Now now, don’t be offended. It’s just a funny word I made up and wanted to use. Anyway, it doesn’t apply to all bike riders… but it does to You, the rude fool wearing black at night, biking in poor weather without reflectors or lights. Sometimes you’re wearing headphones, occasionally a helmet, and though I’ve seen you in sandals your fashion sense is your own bag. The bigger issue is the drivers and cyclists with whom you share the road – namely, myself.

As a fellow rider, your refusal to practice even a token measure of personal safety and civil awareness alarms and embarrasses me. Obviously, since you’re able to coordinate enough muscle control to pedal and steer at the same time, you experience some of the typical synaptic firing that working brains enjoy… and yet, all evidence suggests you can’t even vapour up the cerebral steam to visit a dollar store for something cheap and cool that makes good on every single reason it exists, and has zero drawbacks to boot. Do tell: are your walls adorned with post-it notes reminding you to breathe? or do you just not think about that either.

Speaking as a motorcar driver, if I were to operate my vehicle at night without lights, chances are roughly total you’d be squawking your hypocritical beak off. Your fellow riders (the “visibles”, they with the wherewithal to give a pickled fuck about themselves and their fellow rest of us) weighed the odds and decided to give the high-velocity blocks of steel hurtling through the night every chance to miss them. But not you. Why is that? While you’re thinking about it for the first time in your life, let me just say: once is too many for me, when it comes to violently swerving because you appeared out of the shadows. I don’t need any formal research to speak for all motorists when I say: We don’t want to suffer the rest of our days knowing we put you in a wheelchair, or coma, or coffin, through no fault of our own. We have enough events on our calendars without circling the anniversary of your needless hood-splattering.

Please don’t mistake my morbid concern for some sort of amused fondness. I do not like you. It’s not about the fender damage either; your blood will wash away never to be seen again. It’s the admonishment I wish to avoid in the eyes of your people, and I’m fairly certain they wish to avoid the painful baggage your senseless, self-induced death will force them to carry forever as well.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Ask them yourself.

bike-car-night

(all the above applies with the same gentle guiding hand to black-clad night joggers, and while we’re at it, you invisible pedestrians too (especially those walking black dogs or camouflaged children whose live/dead status is of little apparent interest).

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