Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Checking in on Car Culture


A piece in the today's Times goes into the bad habits of many drivers. Normally, an article like this wouldn't get more than a clip in Today's Clip, but after last week’s "Dust Up" it was worth noting that it isn’t just a few bad apples that ruin the whole bunch and that it’s not just uppity cyclists complaining about unsafe drivers.

What’s also interesting, is how many of the common driver’s complaints can’t/don’t apply to cyclists. In order, the driver complaints listed in this article are:

1) Tailgaters that honk, flash lights, and make rude gestures when you’re already going over the speed limit
2) Drivers that don’t use their turn-signal
3) Police officers have a problem remembering to use their turn signals
4) People that throw trash out their windows
5) Speed racers out of red lights (who end up stopped at the same light as the "loser" from the last light)
6) Cars that are double parked

With the exception of #2, (To be fair, half the time I signal a right hand turn, the driver’s behind me act like they have no idea what’s going on) none of these apply to folks that use their bikes instead of their cars as their transportation choice. So next time one hears that cyclists break just as many laws as drivers, remember that people on a bike don’t even have as many ways to break a law as our friend’s in their cars.
(photo from today's Times)

2 comments:

Dan W. said...

http://money.cnn.com/2008/01/14/news/companies/taylor_detroit_nissan_future.fortune/index.htm?postversion=2008011409

According to Nissan, the Car Culture is fading -- and not a moment to soon.

Justin said...

My list:

1) People who don't get the heck out of the way when the person behind them clearly wants to go faster.
2) Drivers, including police officers that don’t use their turn-signal
3) People that block intersections for an entire cycle because they couldn't figure out that they were going to be in the way when the light changed
4) People that throw trash out their windows
5) People who believe that going the exact same speed as someone else is a great reason to be in the lane next to them, completely blocking anyone else from getting around them.
6) Cars that are double parked