Tag Archive for happy Thanksgiving

Pre-Thanksgiving Morning Links: SaMo begins enhanced enforcement; stop bike thieves with a handlebar bomb

Local

LADOT Bike Blog shares a combination bike/transit route from NoHo to UCLA. And invites you to share your favorite route.

After throwing North Figueroa cyclists under the bus — potentially literally — Councilmember Gil Cedillo is hosting safety meetings for Marmion Way and Avenue 26. Meanwhile, Fig4All is holding a potluck to discuss it.

Culver City is installing over 100 bike racks throughout the town.

Pay extra attention to the letter of the law in SaMo this weekend, as the Santa Monica police will begin enhanced enforcement to improve bike and pedestrian safety on Saturday. This one will focus equally on violations by drivers, pedestrians or cyclists, as it should.

 

State

The Times reports that Huntington Beach cyclist busted with a large weapons cache was initially stopped for riding the wrong way without a light; he said he was heavily armed because it was just good to be prepared. For what, he didn’t say.

Great cause. Friday’s Tour de Tryptophan in Fullerton will raise funds for a cyclist who suffered a spinal cord injury, but is determined to walk and ride again.

Flashing headlights increase visibility but can annoy others on the road — and aren’t addressed in state law one way or the other.

A San Francisco lawyer faces up to four years in prison after pleading guilty to the hit-and-run death of a Chinese bike rider.

 

National

The Bike League looks at what bike equity means in light of the decision not to charge the cop who killed Mike Brown in Ferguson MO. Meanwhile, a Ferguson bike rider is arrested while attempting to video police, which is perfectly legal under the 1st Amendment.

Streetsblog says banning speed cameras puts lives at risk.

A post-ride rubdown helps your heart as well as your muscles.

A Kickstarter for a new folding cargo bike has raised nearly twice their goal with 24 days to go.

A Maryland man gets his burgled bike back after spotting the thief riding it.

 

International

Montreal’s threatened bike share system gets a reprieve for the next five years.

British Olympian Dani King thought she was going to die when she crashed after hitting a pothole.

Talk about a jerk. A UK driver faces charges for running three separate cyclists off the road.

 

Finally…

A new company wants to stop thieves by turning your bike into a rolling bomb; no, really, what could possibly go wrong? Heads-up courtesy of Bike Portland. Maybe this is how Santa Claus finances all those toys, as a man in a Santa cap robs a Solano Beach bank before making his escape by bike.

And Florida cyclist says that following a collision that left him seriously injured, the driver got out of the car, cussed him out, spit on him and left him lying in the middle of the road.

Nice.

………

I’ve got a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, starting with the amazing support I’ve received from visitors to this site over the past few days.

As bad as things have been this year, they could be a lot worse. And there are a lot of people out there facing far bigger problems than mine.

So I hope you’ll join me, and take just a moment amid all the football and feasting and early Black Friday specials to find something to be truly thankful for.

And if the opportunity presents, lend a hand to someone in need, because there’s always someone a little worse off, and it doesn’t take much to make a difference.

So please, have a great Thanksgiving, however you celebrate it.

I’ll see you back here after the holiday.

A Thanksgiving thank you, editing Google bike maps, and Zev says back to the drawing board

I’ll be honest.

This has been yet another rough year, in a string of rough years that has gone on way too long.

And yet, I have a lot to be thankful for. Not the least of which is the simple fact that I’m here, and have a loving home and family waiting for me at the end of a ride.

That’s a lot more than some people have.

I’m also very thankful for you. Because it doesn’t matter what I have to say if no one bothers to read it.

So much for that question about a tree falling in the forest.

Thank you for coming by, whether this is your first visit or you’ve been with me from the beginning.

Please accept my best wishes for a very happy Thanksgiving for you and your loved ones. And my hope that we’ll all have more to be thankful for next year.

But if you want to read some heartfelt thanks from someone who clearly means it, try this one.

And People for Bikes says be thankful for biking.

……..

Another thing I’m thankful for is all the people who send me links and contributions, and help me put this blog together on a regular basis.

Such as frequent contributor Eric Weinstein, who offers his thoughts on Santa Monica’s newly adopted Bike Action Plan.

The Santa Monica Bike Action Plan was enacted by the City Council last night. This means that Santa Monica will budget the expenditure of 2.5 Million dollars for the next two years, and has grants to bring the total up to about 8 Million dollars. That’s a big bunch of money to improve cycling!  I think this will change the entire experience of biking in Santa Monica to a level greater than Portland. Santa Monica is on it’s way to increasing the bike mode share – aiming for 30%!

Some of the items: lots of bike lanes, sharrows, bike boxes, and green lanes for major east-west and north south signature corridors. The largest bike garage in the country – oops it’s already here! Some bike education/encouragement for students, and a bunch of other useful items – some signage to improve the overcrowded beach bike path. And a bike share. There’s a 5- year and a 20 year wish plan for better facilities. These will include: taking some parking for wide (passing lane) bike lanes, even more lanes and sharrows, bike parking at the coming Expo stations, and my favorite: a recreational cycletrack around the Santa Monica Airport. Bring on the Tour of California.

Hooray for progress! This is a major milestone in getting people out of cars and on bikes!

……..

County supervisor — and widely anticipated yet currently unannounced mayoral candidate — Zev Yaroslavsky says L.A. County should send the proposed county bike plan back to the drawing board.

The motion by Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky calls on the county Department of Public Works to create a bike plan that “will not just move us out of the 1970’s, but move Los Angeles County forward as a leader in 21st Century bicyclist safety and comfort.”

Specifically, the motion says that the plan should “promote the use of leading-edge designs such as those found in the Model Design Manual for Living Streets that was prepared by the Department of Public Health.” Those include “cycle tracks” that separate bike lanes from traffic with dividers such as a lane of parked cars, and experimental street design approaches—including the possibility of varied lane and sidewalk widths in some areas—that do not fall within current Caltrans standards.

The motion urges the county to take the lead in helping such street layouts receive state approval for broader implementation.

A longtime leader in L.A. politics, Yaroslavsky offers a surprisingly strong and influential voice in support of safer cycling in the county. And could soon join Austin Beutner and outgoing City Council President Eric Garcetti in a bike-friendly mayoral field.

Things are getting very interesting.

Thanks to Streetsblog’s Damien Newton for the heads-up.

……..

George Wolfberg, who I frequently rely on for some of our best links — as well as his incomparable behind the scenes contributions in reaching the right people and getting things — sends word of a rash of bike burglaries in the Brentwood area. He sends the following report from LAPD Senior Lead Officer Kirk.

  • 11/14/11 1500 Hrs – 11/21/11 1000 Hrs, 1300 Block of Wellesley Ave, Susp removed window to residence and entered the loc. Susp removed property and fled loc. Property taken was a bicycle.
  • 11/04/11 1800 Hrs – 11/08/11 0930 Hrs, 1800 Block of Stoner Ave, Susp cut bike lock and removed bicycle from parking lot.
  • 11/18/11 0400 – 0600 Hrs, 1400 Block of Barry Ave, Susp removed bicycles from apartment balcony.
  • 11/19/11 1200 Hrs – 11/21/11 0800 Hrs, Susp cut off lock and removed the bicycle from property.
  • 11/19/11 0900 Hrs- 11/21/11 0600 Hrs, 11300 Block of Wellesley Ave, Susp cut off lock and removed bicycle from carport area.
  • 11/20/11 1330 – 2130 Hrs, 1600 Block of Granville Ave, Susp cut cable lock off and removed bicycle from apartment courtyard.
  • 11/21/11 0645 – 0830 Hrs, 2000 Block of Colby Ave, Susp cut off lock and removed bicycle from property.

Officer Kirk suggests keeping your bike inside your residence, and writing down the serial number. I’d add that you should keep a current photo of your bike, register it, and lock it with a secure U-lock any time you have to leave it outside or in your garage.

Remember, weight doesn’t matter if you don’t have to carry it with you, so go for the biggest, strongest lock you can find to protect your bike at home.

……..

Another contribution comes from Alejandro Merulo, who calls our attention to Google Maps feature I was unaware of.

I wanted to let you know of a feature that readers of your blog may find useful. As you know in Los Angeles, a large number of bike lanes and sharrows have been added to our streets recently. These bike lanes should be added to Google Maps so that more people ride on them. Google has made it possible to do this for any user using Google Map Maker. It would be great to have other cyclists adding/reviewing these features. For example, today I added the Spring Street and 1st street bike lanes. But these additions need approval. There aren’t that many cyclists reviewing other people’s submission to Google Map Maker.

Sharing the ability of cyclists to add our routes to the roads will make them safer. If you could share this feature through your blog, many cyclists would appreciate it.

Not being familiar with this feature — and a little to dense to figure it out on my own — I asked Alejandro to explain the process.

The link for Google map maker is http://www.google.com/mapmaker. If you are in normal Google maps with the biking layers on, there is some small text on the bottom right that says “Edit in Google Map Maker.” Using a Google account, you can then draw lines along roads. Clicking next, you can then edit road attributes and add bike lanes. Once you have gotten this far, I found it intuitive to figure out other features. However, if you try these steps and still have trouble, let me know and I’ll be happy to assist you. You can see some of the work I’ve added if you type in “Spring Street and 9th Street, Los Angeles, CA” in the text box at the top. You can also see Community Edits like mine by clicking on “Community Edits.”

……..

Santa Monica’s Bike Effect hosts a trunk show of women’s cycling apparel from New York designer Nona Varnado this Saturday. L.A. wants your ideas on how to keep the city moving, including a suggestion to make motorists pay the true cost of driving. KCET Departures features Flying Pigeon’s always informative, entertaining and elucidating Josef Bray-Ali. Damien Newton unveils this year’s Streetsie Award winners, including a much deserved nod to the LACBC’s Colin Bogart as Advocate of the Year. Curbed takes you on a ride down the new Spring Street bike lane, which has bike parking, too. The Beverly Hills Bicycle Ad Hoc Committee considers the biking black hole’s first pilot projects. Cyclists make their case for a safer PCH while Malibu officials consider becoming bike friendly. Former Burbank city council candidate Garen Yegparian offers a spot-on look at the state of cycling in the Los Angeles area, and finds drivers in his own Armenian community among the worst offenders; definitely worth reading. This is what 10 years of L.A. traffic fatalities looks like, based on the Guardian’s map of U.S. casualties from the last decade; thanks to Simon for the link.

A San Diego cyclist thanks the life guards who saved his life. A San Francisco cyclist pleads not guilty in the death of a pedestrian; he’s accused of running a red light and hitting the 68-year old woman as she walked in the crosswalk with her husband. In a heartwarming story, an S.F. cyclist rescues a puppy while riding. San Jose cyclists pitch in to fix up a derelict bike path. A new bike rack keeps a Los Altos bike safe on a public street for four months. San Rafael cyclists celebrate Cranksgiving. A San Anselmo cyclist is in a coma after being found unconscious on the side of a fire road.

New Mexico cyclists install a ghost bike for a six-year old boy killed 21 years ago. In a classic chicken or egg equation, St. Louis County doesn’t build bikeways because not enough people bike; the current leadership in Ohio doesn’t seem much better. A Huntsville radio station helps ensure 2800 children will receive a new bike for Christmas. A Florida cyclist was drunk when he was hit and killed by an unmarked police car while carrying a case of beer in each hand. Dunedin FL officials turn down nearly $450,000 in Safe Routes to School funding because they’re afraid residents might object.

Nine-and-a-half years for on Oxford driver who deliberately ran down a cyclist; turns out he knew the rider if that makes it any better. A video guide to wearing tweed while you ride. Then again, if you really want to be seen, this should do the trick. Seven people face up to 2 years in prison each in the Operation Puerto bike doping scandal. A New Zealand driver is found guilty of killing a cyclist, despite claiming she just didn’t see him — which is usually the universal Get Out of Jail Free card for careless drivers.

Finally, North Carolina police kill a disabled, partially deaf cyclist by shooting him with a stun gun while he was riding. For any law enforcement personnel unclear on the concept, never, ever knock anyone off a bike while their riding unless you actually intend to kill them.

Because you just might.

Today’s post, in which I am truly grateful — and only complain a little

Oddly, Thanksgiving is still being held this year, despite marketers’ attempts to bypass it in favor of endlessly extending the holiday shopping season.

Or am I the only one offended by Christmas carols that began playing in stores before Halloween this year — let alone repeated attempts to move Black Friday up by several weeks. And since when has a day that marked retailers’ profits finally moving into the black become a holiday in its own right, anyway?

I won’t bore you with a list of things I’m thankful for. I’ll just acknowledge, as the LACBC pointed out, this has been a very good year for local cyclists. By far, the best in my memory, in fact; a year when the voices of cyclists finally shook the halls of government.

And our civic leaders actually did something about it.

I hope you’ll take a moment to appreciate the people and blessings in your life, as I do in mine. And I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read what I have to share, whether it’s your first time here or you’re a long time regular.

I have a lot to be thankful for.

And I’m very glad that Thanksgiving still means something.

.………

Bike Skirt offers thanks for her many bike blessings, while Damien Newton says thanks to all Streetsblog readers and supporters.

.………

Streetsblog interviews Aktive, who’s gone from a non-rider to a leader in the cycling community in just 14 months. The hard-won Hollywood Trader Joes bike racks disappear without warning. Local residents call for a road diet on Colorado Blvd in Eagle Rock. Continuing with Wednesday’s theme, a Santa Cruz County driver is arrested for allegedly running a cyclist off the road, then making a U-turn to come back and threaten him.

A reminder that not all tragic deaths occur on the road. When it comes to pro racing, a good excuse is all in how you frame it. Tips on the art of winter commuting; if it gets much colder here, we may need them ourselves. Despite being in effect since 2008, Vancouver, Washington’s mandatory helmet law is widely ignored and unenforced. Some of the city hall staffers who promote New York bike lanes ride in them, too. A Brit cyclist learns how to ride in New York.

Bromptons graduate from geek chic to everyone’s favorite commuter bike. London’s bike share program opens up to non-members next week. Police warn the UK’s new Deputy Prime Minister not to commute by bike to Downing Street. Oxford students buy bike lights to avoid tickets, then return them afterwards. A cyclist missing for eight hours is found with a broken leg and suffering from hypothermia after she was possibly struck by a car. A New Zealand rider asks why are cyclists are being picked on after the carnage of recent weeks. Cycling communities around the world reach out to those in need this holiday season.

Finally, a writer says I’m not a F***ing cyclist, I’m a Ruby’s daddy on a bike, while the Initiative Director for the South Bay Bicycle Master Plan says that she didn’t hear one single motorist yell an obscenity at a cyclist while she was in Amsterdam.

And if you’re looking for the perfect condiment for that turkey, it appears L.A.’s favorite native-born hot sauce has been around a lot longer than we thought.

Best wishes for a very happy Thanksgiving.

%d bloggers like this: