A great idea from the cycling enthusiasts in Australia. Jerseys that tell a story and humanize the cyclist for passing vehicle drivers. Actually quite brilliant. And in the words of one proponent: “Cyclists are someone’s husband, wife, son, daughter, father, mother. We’re not some blob on a bicycle that doesn’t matter to anyone.” Ain’t that the truth!
ARTICLE FROM THE AUSTRALIAN written by Jasmine Lill:
CYCLISTS have started wearing ‘I Am Someone’s …’ jerseys to remind drivers that they are people too.
Online information group Cycle produced the customised jerseys after riders chose from a list of labels including ‘mum’ and ‘dad’ on the back panel.
“The main thing about it is to promote in people’s minds that we do belong to someone,” Brisbane-based Cycle contributor Steve Mitchell said.
“Cyclists are someone’s husband, wife, son, daughter, father, mother. We’re not some blob on a bicycle that doesn’t matter to anyone.”
The jerseys include a black armband in memory of cyclists killed on their bikes, the ‘I Am Someone’s …’ sign on the back, and a camera to remind motorists that cameras are everywhere.
“It’s not just us with cameras, it’s not just motorists. They’re everywhere and we’re all being held accountable,” Cycle contributor Dave Guyatt said.
Mr Mitchell said the group wanted to move cycling forward and away from the polarising attitudes people have toward it.
“If every time anyone jumped into a getaway car we said all motorists are crooks – well, we don’t do that,” he said.
“When one cyclist does something wrong, it’s every cyclist’s fault. I mean, I don’t know that person. This is where we’ve got to get people to think, it’s not that they’re a cyclist, they’re just a d***head.”
Mr. Guyatt — who started cycling and lost over 40kg after he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes — said he hoped the jerseys would make a difference on the roads.
“If no-one says anything, nothing happens. Our hope is that we’re saying something, so something will happen,” the Diabetes Queensland ambassador said.
He did say driver attitudes have improved somewhat since the introduction of the new bike laws on April 1.
“I don’t get harassed in traffic anywhere near as much as I used to. My Saturday ride generally finishes in the city and then I ride 16km home. That used to bother me at times because I’d do it by myself and I’d get heckled six or seven times between South Bank and Carseldine,” he said.
“Because of my health turnaround, my family loves cycling. My wife does worry when she hears a news story while I’m out and it’s in the direction I was headed. But all in all, the family love that I’m on the road doing what I do and staying healthy.”
Orders are being taken for another run of jerseys.