Morning Links: LACBC needs to hear from you this Saturday, video from bike/LAPD crash, and a bunch of kindhearted people

Let’s start with some difficult personal news. 

The Corgi is dying. 

If you’ve followed this site for awhile, you’ve no doubt seen her grace these pages, whether as the spokesdog for our annual holiday fund drive, or simply because she wouldn’t get out of the photo. 

And she’s kept me company and watched over me as I’ve written this site for more than nine years. 

But a couple months ago, she started getting sick, and has gotten progressively worse. 

Then last week her new vet confirmed she has an inoperable, malignant tumor at the base of her snout. And at 13, we’ve decided not to make her suffer through radiation therapy just to slow the progression of the disease and buy few more months — for our benefit, not hers. 

Because she’s already given us far more than we could ever have asked. 

Simply put, it’s her time. 

So she’s now in the corgi equivalent of hospice care, with a focus on palliative care to keep her as healthy and happy — and free from pain — as possible, for a long as she has left.

The vet estimates that could be somewhere between three and six months. Or maybe less because of how rapidly her cancer has progressed. 

I share this here because some people have grown attached to her. But also because it will severely impact my life over the next few months. And may affect my ability to put up a new post, or write with the same depth as I strive to do. 

As always, I’ll do my best to be here for you every day with the latest bike news from around the corner, and around the world. 

But I also know the coming days are likely to be very difficult, and she needs me now more than ever before. 

I don’t plan to offer regular updates about her condition here; this site is about bicycles, not my dog.

Or me, for that matter. 

So if you want to keep up with her, and how both of us are doing, you can check in on my personal Twitter account from time to time.

Now let’s get back to why we all came here today.

………

Speaking of which, they’re back.

And they want you to tell them where you want them to go.

After wandering in the weeds in recent months as they dealt with an extended leadership vacuum, and ineffective and misguided leadership when they had one, the LACBC is ready to re-engage with the city’s bicycling community.

Although much smaller and poorer than in recent years.

When new LACBC Executive Director Eli Akira Kaufman was hired to take over the coalition, it wasn’t long before major financial problems were revealed.

A lack of fundraising by the previous, largely disengaged Executive Director and mismanagement by the board of directors led to an existential crisis that literally threatened the survival of what had been Southern California’s most influential bicycling advocacy organization.

No wonder city leaders ignored them. And us.

Massive cost cutting, including the painful loss of over half the staff, through no fault of their own, has led to a temporary period of stability.

As a result the coalition until the end of the year to get their shit together raise a substantial amount of funding and develop a more sustainable business model just to stay afloat, even in their smaller size.

Kaufman makes no bones about the LACBC’s current predicament.

“We’ve been out of touch with the community we serve for too long,” he said. “We need to get back in touch, and listen to the people so they’ll feel like, and be, a part of the of the mission.”

“Let’s be honest. If we were making an impact they would already support us.”

The changes at the coalition also includes new leadership on the LACBC board, where Pure Cycles co-founder Michael Fishman has taken over as chair, with Kevin Shin of Walk Bike Long Beach as the new vice chair.

Previous chair Mark Caswell remains on the board to provide continuity after stepping down.

The LACBC is also attempting to recruit four new members, who Kaufman describes as an entertainment industry executive, a politically connected attorney, a socially conscious developer committed to livable urban density, and someone with a much-needed background in non-profit fundraising.

“We’re not done,” Kaufmann continued. “I wouldn’t be fighting this hard if we were. But now isn’t the time to be conservative. The old way of ‘Not right now’ just doesn’t work for us anymore.”

Which brings us to this Saturday.

The LACBC is hosting an open house from 11 am to 3 pm at the LACBC HQ, 634 S Spring Street in DTLA, with a presentation by Kaufman at 1 pm.

They want to listen to you. Whether or not you’re a member of the coalition. And regardless of how or where you ride.

If you ride a bike, or care about those who do, that’s all that matters.

They’re calling it Which Way LA-CBC, a play on Warren Olney’s long-running program on KCRW.

The whole idea is to reconnect, and let you tell them who they should be, and what they should do, from this point forward.

Because really, it’s your bike coalition. And your representatives at City Hall.

Even if they’ve fallen down on the job in recent months.

………

Onscene TV posts raw video from Tuesday’s crash between a bike rider and an LAPD motorcycle cop near Lake Balboa — fortunately, after both victims had been taken to the hospital.

And am I the only one who keeps reading that name as Obscene TV?

………

Today’s common theme is kindhearted people.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies set out to buy a new bike for a 12-year old Cerritos boy after he reported his bike stolen, then Walmart donated it to them at no charge.

After a New Hampshire boy’s bike was stolen, an anonymous veteran dropped off a replacement at a local police station; a few hours later, police arrested a woman after spotting her riding the boy’s original bike.

A pair of cops dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a Shreveport, Louisiana man who can’t hear or speak, after failing to find his stolen bike.

………

Trek has recalled their popular Kickster kids balance bike due to a defect in the steerer tube clamp that can lead to dangerous falls.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes goes on.

A road raging Cincinnati driver was indicted on two counts of felonious assault for speeding ahead of a bike rider and intentionally dooring him after the victim had flipped him off.

British police accused “sick vigilantes” of booby trapping scenic trails with broken branches, carpet tacks and a wall of rocks.

………

Local

Los Angeles has finished the first of a planned series of Complete Streets on a 2.3-mile stretch of Roscoe Blvd through Panorama City and North Hills to improve safety for “pedestrians, bikes, buses and cars.” Although it’s unclear from the story whether anything was actually done to improve bike safety.

Extremist hate came to Santa Monica Monday, when someone spray painted anti-Jewish slogans on the pedestrian bridge over PCH, and “Holocaust is a lie” on the beachfront bike path; the city removed them the same day.

 

State

If you’re carrying weed and glass bongs on your bike, try not to look suspicious — and don’t flee from the cops, because that shit is legal in California now.

Evidently, not all businesses in San Diego’s North Park neighborhood prefer parking spaces to bike-riding customers; a total of 18 local businesses have come out in support of the planned protected bike lane on 30th Street that would remove 420 parking spaces.

The dockless e-scooter industry is fighting back against the San Diego repo firm and a bike shop owner who have confiscated over 10,000 of the devices because they were left in the wrong places.

A new underpass and bridge mean San Diego’s Rose Creek bike path is that much closer to its anticipated opening next year.

Once again, authorities keep a dangerous driver on the roads until it’s too late. A Bakersfield woman is in critical condition with major injuries after an alleged drunk driver slammed into her bike; the driver was previously convicted of DUI and hit-and-run after pleading no contest to the charges 26 years earlier. Seriously, fleeing a crash while under the influence should be enough to permanently disqualify someone from having a license.

Calistoga police haven’t made an arrest yet in the hit-and-run death of a bike rider who was found lying next to his bicycle in the early morning last week.

The bicyclist who was struck and killed by two drivers in a Sonoma County crash has been identified as a 39-year old Santa Rosa man; meanwhile, investigators continue their outrageous victim blaming, saying they don’t know if he was impaired. So why the hell even mention it unless they do?

Folsom has attempted to tackle the problem of speeding drivers by installing smart traffic lights that turn red if someone is exceeding the speed limit.

 

National

A new study shows that investing funds in building better biking routes improves access to jobs in US cities, while another study shows drivers are more likely to buzz women on bikes than they are men.

Bicycling’s Selene Yeager says if you want to be happier at work, ride your bike there.

CNN lists their picks for five of the best bike locks.

Someone went on a bike theft spree in a Colorado mountain resort, snatching six bicycles throughout town on a single night.

A chance discovery at the popular RAGBRAI ride across Iowa led to a groundbreaking study that has improved the lives of Parkinson’s patients.

Dallas bike cops teamed with a security guard to rescue a suspected drunk driver from a fiery crash after he drove his car into a downtown building.

A Cleveland man is in custody for allegedly ramming a pair of men sharing a bicycle with his SUV, then getting out and robbing them at gunpoint; the theft was reportedly in retaliation for stealing drugs and guns from the thief and his unidentified partner.

An Ohio city plans to use eminent domain to claim an abandoned rail line that the owner refuses to sell to make room for a rail-to-trail bikeway.

The speaker of New York’s city council calls for a permanent crackdown on reckless and bike lane-blocking drivers.

Sad news from Maine, where the CEO of IDEXX, the state’s third largest employer, suffered a severe spinal injury while on a club ride last month, leaving him with limited mobility in his arms, and none in his legs, torso and fingers; no word on how it happened.

 

International

Accusations fly in Ottawa following the death of a 13-year old boy who was killed by a driver as he was riding his bike; the head of the city’s Transportation Committee tweeted that bike riders were just left-wing publicity hunters who aren’t helping the cause of safety. Nice guy.

Another reminder of the dangers of potholes, as a Montreal woman suffered a broken nose, three broken teeth and bruises across her entire body after she struck one and flew off her bike.

No shit. A Malta bike rider complains that putting sharrows on high-speed arterial roads is just insane, after a driver buzzes him with inches to spare.

This is why people keep dying on the streets. After an 84-year old New Zealand man ran a red light and slammed into a woman riding her bike, knocking her cold, a driving assessment showed he was perfectly fine to keep on driving and do it again to someone else.

 

Competitive Cycling

Eurosport remembers when the great Eddy Merckx won the Tour de France with a legendary descent from the Col du Galibier to Valloire, site of today’s 18th stage.

Cycling Weekly asks when is it too hot for a bike race, as temperatures in the Tour de France climb north of 105 degrees.

The Beach Reporter sings the praises of local riders who won, or helped lead their teams to victory, in last weekend’s Manhattan Beach Grand Prix, including last year’s US national women’s champ Coryn Rivera.

Mechanics from a Vancouver bike shop fix banged up bikes overnight every night to keep competitors going in British Columbia’s toughest singletrack stage race.

Outside wants to introduce you to the Billie Jean King of professional bike racing.

Former doper and current clean cycling team manager Jonathan Vaughters’ forthcoming memoir goes deep into the sport’s relatively recent dirty past to revisit the halcyon doping days of Lance and Landis.

 

Finally…

It’s a trick question — you can’t ride a bike to the moon. If you’re going to wear a dress to rob a bank and make your escape by bike, at least try to wear practical shoes. Especially if you’re a guy.

And if you don’t want “nuisance cyclists” riding on the sidewalk, then improve safety on the damn street already.

Seriously.

 

7 comments

  1. Robs Muir says:

    Ob. LAPD/bicyclist crash in Encino… How the HELL could that accident occur on a street like that?

    Looks to me like an out-and-out assault by an LAPD officer.

  2. David Drexler says:

    Sorry to hear about the Corgie.

  3. Jaycee Cary says:

    So sorry to hear about your sweet puppy. We love them unconditionally knowing that our time together is limited. My best wishes and positive thoughts to you and her during this difficult time.

  4. Moore says:

    Love to you and the corgi.

  5. bikinginla says:

    Thanks to all for the kind words about the Corgi. They bring a lot of comfort at a difficult time.

  6. Ralph says:

    Condolences about your dog.

    Here is another link for the traffic lights. Just not in Folsom

    https://www.itsinternational.com/categories/enforcement/features/traffic-signals-turn-red-to-stop-speeding-drivers/

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