Art shamelessly lifted from CommuteOrlando
Commute Orlando, as most readers of this blog know, is a commute-oriented Orlando blog. But it's also much more, including many other things you'll see if you click on the "home" button, here. I highly recommend it, but their "Street Smarts" artwork, shown at right, DOES raise a question. What, exactly, is that cyclist trying to communicate? He (or she) MIGHT be signaling a stop. However, at least as likely, the cyclist is pointing out debris to a following cyclist, or just swinging an arm while making a head check. It definitely doesn't look like a "don't pass" signal with that finger pointing towards the dead polecat. Whatever it is, it DOES look confident.
At bicycle school last weekend, I got instructed to signal a stop by means of a bent elbow with the forearm pointing down. That clearly sends a message to any following motorists that the cyclist trying to signal something (even if they don't actually understand it's a stop signal) and not just resting his hand from the bar, or pointing out an interesting bit of roadkill.
Makes sense to me, though it also explains all the blathering I've done recently about awkward stop signals. I imagine opinions on this might vary...
WEDNESDAY UPDATE: If you think I'm kidding, go to Wikipedia, here, and see if YOU can figure out about stop signals! Among other things, the description for cyclist stop signals in the US & Canada conflict with the picture, supposedly of same (what I learned matches the description). If you REALLY want to be amused, try to carefully follow the Wikipedia directions for a UK stop signal. Just make sure no traffic is around. I'd hate to hear of any of you getting hurt. Now, the unasked question (until now), is: just that I'm able to make this post AND cite references suggests something about the current state of bike education knowledge. What do you think that might be?