Yesterday I was at a red light in Roxbury, at Warren and Townsend. A guy in a PT Cruiser called out to me. As a woman cyclist, I tend to be wary of guys who want to talk to me – must be a hold-over from my teen experience with a pervy driver in the ‘burbs.
Anyway, despite my wariness, I do tend to try to be friendly when people talk to me at red lights, because it’s one of my fave things, these red-light chit-chats.
This guy said “Hey! I want to trade! You know why?” “Why?” said I. “Because you don’t use any gas!” And the light was long enough for him to go on that he often rides a bike himself. I told him to “keep up the good work!” He wished me a blessed day and then the light turned and we went along our way. When he turned off the street, I heard his good-bye beep.
This little exchange put me in a good mood for the rest of my ride (and it happened very early in my ride). I seldom am the one to initiate a red light chat, but I really enjoy them. People are almost always talking about something in a friendly way. I think the majority of my chats at lights are giving people directions (inevitably to Fenway Park), so the ones that are different are little gems.
It’s true, there are a lot of bad car-bicycle interactions every day in this city, but that only makes me appreciate the pleasant ones all the more.
Keep up the good work, everyone!