first, the obligatory, ‘tried the search function, but didn’t find anything’ spiel…
I’m a part-time unicycle commuter, riding about 11mi each way one day a week to work (FWIW, i go by bicycle the other 4 days). Nearly every time i ride, i receive positive reactions from motorists, pedestrians, and other passers-by (to the point where it’s almost bothersome). A few times, though, i’ve been heckled by passers-by, usually teenage pedestrians. Once, last week, a bunch of kids (perhaps 12-13 yr olds) saw me coming down the street, and as i passed by, started running alongside me…i think it was just in fun and all, but i sped up anyways, and a couple still were able to keep up for perhaps 100yds on a slight uphill, with me going all out (i was a little tired).
I’m not sure these kids who were chasing me meant it as a threat of any sort, but i couldn’t help but feel threatened by being flanked by them as i tried to outrun them.
Actually i guess i wouldn’t be worried at all if it weren’t for the few other positively hostile, but merely verbal, reactions received from others (perhaps 14-15 yrs old). The two that i can remember specifically were “boy, i kick that, you going down,” and “you go get 'em…circus clown faggot.”
Does anyone else ever receive any hostility, verbal or otherwise, from passers-by? Do you worry about it? Am i just being paranoid?
From my experience, teenagers are usually the worst as far as comments go. You shouldn’t feel threatened though, they are just poking fun at you and trying to look cool in front of their friends. Sometimes it is older people too, because a lot of people never leave that high school/college mentality. The worst experience I ever get with younger kids is them yelling things at me, whereas the worst experience I have had with college kids is someone trying to drive me off the road.
I’d be far more afraid of idiots on the road who don’t pay attention to crosswalks, or assholes who try to drive you off the road than young kids being kids. Although, it is funny sometimes if you are unicycling past a group of kids and they yell stuff at you to simply get off your unicycle and talk to them. I do the same thing with cars who beep at me if they come to a stoplight. Stopping to talk to them makes them usually makes them feel embarassed.
Don’t do it in a condescending or angry tone, just simply go up and say “Oh hey, whats up?” Most of the time they will either just not say anything or just say “hey man were were just joking” and you can sort of laugh it off. You have to realize that you do look ridiculous, and need to be able to laugh at yourself. Most of the time, stopping and talking to whoever yells viscious things at you makes them turn really shy and embarassed, and the other times you just laugh it off with them.
Or for cars, you knock on their window and ask “How are you today? What were you honking about?” Taking a polite tone with angry motorists is usually funnier to me than being angry. The smile and wave seems like it trumps the middle finger nowadays.
I’ve had people talk sh*t on me with a group of their buddies multiple times. Every time they talk smack I just walk up to them and they act like they were just kidding. This is not me trying to act tough, it’s just everyone in my city talks all big but won’t ever back it up.
Haha the best one was when a biker wanted to ride my uni, and I just blew him off b/c he was a d-bag. As I was walking away he started talking mad sht, I said “what?” and walked toward him. He acted like he didn’t say anything and once I was fully out of the skatepark he said, "f** off fag" then he took off across the skatepark. I haven’t seen him since
So what you are saying is that macing them is out of the question? Just kidding. I do find that the young kids will respond if you ask them if they want to try it and talk with them a few minutes. It works real well with skaters in my area.
I don’t really get much of that. But when I do, I just smile, perhaps even let out a chuckle and keep riding. They’re all talk, and they’ll never actually dare to mess with you. (well, not with me at least ;))
I get hassled all the time, usually by high school kids or junior high kids yelling the classic “Fags ride unicycles” or some other lame comment. usually I blow it off and keep going but recently I build up a trials uni and was playing on it on the street by my house and I heard “unicycles are gay!”. I looked around and couldnt see anyone so I kept riding and they said it again but it sounded angry. The people were yelling at me from their yard and i couldn’t see them through the trees. Then it sounded like they got angrier and started yelling “Do a fucking 360!” “do a 360 Bitch!”, Normally I wouldn’t care but I effing live here! I don’t want to get harassed every time I ride a unicycle by their house (Which is every day!) And I also don’t want to confront them in case they get mad and do something to my truck/house/anything outside.
(didn’t read all posts)
If you don’t want to get comments from the peanut gallery, ride something boring to work. Otherwise, let the nice people make the compliments, and the not-so-nice (or smart) advertise their stupidity and small egos. It’s not about you after all, it’s about them. Just ignore it.
I used to often get people sticking their foot out, as though to trip me. Few would actually want to do it, and if I rode toward them they would pull the foot back. But it’s more fun to ask if you can run over their foot. “Mind if I run over your foot?” If you do it without falling off, they’re impressed and they got a chance to interact with you in a positive way. The ones not looking for positive will usually withdraw their offer to trip you, and you’re on your way.
Other teenagers, is mainly the reason why I don’t like to ride by myself. I’m not a very social person when talking to people I don’t know or when I’m busy, which is why I don’t like unicycling because everybody feels like they need to talk to you.