Archive for Morning Links

Riverside driver kills own son with vision-blocking SUV, and tell Metro to stop wasting money widening highways

This is who we share the road with.

And what, unfortunately.

Heartbreaking news from Riverside County, where a father ran over his own son in his own driveway as he was coming home from work, killing him.

Apparently, the boy was playing next to the gate and ran into the driveway to greet his father, where the grill of the man’s massive Chevy Tahoe SUV may have blocked his view of the one-year old boy.

It’s one of the most absurdly needless dangers we all face on the road, as the ever-increasing size of SUVs and pickups can block the driver’s view of anything directly in front of them, up to and sometimes including grown adults on bicycles.

Their high, flat grills also make it more likely that anyone the drivers hit will be knocked down in front of the wheels, increasing their risk of getting run over by a nearly three ton vehicle.

So if you’re looking for a reason why pedestrian deaths continue to spike, you can start right there.

There’s simply no excuse for allowing machines that are literally designed to kill to use our public roadways.

Photo by Abdulwahab Alawadhi from Pexels.

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Streets For All reminds everyone to tell Metro to stop wasting billions on demand-inducing highway widening projects this Thursday.

This Thursday: Tell Metro to cancel the 710 widening and stop spending billions to widen more highways!

This Thursday, the Metro board on its agenda (#9) will consider a motion to formally kill the 710 freeway widening project, and to develop a local project investment plan that includes transit and active transportation improvements.

Despite this, the board will also consider approving a budget (item #15) that allocates billions of dollars more to widen yet more highways, often based on lies told by Metro staff.

We know that widening the freeway will only induce demand and is Destruction For Nada, and Metro needs to reallocate funding and priorities based on this proven fact.

If you’re able to call in (Thursday at 10am) and make public comment, this is most impactful. If not, send the board an email.

BEST > Call in and make public comment (5.26 @ 10am)

Email Public Comment

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Today’s common theme is advances in bike lighting and security.

New clipless pedals from Redshift Sports come with built-in front and rear facing lights to improve safety, with the rotational movement of the pedal more likely to draw attention than a stationary light; the lights turn on and off automatically, and always know which direction they’re facing.

A new Schwinn ebike comes with a built-in frame light, while a new longtail foldie ebike from Calendar Bikes actually glows in the dark.

Wing Bikes new VanMoof knockoff ebike comes with a built-in Apple Find My network tracker to keep tabs on your bike.

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Looks like progressive talk radio host Stephanie Miller is one of us.

Thanks to Mike Burk and the Smiling Corgis for the heads-up. 

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Either Bob Dylan is one of us, or he just found a beat up old bike to pose with.

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Here’s your chance to learn planning and design the Dutch way.

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Oopsie.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. A Houston letter writer insists bicycles should be licensed so bike riders will help pay for planned new bikeways. Never mind that people who ride bikes pay taxes just like everyone else, while studies show a bike license program would cost more to administer than it would bring in.

Horrific video from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where a driver swerved into a bike lane and ran down several bike riders, in a crash that appears to be anything but accidental; fortunately, none of the victims, all of whom were riding in the bike lane, were seriously injured.

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Local

Los Angeles was the nation’s second most deadly city for bike riders in the past decade, coming in just behind New York, as bicycling fatalities continue to rise; Los Angeles County led the nation with 276 deaths from 2011 to 2020.

 

State 

Sad news from Madera, where a man riding a Huffy beach cruiser was killed by a hit-and-run driver who lost control of his car while making an unsafe turn, swerving off the roadway onto the dirt shoulder where the victim was riding.

Extreme endurance cyclist Grant Lottering is planning a 700-mile nonstop ride from Central California’s Shaver Lake to Irvine, including 63,000 feet of elevation gain, to raise awareness of a charity using sports to help children and young people overcome violence, discrimination and disadvantages.

 

National

It was nice while it lasted. Just a year after acquiring Peloton, Outside has axed the magazine, as well as mountain bike startup Beta; the publishing company also terminated some editorial staff members at CyclingTips and VeloNews, as it transitions from print to online.

The Navajo Nation is working on a 60-mile rail-to-trail conversion, which would be the first such bikeway on native lands in the US.

A 29-year old Idaho man pledged to do whatever it takes to become a better man, after he was sentenced to seven and a half years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a bike-riding man; he was smoking heroin when police took him into custody.

Bicycling looks inside the Major Taylor display at the Indiana State Museum. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

A “burrito ministry” using bicycles to deliver food to homeless people in Nashville and Memphis twice a week is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

Nice piece from the New Yorker, as a university professor takes a very personal look at the history of bicycling, from the first Laufmaschine to the pandemic bike boom, noting that a toddler who starts on a balance bike can experience virtually every type of historic bike as they grow up.

A Republican sponsored bill would legalize parking protected bike lanes in Pennsylvania.

A Miami weekly considers three ways to improve safety on the deadly Rickenbacker Causeway, where a bike-riding couple was killed by a dozing driver.

 

International

The New York Times highlights seven great bicycling cities, along with the best bike trail to ride in each one, from Geneva to Bogota, and San Francisco to New York and DC.

Famed Irish travel writer Dervla Murphy has died, after making a career of traveling the world by bicycle, foot, pack pony or public transport; she first came to fame with a book about bicycling from Ireland to India in 1965. She was 90 years old. Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

An Irish website recommends five bucket list worthy bike routes to explore the Emerald Isle.

A British man has died two weeks after his bicycle was stuck by a ped-assist ebike.

Differences in speeds are leading to conflicts between different types of bike riders on Brussels bikeways.

Bicycling crashes have dropped significantly in Amsterdam after e-scooters were banned from the city’s bike lanes.

A New Zealand university professor says ignore the bikelash, because the benefits of investing in bicycling far exceed the cost.

 

Competitive Cycling

Tragic news from Italy, where the sports director of the Viris Vigevano cycling team was killed when he was struck by a rider as he was watching the conclusion of the Trofeo Castelfidardo race in Italy’s Marche region.

Dutch pro Ellen van Dijk is the new women’s hour record holder, covering 49.254 km — the equivalent of 30.605 miles — at Switzerland’s Gretchen velodrome.

CyclingTips profiles Ally Wollaston, a New Zealand track cyclist making her mark on the women’s WorldTour.

Friends and family members remember Moriah “Mo” Wilson, the gravel cyclist fatally shot in a love triangle murder in Austin, Texas earlier this month.

 

Finally…

Who needs a tandem when you can ride a bicycle built for seven? Now you, too, can have a vintage 1946 Bianchi racing bike owned by four-time Giro winner Luigi Casola, for a mere 27 grand.

And what do you do when a YouTube star slams a rented Tesla into your car trying to catch air on one of the steepest streets in Los Angeles?

You write a song about it, of course.

Thanks to LAPD Central Traffic Division for the link.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Arrest warrant issued in Mo Wilson love triangle murder, and bike & pedestrian bills move forward in CA legislature

Before we start, I’ve received a number of reports that someone on a bicycle was killed while riding in Claremont on Friday. 

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find any confirmation yet. 

I’ll let you know if I learn more.

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It’s one of the oldest stories in Hollywood.

But this isn’t Hollywood. And this time, it’s not just some filmmaker’s fantasy.

Because it turns out the murder of rising gravel cyclist and mountain biker Moriah “Mo” Wilson was the result of an old fashioned love triangle.

Wilson was shot multiple times and killed August 11th while in Austin, Texas to prepare for the Gravel Locos race.

After investigating, police have issued a first degree murder warrant for 34-year old Kaitlin Marie Armstrong, the business partner, and off-and-on romantic partner, of pro gravel cyclist Colin Strickland, who operates a vintage trailer restoration business.

Strickland said he had a brief romantic relationship with Wilson last fall, before reconciling with Armstrong.

Apparently, they were on a “break” at the time.

Wilson and Strickland had gone swimming together that afternoon, before he dropped her off at the apartment of a friend she was staying with.

According to The New York Times, police had taken Armstrong into custody a day after the shooting, but let her go hours later.

The day after Ms. Wilson was found dead, the police took Ms. Armstrong into custody on an unspecified misdemeanor warrant but were then informed that the warrant was not valid and told Ms. Armstrong she could leave if she wanted to, the affidavit said…

The affidavit said the police had received a tip from an anonymous caller. The caller said Ms. Armstrong had said in January that she wanted to kill Ms. Wilson after learning that Mr. Strickland was in a romantic relationship with Ms. Wilson while he was dating Ms. Armstrong.

Now they have no idea where she is.

A Boston website reports Strickland originally lied about his own whereabouts the day of the shooting in an effort to hide his involvement with Wilson.

He also bought two guns last winter, for himself and Armstrong — including the weapon apparently used to kill Wilson.

The murder has left the Austin bicycling community in shock.

Meanwhile, a crowdfunding page to “help fund community organizations that help youth find self-confidence, strength, and joy through biking, skiing, and other activities that Moriah was passionate about” has raised over $60,000 of the $100,000 goal.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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Streetsblog notes that most bike, pedestrian and transit bills in the state legislature are moving forward.

That included the Bicycle Omnibus Bill and another attempt at getting the Stop As Yield bill, aka the Idaho Stop, past the governor’s desk.

However, it also includes a bill requiring bikeshare and e-scooter companies to insure their riders, which would likely put them all out of business.

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Mark your calendar to help make biking better in Orange County.

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An Indian man and his son can’t contain their joy over buying a used bike.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

Seriously? After bike-riding Miami couple were killed by a fatigued driver who may have been sleeping at the wheel, the local police respond by reminding bike riders and drivers to obey the law, saying safety is a shared responsibility. Even though the victims didn’t do a damn thing wrong, except share the road with a driver without enough sense to pull over when he was too tired to drive.

Two London bike riders were attacked by a driver who pulled up next to them before tossing thumbtacks in their path.

After a British truck driver was caught on video buzzing a bike-riding cop in hi-viz, angry drivers tried to defend the close pass by insisting the driver stayed in his lane.

A member of Britain’s national cycling team was lucky to escape serious injury when he was intentionally rear-ended by a road raging hit-and-run driver.

More proof drivers are the same everywhere, as a road raging Parisian driver ends an argument with a bike rider by driving over his bike, and dragging it under his car as he tried to drive off without stopping.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly. 

After Fresno’s mayor posts a video suggesting he rode his ebike to work for Bike to Work Day, it turned out he didn’t really ride, and doesn’t even own the bike he was riding.

A Houston robbery victim ran over the thief’s bicycle getting away after the robber had shot him.

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton examines Metro’s annual tradition of lying to justify their ever-expanding highway widening budget, which jumped 33% this year, on top of an 80% increase last year — despite promising to switch to a more multimodal approach. Never mind that they’re burning money while helping to set our world on fire in the midst of an ever-worsening climate emergency.

The BBC takes a look at my friend and bike shop owner Carlos Morales and the Eastside Bike Club he founded in 2008.

 

State 

Menifee is building a new six acre bike park.

Sad news from Fremont, where a seven-year old chid was killed when they were struck by a driver while riding a bicycle. Even if a San Francisco website can’t decide if the kid was riding a bike or walking.

 

National

Best Products says cheap ebikes are taking over the streets, while apparently defining cheap as under two grand.

An 82-year old writer for CleanTechnica shares the lessons he’s learned in eight years of ebike ownership and maintenance.

This is who we share the bike path with. An Iowa driver faces DUI and reckless homicide charges for killing one person and injuring two others as they were walking on a multi-use path at two in the morning, after driving nearly the entire length of the pathway.

 

International

A London, Ontario writer reminds pedestrians they don’t belong in bike lanes.

A new Canadian study shows women are more concerned about drivers, and bullying and abuse, than they are about infrastructure.

You’ve got to be kidding. After Scotland’s transport minister says ebikes are the future, a Lycra-clad neanderthal columnist insists ebike riders are cheating.

Half of British women would like to ride their bikes more, but don’t feel safe on the roads and worry about a lack of infrastructure.

A kindhearted teenage Ukrainian refugee in the UK gave his new bike to a fellow refugee so she wouldn’t have to go without one; he was rewarded with an even better bike a few days later.

Companies in Brussels, Belgium are rethinking deliveries, and trading delivery vans for “more environmentally friendly, and often faster, cargo bikes.

New research from the Netherlands suggests that roundabouts are less safe for bike riders than traditional intersections.

Bike sales are surging in Beijing as the city closes parts of its transit system to combat Covid.

An aide to a Malaysian elected official was killed when he fell off his bike on a descent.

Heartbreaking story from Australia, where a Good Samaritan was stabbed to death by a 15-year old boy, after he tried to stop the teenager who had just stolen a bike from a younger boy; the 15-year old was arrested, but has yet to be charged.

 

Competitive Cycling

Britain’s Simon Yates took the win in Saturday’s 14th stage, while Ecuadorean pro Richard Carapaz slipped on the pink leader’s jersey.

All the action took place on Saturday, as an exhausted peloton eased into today’s rest day on Sunday’s stage 15, with Carapaz retaining his newly won leader’s jersey despite an early fall.

Dutch pro Tom Dumoulin threw in the towel on Saturday’s 14th stage, dropping out early in the race, explaining that his “body is worn out;” meanwhile, Alejandro Valverde dropped out of contention after losing eight minutes following a flat.

Former pro Robbie McEwen was forced to apologize for inadvertently using a homophobic slur during a Giro stage 10 broadcast.

 

Finally…

Maybe Obsessive Cycling Disorder isn’t the best name for a bike shop if you don’t want to piss off the OCD community. That feeling when you’ve been visited by the bike fairy.

And it looks like Trevor Noah is one of us. At least when he’s in The Netherlands.

Thanks to Glenn Crider for the link.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

San Diego bike rider injured by elderly driver, crowdfunding for murdered DTLA bike rider, and CA speed cams killed again

Once again, an elderly driver raises the question of how old is too old to drive.

A 57-year old woman riding on San Diego’s SR-56 Bike Trail was seriously injured when an 80-year old man in an SUV slammed into her as he exited State Route 56, and turned right onto Camino Del Sur in Torrey Pines.

The victim was crossing Camino Del Sur in the bike trail’s dedicated crosswalk.

She suffered a fractured pelvis and fifth lumbar vertebrae, but fortunately, her injuries were not believed to be life-threatening.

A street view shows the intersection is controlled with a red light at the crosswalk; however, there’s no word on whether the victim was crossing against the light, or if the driver made an unsafe right on the red.

Phillip Young reports signage at the intersection prohibits making a right turn on a red light when pedestrians or bike riders are present, which drivers routinely ignore. And which should be banned there under all circumstances.

But the crash highlights both the dangers of street crossings on separated bike paths, as well as the inherent risks of allowing people to keep driving long past the age when most driver’s abilities start to decline.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up; artwork by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

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The victim in the murder of a bike rider in Downtown Los Angeles had attended a game at Dodger Stadium, and was likely on his way to catch a train home when he was attacked just after midnight Tuesday.

Twenty-eight-year old Oscar Gaytan was killed when he was pulled off his bike by his attacker, described only as a man in his 30s, striking his head on the street.

Police are investigating it as a homicide.

A crowdfunding campaign to help pay funeral expenses has raised nearly $10,000 of the $25,000 goal.

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Once again, the California legislature has shamefully decided that not annoying drivers by making them obey the law is more important than saving human lives.

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It’s been shown time and again that this is the most effective way to make changes on our streets.

So why doesn’t Los Angeles ever do it?

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This is how you catch drivers passing unsafely.

Unfortunately, using video or photo evidence to prosecute traffic infractions is illegal in most, if not all, US states, for reasons that will forever escape me.

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The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

A British bus driver was fined the equivalent of just $500 for a punishment pass that literally forced a bike rider into a roadside hedgerow. Just in case you’re wondering why crap like this keeps happening.

A driver in the UK learns the hard way that there’s no such thing as a friendly warning toot when you’re on a bike.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly. 

A Singapore man was sentenced to four days behind bars for illegally riding his ebike on the sidewalk, after a 74-year-old woman fractured her shoulder when her umbrella got hooked on his bike.

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Local

Spectrum News 1 reports increased ebike use could cut carbon emissions 50% if they replaced short car trips. Which won’t happen until we provide safe places to ride them.

Burbank has approved a $2 billion plan to reduce the city’s greenhouse gases and achieve carbon neutrality by 2045. Assuming any of us are still around, of course. 

The LACBC looks at a number of upcoming events.

 

State 

The rich get richer. San Diego will soon be adding bike lanes to Convoy Street, Balboa Avenue and Clairemont Mesa Boulevard in the Kearny Mesa neighborhood.

A San Diego TV station says businesses that formerly opposed bike lanes are starting to come around, although another station does its best to suggest no one is using them. Hint: if you want to make it look like no one is a bike lane, show up after 8 am, when many people are already at work or school.

The Bay Area’s BART train system is working to better accommodate bike riders, including people with cargo bikes and other large bicycles.

 

National

The founder of the Vision Zero Network looks at the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), which is currently up for review, and the “strategies to improve vehicle designs, policies and safety regulations that would save lives if they were implemented.”

new report from the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy says completion of the 3,700-mile Great American Rail-Trail, which extends from DC’s Capitol steps to the coast of Washington State, would pay for itself in just five years in visitor spending alone, generating over $350 million per year in economic activity. Iowa alone would see an additional $14 million in tourist spending every year.

A Wired podcast explains how to get started with bicycling, while Momentum recommends six of the best bicycles for commuting with a side of fun.

Bicycling recommends the best bike jerseys for a more comfortable ride. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you. 

A Denver magazine explains how the 50-year old Iron Horse Classic helped make the small southwestern Colorado town of Durango a bicycling mecca.

The Pueblo, Colorado fire department now has a pair of ebikes to allow it to respond to emergencies where using a fire truck could be difficult.

Kindhearted cops with a Missouri police department dug into their own pockets to buy a new bike for a 19-year old man, after the one he relied on for transportation was destroyed in a collision.

 

International

Cycling Weekly pits a classic steel Colnago against a modern superbike from the same bikemaker, and finds that 30 years of progress amounts to just 14 seconds in the real world.

New 3D carbon technology promises to lower the rolling resistance of bike tires to increase speed without compromising grip or wear

 

Competitive Cycling

Italian cyclist Stefano Oldani claimed his first victory as a pro in Thursday’s 12th stage of the Giro; it only took Oldani 211 tries to get his first stage win.

The peloton paused to remember fallen pro Wouter Weylandt as the Giro returned to the Passo del Bocco for the first time since his death 11 years ago.

The Giro will now give stage winners uncorked bottles of prosecco, after Eritrean pro Biniam Girmay was forced to withdraw when an errant cork hit him in the eye, following his record-setting effort as the first Black African rider to win a Grand Tour stage.

VeloNews considers what to do and not to do to get mentally ready for a bike race, as well as during the race.

 

Finally…

No, a bike cam can’t protect you from all motorist-related injuries, even with a 360° field of view. That feeling when the food supplies for your record-breaking attempt weren’t really stolen after all.

And let’s all go bouldering by bike.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

It’s Bike to Work Day, LA Times talks with seven bike-riding Angelenos, and how the press blames crash victims

Happy Bike to Work Day.

But just between us, feel free to bike anywhere.

I won’t tell.

While it’s not the bicycling equivalent of Trick or Treat that it used to be, Spectrum News 1 reports several LACBC chapters will be operating pit stops, including in West Hollywood, Culver City and Santa Monica.

Metro is hosting a Bike to Work Day celebration at Union Station until noon today.

Bike to Work Day Celebration

  • May 19 @ 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Union Station, 800 N Alameda St
  • Los Angeles, CA 90012 United States

Ride Metro Bike Share to work on Bike to Work Day! Stop by our booth in Union Station West for free coffee, pastries, and passes for FREE 30-minute rides.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition is teaming with Pasadena nonprofit Day One for a Bike to Work Day stop at City Hall.

That will be followed by a Handlebar Happy Hour this evening.

It’s a good day for a multimodal commute, with free transit for bike riders throughout the LA area.

Saturday’s daylight Ride of Silence has been moved from the Rose Bowl to Memorial Park in Old Pasadena.

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Nice piece from the LA Times, which talks with a broad cross-section Angelenos who love riding their bikes, despite the obvious obstacles.

“The concern is very simple,” bike activist Michael Schneider said. “People feel like they’re gonna die if they bike in L.A.”

Over the past five years, 96 cyclists have been killed on Los Angeles roads, an average of 18 a year, according to LAPD data. So far this year, six have died, including Andrew Jelmert, a 77-year-old real estate agent struck by a driver in Griffith Park in April, and days later, Leonidas Accip Serech who was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Koreatown. That same week, a third cyclist, John Hermoso, was killed while riding near Santa Clarita, outside Los Angeles city limits.

And yet a hardy 3% of L.A. residents, about 120,000 people, through wit, will, joy or necessity, carve out their daily commutes and other trips on two wheels.

The riders range from Schneider and legendary Bike Kitchen founder Jimmy Lizama, to Cal State LA assistant professor Michael Runnels and Lena Williams of People for Mobility Justice.

Most focus on the surprising convenience and sheer joy of riding a bike, despite the built-in inconvenience and inequity of LA-area streets.

Here’s just a portion of what Runnels had to say, in response to the question “What’s the most fun you can have on a bike in L.A.?”

Descending down a hill from Griffith Park. Los Angeles is an unfurling gorgeous flower that has no center — continuous gorgeous petals. And the only way that I began to see how this beautiful city is tied together is on the saddle of a bike. I mean you could see, in a poor neighborhood, you’ll tend to go slower because the roads are maintained less effectively. If you bike to Beverly Hills, the pavement turns smooth. You can see the theory of a city: where the money goes, where the money does not go. The views of the city that’s nestled in the mountains right next to the ocean — it’s stunning. So riding your bikes with friends, in this staggering natural beauty, you’re earning this beauty. You’re getting exercise, you have a zeroed out carbon footprint, and you’re making bonds with your community in ways you could never do with a car.

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

It’s today’s must read piece. So take a few minutes and read the whole thing.

We’ll wait.

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In the day’s other must-read, Slate takes a deep dive into how news organizations cover car collisions when the victim is on foot, or otherwise outside the vehicle.

Subtly — or not so subtly — blaming the victim by parroting police reports, without taking an objective look at what really happened.

Across the country, media outlets consistently employ practices that traffic safety experts and advocates object to—writing headlines about pedestrian and cyclist fatalities in the passive voice and highlighting the vehicle instead of the driver (i.e., “pedestrian struck by car” instead “driver strikes pedestrian”). Research suggests that American reporting is much more likely to focus on the pedestrian or cyclist who is struck, rather than the driver behind the wheel. Recognizing the problem, a 2018 Columbia Journalism Review article offered guidance to reporters and editors: “When covering car crashes, be careful not to blame the victim.”

Because most people learn about these incidents from the press, reporting habits around roadway deaths have attracted more scrutiny as pedestrian and cyclist fatalities rise, surging 46 percent and 36 percent, respectively, from 2010 to 2019. Roadways have grown even more dangerous during the pandemic, with more than 42,000 people dying on American roadways in 2021, a 10.5 percent annual increase, the highest on record. Meanwhile, traffic fatalities have fallen steadily across most of Europe and East Asia…

The media’s role in this conversation matters. Public pressure can help push transportation agencies to revise their approaches to road safety, something that the growing death toll suggests is overdue. Media coverage can be instrumental in shaping such pressure, but only if newsrooms dig deeper in their crash reporting and guard against blaming the very people who are getting killed.

Unlike the Times story, this one won’t make you smile. But it’s every bit as important a read.

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Streetsblog reports that a Metro committee has recommended pulling the plug on the $6 billion plan to widen the 710 Freeway, which would require demolishing hundreds of homes and businesses.

Let’s hope that means they’re finally getting it, recognizing that we can’t keep building traffic-inducing highways when the world is literally on fire.

Or maybe not.

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GCN explains how to recycle old bike tires.

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Local

Streets For All is endorsing Bryant Odega to replace outgoing LA councilmember Joe Buscaino in CD15, noting he’s the only candidate for the post who has endorsed the 25×25 plan to return 25% of LA street space to human use.

 

State 

Bike to Work Day returns to San Diego after a two-year pandemic-induced hiatus, with 100 pit stops scattered around the city.

A Los Angeles expat has turned his high-end Sonoma home into a bike-centric clubhouse for his friends.

 

National

Seriously? House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy slammed Speaker Nancy Pelosi over a proposal to give House staffers free Peloton memberships, when families are struggling to find baby formula — then joined 191 other Republicans to vote against funding to address the formula shortage.

Garmin’s new $400 bike tail light comes complete with a rear-facing, hi-def bike cam and built-in radar to warn you about oncoming vehicles.

Bicycling says Coldplay wants you to help provide the pedal power to power their shows. As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

An Idaho man celebrates riding 200,000 miles over 36 years. Something I was on track for before diabetes and other associated health problems knocked me off my bike.

A Denver weekly says the city’s rating as one of the nation’s safest cities for bike commuters doesn’t jibe with its rising traffic death toll, six years after adopting a five-year Vision Zero plan.

Denver riders who missed out on one of the city’s ebike rebate vouchers will get a second chance in 60 days, when any unused vouchers go back on the market.

An Illinois woman was sentenced to five years behind bars for the hit-and-run death of a Wisconsin man who was riding his bicycle against traffic.

That’s more like it. Philadelphia is adding bicycle parking patrols to target drivers who park in bike lanes.

 

International

Police in Liverpool, England caused an uproar when they tweeted bicyclists should ride with courtesy and care, with bike riders angrily noting they’re not the ones who are killing people.

Undefeated English UFC featherweight Lerone Murphy reports he nearly died after he was struck by a careless driver while riding his bike, and nearl bled out when it took 45 minutes for an ambulance to get there.

Speed cams work. A speed camera installed to enforce a British city’s new 20 mph speed limit caught 1,100 drivers in just the first 24 hours — and a whopping 23,500 speeding drivers before it was officially turned on. So what the hell is California waiting for?

The wife of the inventor of Haribo gummy bears was one of us, riding her bike to make deliveries of the then new confection around Bonn, Germany in the 1920s.

Ukrainian soldiers are turning to local ebike maker Delfast, mounting bikes with anti-armor rocket launchers to turn them into stealth tank killers.

 

Competitive Cycling

Spanish pro Juan Pedro López held on to the pink leader’s jersey in Wednesday’s 11th stage of the Giro, as Italy’s Alberto Dainese won the stage, becoming the first Italian to win at this year’s race.

Disappointing news, as Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay was forced to withdraw from the Giro hours after becoming the first Black African to win a Grand Tour stage, due to a hemorrhage suffered in his left eye when he popped a bottle of prosecco to celebrate his victory, and was struck by the cork.

Thirty-nine-year old Italian cyclist Domenico Pozzovivo is fighting through pain from a horrific head-on crash by a driver two years ago to compete in the Giro, assuming the sole leadership of the Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert after Girmay was forced to drop out.

 

Finally…

Your next carbon frame could be virtually unbreakable. A pair of exercise bikes went down with the Titanic 110 years ago.

And Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy is one of us. Or at least, the fictional president he played was.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

US traffic deaths soar, LA Times picks Pynoos over O’Farrell, and Friedman fights for bike safety on Burbank bridge

If you thought our roads are getting more dangerous, you’re right.

According to figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 42,915 people were killed on American streets last year — the highest total since 2005, and an increase of 10.5 percent over 2020.

Bicycling fatalities rose five percent, to 985 — an average of five deaths every two days — while pedestrian deaths jumped 13 percent to 7,342.

Not surprisingly, nearly two-thirds of US traffic fatalities occurred in urban areas, where there are more people, and more cars.

Artwork by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up.

……….

In political news, Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer dropped out of the race for mayor, swinging his support to Karen Bass.

And the LA Times made a surprising endorsement of former Mike Biden staffer Karen Pynoos over incumbent Mitch O’Farrell in CD13 — without mentioning O’Farrell’s role in tanking the shovel-ready Temple Street lane reduction in the wake of the Playa del Rey fiasco.

………

California Assembly Transportation Chair Laura Friedman jumped into the road safety fight to push for steps to improve bike and pedestrian safety on the new Burbank Blvd Bridge.

………

Still more Bike to Work Week news.

Or bike anywhere, for that matter.

Tonight marks the annual Ride of Silence, with rides throughout California; a ride will be held in Los Angeles at 7 pm tonight, starting at 3554 W. First St .

Metro is celebrating tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day by offering free rides for everyone on all Metro Bus and Rail lines, as well as free half-hour Metro Bike rides.

Bike Metro is teaming with the LACBC to host a lunchtime ride through Chinatown on Thursday’s Bike to Work Day.

Culver City Bus is offering free rides for bike riders on tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition and Day One are hosting a Handlebar Happy Hour at the Dog Haus tomorrow night.

And make plans for a Spoke and Art Ride this Saturday.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

There’s a special place in hell for the bike thieves who rammed an 81-year old British man with their car, knocking him into a ditch and stealing his new mountain bike.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A 35-year old ex-con will stand trial for the unprovoked murder of a San Diego man in a Pacific Beach restroom, before the killer fled on a bicycle; Martin Alvarez, Jr. has entered a not guilty plea to the fatal stabbing.

………

Local

The proposed LA River Master Plan has been posted online, along with public comments about the plan.

A massive Puente Hills landfill could soon become the new Puente Hills Regional Park, including plans for a bike skills park.

 

State 

Plans for a two-way bikeway down the middle of Palo Alto’s California Street hit the skids, failing on a tie vote at the city council.

 

National

No surprise here. A new study from the Urban Institute shows that tax rebates are a better solution to soaring prices than cutting gas taxes, while policies that discourage driving — like high gas prices, for instance — would have the greatest longterm impact on inflation.

Advisory bike lanes, which give bike riders priority and force drivers to share the roadway, are coming to a pair of short Portland streets. Advisory streets have bike lanes on either side, with a single car lane shared by drivers traveling in both directions; drivers are expected to move into the bike lanes to pass one another, before returning to their lane. Let’s hope they have a better rollout than they did in San Diego

A crowdfunding account has raised over $91,000 for the family of a young Las Vegas father who was killed by a speeding driver while riding his bike on Sunday.

A Minneapolis man pulled himself out of depression and got his life on track with an apprenticeship at a nonprofit bike shop dedicated to providing mentorship and training for young people dealing with housing instability.

Miami bike riders demanded safety improvements to the city’s Rickenbacker Causeway following the death of a couple riding in the bridge’s green bike lane.

 

International

Cycling Weekly considers what makes a good beginner bicycle.

After bike riders complained about a 22 mph speed limit, organizers of the 20,000 person Ride London backed off and removed the speed cap.

Someone cut the locks off a semi-truck in the UK, and made off with 133 Merida bikes as the truck was stopped at a truck stop, while leaving 73 bikes behind.

The co-owner of the Israel Cycling Academy WorldTour cycling team has donated one million dollars to complete a bike trail in Elad.

A Kiwi driver was captured on video ramming a woman riding a bike directly in front of her car, but will only get a lousy $150 fine because she “wasn’t injured enough.” But at least the driver apologized and offered to fix her bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

History was made Tuesday when 22-year old Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay outsprinted Mathieu van der Poel to win stage 10 of the Giro, becoming the first Black African to win a Grand Tour stage.

Ayesha McGowan, the only Black rider on the women’s pro tour, called it a victory for all of us.

Even van der Poel showed his support for Girmay in defeat, with a thumbs up gesture as the African rider crossed the finish line.

 

Finally…

Your next e-cargo bike could be self-charging with solar panels. And Giro podium today, followed by a Prosecco cork in the eye.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

More Bike Week news, bikes and accessibility at PCSC next month, and LA gets new electric bike lane sweeper

More Bike Week news.

The Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition is teaming with Day One to host a free evening taco ride tonight.

Pasadena’s Day One is hosting a bike-in movie Saturday night, screening Together We Cycle, a documentary about the history of bicycling in the Netherlands.

Santa Clarita is hosting a Bike to Work Week Challenge for businesses and their employees, including five pit stops on Thursday’s Bike to Work Day.

Metro is sponsoring a series of Bike Week events —

UCLA Bike Week Commuter Event

  • May 18 @ 8:30 am – 10:30 am
  • Perloff Hall at UCLA, 1317 Portola Plaza
  • Los Angeles, CA 90095 United States

It’s Bike Week! Come to Perloff Hall to learn more about Metro Bike Share at UCLA.

Bike Share 101: Bike Safety Basics at UCLA Bike Week (In-Person Class)

  • May 18 @ 11:00 am – 12:30 pm
  • UCLA LuValle Commons, 398 Portola Plaza
  • Los Angeles, CA 90095 United States
  • RSVP HERE

The BEST Bike Share 101: Bike Safety Basics class, presented by Metro, Metro Bike Share, and LA County Bicycle Coalition, is a 1.5-hour in-person class where you will learn how to navigate the Metro Bike Share system and improve your safety while riding Metro Bike Share on campus. RSVP REQUIRED.

Bike to Work Day Celebration

  • May 19 @ 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Union Station, 800 N Alameda St
  • Los Angeles, CA 90012 United States

Ride Metro Bike Share to work on Bike to Work Day! Stop by our booth in Union Station East for free coffee, pastries, and passes for FREE 30-minute rides.

Bike to Work Day Lunch Community Ride

  • May 19 @ 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
  • Union Station West Portal, 834 N Alameda St
  • Los Angeles, CA United States

Are you a bike commuter? Do you work from home and want to get out for a bike ride? The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition and Metro Bike Share invite you to celebrate National Bike to Work Day with a short, fun-filled lunch hour bike ride sponsored by Metro’s Bicycle Education Safety Training (BEST) Program. Join us at Union Station, where we’ll ride along to Chinatown and the LA State Historic Park to enjoy a tasty fresh lunch.

3rd & Santa Fe Pop-Up

  • May 21 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
  • 3rd & Santa Fe, 999 E Third Street
  • Los Angeles, CA 90033 United States

Are you looking to visit the Arts District this weekend? Visit our table at 3rd & Santa Fe and get a free 1-Ride pass for you and your friends.

In addition, Metro is offering a one-year Metro Bike bikeshare pass for $75 this Thursday and Friday only.

You can find still more Bike Week news in yesterday’s post, in case you missed it.

Photo by Ana Arantes from Pexels.

……….

Bike accessibility advocate Megan Lynch will be speaking at next month’s meeting of the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition.

As she notes, her appearance builds on the successful panel discussion she hosted at last month’s Calbike summit.

………

Apparently, Los Angeles has a new electric bike lane sweeper.

Now we just need more bike lanes to sweep.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. NFL quarterback Tom Brady rode a bikeshare bike through the streets of New York over the weekend, but all anyone seemed to notice is he wasn’t wearing a helmet.

No bias here, either. Bike riders in a British city decry plans to cope with periodic flooding by removing a bike lane to make room for the flood waters, rather than actually dealing with the problem.

Or here. Scottish bike riders criticize an Edinburgh website for posting a video purporting to show a bike rider racing through a roundabout, which has obviously been speeded up to make it appear far more dangerous than it was. While ignoring the real problem of the person on the soundtrack singing about how he’d like to run the rider down with his truck.

………

Local

Los Angeles looks at the battle between challenger Dulce Vasquez and incumbent Curren Price for LA’s CD9 council seat.

Streetsblog’s SGV Connect podcast talks with bike-riding state Senator Anthony Portantino, who has sponsored legislation requiring communities to make progress on bicycle and pedestrian planning, as well as talking with the leaders of the very active Active SGV.

 

State 

A San Diego man was shot in the leg following an argument with another man in the city’s Logan Heights neighborhood, before the shooter made his getaway on a bicycle.

 

National

The Biden administration is sending out $5 billion to cities and localities to address the rising traffic death toll on our streets by by “slowing down cars, carving out bike paths and wider sidewalks and nudging commuters to public transit” under the Transportation Department’s new Safe Streets & Roads for All program. Needless to say, right wing Breitbart News does not approve.

Mas mojitos, por favor! Bicycling says drinking mint could make you faster in the summer heat. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A writer for Electrek says “acoustic bikes” are incredible, but he only rides ebikes for transportation.

Cosmo offers their picks for the best cruiser bikes, with prices starting at just $190. Although that’s for a Huffy, so “best” may be relative.

Kindhearted Spokane cops replaced a seven-year old girl’s stolen bicycle after a group of teens pushed her off and rode off with it.

In a sign of pent-up demand, it only took three weeks for buyers to max out Denver’s new ebike rebate program. A fate that’s likely to befall California’s $10 million ebike rebate program as well, once it kicks off later this summer.

Nice gesture from the Pro Football Writers of America, who gave a lifetime achievement award to former Denver Broncos and New York Jets assistant coach Greg Knapp, who was killed in a collision while riding his bike in San Ramon last summer.

Houston is holding its annual Bike Summit for the first time since it was cancelled by the pandemic, amid calls to do more to improve and maintain the city’s bikeways. Los Angeles held a bike summit once. And needs to do it again.

More on the murder of rising gravel cyclist Moriah Wilson, who was shot to death in Austin, Texas last week while preparing for Saturday’s Gravel Locos race in Hico, Texas.

Once again, an elderly driver has taken the life of an innocent victim, as an 85-year old Oklahoma woman ran down a popular dentist from behind as he was riding his bike; investigators described it as “unfortunate,” while saying it’s unclear why she didn’t see him. Once again raising the question of how old is too old to drive.

Attorney General Merrick B. Garland has withdrawn a request for the death penalty for the truck-driving terrorist who killed eight people by speeding down a New York bike path, opting for life in prison instead of the death penalty requested by former Trump AG Jeff Sessions.

Unbelievable. The driver who killed a man and woman riding in a green bike lane on Miami’s Rickenbacker Causeway has been ticketed, but isn’t facing charges for their deaths; meanwhile, advocates call for safety improvements on the deadly bridge. Because evidently, killing two innocent people while breaking traffic laws is just an oopsie.

 

International

The United Nations is marking next month’s World Bicycle Day with a set of ten bicycle postage stamps. Raise your hand if, like me, you had no idea the UN had its own post office.

Treehugger says there’s an ebike and cargo bike revolution happening, and cities need to catch up with bike storage solutions to accommodate them. Add adaptive bikes to that list, too; as Megan Lynch has pointed out, bike parking for non-traditional bikes is woefully lacking.

More proof that not even physically separated bikeways are safe from reckless drivers, after a Toronto bike rider was left with life-altering injuries when a driver lost control of their car, jumped the curb, crossed a grass divider, and struck the victim on a bike trail before slamming into a guard rail. Sounds like maybe the guard rail was on the wrong side of the pathway.

The Conversation asks if New Zealand’s new budget will be another lost opportunity to get drivers out of their cars.

 

Competitive Cycling

LA’s Bahati Foundation, founded by Compton’s multiple US crit champ Rahsaan Bahati, is sponsoring five young people of color in this summer’s SBT GRVL race in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, to “help broaden their cycling experience and bring diversity to gravel’s starting line.” Unfortunately, this one doesn’t seem to be available on Yahoo, so you’re on your own if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

Hide your AirTag inside your tire. That feeling when you catch a bike thief in the act, and the cops never show up.

And turn your bike into an ebike with a pocket-sized battery. As long as you have a very big pocket, that is.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Welcome to Bike Week, top LA mayoral candidates support bikes and transit, and women’s gravel racer murdered in Texas

Welcome to Bike Week 2022!

Metro is marking Bike Week with a 20% discount on the Metro Shop Bike Collection through the end of the month with coupon code BIKE20 at checkout.

The transit agency is also offering a one-year Bike Hub membership for just $1 on Thursday’s Bike to Work Day with promo code: BIKEMONTH22, as well as free Metro Bike bikeshare rides on Bike to Work Day.

Pro tip: You don’t have to only ride to work just because they’re calling it Bike to Work Day, you can actually ride anywhere for any reason. Or no reason at all.

Metrolink is offering free rides all week if you board with a bicycle.

The LACBC is hosting a 30-mile, family friendly ride this Sunday to reconnect with the LA River, or Paayme Paxaayt as it’s know by the Tongva/Kizh/Gabrielino people who originally inhabited the LA area

UC San Diego wants you to celebrate a healthy, environmentally friendly, cost-saving two-wheeled commute. Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.

………

It looks like there will be a Los Angeles Ride of Silence on Wednesday, after all.

Wildwolf Cycling Collective forwarded this announcement of the ride to me over the weekend.

CALLING ALL RIDERS! Wednesday May 18th at 7PM we ride in silence in solidarity with riders around the globe for the annual Ride Of Silence.

We will be riding as a community to HONOR those who have been injured or killed on bikes

To RAISE AWARENESS that we are here

To ask that we all SHARE THE ROAD

Please wear white if you can. We will have some sign making materials. Bring your own sign or a light colored or white blank shirt to print on.

The ride will be led out by the Bicicrofono, we ask that everyone respect the 12mph or slower pace and stay behind the bike trailer.

Following the ride there will be a gathering  to connect as a community and release our emotions.

Leaving from 3554 W. First St (corner of 1st and Bimini Pl).

………

A coalition of LA advocacy groups, including the LACBC, LA Walks, CicLAvia, and Streets For All, have gotten most of the candidates for mayor of Los Angeles on the record for their stands on transportation issues.

While it focuses on transit, some of the candidates also staked out a position on bicycling and safe, livable streets.

Of the top candidates, Karen Bass seems to take the strongest stand in favor of bikes and livability.

Here’s how Streetsblog’s Joe Linton and Sahra Sulaiman summed up her responses.

As she had done in previous forums, frontrunner Karen Bass described herself as a bicyclist while also explaining she preferred beach paths over city streets “because we have not created the infrastructure to make biking convenient and safe.” She pledged to transform all major corridors to be “walkable, bikeable, green, and safe,” including expanding dedicated bus lanes, protected bike lanes, and first- and last-mile access to transit. Bass stressed the importance of prioritizing “accessibility for the most vulnerable members of our community” and ensuring that their voices – often not heard during traditional community engagement efforts – were part of the conversation….

And she spoke to the importance of building coalitions to create more dedicated spaces for buses, bicyclists, and pedestrians while also weighing the impacts on local neighbors and businesses – a position that some will read as potentially giving in to NIMBY sentiments but which is likely meant to speak to the way in which wealthier newcomers’ demands for amenities in gentrifying communities, like in her home base in South L.A., often steamroll the long-standing demands, aspirations, needs, and concerns of the stakeholders of color.

Mike Feuer and Kevin de León also called for more protected bike lanes and alternatives to driving.

However, in all likelihood, the race will come down to a contest between Bass and self-financed billionaire Rick Caruso.

While Caruso focused on his call to significantly increase police staffing — although I haven’t hear him explain how he’ll pay for it yet — he also had some good things to say about active transportation and transit.

I believe the potential for Los Angeles to create the same type of walkability and community is untapped and limitless and with the right planning and determination, we can make the city known for sprawl and the automobile, a truly community driven city where owning a car will no longer be a prerequisite for getting around. I also believe that we must elevate biking and transit options to the same level and truly ensure that all forms of transportation are viable, safe, efficient, and accessible…

If we are truly going to get Angelenos out of their cars and onto mass transit and active transportation we have to build a better, more reliable system that touches every inch of this city.

You can download PDFs of all the candidate responses here, including statements by Craig Greiwe, Gina Viola and Mel Wilson, as well as Joe Buscaino, who dropped out of the race last week while throwing his support to Caruso.

………

Heartbreaking news from Austin, Texas, where 25-year old cyclist Moriah “Mo” Wilson was shot and killed while visiting a friend.

A top gravel and mountain biking specialist, Wilson had flown to Texas to prepare for the Gravel Locos race in Hico, where she was favored to win, according to VeloNews.

She had won a number of races already this year, including San Diego’s recent Belgian Waffle Ride, and had recently quit her job with Specialized to race full time.

The Austin Statesman-American reports she died of multiple gunshot wounds in what police say was not a random act; police have identified a person of interest.

The editors of FloBikes offer a remembrance.

Thanks to Gravel Bike California for the heads-up.

………

This is what the Beach Life Festival looked like in Redondo Beach this past weekend.

And what other LA venues — including, yes, Dodger Stadium — could look like.

………

This one’s just too beautiful to pass up.

………

There’s something you won’t see from a car.

………

NFL great Tom Brady is one of us, as he takes a bikeshare tour of New York, while casting a critical eye on scofflaw riders.

………

This is who we share the road with.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

A road raging motorist sucker punched a 60-year old Trinidad, California bike rider after subjecting him to a punishment pass, for the crime of legally riding a bike in the traffic lane.

New York’s bike-hating columnist demands that ebikes be banned from the city, calling them a menace. Just wait until someone tells him about cars.

Good damn question. British bike scribe and historian Carlton Reid asks why so many motorists feel persecuted when in reality, they rule the world.

But sometimes it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

At last report, police were responding to a man on a bicycle chasing people with a machete in DTLA. Thanks to Meagan Lynch for forwarding the link.

………

Local

Super Domestic Coffee, a combination bike shop and coffee shop with locations in Los Angeles and Culver City, will open a third location in Venice.

 

State 

California Streetsblog explains why congestion decreases when cities remove traffic lanes — regardless of what Elon Musk says.

San Diego hospital workers report an anecdotal uptick in ebike injuries, with the typical victim being a tourist under the influence.

Police have arrested a pair of men who robbed the Berkeley High School mountain bike team at gunpoint last month. There’s not a pit in hell deep enough.

 

National

A new study shows American cities are drowning in parking, which could probably be put to better use.

Wired has tips on how to join the e-cargo bike boom with your kids.

Electrek suggests the US Postal Service should invest in four-wheeled e-cargo bikes instead of gas-guzzling delivery trucks.

A group of Denver-area men sprang into action when they saw someone trying to steal a bicycle, and ended up detaining a man suspected of stealing over 100 bikes.

Kindhearted Omaha firefighters donated around 100 bikes to kids in need for the 10th consecutive year.

Boston area police conclude an ebike rider simply lost control of his bike, rather than being the victim of a hit-and-run, as originally thought — although it’s clear they haven’t bothered to talk with the victim. Never mind that it’s entirely possible that a driver can cause a crash, without actually hitting someone.

Tragic news from Miami, where a man and woman were killed by a hit-and-run driver on the Rickenbacker Causeway between the city and key Biscayne; witnesses said they were riding a pair of “mom and pop” bikes when they were run down in the green bike lane.

 

International

Cycling Tips says pressure washing your bike may not be the best way to do it, regardless of what Peter Sagan does.

Bikeshare use is plummeting in Cork, Ireland with a drop of over 75% since 2019, even as businesses have reopened post-pandemic. Although it’s likely the pandemic is far from over.

Hundreds of Edinburgh families turned out for the city’s Kidical Mass ride to demand child-friendly bicycling; Swiss families took to the roads to call for kid-friendly roads, too.

No bias here. A Welsh paper says a local town has had to live with chaos, congestion and abuse, with drivers sitting for hours with their heads in their hands — all because it reduced the speed limit to 20 mph. Sure, that’s credible.

What do you do after hosting the British equivalent of the Emmys? Ride your Brompton back home, of course. Thanks again to Megan Lynch.

A local website profiles a Ghanian bikemaker who uses wood to craft his frames.

The ghost bike movement has made it to Singapore, with eight all-white bikes to mark the eight people killed on the city-state’s roads last year.

 

Competitive Cycling

Sunday’s stage nine of the Giro shook up the standings, as Aussie pro Jai Hindley won a mountaintop sprint to claim the stage, while Simon Yates and Wilco Kelderman rode themselves out of competition; Spain’s Juan Pedro López held onto the pink leader’s jersey by a slim 12-second thread.

It took Hindley 570 days to get back on the podium after finishing second in the 2020 Giro, followed by a year of mental and physical setbacks in 2021.

Former German pro Danilo Hondo got less than a slap on the wrist for his involvement in the Operation Aderlass blood doping ring, with a backdated two and a half year ban that’s already expired, and another five and a half year ban suspended because of his confession and cooperation with authorities. But that means the era of doping is really over now, right?

VeloNews considers how coverage of bike racing can be modernized to make it more engaging, after 50 years of the status quo.

 

Finally…

Vroom, vroom! Your next ebike could be the two-wheeled equivalent of a Shelby Cobra. Sometimes you just have to ride your bike handsfree so you can play your ukulele and harmonica.

And that feeling when you become your own dog’s domestique.

Although sometimes, riding slow can be just as good.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

New York joins LA in fight for 25×25, Streets For All’s state & county endorsements, and Ford says park the car

New York is joining Los Angeles in the movement for 25×25.

Advocates are challenging city leaders to return 25% of city street space back to the people by 2025, whether in the form of sidewalks, bikeways or public plazas.

New York currently has 19,000 lane miles dedicated to motor vehicle use, and three million free on-street parking spaces — more than 1.5 for every vehicle in the city.

The LA 25×25 campaign similarly seeks to return 25% of the city’s 6,500 centerline miles of streets to human use by 2025.

Unfortunately, none of the five major candidates for mayor — make that four, after Joe Buscaino dropped out — have signed on yet, though a handful of others have, including progressive candidate Gina Viola.

Which would seem to make it a valuable point of distinction for anyone who does.

Meanwhile, three of the five candidates for city controller have endorsed the plan; not surprisingly, pseudo-environmentalist Paul Koretz is a holdout, along with Paul Wilcox. And four of the five candidates for city attorney are onboard.

Only Curren Price has backed it among sitting city council candidates. Bob Blumenfield is a no, while Monica Rodriguez and Mitch O’Farrell have failed to respond, along with “Roadkill” Gil Cedillo, though several of their challengers have endorsed it.

Combined with the Healthy Streets LA ballot measure, which requires the city to build out the already-approved mobility plan as streets are repaved, it could radically reform the city into a human-centered space it hasn’t seen for most of the past century.

And New Yorkers could envy us for a change.

Photo shows kids enjoying a pre-pandemic CicLAvia.

………

Streets For All offers their endorsements for the state legislature and the LA County Board of Supervisors.

Not surprisingly, the political action committee recommend returning Assembly Transportation Committee Chair Laura Friedman to office, along with Hilda Solis at the county level.

They also recommend WeHo Mayor Lindsey Horvath for the county board.

Click the link above for their endorsements in other state legislature races.

………

The East Side Riders invite you to join them on a family friendly ride this Sunday.

………

Ford is starting a new campaign telling their European staffers to park their cars and bike to work, instead.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

This is the problem with drivers parking in bike lanes. A road raging San Francisco driver subjected a bike-riding man to a punishment pass, then threw something at him while screaming to “stay in the God damn bike lane!”, after the victim had been forced to leave it several times to get around illegally parked cars. Which is not to suggest that the jerk behind the wheel had a point.

No bias here. After a 15-year old Paris, Texas girl was injured in a hit-and-run while riding her bike, the local press can’t be bothered to mention that the apparently sentient car even had a driver.

But sometimes it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A South Philly bike rider was killed in a curbside shootout when he tried to rob a man smoking in front of his home, not realizing the intended victim was armed and had a license to carry.

………

Local

The widow of a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy who died during a mountain bike race run by the California Police Athletic Federation won a partial victory when a judge refused a bid to dismiss her lawsuit, but ruled she couldn’t receive punitive damages in a wrongful death case.

 

State 

No news is good news, right?

 

National

AAA included head-on collisions with bicyclists in their crash tests for cars with active driving assistance; the results weren’t pretty.

Bring it on! Seattle is hosting a self-guided Tour de Donut leading to five donut shops around the city; the $25 entry fee includes a T-shirt, and coffee or donut at each stop. LA has a hell of a lot more donut shops, in case anyone wants to try it here.

LV Sports Biz has more details on plans to hold a L’Étape by Tour de France fondo in Las Vegas next May.

Colorado bike vigilantes are stealing back previously stolen bicycles, because police don’t have the time or resources to track them down.

Millions of toddlers can’t be wrong. The founder of popular balance bikemaker Strider Bike will be inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame.

Police in Kalamazoo, Michigan are using a laser measuring device mounted to an officer’s bicycle to catch drivers violating the city’s five-foot passing law. Something we tried, and failed, to get the LAPD to do here when they complained there was no way to enforce California’s three-foot passing law.

Seriously? A Virginia legal group suggests five of the state’s bike laws that could save your life — including wearing a helmet, which isn’t required under state law. But the only tip they have for drivers is to obey the three-foot passing law. Because evidently, if you get killed by a driver it’s your own damn fault.

 

International

Vancouver is Awesome offers a cycling enthusiast’s guide to buying your first bicycle.

Good idea. Canada’s Price Edward Island is donating $25,000 to a foundation to help young people in recovery transition back into society, to help establish a program to refurbish and recycle bicycles.

Great idea. Cycling UK, Britain’s official bicycling agency, is now offering free three-month ebike loans to encourage people to stop driving and start riding.

The rich get richer. London bicyclists now have yet another bicycle superhighway, providing a safe route for riders on the city’s east side. Which compares favorably with LA’s none.

No bias here, either. An Irish jeweler blames a new bike lane that replaced parking spaces in front of his shop for “forcing” him to close, before even waiting to see how it affected his business; Facebook commenters aren’t having it.

We Love Cycling, which appears to be associated with Czech carmaker Škoda, offers advice on how to buy a bicycle online.

More heartbreaking news from Ukraine, where a father was killed by Russian soldiers as he was riding his bike, leaving his family to carry his body back home in a wheelbarrow.

No surprise here. After authorities in a New Zealand city block a dangerous street to through traffic, there hasn’t been a single crash; the city now plans to make the closure permanent.

 

Competitive Cycling

No change in the leader’s jersey, as French cyclist Arnaud Démare overcame  Caleb Ewan in a photo finish to win Thursday’s sixth stage of the Giro, capturing his second consecutive stage.

Evidently, Astana Qazaqstan team leader Alexander Vinokourov still thinks a bike race is best seen from the seat of a bicycle, taking a few minutes to motor pace behind the team van during Thursday’s sixth stage.

Cycling Tips looks at an Italian cycling team’s whopping 38 sponsors.

 

Finally…

Presenting an ebike for people who’d rather be riding a motorcycle. If you’re riding a bike with two active drug warrants and an open charge of driving without a license, maybe don’t ride salmon — or flee from police when you do.

And you’ll have to keep riding a dumb Zwift bike for now.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Russian soldier faces war crimes trial for killing bike rider, drivers behaving badly, and Metro releases draft 405 corridor plan

Ukraine announced plans to try a 21-year old Russian soldier for war crimes, for killing a 62-year old civilian walking his bicycle just feet from his home.

He reportedly was ordered to shoot the man as a group of Russian soldiers were fleeing a Ukrainian counterattack in a commandeered car during the first days of the war, so the victim couldn’t report their location to Ukrainian forces.

According to The Washington Post,

The prosecutor’s office said that Ukrainian investigators collected evidence of the soldier’s involvement, finding him “in violation of the laws and customs of war combined with premeditated murder,” and that the crime can carry a penalty of 10 to 15 years or life in prison. The statement did not provide details on the nature of the evidence or how the Russian soldier ended up in Ukrainian custody.

He is the first Russian soldier to be charged with a war crime while in Ukrainian custody, though ten soldiers were charged in absentia last month for the torture and mutilation of civilians in Bucha.

Ukraine reports evidence of more than 10,000 alleged war crimes committed by Russian forces, with 5,000 open investigations.

He faces 10 to 15 years if he’s convicted.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

Photo by Matti from Pexels

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On a related subject, our anonymous courtroom correspondent writes in with a few observations, including turning heads with her two-wheeled support of the country under attack by Russian forces.

I’ve been flying a little (12″x18″) Ukrainian flag on my rear bike basket for a couple months now but constantly reconsider because whoo boy does it attract the honking.

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Remember Santa Barbara’s intention to designate In-N-Out a nuisance due to the traffic it attracts? Santa Ana just plans it into the street. Those pesky cyclists are never in the way of hungry drivers turning, or just waiting on the roadway to turn!

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In the latest edition of Motorists Behaving Badly:

Last week at the Pasadena DMV, a driver hit a DMV examiner, and then (sigh) backed up into a parked vehicle. This was an already licensed motorist, btw. Somehow.

Meanwhile, in Orange County the same night, a speeding driver smashed into a house on Newport Blvd…and then caught fire. The road road here has the CMUTC’s minimum-width bike lanes, and a (maximum) speed limit of 50mph. County officials remain confused as to how a collision possibly could’ve happened.

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Metro is looking for public comments on their draft comprehensive multimodal corridor plan for LA County’s I-405 Corridor 

Meanwhile, Streets For All is calling for everyone to tell Metro to stop wasting billions on freeway widening projects that only create more induced demand.

The agency’s new draft budget increases freeway spending 33%, on top of last years massive 80% boost.

………

Michael Wagner, author of CLR Effect, corrects yesterday’s item saying there’s no Ride of Silence planned for Los Angeles County this Wednesday.

He notes that The Cycling Connection in Rancho Cucamonga will host a Ride of Silence as part of the international movement to honor fallen bike riders and other victims of traffic violent.

There will also be a daytime Ride of Silence on Saturday at the Rose Bowl.

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As former New York DOT Commissioner Janet Sadik-Khan wrote, first they’ll fight it, then they’ll fight to keep it.

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Grist offers an explainer on the deadly 85th Percentile Law, using LA’s deadly Zelzah Ave as a case in point.

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No argument here.

Although we may never know how that feels.

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The war on bikes may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. Britain’s Express newspaper asked its readers if “cyclists should own the road or should drivers have priority?” And got exactly the responses you’d expect by wording it that way.

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Local

The Los Angeles Times continued their string of endorsements of progressive candidates for city council, recommending civil rights attorney Erin Darling to replace outgoing Mike Bonin in the Westside’s CD11. Darling also earned my endorsement a few weeks ago for his support of safe, livable streets.

LAist offers a detailed voters guide to the upcoming June primary election.

Join a family friendly ride with Walk Bike Glendale and Glendale Mayor Ardy Kassakhian this Saturday.

 

State 

Berkeley approves a new mile-long protected bike lane on Hopkins Street, despite the usual panic over removing parking spaces.

San Francisco moves to ban racially biased pretext traffic stops, preventing police from stopping people for minor traffic infractions such as broken tail lights, jaywalking, or tinted windows.

Streetsblog talks with the new executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

 

National

Cycling Weekly profiles the young women who will ride this year’s 950-mile Remember the Removal Bike Ride, retracing the route taken by their Cherokee ancestors during the infamous Trail of Tears; over a quarter of the 16,000 members of the Cherokee Nation ordered out of their ancestral lands by the US government died of starvation, disease or exposure during the forced march.

L’Étape by Tour de France promises to bring the full Tour experience to Las Vegas next year, with a new 25 mile, 50 mile and 75 mile fondo through Sin City. But will there be someone dressed as the devil to chase you?

Hats off to Salt Lake City, where the city council voted unanimously that 20 is plenty, reducing speeds on 70% of the city’s streets to 20 mph. Meanwhile, the city is forming a task force to fight road rage, and boosting spending on traffic safety to combat a jump in pedestrian deaths.

Aspen, Colorado is moving towards requiring ebike renters to watch a bike safety video before they’re allowed on local trails.

One more example of keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late. A Davenport, Iowa man was sentenced to a whopping 55 years behind bars for the drunken hit-and-run death of a man riding a bicycle, after driving aggressively and running multiple red lights; it was his third DUI offense. Although even I think that sentence might be just a tad extreme.

A Rhode Island op-ed says it’s both the best and worst of times for the state’s bicyclists, as they mark Bike Month while a hostile DOT has stalled any progress.

Authorities in New Jersey’s Hudson County are standing in the way of the area’s first bike lane, preferring parking over the safety of people on bicycles.

 

International

Cyclist explains the mechanics that make an ebike tick. Meanwhile, a writer for the magazine says she crashed her bike for the first time in years, and learned…nothing.

Kingston, Ontario voted to eliminate parking minimums, replacing them with maximum limits on parking spaces for commercial and residential buildings, as well as requiring parking for bicycles, e-scooters and shared vehicles.

A Toronto website offers tips on how to maximize your speed crossing the city on two wheels.

A former Antigua national cycling champ is fighting for his life after a driver claims he was at the wheel when he ran down four bicyclists training for a weekend race, which was cancelled in the wake of the crash; another victim says the collision has left him mentally struggling.

Evidently they know something we don’t. As American road deaths climb to levels rivaling the bad old days, European traffic fatalities continue to drop, declining 17% in 2020 to continue a nearly 20-year trend.

 

Competitive Cycling

Frenchman Arnaud Démare won a mass sprint for the finish line in Wednesday’s 5th stage of the Giro, while 2nd place finisher Fernando Gaviria risked a sponsorship blowup by blaming his “shit” bike for the loss.

 

Finally…

We might have to deal with angry LA drivers, but at least we don’t have to confront rogue bulls on the loose. Now you, too, can own a home just off the Marvin Braude bike trail in Santa Monica for a mere 13 million bucks.

And let’s finish today with a peppy ode to new bike day. Which may be my new favorite song for the summer.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

Plea deal in drunken Oxnard hit-and-run that killed 16-year old boy, and crowdfund for fallen Rapha ride leader tops goal

Once again, a killer driver has been allowed to plead to reduced charges.

And reduced jail time.

Thirty-nine-year old Oxnard resident Julio Cesar Sanchez pled guilty to vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence in the drunken hit-and-run death of 16-year old Andres Hernandez, as the Port Hueneme boy was riding in Oxnard last September.

Sanchez also admitted to special allegations of fleeing the scene and committing a serious felony involving great violence.

He was sentence to nine years, after prosecutors dropped charges of second degree murder and gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated with prior DUI convictions, which could have resulted in a sentence of 15 years to life.

Instead, he’ll likely spend less than half his nine-year sentence behind bars.

Let’s at least hope he’s never allowed to drive again.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

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A fundraiser to help defray funeral expenses for Rapha ride leader John Hermoso has reached over $12,900 in just one week, topping the $10,000 goal.

Hermoso, better known as Panduh in the cycling community, was killed in a head-on collision while riding the Santa Clara Truck Trail near Santa Clarita 12 days ago.

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Here’s your reminder to turn out for the LA City Council Budget and Finance Committee meeting on Friday to demand more funding for active transportation and Vision Zero in the coming fiscal year.

Unfortunately, the city council isn’t taking phone-in comments anymore following the reopening of City Hall, despite rising Covid rates. So you’ll have to show up in person, or email members of the committee in advance of the Friday afternoon meeting.

And if you have any question what difference more funding could make, just take a look at the photo in the tweet below.

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Your periodic reminder that this is what we could have in Los Angeles, where the terrain and weather are more inviting than London.

And London commutes didn’t look like this, either, until the city built out a network of bicycle superhighways just a few years ago.

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The annual Ride of Silence to remember the victims of traffic violence is scheduled for next Wednesday.

Unfortunately, there are no rides currently listed with the national registry in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego or San Bernardino Counties for the day of the event.

However, the Pasadena Ride of Silence will return to the Rose Bowl as a daytime event on Saturday, May 21st.

Let’s hope more people will step up to host rides in Southern California over the next week. Because we really need to send a message this year.

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I’d watch it.

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Somehow, I think it will take just a little more than an illegible sign.

But maybe that’s just me.

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How to tell someone played hooky from physics class.

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The war on bikes may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. A London man is roundly criticized for the crime of riding a Penny Farthing in traffic, while politely waving a driver to turn in front of him — then nearly getting hit when a second driver tries to do it, too.

Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

Bizarre story from Las Vegas, where a man faces murder charges for pepper spraying another man, then stabbing him to death, after accusing the victim of damaging his bike “with the help of a ‘hacker’ from Indiana.”

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Local

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton digs deep into Metro’s proposed budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which calls for a 27.2% increase in active transportation spending. Although the $80 active transportation budget is dwarfed by the agency’s proposed $634 million in highway spending, a 35% increase over this year.

Pasadena is celebrating an abbreviated bike month, condensing it down to just the last 19 days of the month.

 

State 

More information on the cryptically described hit-and-run we mentioned yesterday in San Diego’s Ocean Beach neighborhood, which left the bike-riding victim with major injuries; police are looking for a newer model white 4-door crossover-style SUV with silver alloy wheels, and probable damage to the right front, with a license plate beginning with 8YN. There’s a $1,000 reward for information in the caseThanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

Morgan Hill-based Specialized is developing a new e-cargo bike sub-brand extension called Globe, specifically designed to replace car trips, while priced below the company’s Turbo ebike line.

 

National

Bicycling offers their picks for the best road bike wheels to “improve your speed, enhance you ride quality, and take you farther than ever.” As usual, read it on Yahoo if the magazine blocks you.

Denver area residents reached out to replace the ebike a Vietnam war vet relied on as his only form of transportation, after it was stolen from a Walmart bike rack.

She gets it. The executive director of Chicago’s Active Transportation Alliance calls out the city’s failure to improve a deadly intersection, saying no one should die just because they use a bike to get around.

Pittsburgh is getting a new ebike-based bikeshare system.

New York’s new $4 million traffic safety campaign telling drivers to slow down seems to be having the opposite effect, with a dozen people killed in crashes in the first week.

 

International

Off.Road.cc delivers a primer on frame geometry, while Cycling Weekly discusses frame materials, suggesting metal frames offer benefits over carbon fiber.

A Calgary, Alberta couple dug up a metal 1935 bike license while working in their garden. Note that it wraps around the frame, and would be virtually invisible to anyone at a distance, for all those who insist bicycles should a license to force scofflaw riders to behave.

A Toronto paper demonstrates the right way to write a headline, reporting that a “Cyclist was struck by a driver while walking his bike across the street.” My only quibble is that the victim is a person, not a cyclist. But still.

The US military garrison in Wiesbaden, Germany offers advice on how to ride in the country.

 

Competitive Cycling

Lennard Kämna took Tuesday’s Mt. Etna stage of the Giro in a breakaway; the 23-year old German pro is making a successful comeback after last season was derailed by physical and mental health problems.

Columbia’s Miguel Ángel López withdrew from the Giro after getting dropped in the first miles of Tuesday’s fourth stage; he reportedly suffers a left hip injury that failed to bounce back on Monday’s rest day.

Dutch star Mathieu van der Poel is taking a sabbatical from mountain biking to focus exclusively on road racing this year, before returning to the sport for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Colorado’s annual Durango to Silverton Iron Horse Challenge celebrates its 50th year at the end of this month.

 

Finally…

Apparently, London doesn’t have the only bike-riding cat. Now you, too, can be the proud owner of a Giro d’Italia NFT.

And this one hits right where I live, at the intersection of bikes and corgis.

But evidently, they’re not the only canine bike racing fans.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

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