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I started this same thread in the MTBR commuter forum & didn't get very many stories, but...

Has anyone ever flipped off a bad driver & it escalate badly?
 

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I started this same thread in the MTBR commuter forum & didn't get very many stories, but...
In my MTB days I never came across any bad drivers on the single track trails I frequented. Had I seen any drivers on them I most assuredly would have flipped them off. :)

Has anyone ever flipped off a bad driver & it escalate badly?
I try not to but can't always help myself. Many years ago I had car end up stopping way up ahead of me and the driver got out and looked like he definitely wanted to kick my a$$. I just zoomed past and luckily nothing else happened. Most other times nothing really happens. Maybe some yelling. All in all I'm pretty fortunate to live in an area where drivers tend to be pretty accepting of cyclists. But I typically ride alone and pretty responsibly. IMO groups that ride 2 or 3 abreast and blow through crowded intersections, which seems to be most groups, draw more wrath from drivers which brings up the "flipping off" probability.
 

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As with driving I find a simple thumbs up to work much better. It typically doesn't get the other person enraged, and lets you know they're aware of their stupid actions.
 

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It never solves anything, but sometimes it just feels right. My riding buddy who is retired Army colonel, did it when someone intentional buzzed us. The truck stops, and they have their choice words. The guy ends up threatening to shoot us, my buddy called his bluff and told him to do it, and that was pretty much the end of it.

I usually ride alone, so flipping an idiot off is something I just try to avoid. Especially since I'm a smaller guy riding in the land of lifted trucks and ********. But I do just kind of throw my hand up as to say 'Really?'.
 

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The worst instance I had was prior to my camera days. The guy stopped, and we had a shouting match which ended with me asking if he wanted to continue discussing it at the sheriff's office down the street.
 

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My responses are usually "really?", "@$$hole!", or the NYC fave "jergoff" (that's how it's said). It's always in response to me getting cut off or something similar, so I've never had one of those cowards stop.
 

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My responses are usually "really?", "@$$hole!", or the NYC fave "jergoff" (that's how it's said). It's always in response to me getting cut off or something similar, so I've never had one of those cowards stop.
NYC is an exception. When you call somebody those names there you're actually being polite.
 

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last wkend, I called some guy who blew past me while I was crossing thru an intersection an ahole...

caught him at the next light and he rolled down the passenger window and very politely informed me that he was NOT an ahole.

he said he 'simply didn't see me'...he then apologized for 'scaring me'...

so, guess he wasn't an ahole, just an inattentive schmuckwad.
 

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Flipping people off is not my way of doing things but I have experienced situations out there. I just call the Police if needed. However I ride legally which helps keeping things safe and reasonable.
 

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My motto is "shoot first and flip later".
 

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Yup.

Bike commuting home, riding down a narrow 2 lane residential street, taking the lane and a Cadillac blows his horn to get me to move over. I look back, he blows again and I can see him gesture with his hand for me to move out of his way.

I flip him and he promptly chases me up onto the sidewalk, then speeds off.

I re-learned the very basic lesson that a 2 ton auto will win every time.
 

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I try not to flip people off but sometimes my heart gets ahead of my brains and I combine it with several statements pertaining to their parentage and the depth of the local gene pool. None of this is productive for a budding 70 year old. I also do my best to share the road as we ride a lot of twisty two lanes and claiming the lane or riding two or three abreast just creates trouble and increases your risk of a serious accident. Once back in the city on four lane roads we ride two abreast and claim lanes with no issues. People around here are generous and respectful most times. We need to be respectful also!!!
In my experience most of the door handle passes can be attributed to the professional truck drivers, they are absolutely the worst!!

 

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Anytime a car is coming at me driving across the yellow, I flip them off. I'll spit on their car too if they're close enough.

I often use the no-no sign your mom used to give you with the index finger waving back and forth.

I've never had a problem with a car behind me. I always communicate very well the cars behind me and never hold them up, no issues ever there.
 

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Wearing lobster mitts during the winter helps prevent my emotions from getting the better of me.

But I seriously try to avoid that sort of thing. It just doesn't work. I do swear a lot while I'm out and about but I'm pretty much the only one that can hear it as I certainly don't speak above a normal talking level. I doubt nearby pedestrians would have a hard time knowing exactly what I'm saying, though they likely instantly get the gist. It's a stress relief for me and for me alone.
 

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I live and ride in Arizona, where it seems just about everyone is packing. (Well, not EVERYONE, but many, many people here do.) While I have been tempted to flip someone off many times, I don't do it. It's just not worth the risk IMO. Flip off the wrong person who has a hot temper and a gun, and you're asking for a whole lot of trouble. Nope, not worth it.
 

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I have enough problems with cars and trucks when I'm riding my 700 pound motorcycle, and I installed an air horn to use instead of flipping the bird. The air horn not only gets their attention, but usually tends to diffuse the situation as the driver initially thinks he's pissed of a much bigger vehicle. Sadly, the air horn would not work an a road bike.

As with the motorcycle, I ride my road bike in a predictable way, but with the assumption that no one actually sees me (even though I have flashing lights and reflective tape front and rear).

I generally don't have problems with older drivers. Some High-schoolers seem to think they own the road, though.

In my experience, escalating a potentially bad situation is never the right thing to do.
 

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I am much more likely to flip off a driver if I'm alone. If an encounter with a driver escalates, and I'm with a group, well, I just made it everyone's problem. That's not cool.

But, I am guilty of letting my emotions run. I've called many drivers' bluffs. And based not that, I sort think the odds may be tilting out of my favor. One of these days, someone's going to turn it up to 11 - I'm fit and all, but I'm not bulletproof or bumperproof. I'm getting better... I'm on like Step 7 if there were a 12-step program.
 

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I've always been intolerant of bad drivers and used to be pretty quick with the bird. But now that I live in the Wild West (New Mexico) I've stopped completely.
Here, Machismo rules the brains of the stupid and will get you killed.
 
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