Saturday, August 6, 2011

Time to Reflect, Heal

I had an accident in the autumn (last year) in which I suffered relatively minimal physical damage.  However, I actually inflicted more harm on another, a cyclist.  It could well be argued that it was just an accident, a somewhat freakish one at that.  It could just as well be argued that the other cyclist and their partner were being careless or thoughtlessly reckless.  The fact that I came away rather mildly injured while the other party was more seriously, though not terribly, injured troubled me regardless of the cause.  It was a reminder that we do not control the world around us.  It is unpredictable, sometimes irrational--especially when people get involved--and one must be very careful, extra careful as a cyclist because while the rules of the road are relatively clear and well regulated with respect to automobiles and pedestrians, they are not with cyclists.  I don't care to be regulated further as a cyclist, but cases like this argue that there is a problem.

The injured party did engage an attorney to contact me.  The matter went nowhere and quite frankly it was irritating.  I knew I hadn't done anything wrong, yet I felt there should be a way to provide for injuries in a case such as this.  Apparently, some apartment insurance plans might do this.  I didn't carry it. When accidents happen and people get hurt it is always regrettable.  The lesson, in my eyes, is two-fold: for urbanites, get apartment insurance, find out what it covers and watch out for your fellow cyclist who, yes, is often a jerk.  Furthermore, if you see someone peddling constantly going downhill they're probably riding a "fixie."  These folks try to ride like the rest of us, but they are riding a very different kind of bike, which sometimes produces unexpected results.  Any bike can be converted to fixed gear, but usually they are road bikes.  Just be vigilant.


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