Letter on cyclists was meant to enlighten
Re May 21 letter, “Cyclist won’t share road with writer”: Wow, just wow. It seems that Mr. Paul Poetto can read minds. At least he thinks he can read mine. And it’s obvious that he can take people's words out of context.
Why would he assume I wanted to harm him when I clearly stated that riding in the middle of a 55 mph road that has blind curves is dangerous? My hope is to not hurt anyone, myself included. If I come around the bend in my 3,900-pound vehicle at 55 mph and a bevy of bicycles is 30 feet ahead of me, the best brakes in the world aren’t going to stop me. So then what would he have me do? My minimum speed limit idea is far from outrageous. And it has been applied on certain highways where the speed limit is 55.
And as an aside, one of the first things you learn as a child riding a bike is to stay out of the road.
In actuality, when I come across a cyclist (and especially a group of cyclists) it’s them that scares the heck out of me. I never know if they’re going to stay on the shoulder or dart out into traffic. Would it be so difficult to invest in a side-view mirror to check for oncoming traffic before veering into it? Or heaven forbid, would it take away from the beauty and/or aerodynamics of the bike.
From this motorist's point of view, it’s the bicyclists that drive recklessly, not the automobile drivers.
The traffic laws are there for a reason, mostly for safety’s sake. I ask again, why do bicyclists think the laws don’t apply to them?
All in all, my intent was just to write an article about common sense on the roadway. My intent was not to vilify anyone, just to possibly open some minds. But I guess the mind of this one bicyclist is closed, as he took my words as a personal affront. Perhaps he’s guilty of the unsafe practices I mentioned and therefor became offended. Not being a mind reader, as Mr. Poetto is, I wouldn’t know.
But with all our rural 45 mph and 55 mph roads here in Stillwater, maybe it’s a good idea he keeps his bike someplace where he has more control over it and doesn’t feel the need to just criss-cross the shoulder line in the willy-nilly fashion that I constantly observe.