Monday, February 21, 2011

Racers and conflicts

Sometimes I just cannot take the abusive nature of conflicts. The conflict between bicycling racers training in packs and the driving public is out of control.

 Since the invention of the bicycle a byproduct has been the bicycle racer.  Racers that ride bikes are different then those that race cars, bicycle racers are racing reality. Nothing is more physically demanding of so many muscles or so many senses.  Watch the 21 days of the Tour De France just once and feel the emotion and the mission.

Bicycle racers race in packs and must train to win and gain expertise. Bicycle racers may go 50 miles per hours or more. Bicycle racers train on the roadway system worldwide. There is NO other place to train and no other way to learn but to train as you race—IN PACKS.

I am not a bicycle racer, was never one but I am a bicyclist and have been all my life. I love the bicycle because it offers me health, economic freedom, social networks and affordabilities never imagined in our consumer world.  Look the bike it is under 30 pounds, last forever and has a small impact on the planet. It is a supremely sustainable devise that does what it is suppose to do.  It is one of the few devises that exceeds expectations  .  

Toss yourself in a 4,000 pound box and drive around endlessly, complacently and unsustainable and notice the difference. Our planet needs some of the health the bicycle brings to us. Racers are constantly combated by those big boxes.  They spend 40 hours or more a week training and much of the time alone in traffic being abused.  They are cut off, hollered at, pushed off the road by impatient passers in their boxes.  It seems that drivers believe that that box has more rights then the little person on a 30 pound devise has.

Day in and day out the racer get abused—then on weekends they get to ride in packs. Packs are like hornets nests pulsating with energy not to be disturbed. Packs have a mission and that is training and flowing. They also have real power and use it often to keep the abuse from rising out of the boxes all around them. Messing with 50 or 100 cyclists is different than running a lone one off the roadway.

In the 60s motorcyclists had similar problem with drivers. Constant harassment, blatant abuses and endless conflicts. A group formed from all the conflict and set as mission a unity of one for all and all for one. Since the law was not assisting they implemented a strategy of fear into the driving public. If you mess with a Hells Angel other Angels will get you no-matter where you live.  Offending motorist were tracked down and beat up by the brothers. Very quickly word spread and still exists, if you mess with an Angel you will get hurt. 

People quit messing with motorcyclists pretty much since they could not tell Angels from just other riders. I was a motorcyclist those days and still am and I thank Hells Angels for suffering the agony and enduring the legacy of a transportation system too big, too arrogant and too driven by speed alone to be fixed.

So the bicycle racer is being run out of towns, off the roads and seen as a nuisance. He is a reflection of a system that is still arrogant, intolerant and not fair to other users.  Times have to change now that our health, the planets health and oil is now not affordable or soon available.
Give the packs some room and some relief. Stop and rest 5 minutes and let them go ahead out of sight and mind. Cool off and think about them differently, think of them as hero’s of the roadway powered by intense personal energy and a small 30 pound devise. They are models of health, transportation, inspiring to watch and like a wasp nest something to let go without disturbing.

Begin to be careful of those single bicyclist that are all around you. They are easily injured by traffic, easily made unstable by passing them too close, turning in from of them or just  more. THE LANE IS A PUBLIC UTILITY it is full of people using different devises. Learn how to cooperate. 

We all need to know, understand and obey the traffic laws--all of us.

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