Saturday morning, early spring, I’m running north on Vanderbilt Avenue in Brooklyn, away from Prospect Park.
The context: A handful of years ago, the DOT made Vanderbilt Ave in Prospect Heights awesome. It’s a big, two way street, and people love going fast on it. They added a big center median and bike lanes on either side of the road, and it’s since become something of a biker’s paradise. The bike traffic jams at big intersections these days are kinda hilarious/nice/annoying. All of which is to say that lots of people are using these lanes.
That day: It was an awesome early spring morning, one of those days when the sun is actually warm again and the air smells alive. I was coming down the hill and caught up to a guy salmoning in the southbound bike lane.
He made at least one person veer out of his way, and I decided that I’d point out that there was, in fact, a bike lane going the same direction he was just across the street. I said something about how it was dangerous and how he was forcing people to swerve out into traffic to avoid him. There was probably swearing on my part.
“I’m endangering people? I’m going about two miles an hour.” And that makes it okay? Again, I noted that his bike lane was right over there.
“But it’s a chilly morning, and this one’s in the sun.”
Seriously dude, you can’t handle biking in the shade?
At this point, I got perhaps too upset, yelled something about him being an embarrassment to all bikers and a pathetic human being and kept running.
(And yes, I wholly agree that I can be a dick for calling people out and not being super nice about it, but this guy was endangering people because he didn’t want to be cold. How does he survive in New York City?)