Tag Archive for Beach Streets

Morning Links: DIY red cup protected bike lanes today, LA traffic deaths up despite Vision Zero, and a busy bike weekend

It’s National Red Cup Project Day. 

So go out and stake out your own protected bike lane by using your favorite brand of plastic red cups to mark your favorite bike lane for just a few bucks.

And knowing LA drivers, for just a few minutes before they run them over anyway.

But still.

Then send me the photos or video, and I’ll post them on here.

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Good piece from the LA Times’ Laura Nelson, who writes that, despite Vision Zero, traffic fatalities are up significantly in Los Angeles; advocates blame inaction by the city and a lack of commitment to improve safety if it means inconveniencing drivers.

I’d say that about sums it up.

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It’s a busy bike weekend in the LA area.

Culver City is looking for volunteers to clean up Ballona Creek on Saturday, presumably including the bike path.

Councilmember Bob Blumenfield hosts his annual Blumenfield Bike Ride in Reseda Saturday morning.

Long Beach’s popular Beach Streets open streets event takes place on Saturday, as well.

And the ever-popular CicLAvia rolls through the streets of Wilmington on Sunday, with their first event of 2015.

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KCBS-2 looks forward to Monday’s arrival of LA’s first two-way bike lane on Spring Street in DTLA.

Although unlike the photo they use to illustrate the story, it probably won’t be cobbled.

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Kindhearted Santa Clarita sheriff’s deputies surprised a young boy with a new bike after his was stolen; credit the local Bicycle John’s outpost for donating the bike.

Thanks to Nina Moskol, Chairperson of the Santa Clarita Valley Bicycle Coalition for the heads-up.

Speaking of Santa Clarita, the city’s mayor looks forward to next month’s visit by the Amgen Tour of California, while encouraging residents to explore the city by bicycle.

And a columnist for The Signal decries a “relative bloodbath of pedestrian and bicycle accidents” in the area, saying more must be done to improve safety, especially on busy six-lane McBean Parkway.

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Today’s common theme: mountain bikes.

Recently retired football great Rob Gronkowski is one of us; Bicycling offers a little unsolicited advice as he takes up mountain biking.

Congratulations to gun maker Smith & Wesson, whose attempt to enter the mountain bike market ranks 41st on USA Today’s list of the 50 worst product flops of all time.

Finishing our mountain bike trifecta, Outside offers seven tips for beginning mountain bikes, whether or not they answer to Gronkowski.

But wait, there’s more!

The Orange County Register’s David Whiting takes a docent-led mountain bike tour through the volunteer-managed Irvine Ranch Conservancy, which he says most people have never heard of, even though at 40,000 acres it’s nearly as big as Bryce Canyon National Park and even more spectacular.

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Local

Spectrum News 1 is the latest LA news outlet to look at the city’s new program to install permanent memorials to fallen bicyclists.

A former LA city planner states the obvious, suggesting that LA traffic congestion is only going to get worse and that solutions like walking and biking remain woefully underfunded, without the safe infrastructure necessary to make them work. However, he also blames increased density and transit oriented development, as well as reduced parking requirements, calling them frauds, without citing evidence to back it up.

An op-ed in the LA Daily News says California drivers won’t willingly give up their cars.

This is who we share the beach with. A woman tells what it was like to get run over by an LAPD SUV while sunbathing on Venice Beach.

Santa Monica’s Breeze bikeshare program could be on the chopping block due to competition from dockless bikes and e-scooters, as the city faces budget cuts and layoffs under a program to speed payment of its $448 million unfunded pension liability. 

He gets it. An op-ed from the vice chair of the Long Beach Transit board of directors says everyone deserves safe streets.

This is who we share the roads with. A Long Beach bus driver faces charges for sideswiping more than a dozen cars while driving at three times the legal alcohol limit.

Signal Hill police will be cracking down on violations that endanger bike riders and pedestrians net month.

 

State

California’s Complete Streets bill moves forward after passing through the Senate Transportation Committee; SB127 would require Caltrans to consider the safety of all road users on any state-owned road.

That’s more like it. An El Cajon woman driving with a suspended license got three years behind bars for the hit-and-run crash that seriously injured a nine-year old boy who was riding his bike to school.

A San Diego TV station says bike riders and skaters at a new pump track think the park isn’t big enough for both of them.

A 75-year old Indian Wells man was hospitalized with significant injuries after he somehow crashed into the back of a parked city van Thursday morning.

Riverside sheriff’s deputies are still on the lookout for the red light-running hit-and-run driver who killed a 21-year old Eastvale man as he was biking home from work five years ago; deputies originally arrested a man who admitted to driving while “drunk out of his mind” and thought he had hit something that night, but phone records placed him miles from the crash site.

The speeding driver in the Sunnyvale crash who intentionally rammed eight pedestrians and bike riders as they waited at a red light was reportedly suffering from PTSD from his time in the Army; witnesses said they heard him repeatedly moan “Thank you, Jesus” following the crash.

 

National

A tax bill pending in Congress could mean an extra $53 a month in your pocket for commuting by bike.

Fast Company says people only realized just how much they’d miss ebikes after they were taken away.

Breaking a sweat today can provide health benefits up to a decade later.

An Oregon weekly offers its annual bicycling edition, with stories ranging from BMX and gravel grinding to low stress bicycle networks.

Phoenix says what’s a few traffic deaths between friends, bucking the national trend by voting not to adopt a Vision Zero plan.

A new study from an Arizona professor recommends leading bicycle intervals or split LBIs to reduce the risk of collisions with right-turning drivers.

Colorado comedian Wally Wallace discusses the second edition of his bicycle and comedy festival in tiny Trinidad CO, choosing the city of slightly more than 8,000 people because it’s halfway between Los Angeles and Chicago by train.

A Boise, Idaho bike cop is about to log 100,000 miles on his bike.

A Minneapolis transportation columnist says if you want a happy commute, travel by bicycle.

The NYPD is cracking down on red light-running bike riders, after a woman suffered a fractured skull that left her in a coma when she was struck by a food delivery rider who blew through the light. Seriously, unless you live in Idaho or Arkansas, stop for the damn red light, already — especially when pedestrians are present.

A DC website says it’s very charitable to conclude that the cop who hit a bike rider as he rode in a crosswalk actually had the right-of-way, as the local police insist.

Life is cheap in North Carolina, where a speeding driver who killed an 18-year old basketball star while he was riding his bike walked with just 75 days behind bars — and even that was suspended.

A travel writer visiting New Orleans says bikeshare is a surprisingly good way to tour the city.

 

International

Research papers usually tell just half the story about exercise science, since they too often leave women out of the equation, according to a Cycling Weekly writer.

Heartbreaking video from England, where a balance bike-riding three-year old became collateral damage in a road rage dispute between two drivers; remarkably, the truck driver who killed him was cleared of wrongdoing. Evidently, road rage is perfectly legal in the UK, even if it kills an innocent person.

You’ve got to be kidding. Life is cheap in Britain, where a “remorseless” hit-and-run driver walks without a single day behind bars for leaving a triathlete with serious injuries after deliberately cutting in front of her bike — and saying she deserved it, calling it karma, for the crime of delaying his car for a few moments. Let’s wish him well, because karma’s got a nasty way of coming back to bite you in the ass.

Seriously? Japan Today points out the dangers of reckless bicycling, while noting that police blame bike riders for “nearly 100%” of crashes with pedestrians. While we have an obligation to ride safely around people on foot, anyone who’s ever had someone step off a curb or turn around in front of them knows that’s pretty damned unlikely.

The Japanese man whose wife and three-year old daughter were killed when their bike was struck by an 87-year old driver calls attention to elderly people who can no longer drive safely. We’ve got to find a better way to identify unsafe drivers and take the keys out of their hands. Because despite what Elon Musk says, self-driving cars are a long way off.

 

Finally…

When you’re sexually harassed by your e-scooter.  Here’s your chance to tour Winterfell by bike.*

And yes, I would.

In a heartbeat.

*dragons not included

Morning Links: Smith vindicated for BWB, Beverly Hills Complete Streets meeting, and more e-scooter news

Good news.

The Alameda County DA’s office has dropped the charges against Najari Smith, founder of the Richmond, CA bike co-op Rich City Rides.

Smith was arrested by Oakland police on August 3rd while leading a weekly social bike ride, ostensibly for illegally playing amplified music.

However, witnesses at the scene were convinced he was busted for Biking While Black.

A statement released by the Oakland Police Department in response to the public outcry over the arrest said Smith was “impeding traffic” and “refused to provide identification or any information that would assist the officers in identifying him.”

Even though Smith says he cooperated with the officers and provided them with two forms of ID.

Fortunately, he won’t face any serious consequences for the misguided arrest. Although no one can give him back the two days he spent locked behind bars before making bail.

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Beverly Hills will hold a workshop to discuss Complete Streets in the former Biking Black Hole tomorrow night.

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Long Beach’s first evening Beach Streets event takes place this Saturday. Let’s hope CicLAvia follows their lead and schedules a few evening or nighttime events.

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Today’s common theme is yet another return to the e-scooter debate.

After a Cleveland woman was killed by a DUI driver while she was riding a scooter, the focus was on the dangers of scooters, rather than the dangers of drivers who admit snorting heroin before getting behind the wheel.

Streetsblog gets it, saying scooters aren’t a public safety hazard, but streets designed only for cars are.

He gets it, too. A Portland writer says if it makes sense to charge for scooters to use city streets, then it also makes sense to charge proportionately for cars to use them.

No bias here. The Philadelphia Inquirer says the e-scooter sky is falling, and it’s time for panic before they besmirch the city’s streets.

BuzzFeed says people with broken bones and missing teeth are turning up in ERs around the nation as a result of scooter crashes, although no hard data is available.

Bloomberg may have the smartest take, saying scooters pose a serious challenge to the reign of cars by providing convenient first and last mile solutions, as well as transportation for quick errands.

And Santa Monica is dealing with the problem of haphazardly parked scooters by providing designated scooter parking on the sidewalk. Although a better solution would be to replace a car parking spot with parking for the more efficient scooters.

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Local

Streetsblog offers a review of Sunday’s sparsely attended open streets event in Huntington Park and Vernon, which could have benefited from better promotion.

CiclaValley previews Bike Walk Burbank’s 4th Annual Midnight Ramble this Saturday.

Still no word on who is behind the rash of shootings at Malibu Creek State Park, or whether bike riders, hikers and campers are safe there after a camper was murdered earlier this year.

 

State

The California Sun lists seven must-see California destinations operated by the Bureau of Land Management.

The 11th Annual Bike the Bay rolls this Sunday across the iconic San Diego Coronado Bridge and around the San Diego Bay.

Stockton residents have installed a ghost bike for a rider who was killed in an unsolved 2016 hit-and-run.

This is who we share the roads with. A San Jose woman called the police after she got home at 2 am, and discovered a dead pedestrian lodged under her truck; she was not arrested, despite driving with a suspended license and an outstanding warrant for theft.

 

National

The Seattle Times applauds nearby Bellevue for a pilot bike lane project that uses a variety of separators, from bollards to planters, to determine what works best and how it’s accepted by the public and business owners.

An Albuquerque man offers an impassioned Op-Ed calling for drivers who hit bike riders to face justice and for the city to do more to protect bicyclists, after his friend who refused to own a car was killed by a hit-and-run driver while riding his bike.

Texas Senator John Cornyn welcomes riders to this week’s Hotter’n Hell 100 in Wichita Falls, after helping out as a volunteer last year.

An Iowa bicyclist offers advice on how to avoid killing someone on a shared use path. Because someone recently did.

A Catholic monk stops in Oklahoma on an unsupported cross-country ride to promote religious unity; his indirect route has taken him over 4,000 miles to get just halfway across the US.

Video has been released of the crash involving the hit-and-run Kentucky mayor that sent a 16-year old girl to the hospital. It’s hard to see, but it appears to show the mayor’s SUV hit the girl’s bike without knocking her down, supporting his contention that she rode off without stopping.

A Detroit website examines the Motor City’s use of road diets to successfully remake its streets.

Pacific Standard magazine looks at ghost bikes, including a moving ghost bike prayer written by Pittsburgh minister.

New ped-assist bikeshare ebikes are the alternative transportation alternative for New Yorkers stranded by the shutdown of a major subway line. Not surprisingly, the mayor didn’t show up for his own widely promoted ride to promote them.

Oops. A New York cop admits on video that his supervisor ordered officers not to ticket people who park in bike lanes.

Pennsylvania police crack down on groups of teens who block traffic with their bikes and shout obscenities at drivers.

Now you, too, can own your very own dockless bikeshare bike, because Ofo may be no more in DC, but a local bike co-op is selling off some of their bikes for the low, low price of $100.

 

International

A writer for the New Republic says the modern automobile must die in order to fight climate change.

The Mother Nature Network provides photos of 18 spectacular pedestrian and bike bridges around the world.

A European website looks at Complete Streets design in Vancouver, where they’re busy doing it right.

A Toronto writer recommends having your bike tattooed with a registration number from Britain’s Bike Registry to prevent theft and help recover it if it is stolen. I recommend the free Bike Index registration, but whatever you do, register your bike somewhere. Now.

WTF? A Toronto newspaper asks if bikeshare users give “real” cyclists a bad name. Unless your bicycle is imaginary, you’re a real cyclist until the moment you step off it.

A Hamilton, Ontario website calls a newly resurfaced road design “deranged” after the city blocks off space where a curbside bike lane could go, then paints sharrows in the traffic lane.

An Irish mayor has turned his own reserved parking space into a bike corral.

A bill in the Israeli Knesset would require all ebike riders to wear a helmet any time they’re on their bikes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling tells you how to watch the Vuelta, if you’re willing to fork out the bucks; the race starts this Saturday, but won’t be carried on American TV. Let’s all send a big FU to NBC, which has decided to charge to stream the races they used to carry on cable.

No wonder women’s cycling is so exciting. A new study shows female cyclists race at a greater intensity than their male counterparts, who sustain more load and volume over longer courses.

Pro cyclist Lauren Hall retired after winning the final stage of the Colorado Classic, ending a career that included three national track cycling championships, and two second place finishes in the US road cycling championships.

The pros are going with snub nosed saddles.

 

Finally…

When your on-camera bike ride is only for the cameras. This is who we share the roads with, too; thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

And always try to look up from your phone before hitting a parked car.

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Eid Mubarak to all observing Eid al-Adha today.

 

Morning Links: Ride the Long Beach Grand Prix route sans cars, and Bike Snob looks at presumed liability

Long Beach is once again allowing bikes, skaters and pedestrians to experience the Long Beach Grand Prix route in a carfree mini-ciclovía, but only for an hour and a half.

Although it might be more exciting with the cars zooming by at breakneck speeds with just inches to spare.

Just like on most LA-area streets.

Click here for a larger version of the Long Beach Grand Prix View poster.

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Good piece from Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss, as he tackles the topic of presumed liability and the disparity between bikes and motor vehicles.

To be fair, we do acknowledge this disparity in responsibility by requiring motorists to obtain licenses and to register and insure (at least in most states) their vehicles. We don’t acknowledge it, however, once a motorist collides with a cyclist. Indeed, in practice, cyclists often bear more responsibility than drivers in these instances, due in part to the common misconceptions that bikes don’t belong on the roads in the first place and that people out riding are just thrill-seeking fitness freaks who get what’s coming to them. On top of that, cyclists must then deal with all the ensuing legal and medical issues that come with being hit, and generally speaking, people aren’t exactly at their sharpest after they’ve been clobbered by an SUV. Forget standing up for your rights; you’re lucky if you can stand up at all.

It’s worth taking a few minutes out of your day to read the rest.

And hats off to Weiss, who’s finding his voice as an advocate for safer streets.

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Local

Curbed talks with outgoing LA Times architecture critic Christopher Hawthorne, who is taking the newly created post of chief design officer for the City of Los Angeles, with oversight responsibilities including reviewing the design of streets, sidewalks and bikeways.

Santa Clarita had no pedestrian deaths last year, even though LA County led the nation.

 

State

A new bill would authorize congestion pricing demonstration projects in two cities in Northern California, and two in the southern part of the state, offering the potential to get more people out of cars and onto bikes, foot and transit.

A 71-year old bike rider suffered life-threatening injuries when he was struck by the driver of an SUV in San Marcos on Monday; witnesses reported he veered out of a bike lane and into the path of the SUV. As always, the question is whether any of those witnesses were outside the car that hit him.

Projected costs have more than doubled for San Diego’s planned downtown protected bike lane network, in part because the mayor has decided to use planters as dividers instead of plastic bollards; completion has been delayed until at least 2021.

The San Diego Bicycle Coalition is looking for a full-time advocacy coordinator.

A San Diego writer offers a self-described chill guide to the city’s dockless bikeshare and scooters. Thanks to Evan Burbridge for the link.

A Redding letter writer says the requirement to ride with traffic is a stupid, stupid law and needs to be changed. Never mind that riding salmon is one of the best ways to get into a serious crash; drivers don’t expect to see you riding upstream.

 

National

The Kentucky senate unanimously passed a three-foot passing law, including provisions allowing bicyclists to ride two abreast, and allowing drivers to briefly cross a double yellow line to pass people on bicycles; now the bill goes back to the state house for reconciliation.

Actor and Jennifer Anniston-ex Justin Theroux is one of us, captured by the paparazzi riding incognito in New York.

Five hundred New Yorkers marched to demand safer streets in response to the deaths of two children killed by a red light-running driver last week.

The Wall Street Journal sings the praises of dockless bikeshare, saying “Uber for bikes” is a commuter’s dream. Thanks to Jeff Vaughn for the heads-up.

A Philadelphia jury awarded a bicyclist $3.19 million dollars for injuries he suffered when he hit a pothole during a charity ride, despite signing a waiver before the ride.

 

International

Great idea. Vancouver is working with three bike co-ops to recycle abandoned bicycles and give them to people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford one, to help keep them out of the landfill.

A forthcoming British book illustrates bicycling not too distant past.

An English county will test radar and thermal technology to detect bike riders on the road, and flash a warning to drivers of a rider up ahead.

A BBC radio personality rode 350 miles in five days to raise the equivalent of nearly $700,000 to fight mental illness, after her partner committed suicide las year.

An Op-Ed says New Zealand’s bicycling rates could double if riders had a choice on whether or not to wear a helmet.

An American bike helmet “expert” weighs in on New Zealand’s helmet law, saying a helmet will protect you if you’re hit by a car traveling under the speed limit. Which is probably true, if the speed limit is 15 mph, since bike helmets are only designed to protect against impacts up to 12.5 mph. 

 

Competitive Cycling

World Champion Peter Sagan says it’s not whether you win or lose, it’s all about putting on a good show. Something tells me his sponsors would beg to differ.

 

Finally…

No, really. Bike advocates always bring out the best in online commenters. Oddly, TV viewers don’t like suggesting that bike riders should be tossed out with the trash.

And your next bike could be a Lamborghini.

Assuming you have more dollars than sense to spend on it.

 

Morning Links: Photos from Saturday’s Beach Streets in Long Beach, LA bike thefts, and BMUFL wars in PVE

Mike Wilkinson and his wife Angela took in Saturday’s Beach Streets event in Long Beach.

This past Saturday Metro and the City of Long Beach presented Beach Streets Midtown, a 2.5 mile open streets event along Anaheim Street from PCH to Orange Avenue. My wife and I put the doggies in their trailer, saddled up on our tandem bike and hit the road at the eastern end of the route. The four of us were quite a sight, but we were just one among many unique conveyances along the way.

Whether they were on foot, bike, skateboard or something almost indescribable, the participants were relaxed and friendly. We said “hi” to a wider variety of people in two hours than we have in the past year. Everyone seemed to be having fun, and riding right down the middle of what is usually a big, busy street was liberating and almost joyful.

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All photos by Angela Wilkinson

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You can download these photos, and a few others, from his Google Drive account.

The Cal State Long Beach paper took in the day, as well.

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LA bike thieves strike again, this time snatching a beautiful Geekhouse Woodville touring bike from one of the authors of the Radavist. Thanks to Bryan Hance of Bike Index for the heads-up.

stolenbike

Meanwhile, David Drexler noticed the aftermath of another semi-successful bike theft at the Bundy station on the Expo Line, which was stripped after the thieves were able to cut through one U-lock, but not the other.

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And no, to answer the question we’re all asking, he didn’t get the make of the yellow lock.

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Local

The Daily Breeze looks at the nasty battle over the proposed installation of Bikes May Use Full Lane signs in Palos Verdes Estates, which has refused to post the signs despite the recommendation of their own Traffic Safety Committee, at least for now. Although you’d think three cyclists killed on the peninsula in the last year, and another critically injured, would create some sense of urgency. But apparently, you’d be wrong.

 

State

An OC man was stabbed and his bicycle stolen after two men challenged him over gang affiliations in the parking lot of the Santa Ana zoo.

Laguna Beach is improving access to the Top of the World singletrack trail from the Top of the World Drive in the Top of the World neighborhood to make it accessible to a wider range of non-Top of the World people.

Sunnyvale police are looking for witnesses to a wreck that sent a bike rider to the hospital with multiple skull fractures.

 

National

Road.cc says Donald Trump’s promise to rebuild America’s infrastructure could be an opportunity to convince him to support building more bikeways.

Nearly one thousand Las Vegas cyclists took part in Sunday’s ride to benefit Ride 2 Recovery.

Gary Johnson, New Mexico resident and distant third place finisher in last week’s election, will now dedicate himself to health and fitness, riding the 2,768 Great Divide Mountain from Banff to Antelope Wells NM next June.

The Guardian looks at a proposal for a floating bike path along the Chicago River.

Can we vote for him here? The vice mayor of Cambridge MA says the city’s bicycle safety efforts are the difference between life and death, even if that means drivers will be inconvenienced and parking will be lost.

The operator of a New Orleans bike tour company wants to know why a woman wasn’t given a sobriety test after doing a slow roll over several bikes being ridden by his patrons. Which is a damn good question.

 

International

Canadian traffic safety advocates are focusing on distracted driving and lowering speed limits as public health issues.

A British bike rider died after he was kicked off his bike by a group of youths, not long after he was released from prison after 24 years behind bars.

A jazz musician in the UK performed seven shows in a single day, towing his keyboard behind his bike between gigs as he rode to each one.

A Belfast councilor was kicked off his bike by a group of young men after he tried to stop one from taking a dump on a memorial to a Northern Irish politician while the others filmed it.

Call it a reverse dooring. A Dublin councilor was knocked out by a hit-and-run salmon cyclist who ran into his car door as he was getting out.

Pakistani cyclists ride to raise awareness of breast cancer, while Islamabad restores a network of cycle tracks that had fallen into disrepair.

Cyclists from around India turn out for a nationwide event to promote bicycling.

A new Australian study shows biking or walking can improve artery health in people with Type-2 diabetes.

A Malaysian cyclist returns home after spending the last 16 months riding through 22 countries, losing 22 pounds in the process.

A Jakarta paper asks if wooden bikes can prevent global warming.

 

Finally…

Nothing like auctioning a cow to raise funds for bicycling. Crash your mountain bike, and wake up to a new career as a competitive beard growing champion.

And if you’re going to ride drunk, try not to run into any police cars.

 

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