We all know there is a certain freedom to riding your bike. Let’s face it, you’re one with the elements and unencumbered by the confines of the coffin like nature of your car. It’s great to be outside, soaking in the sun, feeling the wind in your face. Some days, the very experience of being out on your bike, whizzing by cars, is enough to make you feel invincible.
And we all know stopping at stop signs interrupts the blissfulness of biking. The problem is, stop signs are a necessary evil. They protect us from cars. They also show drivers that we are just like them–lawful citizens, just trying to get from point A to point B. They allow drivers to see us and then avoid hitting us!
When you ask drivers in this City what their real gripe is about cyclists, almost uniformly the response is–they’re unpredictable, they don’t follow basic traffic rules. Many cyclists disregard this response but the truth is in order to make our City sustainable and, more importantly, safe, for cyclists, cyclists and drivers have to have a mutual respect for each others space. Think of it as consensus building or a call to build a bike safe city together. So the next time you come to a stop sign, when you stop, you can congratulate yourself on being an ambassador for bike safety. It’s an unpaid, and sometimes thankless job, but needed.