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travsformation

EUCs, cars and the novelty risk factor (aka are we our own worst enemy?)

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Counterexample: I'm one of two people with EUCs in the small suburban town I live in. When I ride in the residential areas (one lane each way, but still a moderate amount of traffic) quite a few drivers give me such a wide berth that even though I'm in the bicycle lane, they'll drive on the other side of the road to give me room. Not all of them, but enough to make me smile.

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My way of riding KS18S is even more confusing to drivers. I always ride on the sidewalk and use the pedestrian crosswalk to cross the streets. Some drivers think that just because I am not a pedestrian walking, I therefore don't have the right of way, but they do. Or they would think that I am violating the law by crossing the crosswalk while riding the wheel. So it may be ok if they run me over??? Fortunately, most do stop because it doesn't matter what or who is crossing the pedestrian crosswalk, the drivers need to stop because they either have a red light or stop sign telling them to or even without any of these. The few that don't I think have problems following the law. And they intentionally, but un-admittedly of course, want to commit man-slaughtering or simply want to exert their vehicle dominance. Or they might think since I to them have broken the law, so it is alright if they can do it too. In court, they might argue that the person riding the wheel shouldn't have been using the pedestrian crosswalk. I wonder what would be the verdict? 

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On 2/7/2019 at 9:41 PM, Circuitmage said:

Yeah man. Cars kill people. I stay away from them. :)

 

Cars are dangerous, and some people are assholes, and some people are idiots, and some people are assholes and idiots (I think it's mandatory actually)  and almost all  of those assholes and idiots drive cars.  That's why I do not ride my wheel around cars (mostly)  There's no point in being in the right if you're crippled or dead.

@travsformation your guy was both.  If he was genuinely confused as to what you were, he wouldn't then start honking at you and flash his lights, after forcing you to crash.  The only thing wrong with this scenario is you didn't do enough damage to his car.  May I suggest adding a windshield to the tally next time or a flat tyre?

Edited by Smoother

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Last week in downtown Washington DC, I saw the perfect collision between a bike and a scooter. There wasn't a lot of car traffic and the scooter just jumped the red light a bit before it turned green while the bike tried to get through the yellow as it was turning red. The scooter t-boned the bike at about 5mph. Neither one was hurt and they both kind of got up sheepishly realizing that they were both at fault for being assholes for pushing their luck. The lesson of this story is to pay attention to what is going on and don't assume the other car/bike/scooter/person will do something rational.

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On 2/10/2019 at 7:26 PM, dmethvin said:

Last week in downtown Washington DC, I saw the perfect collision between a bike and a scooter. There wasn't a lot of car traffic and the scooter just jumped the red light a bit before it turned green while the bike tried to get through the yellow as it was turning red. The scooter t-boned the bike at about 5mph. Neither one was hurt and they both kind of got up sheepishly realizing that they were both at fault for being assholes for pushing their luck. The lesson of this story is to pay attention to what is going on and don't assume the other car/bike/scooter/person will do something rational.

Agreed!   I commute on my wheel through LA city streets and just assume they're all out to hit me.   Messenger cyclists tend to be the worse!

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4 minutes ago, Freewheeler said:

A door flings wide open in front of me and I had to e-swerve, I couldn't hold it, stepped off, stumbled and rolled. I'm on the ground. My wheel is 30 yards down the road. Two freaked out people emerge and render any assistance they could. 

Scary stuff! Are you Ok? 

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Just now, Rehab1 said:

Scary stuff! Are you Ok? 

Yeah, thanks. I'm blessed with an instinct to shed inertia like stuntpeople. Most people want to stop as falling as soon as possible and that's what breaks things. Just go with it... you'll stop soon enough and you'll be better off. 

I'm sore, scraped, but wiser. Good trade off imo. 

Thanks again. 

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@Freewheeler excellent comments in that post. I think I agree with all of it. I too give way to loads of people for 3 main reasons:

1. EUCs are illegal on public land here, so I'M the one that's not supposed to be there. So narrow paths, narrow bridges, etc,  I let all on-coming people pass, with a wave, even if they have stopped for me, I wave them through.  I'd rather build good will than bad will.  I'm trying to be "that nice man on the wheel" not "that A-hole on that stupid, illegal contraption"  If I get us banned from a town, the first one to suffer will be me. And besides, I ride for pleasure, I'm in no hurry.

2.  I can easily make up any time I may have "lost" but, as pointed out above, I'm never late on my wheel.

3. I forget #3 :facepalm: probably wrapped up in #1.:D

Edited by Smoother
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38 minutes ago, Freewheeler said:

Yeah, thanks. I'm blessed with an instinct to shed inertia like stuntpeople. Most people want to stop as falling as soon as possible and that's what breaks things. Just go with it... you'll stop soon enough and you'll be better off. 

I'm sore, scraped, but wiser. Good trade off imo. 

Thanks again. 

Glad you're okay.   My first real world experience was a car door flung open that just caught the inside of my arm, sent me to the ground.   I ride on the far left of the bike lane to give enough room for the car doors now.  

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On 2/7/2019 at 4:12 AM, travsformation said:

As it goes (will try to keep my post brief for a change) I was going for a night spin on my 18XL (first proper, lengthy ride > more on first impressions sometime soon). Have put little over 90 (overblown, Kingsong) kms on it so far, and am not comfortable enough to ride in the congested pedestrian areas or heavy traffic of the city I recently moved to.  [......]

[....]UROs (Unidentified Rolling Objects) are clearly more than some people's brains can process...so...be extra cautious, don't always assume people will do what would normally be expected to, second-guess everyone, and STAY SAFE! :)

 

I understand you and I live in the same kind of city, in my case all the close cities, unluckily, are too urbanized and with congested and heavy traffic. 

I completely agree with your conclusion and with Smoother and FreeWheeler.  I have big dangerous cars everywhere around me.  

I've just taken some 'countermeasures' about it for my future commuting movements. One is a customized backpack, easy to use, where placing the ewheel fast if needed. 

Just picked up few hours ago at a small tailor's shop. I think The owner did a good job. But 13,6 kg is a heavy 'load', who knows how long my backpack will last... 

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On 2/12/2019 at 4:53 PM, Smoother said:

@Freewheeler excellent comments in that post. 

... I'd rather build good will than bad will.  I'm trying to be "that nice man on the wheel"...

Well said. That's precisely what I believe.

We are all embassadors of this still novel and exciting mode of transport.

Right now, I believe we're flying under the radar with respect to the backlash that escooters got. I'll do everything I can to keep it that way. 

 

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On 2/7/2019 at 4:41 AM, who_the said:

You're 100% right, most people/drivers have never still seen an EUC before and aren't sure how to react. That doesn't excuse them, however, from acting indifferently, dangerously, or even violently, toward you. Always assume someone will do the worst possible thing of all their options.

Yeah, that's definitely a sensible approach!

On 2/7/2019 at 5:24 PM, Elder Meat said:

Counterexample: I'm one of two people with EUCs in the small suburban town I live in. When I ride in the residential areas (one lane each way, but still a moderate amount of traffic) quite a few drivers give me such a wide berth that even though I'm in the bicycle lane, they'll drive on the other side of the road to give me room. Not all of them, but enough to make me smile.

I got that kind of attitude too when I was living in a small town. Now that I've moved to the city, people's attitude is entirely different... :(

On 2/7/2019 at 6:08 PM, scubadragosan said:

Some drivers think that just because I am not a pedestrian walking, I therefore don't have the right of way, but they do.

Yeah, I get that a lot too. Even when they've seen me, established eye contact, and I'm already in the right lane of a two-lane (one-way street) pedestrian crossing, I often have to stop because they refuse to stop for me...I'd love to educate them but...I kind of like being alive :efee612b4b:

On 2/11/2019 at 4:26 AM, dmethvin said:

The lesson of this story is to pay attention to what is going on and don't assume the other car/bike/scooter/person will do something rational.

Gospel truth, that!

On 2/7/2019 at 10:41 PM, Circuitmage said:

Yeah man. Cars kill people. I stay away from them. :)

I'd like to but...riding on the sidewalk is impossible here, bike lanes are a mess, and on the road, cars are much more predictable. Funny that all the issues I've had with cars have been on bike lanes or when crossing pedestrian crossings...As @scubadragosan said, it seems like drivers don't think wheels (or even bicycles, for that matter) have the right of way on pedestrian crossing (or even the right to use them....)

On 2/13/2019 at 1:02 AM, Freewheeler said:

Even though I am aware of the danger of drivers pulling out or  opening their doors I hadn't given a berth wide enough to allow for a flinging door opening. Also, it had been parked the entire time I was coming toward it, it had tinted windows, it was turned off and it had no lights on so there weren't any of the typical red flags. 

It's not only the things you can see, there's reason to be cautious of things you can't see. Tinted widows are now a red flag for me. This might be old news but I thought I'd share my experience. 

In addition to the obvious dangers I've added toys, animals, rc cars (and drones), tinted windows and letting my guard down.

Oh, and that dance everyone does when two people walk toward each other and neither commits to a course? That can be tragic on a wheel at almost any speed. The general public's unfamiliarity with our transports may lead to the misconception that we have more control than we actually do. Balance is the sole reason we stay upright. We can't make sharp turns or stop quickly without precise control and balance. And emergencies don't often lend themselves to precision.

I just defer to pedestrians altogether. I'm motored, they're not. Bicycles are the same. They have the right of way... always. In fact, as a wheel rider I place myself at the bottom of the totem pole. Arrive unscathed is the best motto.

Yupp. I guess it's a matter of being wary of everything, trusting nothing and not letting one's guard down. You never know where the least expected hazard is going to show up from or what form it'll take. A cat? A runaway chicken? A bottle of wine rolling in front of you because someone's grocery bag was overloaded and ripped? A badly adjusted lawn sprinkler (as I learned the other day)? :efee612b4b:

I like your motto. I tend to alternate (in a bipolar kind of way) between giving everyone the right of way, for my own safety's sake, as well as being courteous and creating good will, on one hand, and and giving everyone shit for not knowing the basic rules that govern urban mobility, on the other :efee612b4b:

 

 

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On 2/11/2019 at 3:24 AM, Smoother said:

Cars are dangerous, and some people are assholes, and some people are idiots, and some people are assholes and idiots (I think it's mandatory actually)  and almost all  of those assholes and idiots drive cars.  That's why I do not ride my wheel around cars (mostly)  There's no point in being in the right if you're crippled or dead.

@travsformation your guy was both.  If he was genuinely confused as to what you were, he wouldn't then start honking at you and flash his lights, after forcing you to crash.  The only thing wrong with this scenario is you didn't do enough damage to his car.  May I suggest adding a windshield to the tally next time or a flat tyre? 

Excellent point. With those kind of people, I go into full-on vigilante mode (my girlfriend's started calling me The Punisher) :efee612b4b: I would have done more damage if I'd had the chance, but my assessment at the time was that the guy was too pumped up on blow for it to be worth taking the extra time/risk of doing any more damage. He actually chased me down a one-way street, going the wrong way...luckily EUCs are much more versatile than cars, and I was able to dash onto the sidewalk, do a 180º and gain enough time while he turned around to escape. My first car vs. wheel-chase! Exciting stuff! :ph34r:  :efee612b4b:

On another note, I've been occupied with a house move, a lot of back-logged work and a failing laptop that I had to format...so I hadn't even been in the forum since I originally posted this thread (or even been able to enjoy my wheel, for that matter). But things have finally settled down, so it's nice to be back! Have put 100km on the 18XL in the last few days! What a treat! Hopefully I can post my first impressions on it sometime this week! :D

And back on the topic of safety, I've found a great deal of pleasure lately riding late at night on weekdays, in a completely deserted city that feels like my own personal playground! I'll admit that night-riding (insert night-rider theme song) comes with its own set of risks, like pedestrian streets suddenly being blocked (Spanish-style) by dark, rusty, barely visible chains, with no warning or reflective material whatsoever...

90yrmq.jpg

But all the same, I'll take a static chain (now that I know where it is, its behaviour tends to be "fairly" predictable) over heavy traffic and idiot and/or assaholic drivers any day of the week! :efee612b4b:

 

P.S.  Have you missed my Holy Walls of Text (as @meepmeepmayer calls them)? :efee612b4b:

 

Edited by travsformation
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@travsformation What's with the knee? did it fight that nasty chain for you? How did the chain manage to remove all the hair from your knee?  Do you think it could do the same for my back?

WOW! a car vs EUC road rage chase.  I bet you weren't joking about it at the time :DYou need to watch out for that guy.  Hundreds of thousands of cars in your city but only a few EUCs and probably only you in your neighborhood.  He can spot you in an instant if your paths cross again.

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1 hour ago, Smoother said:

@travsformation What's with the knee? did it fight that nasty chain for you? How did the chain manage to remove all the hair from your knee?  Do you think it could do the same for my back?

Hahaha   The knee was already hairless; the chain caught me right above the knee (I was also wearing knee-guards) and by inertia, worked its way up my thigh, grazing and bruising. All the same, if you're interested in the Rusty-Chain-Hair-Removal-MethodⓇ, I'll write to the City Council and see if they're interested in leasing the chain. Or perhaps I might acquire a rusty chain of my own...looks like there might be an untapped (and lucrative) market here I hadn't thought of... :efee612b4b:  (might also come in handy with dickheads like the one mentioned above...)

The crash must have looked pretty spectacular for a bystander, as I somehow (f*ck knows how) managed, after being propelled through the air, to roll on one shoulder and end up on my feet. I'd repeat the feat so I could post the video...but I'm still a bit sore so I'd rather leave it for another time :efee612b4b:

1 hour ago, Smoother said:

WOW! a car vs EUC road rage chase.  I bet you weren't joking about it at the time :DYou need to watch out for that guy.  Hundreds of thousands of cars in your city but only a few EUCs and probably only you in your neighborhood.  He can spot you in an instant if your paths cross again.

Yeah, I laugh about it now, but was seriously riding for my life at the time. If he was willing to try to run me over after making me fall, just for being in his way and gesturing for him to calm the f*ck down, I didn't fancy finding out what he'd be willing to do after I'd bashed in his front grill with my knee-guard, dented his bonnet with my elbow-guard and smashed his side-view mirror with my wrist-guard. :wacko:

You definitely have a point about my conspicuousness...when on foot, I'm just another anonymous dude; when on my wheel, as the only rider in a small city of 65k people, I'm a very easily recognizable target.  And he's not the only person whose hit list I'm on by now... :wacko:

My partner's been insisting quite a lot lately on me cooling it with the "physical responses" and letting shit slide...but this f*cking hostile city attitude doesn't sit well with me: when I roll over the bonnet of a car when I'M on a pedestrian crossing, get hit by a Land Rover in a bike lane in a roundabout, when I have the right of way, and someone attempts to intentionally run me over after failing to yield, and in all instances, the "perpetrator" fails to admit their mistake and are hostile and violent towards me...I can't help it. Self-defence and....rage...(retribution...?) come into play and...so far the checklist includes one punch in the face, one wrist-guard back-hand to the cheek-bone, two smashed headlights, a wrecked front grill, two dented bonnets and a broken side-view mirror. To 99% of the city's inhabitants, I'm a cautious, respectful, courteous & friendly neighbourhood Spiderman (I mean rider); to 1%, I'm an easily recognisable and highly visible mobile target deserving swift retribution...We'll see how things play out.  :facepalm:

I'm not a violent person (quite to the contrary) and generally avoid conflict (especially physical conflict, which is my last resource when all attempts at mediation have failed and I'm being physically threatened and left no other choice), but it's hard not to react instinctively when someone who's just run you over on a pedestrian crossing has the nerve to put you at fault, and what's more, attack you physically...

Ultimately, I think that I'm teaching them a lesson (one they left me no choice but to teach them), and maybe the next time  they'll think twice before being such despots, as they'll  remember the several weeks where they had to invent excuses for their co-workers as to why they have a black eye. Perhaps they'll even reflect on the fact that once in a blue moon, they might come across someone who's not willing to be messed with, which might just make them reconsider whether it's a good idea to keep pushing people around like that...'cause now that there's a precedent of getting their ass kicked for being such dicks, now maybe they'll realise that any random stranger could lash out at them....

But on the other hand, as the sole EUC-rider in town, I'm aware I'm putting myself in a dangerous position. I should probably start practising evasive manoeuvres, mapping car-proof escape routes and remembering that back when I trained in martial arts, I wasn't wearing hard plastic articulation-guards :efee612b4b: (last resort)

Or who knows...maybe karma will pay off and all the lovely people I've been so courteous to will assist me if/when I run into one of these dickheads again...(supposing I'm not riding at 2 AM, when there's no one around, and when I tend to come across these savages...) :efef2e0fff:

Edited by travsformation
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:roflmao:There are too many ROFL moments in you last post so :roflmao: these two will suffice.

 

Wow! I hear you.

194080-I-m-Actually-A-Very-Nice-Person-U

Your feelings during the incidents mentioned are perfectly understandable.  But I'm afraid you're on a hiding to nothing.  You cannot, single handedly, re-educate the SHPOS's in your town, to become model citizens and exemplary drivers, not gonna happen.  Your most productive approach is going to be about preserving your life, and preserving your right/ability to wheel in your town.  Neither of these two goals are met by going all Bruce Lee on every asphole who crosses your path (literally).  As satisfying as Instant carma feels, and contrary to my own advice earlier about windshields and tyres, one day it is going to be you who meets someone with more aspkicking skills, or worse a weapon.  Btw, they all have at least one weapon, the car they are driving.

I'm not suggesting that you go all Christian and bless them after they have run you over.  I'm suggesting that you take a good look at the areas where you have issues with cars, and modify the way you ride, in these areas.  Example.  Drivers keep wanting to run you over on pedestrian crossings because you are not as pedestrian?  Get off and walk.  I see cyclists do this all the time.  Maybe some drivers have tried to run them down too for non pedestrian compliance infractions. Actually I think it's the law here in the UK.

Cars try to knock you off while crossing you're bike path?  Pay extra attention where the bike path can be crossed by vehicles, especially those approaching from behind you.

I'm not sure if you are one, but in our videos a see quite a few riders who are hell bent on maintaining a consistent high speed.  If this is ones mindset, then anything that slows one down is seen as an obstacle, an annoyance.  A mindset more conducive to ones own sanity is to go fast where its possible and slow down or get off where it isn't.

Besides if someone bumps you off, we will miss our "Holy wall of text" (Batman)

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On 2/7/2019 at 8:19 PM, Elder Meat said:

In this regard I apply my motorcycle riding philosophy: it doesn't matter if I have the right of way or not--if there's a collision I'm the one who's going to get hurt. Since I prefer to avoid pain, I will yield if I can even if I have right of way.

That's the same I do!

It's not important if I've the right of way, it's important to stay healthy and get not hurt.

And it's the same as I do as pedestrian.

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On 2/18/2019 at 5:24 PM, Smoother said:

You cannot, single handedly, re-educate the SHPOS's in your town, to become model citizens and exemplary drivers, not gonna happen.  Your most productive approach is going to be about preserving your life, and preserving your right/ability to wheel in your town.  Neither of these two goals are met by going all Bruce Lee on every asphole who crosses your path (literally).  As satisfying as Instant carma feels, and contrary to my own advice earlier about windshields and tyres, one day it is going to be you who meets someone with more aspkicking skills, or worse a weapon.  Btw, they all have at least one weapon, the car they are driving.

It's not that I intentionally set out to teach anyone a lesson or plan on re-educating the city's entire douche-sphere...I'm generally a very mellow, live-and-let live kind of guy who will yield for others even if he has the right of way, just out of common sense and self-preservation. I guess these particular events just caught me off-guard and were so shocking, unexpected and surreal (someone threatening to kick my ass right after running me over on a pedestrian crossing) that out of self-defence (and a sense of vigilante justice?), I ended up surprising myself and reacting that way (the last fist fight I had was as a teenager, if that's of any indication). The "re-educate the dickheads" argument is probably more of post-ass-kicking reasoning I use to justify my actions... :efeec46606:

I guess it's just a matter of changing my attitude and accepting that I'm no longer in the civil, respectful place where I learned to ride, where drivers and pedestrians alike were cautious and courteous around me (as I was around them), but in a mostly hostile environment where I need to be on guard at all times, expect anything, and integrate the idea that crossing paths with an A-hole (who I might just be able to re-educate, as part of the process of defending myself) isn't going to be a rare occurrence any more but rather the norm...

So yeah, given the overwhelming amount of A-holes and the risky position I'd (continue to) put myself in if I were to keep acting on my instincts...yeah, self-preservation (and preserving my right to ride without having to look over my shoulder) is really the only sensible option here...

On 2/18/2019 at 5:24 PM, Smoother said:

I'm not sure if you are one, but in our videos a see quite a few riders who are hell bent on maintaining a consistent high speed.  If this is ones mindset, then anything that slows one down is seen as an obstacle, an annoyance.  A mindset more conducive to ones own sanity is to go fast where its possible and slow down or get off where it isn't.

That's probably one of the factors that contributed to my Bruce Lee impressions: when driving in this city, I've had several scares involving bicycles appearing on pedestrian crossings, going full speed, nearly out of the blue; I'm used to scanning the immediate vicinity of pedestrian crossing for PEDESTRIANS about to cross--not daredevil bicycles failing to take into account drivers' habits & reaction times. I'd say it's the same for 100% of other drivers. So I've adapted my driving habits AND taken that into account when riding too: always slow to a near-stop at pedestrian crossing, wave at and establish visual contact with drivers; slow down at intersections, even if I have the right of way, yield even when I don't have to, etc.

I can live with people completely disregarding traffic rules (I'd be living in the wrong country otherwise), and am used to no one EVER admitting that they're at fault, but when, despite taking extra precautions that I shouldn't have to take, and being the more vulnerable vehicle in a collision that was no fault of my own, someone (who was at no risk at all in their 1-tonne metal box) has the nerve to blame me for the damage to their vehicle (like when I dented someone's bonnet with my elbow guard, while rolling over it after he ran me over), and on top of that, they decide to physically attack me...I guess that's where my usual nice guy/diplomat/pacifist attitude goes out the window and my evil twin comes out... :efee612b4b:

But having discussed the issue "out loud", there are definitely more sensible approaches than acting on impulse, like calling the cops. Then again, not too sure what the reaction I'd get there would be. Will update if the situation arises and try to stay out of trouble in the meantime... :efeec46606:

On 2/18/2019 at 5:24 PM, Smoother said:

Besides if someone bumps you off, we will miss our "Holy wall of text" (Batman) 

Thanks! :efefa6edcf:

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@travsformation  all that makes complete sense.  I understand completely how one can go from mildly minding one's own business to wanting to kick some ass, I do it all the time:(. i think you and I have an over developed sense of the concept of fairness.  It's not fair that the person who knocks you off your wheel then wants to kick your ass too, so you/we go into "fairiness re-balancing" mode.  The trouble with "fairness re-balancing" mode is that it often makes the re-balancer, the lawbreaker.  In other words, someone does something un-fair but not particularly illegal, to a person, that person then  responds with an act that is illegal.  Suddenly the party that was treated un-fairly is now the law breaker, and subject to arrest, etc.  The law always punishes the re-actor, especially if the actor did nothing they can charge him for. So as an example.  You were forced off your wheel by a vehicle.  He committed a minor traffic infraction, if it can even be proved.  You smash up his car, you have committed vandalism.  With evidence in the form of dents, broken grills. You lose twice; which is doubly un-fair.

I had a history professor who once responded to whining about pop quizzes being "un-fair" by saying "life is un-fair.  Get used to it".  I'm still working on it.:rolleyes:

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2 hours ago, Smoother said:

The trouble with "fairness re-balancing" mode is that it often makes the re-balancer, the lawbreaker.  In other words, someone does something un-fair but not particularly illegal, to a person, that person then  responds with an act that is illegal.  Suddenly the party that was treated un-fairly is now the law breaker, and subject to arrest, etc.  The law always punishes the re-actor, especially if the actor did nothing they can charge him for. So as an example.  You were forced off your wheel by a vehicle.  He committed a minor traffic infraction, if it can even be proved.  You smash up his car, you have committed vandalism.  With evidence in the form of dents, broken grills. You lose twice; which is doubly un-fair.

I had a history professor who once responded to whining about pop quizzes being "un-fair" by saying "life is un-fair.  Get used to it".  I'm still working on it.:rolleyes:

If we could all just learn this at an early age!  How much pain have I caused myself relearning this fact, over and over...

I did smack the air next to the hood of the last car that cut me off.  It wasn’t nearly as cathartic as my wrist guard coming down on the hood of that a$$wholes Prius!

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