Spiral Notebook: What's this? Cyclists are stopping at red traffic lights now

By Giles Broadbent on January 31, 2014 1:01 AM |

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By Giles Broadbent

These are curious times.

If we were in a Shakespeare play, the Sudden Storm of Saturday and the current Opposition Of Jove would signal a cataclysmic disruption.

O God! That one might read the book of fate / And see the revolution of the times / Make mountains level, and the continent / Weary of solid firmness, melt itself / Into the sea!

And so it came to pass that this week, I saw the most singular of things

(I have had a most rare vision. I have had a dream, past the wit of man / To say what dream it was.)

Two cyclists stopped for red lights at the Gallions Reach roundabout. Not one. But two. In the same epoch. What could it mean? Had the Ravens left the Tower? Was nation risen against nation?

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But be of good cheer - all made sense shortly. Amid the halted cars and the discord of the unmovéd bikes, 'twas the presence of police that had stilled the impish pedallers.

Next day, business as usual.

A cyclist tore down the road, jumped the red lights, causing cars to honk and scatter. Ah, they are back to their true ways, those two-wheeled outlaws.

All's well that ends well.

Follow Giles Broadbent on Twitter: @MediaGulch


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