on the way to campus this morning, i hit a red light just before the Hawthorne Bridge. I pull up in the bike box behind a guy.
middle-aged white male in bike commuter gear—helmet, rain jacket, panniers.
- he turns his head back a few times to look at me
- uhmmm… ok i guess he’s probably seen me somewhere before. and he maybe looks familiar… but really i have no idea.
- he says ‘hi’ or ‘good morning’ or some normal greeting, and I say ‘hi’ back.
- just waiting for the light to turn green…
- he looks back at me again and says: “[something something] (I didn’t catch it) not wearing a helmet in this traffic.”
- i try to figure out what those first two words were, but really didn’t hear it. settle on the obvious: He chided me for not wearing a helmet.
- while i was still thinking this, a lady who’s waiting on the right side of the guy—white, late 20s, in cycle chic / business casual but with a skirt that’s a little more alternative/portland-y, wearing a helmet on a more upright-style bike—she pipes up, says to the guy: DON’T BE RUDE.
- light turns green, i bike past both the guy and the lady.
- on the bridge, i’m like, What just happened?? lol
dude, what’s up with middle-aged white men telling me what to do??!