What would you have done (honestly)?
Posted on the 'Anything interesting happen your Thursday night ride?' thread, but thought I'd pop this up seperately, for the heck of it really 😆
Had an altercation with some 'yoofs' of East London riding along the canal at around 7pm last night… they were blocking the path with their bikes (standing there with two bikes across the towpath) and wouldn't let me through, I didn't feel that 12-13 year olds should be able to force me to ride around them, so I politely (honestly!) asked them to move (performing a natty trackstand as I did so 8) )… when they didn't I slowly 'forced' my way through, bumping the front wheel of one of the bikes out of the way as I did… cue much swearing and bravado from the lads…
As I rode off I heard the sound of someone running after me and the next thing I know one of them has grabbed my bag and pulled me off my bike! Jumping up and spinning around, I'm confronted by a slightly older gomer who obviously thinks he's a well hard gangster man, he's spouting off and looking to defend the honour of his homey (I think?)… then all his mates catch up and I find myself pretty much surrounded by 7-8 kids ranging from around 11yr to 15yrs old, all yelling and acting tough… there weren't that many to start with, so I guess a few were off to the side in the darkness, lurking perhaps…
Instinct/self preservation kicks straight in (I really thought I was in
trouble!) and I opt to throw the first punch, a decent hard right hand jab to the midriff of the bigger one who pulled me off my bike… he goes down winded (don't think he was expecting it at all!) and I start the 'crazy man act', screaming abuse and challenges at the top of my lungs and getting right up close and 'into the faces' of the two blocking my escape route down the towpath… thankfully they backed straight off and I managed to get back on my bike and get the fook out of there!
My heart was racing after that, that's for sure… could've turned rather nasty if they'd actually been as 'gangster' as they were pretending to be! Shall avoid the canal for a little while, just in case 😯 4 years of riding along there and this is the first incident I've had…Posted 8 years agoCaptainFlashheartMember
Were you on the Frankenbike? That might have explained it! 😉
Anywhere East of Liverpool Street is bandit country for me, so I wouldn't know! 😉
However, given the prevalence of knives on the streets these days, I suspect I'd try and find a route which avoids any such dark places and any such scrotes.Posted 8 years ago
is his dad bigger than your dad?
I'm 33yrs old… he was probably 14-15yrs if he was lucky… but I honestly felt threatened by them all in a group, didn't even really think before resorting to defensive action… and me Da's not around any more, but I reckon he'd have been bigger 😆Posted 8 years agodeserterMember
real shame this stuff happens and one of the reasons we left the UK, I would have done the same as groups of teenagers can be very dangerous and beat up lone individuals for some fun, used to hear lots of stories of people beat up by gangs of 'kids' on their way home from the pubPosted 8 years agoKarinofnineMember
I think I would have been frightened, but still tried to pass them, if they had pulled me off my bike, and hurt me or damaged my bike, I think I would have lost my temper (not just swearing at bus drivers angry – properly lost it angry) – I tend to kick when I've lost it, 'cos I'm not very good at punching, although I have been known to head butt when in a real pinch!
BTW, when Beastway was still on the Cyclone lads wouldn't ride down that part of the canal, even team-handed.
You must be very brave to do it alone!Posted 8 years agoBigDummySubscriber
I think you say that you could have ridden around them but felt you shouldn't have to. Personally I'd have started with riding round them, regardless of the lack of consideration involved in blocking the path. But I've absolutely no confidence that I could have much effect on a teenager by punching one, even if it wasn't expecting it so I avoid situations in which this sort of thing needs to be done like the plague. 🙂Posted 8 years agotimcMember
This is funny,
You should have just gone round them, No excuse other than you being an egotistical tit.
I admire your bravery & courage to stand up to them, pulled you off your bike, get a smack. Job well done!
In future id just go round though! asking for a stabbing!Posted 8 years ago
I've absolutely no confidence that I could have much effect on a teenager by punching one
I avoid situations in which this sort of thing needs to be done like the plague.
Same here tbh! I know how to throw a punch, but I've hardly ever had to (this is probably only the 2nd occasion in my life in fact) … and the kids blocking the path were quite young, it wasn't till the bigger 'teen' grabbed me off the bike that I realised there was a larger group and it included older youths as well…Posted 8 years agobrakesMember
I am always super-paranoid riding around on my nice bikes in London so if I do I tend to ride round the back roads, away from estates and places where the scrotes hang out – wouldn't dream of riding along the canal
psychle, if I see you riding round Angel on that Frankenbike I think I might smack you one 🙂Posted 8 years agoPeterPoddyMember
If I'd have seen 2 kids blocking my path, I'd have done one of 2 things
Taken a different route and gone nowhere near them
Not stopped. I've probably got more momentum (Weight!) than they can stop.
If I'd have got through like you did and "As I rode off I heard the sound of someone running after me " I would have accelerated as hard as possible. And I can sprint like you wouldn't believe. I doubt I'd have been caught and I doubt if I had he'd have been able to pull me off my bike
If I'd have ended up surrounded like you did, I would have firstly distanced myself from the canal (I can't swim) and then, after shitting myself, tried to talk my way out of it first, then chucked a few of them in the canal
Sounds like you did well to me, mind. Hopefully they won't try it again. One bitten….? 🙂Posted 8 years ago
psychle, if I see you riding round Angel on that Frankenbike I think I might smack you one 🙂
Bring it on, I've proven my fighting prowess (as long as you're half my weight and 14yrs old 😆 )
You based in North London then? Coming along to the STW London Pootle this Sunday?Posted 8 years agoBigJohnSubscriber
I had a very similar thing happen on may commute home about a year ago. A group of youths walking down a road bridge (in pitch black) all decided to spread out and block my way. I decided that I should not have to stop and be intimidated by a bunch of kids so I kept riding (not too fast) and a gap appeared (as it always will, like walking down a crowded street) which I rode through. One of them pushed me, so I stopped to politely enquire which of the little pikeys thought that was a good idea.
I hadn't however noticed the one little psycho behind me who managed to get a sharp punch in, breaking my cheekbone, eye socket and upper jaw.
I know that I could have avoided the confrontation, but should a fit strong 55 yr old man be expected to run away from a bunch of kids doing what bunches of kids have always done through the ages? The difference this time being it was a bunch of harmless, perfectly nice kids, PLUS 1 psycho.Posted 8 years agoSuggseySubscriber
He who runs away lives to fight another day but when push comes to shove, attack is the best line of defence and the meaner, the dirtier and more vicious if you are frightened for your life, the better.Posted 8 years ago
Always remember though that you should only use as much force as is reaonable and necessary ie no stamping on heads of the down or unconcious unless they are armed with a life threatening weapon and may try and use it.
If you have an honestly held belief that you are in danger of immediate assault (ie lets take the bike off him) you can strike first but as you had already been assaulted (by being pulled off the bike) you were well within your comon law rights of self defence in my opinion-CPS's may have different ideas though, you know how strange some of their decisions are!
One last pearl of wisdom that links on to the very first words I typed are dont make yourself a victim-wrong place wrong time!sodafarlsMember
That canal (if it's the Angel-Hackney one I think it is) has had a fair bit of "urban action" of late, even making the billboard of the Gazette recently. I've also had something similar happen last year, and had to swing a bit to continue on my journey. I'd definitely avoid it after dark for a while at least.
Funny Angel is mentioned too. Coming back from Afan via Paddington last Easter the missus and I were riding our bikes through some back streets in the the afternoon to avoid the Essex road traffic and had a spot of bother with some aquisitional youths. The "Mad Irish Bastard" routine worked on that occasion, but it's all a bit depressing…Posted 8 years ago
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