While we’re on the subject of pedestrians getting knocked over by cyclists (and what do you mean, we’re not?) does anyone reading this remember the Green Cross Code? And specifically the bit where you looked both ways before crossing the road – or did I just make that part up? I’m losing count of the number of pedestrians who amble across the road or even along the middle of the road as I’m riding down it on my stealth bike, completely oblivious to my presence, relying on the fact that they can’t hear any cars coming to tell them they’re safe. Obviously I don’t mow them down, or at least not on purpose; I try and ride round them although pedestrians can’t always be relied upon in my experience to walk in a straight line. Today I encountered three – not counting the two in the park who of course have a perfect right to saunter along without looking out for cyclists – one crossing without looking and two using the road as a pavement.
I could get a bell, of course, but they sound so ridiculous and girly and I don’t want to end up as a sound-effect in a rural sitcom about bicycling vicars. I could get one of those whistles that the scary cyclists have but I’m always worried I’d swallow it in the excitement of making the lights at Vauxhall Cross. What I really want is something I once heard about – one of those urban legend, friend of a friend affairs – a handlebar mounted air horn that makes the same noise as a Mack truck. That would blast the pedestrians out of their i-Pod induced stupor and might even wake up the odd dozy van driver as well. Whether it would shift the pigeons or not, I don’t know. But I suspect I would have fun finding out.