Commuting by bicycle in Boston
Maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m not in the know as far as traffic rules with regards to bikes go, but I’m fairly certain that automobile drivers are required to share the road with us bike riders. Maybe the etiquette is something I have yet to grasp. I never thought I would be harassed as much as I have been for simply riding alongside the road.
It’s a bit of a Catch-22. It’s illegal to ride on the sidewalks, but I risk serious injury and harassment from drivers if I ride in the street. Last night as I rode home from work, I prepared to turn left onto my street (off of Highland Ave.) I made sure to use the old hand signals to indicate my turn, and seeing only one car far behind me, it seemed like a pretty reasonable move. That is, until the car behind me sped up, caught up to me as I made the turn and swerved around me at the last second – a bit unnecessary considering there was no one else on the road and he could have easily avoided me by either a.) going the speed limit or b.) actually paying attention. Instead, as I turned down my street after a completely legal maneuver, the gentleman in the car passing me leaned out his window to make sure I heard what he had to say, “Get off the ****ing road you ***hole!”
Am I doing something wrong here? Is there some unwritten code of bike versus car ethics that I haven’t read? Did I miss the memo?