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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bicyclists oppressed by small town police force-which is not all that bad an idea...

Have been trying to plant, chop silage, work ground, and pick my nose all that the same time. Was successful in only one of those ventures...
Here is a link to a funny story.  Every year hordes of bicyclists stream though our fair city on the way to the coast. It is some kind of fundraiser but no one here really cares. We are just annoyed by lanes full of bicycles.
In this area the main reason you ride though Ballston on a bicycle is that you have had so many DUII's that they won't let you near an automobile for the next 30 years. Or if you are that weird old hippie dude that rides around and picks up pop cans.
The bicyclists have had many pranks played upon them.  Including changing all the signs telling them where to go, giving them wrong directions and sending them to the coast by way of Perrydale and Salt Creek, spraying them with silage (and pretending it was an accident) and I'm sure there are more.
I am not sure why it is so annoying as most of the bicyclists are happy and wave at everyone. I guess it is just the issue that I am working and they are not. Or perhaps it is the problem that I have to move wide farm equipment down the same highway at only a slightly faster speed than they are going.
I guess the local police force decided to write some tickets. I have been hard on the local cops but I do find some humor in this incident and I support the point they were trying to make.
Of course, after I think about it I realize it was kind of stupid. So, the bicyclists are blowing through the stop signs and holding up traffic. It is not the same thing as the crazy activist cyclists in Portland. This is an organized event. Why don't the organizers or sponsors or who ever is in charge take responsibility and realize that blocking traffic really pisses the locals off-and try to do something about it.
Just one quick example that pops into my head-Perhaps there should be check points in towns and traffic control. It would bunch up the cyclists but perhaps it would allow for local police to block intersections and run large groups of cyclists through at once.
Frankly, I really don't have a clue what would help. Especially since I've only been thinking about it from that angle for the past ten minutes. Somehow, even though I get amusement from the ticketing I think it is the wrong thing to do. AND I think the $300 ticket is pretty outrageous.
Despite my opinion that ticketing all the bicyclists was not the best idea, and that bicyclists generally annoy me, my irritation is more with the ride organizers than the local police or individual cyclists. But,  I'm sure that nothing will be learned from all of this. I'm sure the ride organizers will not take any responsibility. The cyclists will not ask for changes in the ride to be more compatible with traffic, an df of course our small town will just be written off as a bunch of bicycle haters (mostly true) and no one will want to taste wine here anymore. (Perhaps that would be a good thing!)


  1. Just found your blog and have to say this entry is hilarious. So is the article your reference and the comments that follow it. I have had to deal with the nasty spandex monkeys since the '70's in CA when the first "found it". Then, they complained about horse poop on "their" riding trails and thought it was funny to spook the horses as they zoomed past. Now, they are popping up on MY rural roadways, as self absorbed and rude as ever. I hate them.

  2. Anonymous, thanks for the comment. I usually get negative comments from "Anonymous." The world is divided into two camps, the spandex monkey camp and the non spandex monkey camp. The two camps pretty much hate each other. If I ever were to take up cycling I would ride a beat up old mountain bike and carry a bag of pop cans on the handlebars. This would put me square into the NON-spandex monkey camp and people would smile wave at me when I went by.
    I do have to throw in a defense of the hood to coast riders. They are friendly and really don't seem to realize they are annoying you. I hate the hard core "spandex monkey" types who think they are Lance %^&**)@ing Armstrong crossed with Rosa Parks and deserve the middle of the road cause they are oppressed or superior or cause that spandex has given them a huge wedgie or whatever...


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