Ride Like A Girl

User avatar
Bendo
Posts: 108
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:13 am

Ride Like A Girl

Postby Bendo » Tue Aug 21, 2018 3:18 pm

I was going to post this on the Women's Forum (and I might still do that later, or link to this post) but I think in a way it might be more interesting to share this with a 'general' audience.

You'll quickly note this was written by and for a Nth American audience (like most of the English language internet). The author's assertions that the cyclist will be blamed no matter what and the car driver will usually get off scot-free are sadly the case over there. At least according to reputable sources like BikeSnobnNYC

I once had an epiphany when waiting for lights that never changed that as a cyclist the roads are not made for me. As a man who commutes on a bike this article was a similar 'lightbulb moment' of understanding.

https://medium.com/@nkkl/ride-like-a-girl-1d5524e25d3a

What's your reaction to this? As a man, a woman, x-gender and/or cycle-commuter? b

User avatar
Mububban
Posts: 1549
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 12:19 pm

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby Mububban » Wed Aug 22, 2018 1:47 pm

Bendo wrote:I was going to post this on the Women's Forum (and I might still do that later, or link to this post) but I think in a way it might be more interesting to share this with a 'general' audience.

You'll quickly note this was written by and for a Nth American audience (like most of the English language internet). The author's assertions that the cyclist will be blamed no matter what and the car driver will usually get off scot-free are sadly the case over there. At least according to reputable sources like BikeSnobnNYC

I once had an epiphany when waiting for lights that never changed that as a cyclist the roads are not made for me. As a man who commutes on a bike this article was a similar 'lightbulb moment' of understanding.

https://medium.com/@nkkl/ride-like-a-girl-1d5524e25d3a

What's your reaction to this? As a man, a woman, x-gender and/or cycle-commuter? b


I think she makes a fair point, although I'm sure some will interpret it not as intended and see it as a personal affront against all men.

I often think of my own wife and how she must view the world. I am 6 foot 2, super skinny but still a lot bigger than her 5 foot 1, 50kg frame. When she hugs me, her nose is in my sternum :D I have to lower my head to rest my chin on the top of her head. "A threat" is not how I'd ever classify her.

I can't imagine walking through The Land of Giants every day makes her feel particularly safe, secure or in charge, which is how we cyclists feel and is the point she's trying to make. This isn't a "men vs women" article, it's to highlight feeling vulnerable, that someone, anyone, could harm you if they choose to. That's reality for many women. They rely on the bigger stronger faster heavier things around them to play nice and not hurt them, and are defenceless if they don't play nicely. Just like we cyclists can feel.

But we, like they, choose to go out into the world and hope for the best each day.
When you are driving your car, you are not stuck IN traffic - you ARE the traffic!!!

User avatar
Comedian
Posts: 5524
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:35 pm
Location: Brisbane

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby Comedian » Wed Aug 22, 2018 5:17 pm

Sometimes.. I really wonder how the council in Brisbane expect to be taken seriously. What they say is "Brisbane is a great and safe cycling city suitable for everyone".

The reality is - most bike paths are unlit. I rode home from somewhere recently and I realised that I got most of the way on bike path, and probably 95% of it was pitch black through deserted parks next to a creek. And they wonder why women only make up a small percentage of cyclists in BNE. :evil:

opik_bidin
Posts: 110
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:45 pm

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby opik_bidin » Wed Aug 22, 2018 5:35 pm

Comedian wrote:Sometimes.. I really wonder how the council in Brisbane expect to be taken seriously. What they say is "Brisbane is a great and safe cycling city suitable for everyone".

The reality is - most bike paths are unlit. I rode home from somewhere recently and I realised that I got most of the way on bike path, and probably 95% of it was pitch black through deserted parks next to a creek. And they wonder why women only make up a small percentage of cyclists in BNE. :evil:


This is true in Sydney too. The Cooks River is pitch black at night for most of it. Even I think there could be killers and ghosts lurking around

From what I read, this is men vs women is similar to bicycle vs car or pedestrian vs the car
the difference is, you can choose, and you can become the bully or the victim.

it's your fault that you wore sexy clothes that you get raped ~ You deserved to die as you choose to ride a bicycle on the road ~ it's your fault not looking when crossing at the zebra cross

User avatar
Comedian
Posts: 5524
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:35 pm
Location: Brisbane

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby Comedian » Fri Aug 24, 2018 1:13 pm

opik_bidin wrote:
Comedian wrote:Sometimes.. I really wonder how the council in Brisbane expect to be taken seriously. What they say is "Brisbane is a great and safe cycling city suitable for everyone".

The reality is - most bike paths are unlit. I rode home from somewhere recently and I realised that I got most of the way on bike path, and probably 95% of it was pitch black through deserted parks next to a creek. And they wonder why women only make up a small percentage of cyclists in BNE. :evil:


This is true in Sydney too. The Cooks River is pitch black at night for most of it. Even I think there could be killers and ghosts lurking around

From what I read, this is men vs women is similar to bicycle vs car or pedestrian vs the car
the difference is, you can choose, and you can become the bully or the victim.

it's your fault that you wore sexy clothes that you get raped ~ You deserved to die as you choose to ride a bicycle on the road ~ it's your fault not looking when crossing at the zebra cross

Spot on.

On one hand "Cycling is great for your health and the environment. Go the council for encouraging you."

Ont the other hand after something untoward happens.

"You knew the risks and chose to cycle anyway".

zebee
Posts: 445
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2013 8:37 am

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby zebee » Sat Aug 25, 2018 9:22 am

I am an outlier in this I guess. I intellectually understand the argument but it isn't my experience. I suppose I'm not in the "likely to be attacked" demographic now and never was despite being female.

Too old now, and I think too butch now and when I was younger. Dunno if that's the equivalent of "Taking the lane"... Be assertive but not aggressive and act like you are supposed to be there. Most will take you are your body language's word.

I have ridden the Cook's River path at all times of day and in all weathers and it never occurred to me that it might be dangerous. Well aside from needing a socking great light to distinguish the light coloured twisty path from the light coloured grass so I didn't go careening off into the undergrowth.

I like protected infrastructure and use it for preference when available, but lack of it doesn't stop me riding. Both on and off the bike I go where I want to go, but I do also use common sense. Don't go into bars full of drunks wanting to show off to their mates, don't go onto higher speed roads full trucks and tired pissed off commuters just wanting to go home. Find another way to get where you are going.

So I guess as regards the comparison I see it and understand it but it isn't my experience.

AdelaidePeter
Posts: 468
Joined: Wed Jun 07, 2017 11:13 am

Re: Ride Like A Girl

Postby AdelaidePeter » Thu Aug 30, 2018 2:16 pm

I've read this analogy before and I only partly agree.

One big difference is that sometimes being injured is the cyclist's fault. Stats suggest something like 30% of the time a crash is the cyclist's fault. We can argue over the percentages, but the fact is the cyclist sometimes causes it, and many cyclists need to learn to ride more safely. But a woman never deserves to raped or sexually assaulted. And this is why I usually don't like "how to ride safely" messages being categorised as "victim blaming".

On the other hand, I think it's safe to say that the power imbalance is much greater for car versus bicycle, compared to male versus female.

And I guess finally... obviously I've got no experience at being female, but I don't feel disempowered or discriminated against when I cycle. It's just different. I know I go slower than a car. I know I've got to be careful. But it's more than made up for in terms of my fitness and cost saving.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users