duffy article

December 6th, 2005 Posted in Advocacy, General Stuff, Rants

it's way past my bedtime and a few too many coopers stouts but i was requested to express an opinion and i know my duty damn it.
2ser kicks fbi, they are both good mind you but how good is the phantom dancer on a tuesday early arvo. that is real radio, that sounds like one of them bloody slogans, i apoligise if it is, anyway. michael duffy.
he has been previously mentioned on this blog i vaguely remember, he wrote something that got my goat.
his article on bikes amazed me, as a commuter i do not feel obliged to breath in the fumes of motor vehicles for the law, for respect for other cyclists for anyone.
This might just be me being extraordinarily self centred but like drinks in plastic bottles and state rail gluing the windows shut i can't freakin stand it. Is it selfish and counter productive to want to avoid the health risks of breathing exhaust fumes by breaking road rules and apparently infuriating drivers. MInd you if another cyclist runs a red i am more likely to stop at that red to pretend that there are some cyclists who obey the traffic rules, crazy eh and not always what happens.
What Duffy says indicates to me someone rather out of touch with any comprehension of how hopeful/necessary alternative transport to motor vehicles is.
I ride now with increased fear that people who read that article see me as even more of a pest. In my experience, the vast majority of car drivers are pretty good, the few who resent your presence are a serious threat to one's safety but so is driving a car, i think it is an inherently dangerous but ultimately very trusting thing to get on the road outside of a bus.
Duffy is a pretender who may argue rationally about some issues from his rather conservative perspective but he just seems way off on this one. As cyclists we have very little infrastructure in and around the city to keep us off the road completely if it all, the road is not much fun really, if we had separate cycle lanes imagine how relaxing riding to and from work and around would be.
The point of cyclists slowing motor traffic is rather frustrating as it doesn't seem very accurate, a city tax or substantial new car tax that could got to bicycle infrastructure would be sweet and a reduced city speed limit. When people drive aggressively around town they seem to be rushing to the next red light which is great if you want to be first at the red light but seems such an unhealthy and dangerous practice. Those who did drive in the city would get around faster due to less vehicles and bicycle messengers might have any easier time of it.
Anyway, happy and safe riding.
later
david
pics and links next post i promise