http://alibi.com/blog/37601/article.html

Bikes

My two wheels get ticketed

By Elise Kaplan, fearless intern [ Thu Jun 16 2011 11:37 AM ]

Today across the country, cities celebrate national Dump the Pump Day by encouraging public transportation. By cutting back to one car, a two-person household can save more than $10.000 a year according to the American Public Transportation Association.

Teams from ABQ RIDE and the Rail Runner are doing their part by handing out goodies on various bus lines and Rail Runner trains throughout the day to promote a car-free lifestyle.

Me, I got a different kind of goodie.

As a bicycle commuter I wear a helmet and look both ways. But, I admit, I occasionally stretch traffic laws.

On June 16 at 9:43 a.m., a motorcycle cop flagged me down. He called me out on a violation of failing to obey the traffic control device at the corner of Silver and Cornell.

As surreal as it was to be standing on the sidewalk with my bike while an officer ran my driver's license through the system, it was even weirder to read the resulting warning notice.

License plate number—BICYCLE

Vehicle year—1900 (actually, 1988, but whatever)

Color—BLU (I'd call it gray and teal with yellow brake cables and red handle bars)

Under the line for make and model there is no mention of my aluminum frame Raleigh Technium other than BK. I think that stands for "bike."

Bicyclists are quick to defend our harmless commuting lawlessness. The truth is if we want to officers on our side, we need to follow the rules or pay the price just like everyone else on the road.

But is it wrong if I'm hoping my next violation is a speeding ticket?