I followed a cyclist down Eastlake the other day. We yo yoed for a few miles as we both climbed and descended all the hills heading North. He passed me, I caught up, he pulled way ahead, I caught up again.
The only reason he kept getting so far ahead of me is he was running red lights. As in, not–even–a–question the light was red, it was R E D.
I found my frustration growing each time I caught up to him. He clearly wasn’t gaining any time by running lights. So, what’s the point? Not only is running lights dangerous, it’s one behavior that really pisses off drivers.
And one guy on a bike running red lights makes the rest of us look bad.
He almost negated the cheerful carefree feeling I usually experience when I pedal somewhere. I really wanted to catch him one last time and yell at him, he made me so angry.
Then I passed a chick on the University bridge riding an Xtracyle who gave me a fist pump. And another rider smiled at me at the North end of the bridge. As I approached the Ave, a couple pointed at my basket and grinned as I pedaled by.
And I realized it was my Fall basket decoration that was drawing all of the smiles.
By the time I got home, I was back to my happy place and I had (almost) forgotten about red light runner.
And I owe that to my tacky, plastic, leaf-decorated basket.