Here are some very good entries in the Bike Month Badass Contest. You can enter, too, by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org with your own bike vs. car encounters. Three finalists will be selected, and the winner will be chosen by audience response at the Ride-in-Movie, 12130 River Road, on June 21. You can enter right up until then. Power to the pedal people!
A very badass entry from Michael Halliwell:
I was riding westbound along Whyte Avenue last summer when a little sport truck passes me at about 108 St. Out of the passenger window an empty Red Bull can gets chucked at me as this little truck goes by. Well, they sort of forgot that red lights happen on Whyte Ave, so I caught up to them at the corner of Whyte and 109th. I wasn’t vulgar, didn’t loose my cool… in fact I didn’t say a word. I just pulled up alongside the truck, leaned over towards the open passenger window, tilted my head down to get a better view and stared right in at both the passenger and driver. Neither would make eye contact with me….kinda the whistling-and-looking-everywhere-but-at-me thing. I guess this is when I should include the fact I’m 6 feet, 235lb and look a lot like a cop
Not every driver is bad, according to Marcel J. Huculak:
I didn’t end up throwing anything at a driver or even say anything, but it was the funniest thing that has happened to me on my bike. I was leaving a friend’s house in St. Albert on a late Sunday morning. I had to turn left from Hebert Road to St. Albert Road – the intersection of two very busy arterials. After executing a fine CANBIKE left turn and lane change to the right lane on St. Albert Road, a mini-van which had also turned left behind me pulled up in the lane beside me. The passenger had rolled down the window and shouted to me “Excuse me!” I turned my head toward the passenger and was expecting the usual diatribe from him, like, “get off the road loser,” or, “get a car.” Instead, he surprised me by saying with a smile on his face, “My wife thinks you have sexy legs!” I don’t know if the man was teasing his wife, but I made the rest of the trip back to Edmonton with a huge smile on my face.
Molly Turnbull writes about her “shameful” badass behavior:
I happily glide along the contriflow lane running along the promenade between 121 st and 116 St. overlooking the golf course. Even though drivers drive dangerously close to the line, even though there’s sand in the lane for 3/4 of the summer, even though there’s a construction or city maintenance truck parked in it half the time — despite all that — I love to drive against traffic. It appeals to my desire to fight back, to freak ‘em out, to rage against the machine.
Sometimes, though, those drivers get just a little too close to my lane. Sometimes they’re not paying attention and I worry that I won’t be able to jump the curb while riding parallel to it. Once I was riding there with my kids in the trailer. An approaching car’s wheel was riding the line and I was staring it down. It inched into the lane and was coming closer, faster. Fear welled up in me as I rang my bell and shouted. I thought of how I could jump to the curb, but my kids would be smashed.
At the last minute, the driver skidded to a stop, window open, inches from me. I looked down and screamed “What the @#$ do you think you’re doing? Get off the @#$% public road if you can’t pay attention. You almost creamed me and my $%^&ing kids with your @#$% car.”
After the rage had subsided, and I rode away shaking, guilt began to creep it’s evil way into my heart. I had just chewed out the cutest looking, apple-faced, blue haired grandma I’d ever seen.
This badass figures it’s best if we don’t print his name:
I once caught a lit cigarette thrown out of a window, and promptly returned-to-sender’s lap. Anti-car, anti-litter, and anti-smoking vengeance coupled with couldn’t-do-it-again reflexes made for ultimate satisfaction. I felt like an eco-ninja.
Keith’s entry is “Monkey Warfare” league badass:
I am probably lucky I haven’t been arrested. Last fall I was making a left turn onto Argyle Road from 99 Street and was waiting in the turning lane for the light to turn green. It was a quiet Saturday morning. Some guy in a Suburban Assault vehicle pulls alongside and starts moving into the turning lane and was basically trying to push me off the lane into the median. Thinking that he may have been asleep, I punched the side of his truck. He then rolls down the window and tells me to get my f%&*ing bike of the fucking road.
I got off my bike and set it to the median and must say that if there is a good life rule, you don’t want to make me get off my bike. I should also say this incident was preceded by several close calls where I came pretty close to becoming roadkill. Each one involved Suburban Assault vehicles that were being driven recklessly.
So after dismounting and setting my bike to the side, I proceeded to kick the crap out of this guy’s $50-60k SUV and devaluing it in the process, and all the while was inviting him to call the cops or get out of his cage. He rolled up his window and drove off before the light turned green.