It’s not that I’m looking to crack open my skull, it’s just that sometimes I don’t wear a helmet when I ride my bike. I know I should because I do worry about cars crashing into me. And I worry about car doors opening and making me part of the interior. I also worry I’ll do something stupid. (That’s more of an everyday worry and not limited to being on a bike).
Yet, I’m probably 50/50 on the helmet thing. Now that might outrage some riders who say I’m being irresponsible if I don’t wear one. Fair enough. You might be right. After all, I make my daughter wear one. She’s 9 and also required by law. I’m not.
Now, I’m not an avid rider by any stretch. Instead I ride to save on gas and parking, to run errands and I like to tell myself I’m doing a little something for the environment. That’s what I tell myself, anyway.
But here’s the thing. Increasingly, city riding makes me twitchy. There are too many close calls with drivers who don’t seem to give a crap that there is a bike in the road. Something interesting has also happened recently. Granted this is only anecdotal and not an endorsement to not cover your noodle, but more often I find drivers giving me more room and being more careful when I’m NOT wearing a lid, as if a helmet is the international sign to go ahead and be reckless.
It makes me wonder if other riders have experienced the same thing. I certainly don’t have enough evidence to draw any real conclusions, but it’s been noticeable. I don’t think it’s going to drive my decision about whether or not to wear a helmet, but it’s been curious.