The Chainlink

For the love of God, when you're riding your bike, stop for pedestrians when they have the right of way. You know when some d***wad in a car almost runs you down when you have the right of way? When you do do something like blow a stop sign or crosswalk when a human is trying to cross, you are That Guy.

I used to be pretty good about stopping for people, but eventually realized 'pretty good' wasn't good enough, so I made an effort to be more attentive. In particular I was inspired by a guy I saw a few years ago on Clark St. in Andersonville who not only stopped to let a couple cross the street, but blocked the lane to do so. So I started doing that whenever I could. I've been That Guy occasionally - in particular, there was a time this summer when I was crossing the river on Belmont in my car and began to go around a car that stopped for what seemed to be no apaprent reason - he had actually stopped to let a family cross the street. Geez, was I an asshole then. Fortunately, I wasn't going very fast and the car in front of my honked his horn, and I realized what was happening and stopped. I was That Asshole then.

This morning I was riding down Milwaukee in Logan Square on my way to work and saw a woman trying to cross near the theater. So I signaled a stop, moved into the left-center of the SB lane, and stopped. The next car behind me promptly blew the crosswalk on my right. The next car going NB did the same, as I moved to the center line and put my arm out and shouted at him for added effect (really, this frustrates me a lot sometimes). The next car behind me started to pass on the right and stopped at the last minute, perhaps seeing this. Sometimes I have gotten off my bike and stood with my bike sideways in the middle of the road to help people cross the street.

It shouldn't be this hard to cross the f!@#$ing street, here or anywhere. I am aware (see above) of how easy it can be to slip into a me-first habit of behavior, especially when in a car. But I'm usually a cyclist on the streets here, and we're all cyclists here, and every day I see cyclists fail to yield to people. Not people sitting in cars, but vulnerable people unprotected by anything who are just trying to walk somewhere without getting killed by other people who act as if they are trying to kill them.

So please, don't be a body part, and just let people cross the street.

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Yes, I think that the intersection just east of the bridge is particularly bad for this.

In Portland, OR, drivers get ticketed for blowing the painted white pedestrian walkways (where often there is no stop sign or light). It does take a bit of getting used to. It's definitely easier for me to stop when I am on my bike than when I'm driving my car. A lady with a stroller was so thankful the other day when I stopped.

Also, when I would walk my dog at night, OMG, what a nightmare. I would wait on corners until no one, I mean no one, was driving or riding through. So many people blowing stop signs (day or night). I'd love to be a cop for a day...

I like the idea of 'cop for a day' I would say the city make a policy that if you have photo or video evidence to back it up and are willing to swear an affidavit that what's on the camera is accurate and it shows someone committing  a low level traffic offense like  blowing through the pedestrian walk when someone was in it, or pass on the right in the bike lane or whatever...  that you can go down to your local police station and have them issue a ticket by mail... can't be any worse that the automatic speeding / stop light cameras? it mostly won't catch cyclists violating the crosswalks which was the point of this thread since there's no license plat to mail the ticket to, but it sure couldn't help raise awareness generally that 'hey! stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk'.

Please don't be that pedestrian who thinks anywhere they decide to cross gives them right if way, like between parked cars, agaunst the light even though it's car free or like the uh,"lady"? Who told me to get out of the street because there wasn't a bike lane.
Lastly learn how a 4 way stop works,if you see cars stopped a cyclist stopped with traffic that means it's your turn.


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