Tuesday, January 06, 2009

"You Should Dismount"

Greetings Readers

Before I start I want to say that I have a few blog posts that I am going to post from the end of December so pay attention to the posting for December since I will be catching up for quite a few. There are reasons, but if you think you know me then you probably know the reason why I did not post.

Now, onto the "You Should Dismount"

So, today I had to bring in a cake for a friend who had a birthday a couple of Sundays ago. With it being the end of the year there was our month end close, year end close, and holiday time off which means some people are gone so celebrating a birthday is not really good since most of us are gone on different days of the year.

Anyway, with some ice still left on parts of the bike route I take going to work I decided to take RTD and then LightRail to work. Just in case I might slip on the ice and destroy the cake I made and I would hate for that to happen.

So I took a bus part of the way and then I had to bike a bit of a way to the Arapahoe Light Rail Station. Anyway, to the West of the Arapahoe Light Rail Station there is remodeling being done on the walkway from the Arapahoe Light Rail Station to the Street of Fiddler's Green Circle.

I have taken a screen print and drew on the picture to estimate the "new" Fucked Up Walkway that was designed. Yes Readers, I will take a picture later, but right now this is bothering me too much to wait and now with that comment I have to blog about this.

I do not remember if I "drew" in all the curves in the walkway, but that is certainly the amount of switchbacks on the new walkway from the Arapahoe Light Rail Station to Fiddler's Green Circle. I think I saw, well I did not see the old walkway so it is a safe bet that we "Commuters" are going to be forced with taking the new walkway.

Anyway, this new walkway has just been introduced in the past two or three weeks, I think. Let me tell you it fucking sucks. With me being so used to two straight walkways and now forced to be going through 3 switchbacks and about 5 corners sucks. Sucks!

I digress, but I wanted to let you Readers know that I fucking hate the new walkway.

This morning I approached the new walkway and I see that there were a few commuters who had just gotten off the Light Rail and were all walking to their place of work. I approached the walkway and slowed down a lot, but I did not dismount. As far as I know there is not a sign saying to dismount. Yet.

So, with me being me, I am taking what I can within the law and not breaking the law. That's another topic, but for this sakes there is no sign indicating dismount. However Readers, on the Light Rail side going to Fiddler's Green Circle there is a sign that says dismount from bike. I have seen that sign and have ignored this since the times that I have gone through there are no pedestrians on the new walkway. That is not an excuse, but if I am the only one on the walkway I am going to stay on my bike and ride on the walkway.

But, going from the Fiddler's Green Circle to Arapahoe Light Rail Station there was not a sign that I saw. Perhaps because there is still construction going on that side of the walkway. I do not know.

With that in mind I stayed on my bike and coasted slowly through the walkway. Right foot in the toe clip and the left foot pushing me along the walkway since I am not pedaling. I slow down even more when I approach more than one person walking. And I come to a complete stop when the pedestrian will not move out of my way. I have the right of way since I am on right side of the walkway (but as a cyclist I do not have the right the way in a walkway), but the pedestrian will not move from my way. So, with that I stop and wait and that means that he/she will have to move from my right of way. Oh yes, I get satisfaction. Minute, but satisfaction never-the-less.

The pedestrians and I past each other and soon the walkway was mine to me - meaning I can be all over the walkway and I could put my left foot and coast down down to the Arapahoe Light Rail Station weaving through the switchbacks.

Lo and behold I see a bike rider walking his bike up the walkway and I was approaching him pretty quickly. I slow down once more since we were going to meet at a corner.

"You should dismount." he said to me just before passing me.

"Thanks for your advice" I say as we pass each other.

This was all said non-chalantly to each other.

Yes, he was right and I should have, but I did not since there was no other pedestrians. And also there was no sign from the Fiddler's Green Circle saying "to dismount"

I got to the Arapahoe Light Rail Station and waited for the train and I thought about more what had just happened. I was mad, but I had no right to be mad. I was a bit sarcastic, but still within what I would consider "normal" for myself. I will keep doing what I can, until I can not.

Then again, that brings me to tomorrow's topic, which will negate what I just touched upon (in my opinion). Most of you bike riders will agree with me, but a few others will shake their head and remind me that it is posted I can not ride in that area.
Update 7:45 PM - I was reading last year's blog and I would have to say that this was the first Light Rail incident of 2009. Go figure - it is like clockwork to get into an "incident" at the beginning of January.

Until the next time

Daryl Charley
The Fallen Athlete

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