Wow. There's no point in being contrite if it doesn't go all the way.
On a personal note, I've been commuting to work via bike a lot lately and I've come to be a lot more sympathetic to bikers. For most of the way to work, I take the Stone Mountain bike trail, but I can't use it completely and have to use the road for probably 2 miles of what amounts to a 7 mile commute. There have been a few close calls with cars and some really intentionally rude people.
Mostly, though, it's just general care that's only given when it's convenient. If there are no cars coming in the opposite direction, motorists will generally cut a wide swath around me. If there are cars coming, they will not wait the 2 seconds it takes for the car(s) to clear before passing and will pass me with very little clearance.