There’s this thing cyclists say. “On your left.” Except in Australia, New Zealand, etc where it’s “On your right.”
Some people love it and others hate it.
Runner friends the other day were posting about it on Facebook. They found it scary and harsh and off-putting. “Why do cyclists yell this at me? It’s not like I’m going to move.” Also, this: “Why don’t they just ring their bells?”
We replied: “But some of you do move into our way.” “We say this so that you know we’re there.” “It just means ‘hold your line’ really,” “And so many runners wear ear buds so we have to yell.” “Bells are just confusing.”
Cyclists reported ringing their bells and then having runners hop in front of them.
The stakes are really high.
I try to say “On your left” cheerfully. If people aren’t wearing earbuds, I say “Hey, I’m coming by on your left.” It’s not perfect, but it’s what I do.
The version of “on your left” that cyclists sometimes hate to hear is from other cyclists, when you’re being passed. One of the women I love to ride with on the bike rally used to be passed a lot (not any more, she’s getting speedy) and sometimes to offset the demoralizing cry of “on your left” she’d go first yelling “on your right” to the riders passing her. On big charity rides with large groups and lots of passing at the start I sometimes wish I had a recording so I could just hit a button rather than saying “on your left” over and over again.
What do you think? Do you love or hate “on your left”?