To all the arrogant jerks who bike on New Jersey trails and roadways (Opinion)
If you ride a bike on New Jersey's hiking and walking trails, listen up. Don't act like you own the path.
I mean it, some of you simply have no care in the world for others, and I see it all too often. You have this attitude like you can do whatever you want with no regard for whoever you're sharing the path with, or their safety.
The reason I bring this up is because of a recent incident that occurred while I was on one of New Jersey's walking and biking paths with my son and dog.
But this incident is less about me and more about what this thoughtless biker did to another family that was on the trail.
It was a little damp that day having rained earlier. This portion of the trail was paved so it was a little slippery.
Despite the dampness, there were many people out that day, including children. My son and I were on foot walking our dog.
We were crossing this small, wooden bridge when we approached this family with two young children. I would say one of these kids had to be around five, and the other one a bit younger than that.
These two kids were on scooters. Nothing too big or crazy, and they were minding their own business.
As my son and I carefully passed them, you can hear the dad coaching them and helping them out with balance. Being they were on a footbridge, the parents had the kids toward the center.
And like any kid learning to balance, they weren't necessarily the straightest riders. That's OK; you have to learn sometime.
So we pass this family and get off the bridge. We get a little bit further when we see this biker coming up the path from ahead of us.
He was on a full-sized bike and riding pretty fast. And this wasn't a young gentleman either, probably somewhere around 50 from the looks of it.
Now, if you're on a part of the path where nobody is, then feel free to go as fast as you want. But when you approach others, it's common courtesy to slow down.
Not so much for this guy. As we saw him approaching, it didn't seem like he had any interest to slow down.
My son and I, along with the dog, moved over to the side of the path as this guy went speeding by.
At the moment, I was disappointed that it seemed he didn't even make an attempt to slow down. Almost as if he was bothered that we were in his way. Still, we were at a safe distance to the side when he went by.
It was what he did afterward that really bothered me. Keep in mind, he has now passed us and I was looking back at the guy after he whizzed by (I think that's a normal reaction for any of us when someone passes us by doing something stupid).
Remember that family with the young kids on scooters we passed a little while ago? Well, they were just at the end of this wooden bridge ready to get off of it when this biker approached them.
What this guy did next was deserving of him to crash and fall off his bike. I hate to sound so mean, but he really would've deserved it if it did happen.
These two young children were still in the center of the path, and this biker, with no regard for anyone but himself, maintains his speed and zooms right between the kids.
From where I was, it looked like he nearly took them out. And you can tell the father wasn't happy, shouting back at the guy as he rode by.
I couldn't believe it. It was rude enough with how he went by us, but we were at least safely to the side. This poor family and kids had nowhere to go at the end of the bridge, and this guy had no regard for them or their safety whatsoever.
What if one of those kids fell into the biker's path? Would this guy even have cared? I bet you if that happened that this person would've somehow blamed the kids.
Luckily, nobody was hurt. But it's yet another example of bikers thinking they own the road. Or in this case, the path.
I know it's not all bikers. I'm a biker myself and respect the rules when I ride, and I know many of you do the same. But for those of you who don't, I just hope you don't drive the same way you ride. You're an arrogant jerk, and nothing more.