A recent, and long overdue, letter (Sara Ferguson, “Bicyclists vs. everyone else,” Sept. 29, Gazette) effectively documented the rudeness, idiocy and presumption of far too many members of “The Bicycle Bozohood.” The writer referenced events occurring near Lake Hefner that apparently gored her personal ox. However, the type of behavior she so aptly described is, by no means, a new phenomenon.
I have observed that Eastern Oklahoma County ” particularly that portion of the county in the vicinity of Britton and Hefner Roads, east of Interstate 35 ” has, for decades, been invaded by the species that the author of the previous letter described.
As a carpenter/remodeler in the 1980s and early 1990s, I often found myself pulling a trailer-load of lumber from Jones to Oklahoma City or Edmond. In that connection, I often found myself, at all times of day, stuck behind a “gaggle” of spandex-clad road geese (wearing “helmets” apparently designed by H.R. Giger) holding up the flow of traffic and commerce.
One of my kinder thoughts involved a question about exactly what these people did to earn a living. This question was prompted by the fact that the situation repeated itself Monday through Friday, at all times of day. After a while, I began to think that they didn’t have to work at all. At one point, I imagined that signals from “The Mothership” ” hovering in cloaking mode on the other side of the moon ” stirred these beings into action and caused them to emerge from their underground hive. I even began to imagine that maybe they fed off of the negative energy their pedal-pushing generated among irate motorists.
Isn’t it ironic that the same subset of the population responsible for the “Share the Road” sign ” across the street from the SUV/bicycle staging area ” when challenged on their apparent ignorance of the meaning of “The Red Octagon” (less than a block west, at the nearest intersection) responds by flashing the universal middle finger symbol for “we’re No. 1″?
In the interests of conflict resolution, please allow me to make two modest proposals:
1) Authorities should enforce all laws pertaining to the use of public roads (e.g. stop signs and traffic signal compliance) with the same rigorous enthusiasm applied to seatbelt usage laws.
2) Authorities should designate certain primary rural traffic routes (e.g. Britton and Hefner Roads) as off-limits to bicyclists, Monday through Friday, without a recreational license fee/permit. ($500 a year for the permit sounds about right, doesn’t it?)
Based on the estimated cost of their bicycles and fashion accessories, they should have plenty of money left over to purchase clothespins and cards to put in their spokes.
“John D. Carlson