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New rules for telling me to get off the road

The bay area is better than many other parts of America in terms of stupid driver vs. bike interactions. It's not perfect, of course. If it was, Alto Velo wouldn't be offering a $11,000 reward for whoever hit one of their members in a hit-and-run.

Last weekend must have been the official stupid-people-in-pickup-trucks week because there seemed to be a lot of idiots out. Or maybe it was just that my bike shorts, long-sleeved shirt, and shoes were all actually the same color for once and so they thought I wasn't just some fredilicious utility cyclist.

New Rule 1: If you are going to insist that bikes don't belong on the street, try to respect the bike lanes

California now requires all drivers to use a handsfree device. This means that self-important people are sporting bluetooth ear-fish in increasing numbers and also means that suddenly everybody has decided that the bike lane is the perfect place to pull over and jabber on the phone. Even when they are between two parking lot driveways in their pickup truck.

New Rule 2: If I am breaking the speed limit and you yell at me to get off the road, your truck is forfeit

Later on during my ride, I was riding down Mt. Eden Road. Now, some weeks ago, I was descending and had to ride the brakes behind somebody in a minivan. This weekend, I pretty much didn't use the brakes the whole way down. I was going at or faster than the speed limit pretty much the whole time. It's one-lane in each direction with no shoulder.

And eventually some pickup truck pulls in front of me and yells at me to get off the road.

New Rule 3: If I can shout two sentences at you before you are out of shouting range, I wasn't in your way.

There was some discussion about if "F____ you!" counted as a sentence.

New Rule 4: If we continue for maybe a mile and you are only maybe 30 seconds ahead of me, I really wasn't in your way.

Really not making this up.

If you write me in for "Dictator of California" in 2010, all drivers will be required to correctly answer "Bikes are allowed on the street, true or false?" before they will be allowed to keep or get a license.

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