Car Driver's Entitlement of the Road is Challenged

This short video has been making its way around the internet. If you haven't seen it, check it out and see what grandma does when the driver aggressively revs his engine while she is crossing in front if him. While the grandma's bulls eye is a rare (and hilarious) shot, the behavior of the driver, unfortunately, is not so rare when it comes to sharing corridors of transport with people who commute without motors. Has this happened to YOU? How did you react? TH wants to know.It has happened to me, unprovoked. I was on my bicycle in Portland waiting to cross the street at an intersection when the driver in the brand new yellow mustang starting revving his engine behind me. I looked around and he motioned me to pull over to the side so that he can make a right turn (there was only one lane for the both of us). I considered the option that he presented to me. If I had pulled over to the side and the perpendicular street that I was in queue to cross presented an opening, then there is a considerable chance that I would have crossed the road at the same time that he was turning right, and it would have been a bloody mess, MY blood. After this vision, I decided to stay put while he continued to rev his engine and flail his arms in frustration behind me. He was under the mindset that since I was on a much smaller and non motorized vehicle that my commute was less legitimate than his. Like any other vehicle, I can cross the intersection rather quickly once an opportunity presents itself and then drift back over to the side of the street to allow motorized vehicles to pass me. The wait was not on me, but the perpendicular traffic. If I was one person in a car, like he, I don't think he would have expressed his feeling of entitlement over the intersection. He would likely have supressed his road rage until his next encounter with a cyclist.

Now these are the blatant examples of a few drivers out of many and by no means is meant to demonize drivers in general. Every now and again, drivers acknowledge us cyclists and pedestrians, and even will occasionally even 'open a door' for us. It is not our fault that a separate system of dedicated corridors has not been provided for human powered travel and so we are forced to play real life frogger sometimes.

Treehugger would love to hear about some of your experiences out there on the frontlines of commution, both positive and negative, as well as how you chose to react.

Further Reading:

45 Days in Jail for Driver who Rode Around with Cyclist on the Hood of his Car
Cyclists Cause Less Than 10% of Bike/Car Accidents
6 Ways To Defuse Anti-Cyclist Road Rage
Road Rage Live: Bikes, Beef Patties and Blogs

Tags: Driving | Urban Planning | Walking

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