The Military Budget as Cookies

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How to Not Get
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An illustrated guide for bicyclists. Might save your life.

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Harassment from Motorists

Since harassment by motorists is so incredibly common, it would be impossible -- and pointless -- to list all the incidents we're aware of here. (I seem to be harassed on a weekly basis or even more frequently.) So understand that this page is only a very small sample of harassment stories.

To read up on the Texas laws regarding threatening behavior, check out our laws page.

You can also check out our section on What to Do if you're Hit or Harassed.


Teenagers throwing stuff at cyclists near Shoal Creek Blvd. Mar. 27, 2006

From: Stephen.Kreidler@ci.austin.tx.us
Subject: FW: bolo assaults on cyclist

I spoke with Det. Crippen and he said it's okay to let folks know that APD is confident they have identified the suspects in this case and are continuing their investigation to identify the assailant.

By the way bolo means "Be On the Look Out". I was imagining and Argentinean gaucho throwing a bolo at the legs of bicyclists.

Colly

-----------------------------------------------------------

From: APD
Location: 6400 BLOCK GREAT NORTHERN BLVD.
Suspect: Multiple (2-4) W/M Teenagers
Vehicle: Older Model, Volve 4-dr Sedan, Light colored (White or light Yellow) and a Light Colored Saturn 4-dr
Contact: Det. Crippen: 974-5071

2-4 male teenagers, in a white or light-colored older Volvo 4-dr (possible 1990's model) were seen throwing objects at cyclists. One victim suffered a severe eye injury that may result in permanent vision loss. In other reports, the subjects were seen in a light colored Saturn 4-dr car. These teens may be throwing water balloons, firing plastic pellets, or paint balls. Subjects are listed as teenagers and may attend school in the local area, possibly Anderson or McCallum High Schools. Please, contact Det. Crippen at 974-5071 if you have any pertinent information.


Bike cops set motorist straight by xxx, Mar. 15, 2005

[Ed. note: While harassment against cyclists will undoubtedly continue for a long time, I hope this case marks a turning point in the police response, because it was exemplary. It wasn't that long ago the list would get posts like the one where after a cyclist got yelled at and nearly run over by some road raging motorists and the cyclist called the police, the dispatcher asked, "Wasn't there a sidewalk there you could have ridden on?". In many other cases the police never showed up when called or just didn't care when they did. So the case below, to me, is pretty historic, although I suppose it's not surprising if we get a better response from bike cops than from car cops.

Anyway, I usually don't put every individual case of harassment up on the website, because if I did then that's all I'd do. But I'll put this one up because it shows how the police acted really, really well. Let's hope this isn't an isolated incident, that it's a sign of things to come, and that even car cops will defend our right to the road to aggressive motorists.]

I often commute by bicycle to my office downtown. I do my best to share the road responsibly and sensitively, but sometimes that isn't enough.

On Thursday morning, March 10, 2005, as I rode north across the Congress Avenue bridge, a car driver behind me aggressively pulled around and hit his brakes, coming to a sudden, complete stop right in front of me. I was puzzled by the move, as I had been riding at the right curb, as straight as I could manage.

I watched as he entered his parking garage, and I called 911. As I spoke with the police dispatcher, the driver walked out of the garage and confronted me. He screamed in obscene language that he had commuted by bicycle for two years and that he had "never once held up traffic." He called me "a disgrace to the bicycling community" for "completely blocking traffic," then walked away.

A pair of police officers on bicycles showed up less than five minutes later and took notes as I described the driver, his car, and the incident. One officer even went to the man's office building in an attempt to find him. Then the three of us rode into the garage and found his car.

The driver must have been watching from his office window, because he came to the garage and confronted the officers with his "side of the story," about how I was ?taking up the whole lane at five miles an hour? and how he only intended "to teach him a lesson on what it feels like to be held up by somebody -- you know, tit for tat." He told the cops that I "was never in any actual danger."

The police were not sympathetic to his admission that he had just deliberately used his car to try to intimidate a bicycler. They told him that bicycles had a right to use the road, just like cars, and that his action was inappropriate and illegal. They also pointed out that he couldn't have been too inconvenienced if he had managed to pass me in the first place. He continued to argue that he had only done what anyone else would do.

They asked what resolution I expected. I told them that, while I thought pursuing further legal options would only make matters worse, I hoped the man would realize greater understanding for those with whom he is bound to share the road. As I left, they told me they would file a "road rage" report, and that they intended to "talk to this guy for a little while."

I expect inattentiveness and ignorance on the road, but when drivers choose to express their frustration in willfully dangerous ways, I will call the police every time. We don't allow children to get their way by throwing tantrums, and we certainly cannot afford to allow bullying behavior from adults wielding two-ton cars as weapons.

 


Death Threat 8-15-01 by Mark Pedini

I had a motorist tell me that he would "run my ass over" and he would not be prosecuted due to the fact that I was in the street rather than on the sidewalk.

 


Throwing things at cyclists on S. 1st 8-9-01 by Patrick Goetz

Last time I biked on S. 1st from Riverside to William Cannon, someone hurled a cup of ice at my back (it was hot, so I wasn't terribly put out). The time before that, it was a beer bottle (not nearly as much fun). I can't comment on what South First is like beyond Wm. Cannon, but I can say that I have never biked south of Wm Cannon without being harrassed at least once by a motorist. I've been road biking lately, and the contrast in courtesy between going East/North or South is remarkable. I really think that it is quite dangerous to bike South of Wm Cannon.

 


Motorist cuts off 8-year-old and gives the finger 6-1-01 by Lane Wimberly

The other day, I was out with my 8-year-old son. We were going straight through an intersection, and had stopped at the red light. Normally, I would not stop on the right, but would pull up behind any waiting cars in the right lane. I've been turned into by right-turners too many times. But, this time, since my son's top speed is about 13 mph, I decided that it might be better to cautiously attempt to stick strictly to the bike lane on the right than to merge with aggressive late afternoon traffic.

So, when the light changed, I checked for a clear way, and then yelled to my son to proceed. Sure enough, just as soon as he entered the intersection, a small car pulls up quickly and cuts in front of my son, turning right -- a close encounter. I yelled loudly at the driver. Glancing at me in the rear view mirror as I crossed the intersection, he shot me the finger. "Yeah, buddy, I nearly ran over your son, and here's a little present to go with it."

So, making a light is more important than the life of an eight-year-old boy, and I'm a dick if I think otherwise.

It's a sad world. And, it's sadder still that people want it that way.


Don't Throw Rocks at People's Heads [Austin Chronicle, 9-15-00, p. 12]

Dear Chronicle Readers:

I write this letter out of anger, fear, disgust, and frustration. Last Sunday night my best friend called me, very upset. She had been biking home, minding her business, when an SUV full of guys drives past her. One of the guys hangs halfway out the window and hurls a rock directly at her head. Thankfully, the rock missed, but only just barely. The culprit laughed loudly as he and his accomplices sped off. My friend screamed and cursed them. Then, fearful that they might come back around the block and, who knows what, throw another rock? Run her over? She biked home as fast as she could.

These kind of things simply should not happen. I wonder and I worry, what kind of place is Austin becoming? I feel powerless over these kinds of things happening again. What can I do? I make it a point to smile at car drivers everywhere I go on my bike. I say hello to the other bikers. And when I drive my car, I smile at the bikers. If my windows are down, sometimes I'll say hello. Because guess what -- we're all people. And most of us are just trying to be good people.

Sincerely, Alegra Bartzat


Newcomer to Austin alarmed by rude motorists 1-25-00 by Tom Haycraft

Reading Michael Bluejay's Bicycling Newsletter 1-23-00 was very timely, especially, "DISCUSSION: Newcomers to Austin think we suck." This statement could not be more to the point, more correct (in my opinion) or more timely.

In early October 1999 I was offered a job here in Austin. It was a great career move and from all I had heard about Austin and cycling here, I jumped at it. I got here November 1, and moved my family on December 11 after I closed on a house. I live in south Austin near Slaughter and West Gate. Nice community. I love the fact my boys can go out for hours at a time and roam the neighborhood and surrounding fields, something I never felt comfortable with them doing where we lived in Dallas.

I have now ridden with Velocity out of Cycle 360 and the Sweetish Hill Bakery Ride (great ride, nice pace!). While in a pack, the drivers have been moderately well behaved. While alone, in this first month of riding I've had a bottle thrown at me and countless drivers laying on their horn while passing and countless others creeping onto the shoulder with me while passing at 50 to 70 mph. Welcome to Austin.

 Cycling in north and east Dallas for 9 years (4,000 to 7,000 miles each year) got me the occasional horn honk, but in those years I can't remember any bottles thrown.

Moving to Austin, rated a "top 10 cycling city" by Bicycling Magazine, home to Lance Armstrong and all those stories about the incredible riding here had me thinking I'd died and gone to heaven. I'm mystified by what I have found. While my kids can ride and roam the neighborhood, I feel very limited on when I can venture out to ride without tossing the bike in my truck and driving out of the city.

Yes, 360, Mo-Pac, Bee Caves Rd., Southwest Parkway and others all have wide shoulders -- full of glass, rocks, and trash providing 3 flats in 3 weeks. But I know, the drivers must think I'm Lance -- that is why they are honking! And those young boys in the pickup (yes, I drive one too), they were probably brought up with the best of manners and just wanted me to have something of theirs to cherish and hold close to my heart (or head). Good thing they had a bad aim. And again, those drivers coming over onto the shoulder with me, they DO think I'm Lance and want a closer look like goes on in Hollywood with all those big stars. Right! That's it, and here I thought Austin was full of copulating idiots behind the wheels of the motor vehicles. (Please notice tongue poking out of my cheek!)

 Well, 2 out of 3 (job, home/community ... not cycling!) have been positive aspects of the move here. And yes, in regards to cycling in Austin, this newcomer thinks it sucks. Too bad I have to work for a living and to an extend, my job dictates where I live.

 Funny thing is (if there is anything funny about this), while driving my pickup around town, driver-to-driver things appear to be more civilized as compared to my experiences in Dallas. I can't help but think that the "in-your-face" advocacy efforts in this town have pissed off a lot of drivers. Critical Mass? Looks to this newcomer like it and similar actions could be adding to the attitude displayed by many of the drivers I've encountered in my short time here.

 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

[Ed. note: While I'm embarrassed for us Austinites about the treatment that Mr. Haycraft has received at the expense of Austin drivers, and while such treatment isn't surprising, I can confirm for him that I received just as many death threats from motorists in the days BEFORE Critical Mass as the days since. And while I can't really be sure there is any correlation, nearly all the significant bike activism in this city started AFTER Critical Mass appeared (City's Bicycle Program, Yellow Bike Project, activists on citizen commissions etc.) As for Austin making Bicycling Magazine's list of Top 10 cities, yeah, that one had us scratching our heads too when that came out. Rest assured that we wrote to Bicycling magazine to provide some details about exactly what's wrong with the state of cycling in Austin. And here's some more on the fallout about Austin's Top 10 ranking.]


Even grandmas get into the action 1-25-00 by Joe Eyestone

Safety is my personal #1 issue. I don't log the miles you guys do on my bike, nor go so far afield, yet my neighborhood jaunts in the little over a year that I've been in the saddle have garnered one serious incident (where a car deliberately turned in front of me to cut me off), one so-so incident (where a car passed behind me, deliberately seeing how close he could come to my rear wheel) and plenty of buzzings and finger wavings. It's the attitude of the automobile drivers that concerns me--is it just me, or do the majority of them seem simply not like bikes on the street with them? No doubt road rage comes into play at certain hours; but I've been squeezed by grandmas as well, in the middle of the afternoon with nary a harried commuter in sight nor any traffic to speak of. ... I believe more and better bike lanes would be nice; but nicer yet would be greater support from above [City officials] in order to curb the crazed motorists looking to scouch me into one.


Getting results from the police 12-23-99 (Edited for clarity.)

 One cyclist had these suggestions:

Forget about the Austin Police Department altogether. Sounds like they aren't going to aggressively pursue criminal charges against dangerous motorists. Why waste your time trying to convince some police officer who really couldn't care less? Texas is not lacking in law enforcement agencies. Maybe try contacting the Texas Department of Public Safety, or Travis County sheriff's office. What about the Travis County District Attorney's office? Perhaps they have a mechanism where they review citizen complaints and can be of assistance? There are several criminal statutes potentially applicable to motorists who endanger cyclists with their reckless driving.

 Rick Ogan, a police officer in San Angelo, suggested the following.

When making a complaint about motorist harassment, you probably won't have much luck talking to a detective. They think investigating anything less then a felony is a waste of time. Get familiar with the officers who work bike patrol. They can sympathize with you and will go after those dangerous drivers. No one else on the police department will understand how harassing and dangerous those drivers are. One other thing that might help with APD, go above that detective's head. Complain to his sergeant, lieutenant, or Captain. Meet with the Captain of Patrol and see if you can get some type of bicycle awareness training for the officers. Most officers are clueless about bicyclist and their rights to the road. Most folks believe bicyclist tend to be second class citizens and the police are no different.


Police decline to arrest a drunk, reckless motorist, but arrest the cyclist who hit the motorist
Marco Rubio, 12-28-99

On September 24th while on a routine training ride with fellow cyclists, Bob Parnell and Russell Debarberis, we were riding through a neighborhood in Fort Bend County at about 5:30p.m. The road was a two-lane road with ditches on both sides. We heard a car approaching then suddenly Bob yelled, "Look out!" as the car passed extremely close as if trying to run us into the ditch. The car then stopped at the intersection, but had no where to go due to the traffic. I then saw Russell approach the vehicle from the driver's side and knock on the window. Bob and I had stopped next to the vehicle on the passenger's side. The driver had been drinking and was holding a large open container or mug, which I could clearly see through the passenger's window. Russell and the driver exchanged words and the driver spilled his drink on the center console and dash of his vehicle. As he became violent opening the door and yelled, "Now you've got a fucking problem," Russell had to defend himself not knowing what the driver's intentions were. A few minutes later, a jeep pulled up behind the car and the couple inside told us that the driver of the car was their neighbor and that they would call the police. While waiting for the police to arrive, the drunk driver approached me and said that Russell was going to jail. He appeared very confused and his eyes were extremely red and I could distinctly smell alcohol in his breath. When the police car arrived, the police officer went straight to the couple in the jeep and shook their hands and smiled as if they were best friends. The police officer then approached the drunk driver of the vehicle and asked him to step over to the side with him. They talked for a few moments, then the officer returned and arrested Russell, handcuffing him. He then locked Russell in the police car. Bob Parnell told the officer that he should give the driver a Breathalyzer test, but the officer became very upset and told Bob not to tell him how to do his job and that he would arrest him if he didn't shut up. The officer then asked me to tell him what had happened. After a brief explanation, I very politely asked the officer why he had not administered a Breathalyzer test. He answered by saying that he had special training and that to him the driver did not appear to be drunk and his eyes were red because he had been watching television. The driver was allowed to leave. When another lady pulled up in her vehicle and followed the drunk driver back in the direction he had come. Russell was then taken to jail.


Police refuse to help cyclist threatened by motorist
Robbie Robinette, 12-23-99 (from TBC list; submitted to Statesman)

Recently, while riding our bicycles on Shoal Creek Blvd. between Koenig and Anderson Lane, I and three friends had yet another car incident. The incident was minor but symptomatic of willingness of drivers to endanger cyclists to save a few seconds and harass them in some sort of perverse game. As a competitive cyclist, I am frequently harassed or endangered by vehicles who are either angry with cyclists for some reason or simply unaware of the danger they impose. I had decided to attempt to get the Austin Police Department to enforce the laws and to try to raise public awareness to make it safer for myself and other cyclists.

This incident started when a driver pulled along side of us, paused, matched speeds, then accelerated and turned right abruptly. We avoided being run over but only barely. The two people in front were uninjured but badly shaken, have narrowly escaped serious injury. I sprinted after the car and got its license plate number. We immediately called the APD to file a complaint.

This type of thing happens fairly frequently but this was more egregious than most and we had not doubt that the driver's action was deliberate. I had the hope that with four witnesses we could get the police to do something about this, i.e. call the driver, possibly issue a traffic citation. Instead, APD proceeded to demonstrate a complete indifference to this issue. First they declined to send a cruiser, to the scene, declined to open a case for several days and immediately closed the case when opened.

After several calls to the case was reopened. I spent approximately 1.5 hours on the phone with the case officer, Detective Martin, trying to get APD to at least contact the driver and then to understand the policy of APD with respect to cyclists.

The first point of conflict was that Detective Martin insisted that the driver did not have to yield to a bicycle in the bike lane before turning right. At best Detective Martin does not understand the law. A friend of mine found the following in the Austin traffic laws:

16-1-13 DRIVING VEHICLES UPON, IN OR ACROSS BICYCLE LANES.

No person shall drive a vehicle in, upon or across a bicycle lane except to enter a driveway, building or alley, or except to park such vehicle, or to leave a parking space, if such parking is permissible. No person shall drive onto or cross a bicycle lane as permitted by this section without first yielding the right-of-way as necessary to avoid collision or interference with bicycle traffic. ('81 Code, 11-2-14) Penalty, see 1-1-99

I was unable to get Detective Martin to take any action against the driver or even contact the driver to indicate that he almost injured several people. I moved on to try to understand what cyclist could do to protect themselves from drivers who were harassing and endangering cyclists. The policy of APD, as I understand it, is that unless there is an actual collision APD will do nothing. I gave several examples of motor vehicle harassment of cyclist (pulling onto the shoulder to 'buzz' the cyclist, abruptly swerving in front of the cyclist as the vehicle passes, shouting obscenities, throwing trash, all of the above, etc). He said that there was nothing APD would do in any of these cases unless there was a collision. When pressed Detective Martin indicated that crossing the center line or driving onto the sidewalk would suffice to indicate hostile intent even without a collision. Detective Martin said that while these activities were rude they were not illegal, he went on to mention that cyclist were often rude themselves. I pointed out that few car drivers had been killed by errant or rude cyclists. The irony was lost on Detective Martin.

To me, as a cyclist, these activities clear examples of people in motor vehicles deliberately threatening my life. (For non-cyclists, if you disagree, I suggest that you spend a few thousand miles on a bicycle before making that determination.)

After several more calls to APD by other persons involved in the incident Detective Martin did call the driver and called me to discuss the results of that. Detective Martin said that the driver was aware of us, that the driver did not intend to harass or obstruct us and that any danger presented to us was accidental. Detective Martin said that he was closing the case, having assured himself that there was no intent to harass. I was pleased that APD did call the driver, that was really the best that I had expected. I am deeply disappointed that APD is not willing to enforce the traffic laws and help ensure the safety of cyclists. I suppose that APD feels it has better things to do, the all to frequent messages I receive about friends or acquaintances who are injured or killed by motor vehicles tell me otherwise.


Threat with a vehicle is the same as assault
Patrick Goetz, 3-26-99

Texas law requires me to ride on the right hand side of the road, which is what I was doing on 26th yesterday in moderately heavy traffic. Unfortunately the I-35 access road exits from the right. Some asshole who wanted to get on I-35 started honking his horn behind me and running up on my rear. When I tried to move to the left so that he could pass me on the right he also veered to the left as if to hit me.

As usual, I need to remind the sanctimonious (and I suspect recreational and occasional bicyclists) among us that someone who guns their engine and makes as if to hit me when I'm on my bicycle is ASSAULTING ME WITH A DEADLY WEAPON. There is ABSO-F**KING-LUTELY no difference between this and pulling out a loaded gun and pointing it at my head. I do not like to be assaulted with deadly weapons when I am out in public minding my own business. I do not like it one bit. [Ed. note: Here's a link to Texas laws governing motorists.]


Cell phones help to catch motorists
Dan Connelly, 09/07/98

sarabear wrote:
>
> Some states do something about harrassment...
> I called the police from my cell phone.

 These stories are good and interesting, but really represent special cases due to the nature of the area (rural) and the writer's quick access to a cellular phone.

 I was bumped (contact) off the road on my way home in NE Austin. I dialed 911 when I got home, and was asked if I was at the scene. I replied no. The person on the line seemed surprised I didn't have a cell phone. There wasn't much that could be done, really, since I was not completely certain of the license number, and frankly tried so hard to remember the number I neglected to retain any details of the make and model.

 Those of us who are memory-challenged (I'm the type who has trouble with his own phone number, let alone a 7-digit alphanumeric sequence glanced in a moment of self-preservation) or who ride in crowded urban settings really are not in a good position to have anything done about these things..... at least until we wear wrist-cameras to quickly get photographs of offending vehicles.


Some states do something about harassment...
sarabear (Sara), Sun, 6 Sep 1998

I think everyone who rides the roads with any regularity has experienced agression from local motorists in one form or another. One of the problems with cars is that it creates sense of isolation and anonymity for the driver, in which he feels that he can behave in a manner that he would not otherwise behave if he knew he would be held accountable for his actions.

 I usually get a few hoots and howls any morning that I choose to ride alone. They usuallu come from angry passengers in old pick-up trucks who think it is their personal responsibility to ensure that our streets are free from slow moving traffic, or from 30-something housewives who are sure that they are saving me from certain death by telling me that riding in the street is unsafe. I always muster as big a grin as possible and wave with all fingers visible. I also believe that it is more difficult to be irate with someone who is cheerful and nice. I have to think of their nasty behavior as acknowledgement that I am there..... if they see me, they won't hit me.

 Last summer, a friend and I were taking a long ride on one of the more deserted roads outside of Phoenix. It is one of those highways to nowhere that connects a road on the far north of town to a road about 20 miles south. There may be only one or two places where a rider can turn off the road along the way, and there is nothing but desert on either side for miles. Most of the time we were the only vehicles on the road. Once in a while, we would see a car or truck coming toward us on the other side of the road, or be overtaken by a truck. A single 18 wheeler truck decided that we had no right to be on the road. Rather than passing us safely and legally, he chose to blare his airhorn and run us off the road. There was no oncoming traffic, and he could have pulled over a few feet. My friend ended up diving for the gravel on the shoulder, and I was barely missed by the rear wheels of his trailer. I got the license plate number, and while she was brushing the gravel off her knees, I called 911. I told them that the driver was running cyclists off the road, then gave them the details. Somewhere along that road, there was a trucker who wished he could have found a turnoff. We thought it was kind of odd at the time, but for the rest of the morning, we were treated more respectfully than we had ever been on that road. We found out later that 911 calls are monitored regularly and that our call had put other truckers on alert to be nice. We also learned that they caught and ticketed the offending truck about 10 miles down the road.

 One morning this summer, during my daily ride, I was spinning along in the proper position of a narrow lane on a street with 2 lanes of travel in each direction. It was rush hour, but I was out toward the edge of town, and the traffic was not heavy. I was moving along at around 25mph when a guy in a Saturn decided that he could not wait. He zipped around me to cut me off and turn right. I did manage to stay upright, and kept my wits about me long enough to get his license plate numbers. I called the police from my cell phone. I waited and was met on the corner by another officer. They stoped the driver and read him the riot act. It was clear that he was ignorant of the law and that he was truely sorry, so when they asked me what I wanted them to do, I agreed that a warning was probably best. I really felt that the guy would end up educating his friends so that they wouldn't be as ignorant as he had been. I was pretty shakey after that experience and because of my shakiness, I did not check my bike thoroughly. If I did I would have discovered that my tire was trashed, and I would have taken his insurance information, or some cash to replace my tire.

 I have been well trained to get that license plate number. The police were very helpful and co-operative because I was able to give them something that would identify the driver. If I had not been able to give them that number, there would have been nothing they could do. Motorists will recognize their responsibility when they realize that they are not anonymous. I suggest that we all teach our students to look for license plate numbers when they or another cyclist with whom they are riding are threatened in any way.

 sarabear
LAB (ECI #690), USCF, ABC, CAB, and a bunch of other organizations...


Motorist runs after cyclist
From: egan jones, 7/11/97

OK, here's another story involoving bike lanes!...

Yesterday I was riding up Guadalupe (in the bike lane adjacent to campus), approaching the crosswalk at the Coop (or what's left of it) when a driver passes me and swerves to park in the bike lane DIRECTLY infront of me -just to drop off his sweetie at the front door.

After slamming on my breaks and checking the traffic coming from behind (so that I may avoid a possible splattering), I showed my disapproval by tapping/rapping my fingers on his driver-side window, much as I would honk at him if I were in a car.

After I passed him and continued north in the bike lane he came racing up beside me (I almost thought he was in the bike lane behind me!), jumped out of his car with a livid-as-hell look on his face, and started for me. I had just enough time to figure that I better just start cranking as hard as I could on those pedals. He only got a skim of a kick on my back tire. As I stood at the corner of 24th and Guad, I really wanted to bring to his attention his complete ignorance and lack of concern for bicyclists well-being, but he seemed in NO mood to talk. (I had my U-lock handy just in case.)

Call me chicken, but I decided it was better to leave this one alone (he was about 6-2 and big). I pretended to turn into campus, but then u-turned to exit. He didn't see the u-turn and entered campus looking for me. I waved from behind him and went on my increased-adreline day...

Seems to be a good example of how, yet again, people will cross whatever barriers that are in place to protect cyclists, for whatever whimsical reason.


Motorists throw beer bottle at cyclist
Rick Waring, 7/1/97

Received a call today from a commuter who rides from Austin to West Lake Hills frequently using Barton Spring, MoPac feeder and Bee Caves Rd. Saturday evening coming home from work she was violently assaulted by some individuals in a small dark pick-up who threw a full beer bottle at here. The bottle broke severely cutting her leg requiring a trip to the hospital. She reported it to police, but didn't get the license number.


Motorists throw water bottle at cyclist
Kristin Ashton, Sat, 31 May 1997

While driving home Friday, approaching the intersection of 360 and Loop 1, I happened to pass a bicyclist....I thought to myself, "I bet he's in good shape," smiled, and continued to the stop light. I just happened to glance in my rear view mirror in time to witness a car full of morons throw a FULL water bottle at the rider, who was in NO WAY impeding traffic, and was easy to see. The car swerved behind me unsteadily, right on my tail, before passing into the left lane and racing on through the intersection. This was during rush hour.

Caught up in the flow of traffic, I couldn't slow enough to make sure the rider was okay, but if you are reading this, I hope you are. I do not bike often, but I believe that as a driver of a bigger and more potentially dangerous vehicle it is my duty to help keep the road safe for ALL, not more hazardous. A license does not buy you the road, only the right to share it. Period.

So, let me share this with you, dear readers....to the BLUE VOLVO STATION WAGON, I got your plate number....I called the cops on you, I' d like to wring your moronic, infantile, little necks, and you suck. I love this city because people like you are refreshingly rare, even in these troubled times. [Were that only true! -- Ed.] I only hope you are incapable of reproduction, since natural selection obviously failed us in your case.

Sincerely, Kristin Ashton
(A driver who gives a shit)




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