often as a way to self-medicate. It is possible that the guy who kicked you is mentally ill and/or has had a bad experience with a Cabi rider. Fortunately you weren't hurt and hopefully this gentleman will get the help he obviously needs.

  7. #3637
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    dasgeh is offline Queen of Family Biking & All Things Kidical
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    Also, 1 mph is really slow, even for walking. Most people walk in the 2-3 mph range.

  8. #3638
    PotomacCyclist is offline I spend all day thinking about bikes and talking to people on the internet about them.
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    I take it as a challenge to see how slow I can ride and still stay on the bike without putting a foot down. It's even easier on CaBi. Sometimes even the ants can pass me when I'm going that slowly.

  9. #3639
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    Me: riding to work on the Custis trial, probably ar around 20 +/- mph.
    You: adult on a bike entering from a side path. You entered the Custis without stopping and waiting for me. You were riding slowly, and you casually looked my way as you were entering. I assumed you saw me and were going to stop, but you didn't. At which point I started saying "Woah, woah, WOAH," while moving right and braking.

    You then went left, into the ditch along the path. You somehow got of the bike (step-through frame i assume), dropped it on the grass, and ran in the direction you had been riding. Amazingly you didn't fall. I asked whether you were all right, you said yes and i rode on.

    Well, no one was hurt this time, and I think you learned a lesson (hopefully).

  10. #3640
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    Quote Originally Posted by PotomacCyclist View Post

    Bizarre. I've ridden around some dicier areas and neighborhoods over the past couple months. I've ridden past and through the crowds of the homeless people at the Mitch Snyder shelter and the Central Union shelter. A lot of the people at the Mitch Snyder shelter appeared to be on drugs (looking aimlessly at the ground or at the sky, not focusing on anything around them). People frequently issue warnings about Anacostia. I rode past the Greenleaf public housing projects. No one ever attacked me or threatened me at any of these places. (That's not to say that crime doesn't occur in some of these areas, but nothing happened to me.)
    Not that it will make you feel better, but a few weeks back I was walking with my wife on Connecticut Ave to meet some friends at a bar near Dupont. They have that little construction zone in the middle with exactly one port-a-potty in it. Out comes a homeless man (I'm presuming he's homeless by his clothing, but who knows) who starts blabbering total jibberish and then asking why we don't like some random name. So, I opted to ignore him. He came right up and rubbed his arm along my shirt sleeve (I had on a long sleeved shirt) and said something about now I have special juice too. Eww.

    Anyway, yah, you never know what they would do.

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