A long time ago (well, the last couple of weeks actually...) In a town far far away (well this one really...)
There was a bicycle commuter... I've been riding the same route to work at the same time for about 4 or 5 years now and until the first week of Jan I've never seen him before, you know how it is, you get to know who the regulars are, so my guess is it's either a new route/job for him or he's on some kind of new years resolution.
Over the last few weeks I've seen him maybe a dozen times, and in that time his riding has managed to scare me twice (fearful for him not me), anger me at least 3 times, get shouted at by a pedestrian, and got 3 horn beeps off motorists, and at least a few other shaking head and tutting moments.
This morning after seeing him come up behind another cyclist in front on the road, and realising we were approaching another queue for the next set of lights and he wouldn't be able to overtake them he swung left up the dropped kerb of a driveway onto the pavement to overtake the cyclist, swerving round a pedestrian who looked less than impressed at suddenly having him barrelling towards them and then carries on up the pavement scattering a group of school kids a bit further up.
I'm slightly ashamed to say that as I went past him I yelled 'for gods sake you're a grown man get off the pavement!', he may have replied, I don't know.
What's really annoying* me is that there's been a lot of noise in the local press round here about cyclists on pavements, and people riding too quickly on shared paths lately, and there was even a poll in the local paper about banning cyclists from the city centre which is currently buses and cyclists only, and is exactly behaviour like his that is fuelling it.
I'm also a bit concerned after having seen him riding that it's a case of 50% ignorance and 50% tw4ttishness, if he is a new rider then he might not realise he's being so inconsiderate and at times dangerous, so this is the bit I need help with is how to deal with this tactfully.
So Singletrackworlders and Armchair Warriors, Should I**:
A> just ignore it and let him bring shame upon the rest of us and possibly cause himself or someone else an injury?
B> try and approach him and say ...what?!
C> continue to hurl abuse in an angry cyclist manner until he sees the error of his ways?
*yes yes yes, I know I shouldn't get wound up and all that but this is actually a really good place for cycling and I work with a local Cycling related charity, we support Sustrans and CTC and there is so much hard work going on at the moment to promote and develop cycling it just grates with me when I see things like this fuelling the naysayers, and as long as he's not just a pig-headed idiot I would genuinely like to help him ride safer.
**genuine and comedy suggestions welcome!