On The Internut No Proof Is Incontrovertible

You knew it was inevitable that someone would take an issue, right? In this case it was some guy whose YouTube screenname is Dink65. And his issue is with the post I made there of a short clip you might have watched of my first attempt up Fargo Street this past Sunday. In the video it shows my last few feet of forward progress as I attempt to wend my way back and forth about halfway up the steep street, ending abruptly as I draw up to another entrant and was forced to semi-evasively move around because he was stopped, after his own unsuccessful ascent, and stationed directly in my path perpindicular to the curb. Immediately I mumble something like “I could’ve made it past you. It wouldn’t have hurt for you to move.” As he emptily said he was sorry I then do what he should have done out of consideration for anyone coming up behind me: I moved off the street onto the driveway that was right there beside him.

Seems pretty cut and dry to me. That cyclist’s lack of awareness contributed to me stopping, didn’t it? Nope, not according to Dink65 who saw it entirely different and felt compelled to post this brilliant comment:

“Uhh, you went right at the guy. How is it HIS fault? He was only taking up 2 extra feet. There was a car parked on Fargo most of the morning that didn’t cause any issues, why should a bike parked matter?”

Since I’m only allowed a 500-character response on YouTube, I excised all the “who the hell are yous?” and “where do you get offs?” and kept my reply on-topic:

“Actually I saw the car present an obstacle to several entrants. The point is he had the responsibility to move off the course to the driveway (that I dutifully bailed out onto) and he didn’t and instead presented a 5′ wide obstacle (not 2′ as you incorrectly observe). As to my going right at the guy, I went where my bike took me and where I had every right to go. He however had every choice to get out of my way. And didn’t.”

With such a limited amount of reply room I didn’t have the luxury of wondering where Dink65 got off thinking I was blaming the guy. Sure, in the description I included with the video (below), I expressed myself in exasperated and demonstrative form, but nowhere do I directly put all the responsibility on him and his laissez fair approach to evacuating the road. Instead I simply use his actions or lack thereof as an educational tool:

“Let this video be a lesson to all and especially the #@$$!%*& who aborted his climb and then got in my way by not getting the hell off the dang course. If you abort a climb up Fargo with others coming up behind you, it’s best to WASTE NO TIME GETTING OUT OF THE FREAKIN’ WAY!!!”

I even prefaced my Blogging.la post on the matter with “I’m not one to make excuses, and in fact I may not have made it up to the tippy top of Fargo Street this morning even if the gentleman I’m approaching hadn’t ever been born.”

Instead I primarily blame my lack of technical skill on such alien terrain for that — and for not being able to negotiate around him. I certainly would have been able to continue on another few seconds at least (as I did on my second attempt) if he’d not been where he was… and there may have been the possibility that I somehow could have kept the momentum going onward and upward, but we’ll never know.

The only thing I know is that out there on the internest now matter how you think something is crystal clear and indisputable there will always be an idiot out there to say you’re an idiot.

UPDATE (03/28): So Dink responds to me saying “I went where my bike took me” with a semi-aghast and accusatory “aren’t you in control of your bike?” before settling down with more sympathy for the dude who bikeblocked me saying maybe he just was “getting his wits” together following his own failed attempt.

As to the control issue I wrote that under such strenuous conditions in such alien terrain control is debatable and in fact I was amazed that I avoided hitting him. And to debunk Dink’s assumption I went to the long version of the video and pulled stills and posted them here on Flickr showing just how much sympathy this guy deserved since he basically parked himself on the course loooooong before I got up to him.

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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with laonstage.com, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."