Friday, 12 September 2008

Some timely advice

Yesterday on the way into town, I fumbled a junction, and forced someone in a yellow Renault to take avoiding action. On my way home, a bus driver failed to see me, or misjudged the distance, and pulled  out directly in front.

Neither event was particularly dramatic or dangerous, just the typical kind of mishap on the roads, that must happen millions of times a day. But I was annoyed at both: cross with myself for the first, and with the bus driver for the second.

So it's good timing for this quote from John Franklin's Cyclecraft, which I came across later in the day:

"If you have been aggravated by the actions of another road user, look for the earliest opportunity to have a good interaction with someone else, such as ceding way to a pedestrian or thanking a driver who had been helpful to you."

That strikes me as very sound advice, and a much more appropriate response than seeking some kind of revenge. I would like to think that the driver of the yellow Renault paid for my mistake with a small act of kindness,  and although it's a bit late now, I will look for some opportunity to do the same on behalf of the bus driver.

1 comment:

Andrew said...

An interesting idea, one which I think I'll have to try. I think the doing-something-nice trick makes you feel better, and takes the edge off any anger you may still have from a previous encounter. Driving when angry is bad.

Regarding the bus, it has been said that driving with dipped headlights at all times, even on a sunny day, reduces the chances that people won't see you and pull out in front of you by accident. Not sure how true it is, but it's now totally automatic for me to switch the lights on after I start the engine.