Can I get a 'On your left'?


I recently added the Mercer Island loop to my ride repertoire and noticed something.  During my 2 loops around the island, only 1 person that passed me ever alerted me to the pass.  Probably 20 people passed me on the entire ride, and just 1 'On your left'.  Not saying that it's because it was Mercer Island and not somewhere else, just that this is when I first noticed this.  Or maybe it was because it was Mercer Island...

I gave up being snarky or confrontational or passive-aggressive or even trying to be funny with these people years ago.  Most would either flip me the bird, yell at me, or just ignore me.  Why should they call out their pass?  Is it beneath them, or just takes too much energy, or they don't care, or they just don't know any better?  Either way, it's really not acceptable.  It's not that much to ask for a warning when getting passed.  If you can't call it out, then get a bell or something, just let me know you're coming up.  There are plenty of reasons why I could have to dart to the left, it's not completely unheard of to have to swerve for a pothole, debris, or a car pulling out.  In fact, during this ride on Mercer Island, a car pulled out and one rider passing on the left almost went down because another rider swerved.  A call out may not have mattered, but it can't hurt.

Is a call out (or a bell ring or something) too much to ask for when passing?  If you don't do this, why not?

Submitted by Jim Werner on

i agree with your comment regarding group rides but i would add to that that i would appreciate when pace lines pass that the lead rider say on your left and how many are following.  that was common practice on the '94 stp ride.  even with a helmet mirror it is sometimes difficult to determine the number of riders in the pace line.

Submitted by Jim Werner on

day before yesterday i was on the springwater here in portland when a rider coming towards me thought it was proper to ride in my lane going the opposite direction.  being that i was on a trike i suddenly saw the sun being obliterated.  i deal with this all the time when they are passing someone but there were no other riders or walkers in sight.  .....then again maybe i should have been riding in the left hand lane on the other side of the path.