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There’s an epidemic sweeping New York. It has yet to reach the news and really anyone authoritative which means it doesn’t have a coined term yet so I’ve gone ahead and created a word to describe this devastating occurrence. It’s called: autocychosis. (Auto from automobile, cyc from the word bicycle, and psychosis referring to a severe mental disorder in which thought and emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality.) Yes, autocychosis is an incredibly serious and dangerous disease.

What is autocychosis? Autocychosis occurs when those riding bicycles in the street forget that bicycles on roads (with or without a designated bike lane) are to follow traffic signals as cars. This results in cyclists taking on the roles of both cars and pedestrians. In layman’s terms: Jackasses (who may or may not be wearing obnoxiously colored spandex outfits) act as cars and follow the traffic signals when they are green. But the moment the light turns red, assume the identity of a pedestrian, ignore the traffic signal, and continue on their merry city ordinance-ignoring way.

Those afflicted with autocychosis can hurt not only themselves when they illegally pass through a blatant red light, but any law-abiding pedestrian who has the right of way. Autocychosis has claimed more victims this summer and fall due to the Citibike movement. CitiBank decided it was a good idea to provide numerous bicycles to all the hooligans in this glorious city. However, helmets are not included.

At this moment there is no known cure for autocychosis.  Based on my Web MD education I recommend wearing a helmet and becoming familiar with New York City traffic laws.