So, I’m guessing that you can’t see the connection? James May’s name appearing on a cycling blog. Not something you’d normally bank on seeing.
But here’s the thing: he’s come out recently (well, not actually come out come out) saying that he thinks the perpetual state of war that exists between cyclists and taxis, taxis and buses, and buses and cyclists (not forgetting pedestrians vs everyone) is really stupid.
I couldn’t agree more. Surely the roads should be for sharing? I can’t get my head round the claims of individual traffic sub-groups that, somehow, the road belongs to them, and everyone else should get off them.
“Cyclists don’t pay road tax, should get off the road”
“Car drivers are vacuum-brained priapic assholes, should get off the road. And they kill everyone on the planet.”
“Taxi drivers? Think they’re kings of the road. Professional drivers? Don’t make me laugh, should get off the road.”
“Buses are psychotic rage machines. The drivers are worse, perpetually angry because they’ve just realised that they should have actually listened to someone at school other than themselves, so they might have ended up with an actual job. Should get off the road.”
You get the (laboured) point.
But one of the country’s biggest car-o-philes, lovely James May, has now managed to caption what a lot of us are quietly saying, and have been for sometime:
Share the road!
I know that this is a difficult concept for those adults who were brought up to snatch at anything near their grasp while repeating the zen mantra: “MINE! MINE! MINE!” You know the ones: the ones who absolutely have to be the first in any queue for anything, even if they don’t know what it is.
But listen you people: nothing about this situation is “yours”. A great many of us have managed to do something you may have heard of; it’s called “growing up”, and it’s that time when a person realises that she is not alone in the universe, it doesn’t exist solely for their exclusive use, and there are other beings in the general vicinity who also need space and air.
We do like to believe that cyclists are the chosen commuters: this does not mean that we believe we are the only commuters. We all have to get to work, or get home after work. I for one really, really want to get home, and alive if at all possible.
I’m sure all car drivers, taxi drivers, and bus drivers want to as well, and this means that we all need to look out for each other. And remember there’s a pecking order of squishiness.
Kudos, James. I’m sure you don’t know me, or probably care that I support what you have to say about cycling, but I’m not going to be so cynical that I would presume to disagree with you on this. I own cars as wel