Commuting among assholes is making me insane

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I wanted to get in a fight this morning.

You ever get to meet me, I’m the least violent person on earth. Keep things level-headed, defused, easy. That’s what they look to me for. Good ol’ stoic boy from the Great Lakes.

Not today.

Sheridan Road, as it makes its way north out of Chicago. It’s the lesser of the objectionable routes to Evanston, where I was headed. It’s a busy four-lane road, but the urgency of rush hour generally subsides by the time I roll, and it’s not so bad as far as crappy, Midwest urban thoroughfares go. But this morning, I wanted to pick up the edge of road, and give it a hard carpet-like whip, unleashing a shockwave of destruction from my arms.

This circus clown in a red Colnago kit and red, uh, Colnago track bike rolled up next to me and shouts, “YOU should really look before you spit!” His instant presence and squawk on my left scared me alert. Assumed it was a car. Once I could process what he said, a whiff of empathy and sincere contrition stepped out on the tracks.

I had spat. But had I known a fellow rider was upon me, I would’ve held it. Duh.

But then the contemptuous, furious, roaring train of adrenaline barreled down, squashing any flicker of an apology or shrug. This motherfucker wasn’t getting off that easy.

He pedals on, tries to make the pass. Na. I let him have it.

“If you’ve been on my wheel close enough to get spit on, without a fucking heads up, then you deserve it!”

That was all I had. We approached a red light. I slowed to stop. He blows it without hesitation. I brimmed with piss and vinegar. “Nice stop, asshole!” I bellowed.

And that was that.

Pedaled out the fury, got on with my day.

When it was time head back south, I took a deep breath, and looked up at the Stars and Stripes exclaimed above the Evanston Library. It was whipped stiff pointing south. A tailwind home.

Mmmmm, I’m cruising. Pedaling made easy. When you get one of those Midwestern tailwinds with some ass behind it, you could ride forever.

As I made a left onto a one-way bike route, the one that feeds onto the lakefront path, fixiebro comes smoking along the wrong way and nearly takes us both out. The delicious, alkaline taste of arousing anger from the morning came back. This bike salmon would be the catch of the day.

“SALMON FUCKER DIPSHIT!” I yell at him. This time, dude turns to look. He slows down, and I imagine a confrontation coming on. Instead, he looks at me, and his face washes over with confusion.

I imagined, for a moment, like, a really oversized hawk, or like a flying dinosaur. Just swooping in and picking him up. Bike and all. Then dropping him into Lake Michigan, which is lava.


I need some time off the bike. I’m becoming an asshole, too.

Pull up a stool. Please tell me the commuter assholery you’ve dealt with. Please.


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About Wrighteous

Keeper of the DC colors in the American Midwest.

19 Replies to “Commuting among assholes is making me insane”

  1. Don’t get me started on the turd stain in shop kit riding a 29er ( training for an up comming 24 hr ride or some similar MTB circle jerk) who just had to pass me on a 40kmhr descent on a narrow path on a bridge, just so he could get in behind his middle mgt corporate banking bum chum on their super cool 15 km commute. So get to get on his bro’s wheel he nearly sent me into a steel fence. The confrontation after that where he didn’t take up my invitation to hit me after he’d threatened to, just confirmed his cunt fart status. But we all knew that didn’t we. Oh look, I did get started.

  2. There were the two dudes on an actual ride who hopped on my wheel in a solid 15 mph headwind while I was commuting to the train. Didn’t ask or make a sound, just snuck in there. Or macho bros who I pass, they speed up to pass me because a girl passing them really wounds their ego….then they can’t sustain and I’m forced to pass them again. Over and over.

  3. Jesus listen to all you self righteous cunts. You spat on a dude and were called out on it, get some spatial awareness fucker. You say you ain’t violent but that’s hard to believe considering what an opinionated prick you live your life as.

  4. You guys should drive to work to remind yourself how stupid people can really be. You seem to have forgotten

  5. Come to New York and watch the daily fair weather Cat. 6 races over any of the bridges from Brooklyn into Manhattan. They can’t go up hill to save their lives, pass through blind corners that are 2 way, pass three wide on decents that are wide enough for 2 way traffic. I’m just trying to get into the city, get a cup of coffee and a smoke before I pick up my first 6 jobs of delivering wine and blueprints. I ain’t trying to race anyone. I’ve got a whole day of riding everyday of the week. I’m not trying to die just to get into the city.

  6. I’m living in the Netherlands and experienced the same kind of things while commuting by bike. Last year I mounted a camera on my handlebar during 6 weeks and putted all “brake moments” in one movie.
    Here it is:
    But whatever happens, I try to stay calm and polite.


  8. I run a lil rear-view mirror, mounted on the left temple of my spectacles. No one— car or bicycle— sneaks up on me. Rubber side down, brothers and sisters, see you out there.

  9. Spitting is disgusting and generally unnecessary – you’re bike rider not a fucking baseball player. If some dickwad I was riding behind spat on me, inadvertent or not, I’d be fucking pissed. Getting cat6’d might be the least of your concerns.

  10. More people on bikes, more personalities. In Chicago, May – October (on a bike) is the equivalence of dinner out on December 31st. Happy more people are riding now (more than ever I’d imagine), but it’s a bummer more people are riding.

  11. Two middle aged gents racing each other, on a commute home, one left hooks a lady on a bicycle after losing, the other refuses to stop for red lights. Both using clipped, both riding long enough to know better. Walkers.

  12. And to top it off, when you got home mom had locked you out of the house.
    Oh to have such problems!
    Fucking Millenials! God help us when you fucktards are running the country.

  13. Try to remember that when cyclists do stupid or annoying things , they do them on 20 lb machines. I save the vitriol for the morons doing stupid things behind the wheel of a 4000 lb machine that could easily kill you. Also, I make it a habit to have a quick look around before launching a snot rocket.

  14. Senna was the only driver to stop to help him. Even Erik’s Ligier teammate at the time drove past. In an interview recorded in French years later, Comas revealed what he was told of Senna’s heroism. He said: “I don’t remember anything but I have seen the videos. The front right wheel hit me on the helmet which knocked me out. The car then slid back onto the track but I was accelerating full throttle. Ayrton arrived and immediately heard the sounds, the revving of the engine. He stopped, took off his seatbelt and came running towards me while there were still cars running. He then looked for the short circuit and shutdown my car because at that time, there was a real risk of an explosion or fire. It’s likely Ayrton saved my life at that moment.”

  15. salmon fucker dipshit. HAHAHAHHA.
    kudos for coming up with that!

    i have found in my short years as an adult on a road bike, that sucking it up and cowtowing to VEHICLES is the way to go. I’ve had many a conversation with non-cyclists who think road riders are total assholes – and some are. Assholes are everywhere. We non prick dicks must calm the impression. Likely they are assholes in all their pursuits.

  16. I am in North Long Beach the only guy I see commuting rides on the sidewalk and against traffic. No one bothers me.