Before we start, let me take a moment to thank every who’s given to the 5th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive so far.
Since we started ten days ago, not a single day has gone by without at least one donation. And often, more than that.
So let me offer my heartfelt thanks to Mike W, Ilya G, Philippa M, Gregory S and Glen S for their generous donations to since we saw you last.
Because their open hearts, and open wallets, is what helps keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.
Which means the only question is, who’s going to join them today?
And will it be you?
This is who we share the roads with.
Writing for Bicycling, Joe Lindsey criticizes a culture that allows motorists to break the law with seeming impunity. And chuckle when someone gets away with it.
Like drivers in a highly modified Mercedes using every trick known to man to evade the police while speeding across the US at an average of 123 mph.
And a top speed of 193 mph.
Speeds which would be instantly fatal to anyone outside of the car in the event of a crash. And probably in it, too.
All to win an illegal, unauthorized race across the country, speeding 2,800 miles across the US in less than 27 and a half hours. And putting the lives of everyone else on the roadway at risk, in every city, county and state they drove through.
Maybe it’s here where I point out that all of this is patently insane.
It’s insane to shift-drive across the country on open roads at triple-digit speeds. It’s insane to have such arrogant disregard for the law that you heavily modify a vehicle specifically to evade the police, using technologies that are themselves illegal in many states—laser jammers are illegal in California, Colorado, and Illinois, to name three states on the route, and it’s illegal in every state not to have functioning brake and taillights. It’s insane to try to pass this off as both a bold adventure AND a paragon of driving skill and discretion. And it’s insane for the media to accept that narrative so credulously and uncritically…
Cars are the apex predator in a transportation ecosystem where menace and aggression are literally built into the grilles, and where drivers can hit and kill cyclists and pedestrians and walk away without charges, or receive laughably minimal punishment when they are brought to court. Our devotion to cars is a stuck parking brake on the economy, a pox on public health, and is killing the planet.
It’s today’s must read.
And well worth the few minutes it will take to speed through it.
The Los Angeles Daily News says the final CicLAvia of the year opened people’s eyes to “the sights, scenery (and) shops” in Canoga Park, Winnetka and Reseda yesterday.
But don’t worry.
CicLAvia will be back next year with a return to South LA and a first foray into Watts in February.
It’s worth clicking on the tweet below just to read the long list of witty responses.
Hypothetical: an asteroid 20 miles wide is hurtling through space towards the earth. Do we:
1) Do everything we can to stop it
2) Do everything we can to stop it, but only as long as parking is unaffected
— BikeLosFeliz (@bike_los) December 6, 2019
San Diego is moving forward with the long-debated protected bike lanes in North Park, removing 450 parking spaces to make room for them.
At the same time, however, it’s also beginning work on a pipeline under the street, which could mess up your bike commutes for the next month.
Thanks to Robert Leone for the heads-up.
Leone also forwards news that parts of Camp Pendleton were closed due to flooding as of this past weekend.
Please be aware of the following closures due to flooding:
- BEACH CLUB ROAD REMAINS CLOSED
- RAMP TO WIRE MOUNTAIN ROAD FROM VANDEGRIFT BLVD ENTERING FROM MAIN GATE CLOSED
- LAS PULGAS GATE IS NOW CLOSED
- STUART MESA RD, 41 AREA TO LAS PULGAS IS NOW CLOSED.
Roads and gates above will re-open once water subsides.
For additional information regarding these closures, please contact Mr. Sam Jammal.
Sam Jammal, Community Plans Liaison, Camp Pendleton
Nothing like a leisurely bike ride along the Nile.
No, on it.
Just when you thought discussion of the much-loathed Peloton ad had beaten the subject into the ground…
…actor and gin meister Ryan Reynolds takes a swing at it.
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) December 7, 2019
Meanwhile, a Fox News host insists the whole controversy stems from the actress’ expressive eyebrows. No, really, he’s serious.
Apparently failing to understand what actors do for a living, some
very stupid people have been sending death threats to the man who plays the husband in the spots. And a writer for the Guardian says the actor’s attempts to prove he’s not sexist misses the point.
And not surprisingly, Saturday Night Live got in on the action, not once but twice. Although you have to watch the first one all the way through.
Unfortunately, the actor in the ad isn’t an SNL fan, either.
‘Tis the Season.
Inmates in an Iowa county jail refurbished 25 bicycles for local kids.
A western Pennsylvania bike drive resulted in 1,245 bike for Toys for Tots; the founder says he wants to make sure every kid has the chance to ride one like he did.
Twenty-six Long Island NY kids got new bikes and helmets thanks to a local nonprofit.
A Tampa Bay nonprofit built 900 bicycles for local kids in need.
The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes keeps gaining speed.
No, people on bikes don’t think they own the road. But evidently, the woman in this Texas truck thinks she does.
— Gary Derheim (@DerheimMgdSvcs) December 9, 2019
Los Angeles got a pair of state grants totaling $3.5 million to build 2.2 miles of multi-use pathways along the LA River in North Atwater Village, as well as improving habitat along the river.
If you’re carrying a garage door opener, crack pipe and several change purses on what’s probably a $5,000 stolen bike, stay off the sidewalk — and put a damn light on it.
San Diego bicyclists rode Friday to celebrate the completion of new bus and bike lanes along El Cajon Blvd.
Mind your turn signals and stop signs in Oxnard tomorrow, when the police conduct a bike and pedestrian safety sting, calling it an educational operation. The usual protocol applies — ride to the letter of the law until you get outside their jurisdiction.
San Jose pedestrian fatalities are at an all time high, with other traffic deaths not far behind.
A writer for Quartz questions why women don’t ride to work when they love bikes so much.
Life is cheap in Colorado, where a dump truck driver walks with community service for killing a new mother on her first bike ride after giving birth. And apparently gets to keep his license, too.
Conservative Texas aims to eliminate traffic deaths in the entire state by 2050. Unlike progressive California, which hasn’t even discussed Vision Zero.
A Chicago alderman (alderperson?) backed down on plans to dangerously reconfigure bike lanes to make room for more parking.
He gets it. An Illinois writer says you “meet the most interesting people, see what most drivers rarely notice, and discover places you wish you had known years ago” when you ride a bike.
No surprise here, as Pittsburg drivers make like a quarterback avoiding a blitz by using bike lanes to swerve around speed humps without slowing down.
Gothamist wants to know why ebikes are okay for Amazon and UPS deliveries in NYC, but remain illegal for immigrants delivering food. And why the governor hasn’t signed a bill to rectify that.
New York’s Port Authority makes La Guardia Airport virtually off limits to people on bikes, suggesting it’s your fault for making drivers feel bad when they have to hit you.
Stats show most Toronto bicycling and walking deaths occur during the day, suggesting the free reflective armbands offered by police won’t help very much.
Life is cheap in the UK, where a truck driver will serve less than two years behind bars for killing a bike rider when he couldn’t even see her because of the tray table he built onto his dashboard.
A British woman says she’s lucky to be alive after the brakes on her bike failed during a steep descent on a 114-mile charity ride, sending her crashing into a rock.
British Prime Minister and Captain of the H.M.S. Brexit Boris Johnson says the naughtiest thing he’s ever done was ride a bike on the sidewalk. But London’s Mirror begs to differ, insisting Boris has done much worse — like using highly offensive racial slurs, for instance.
A new Austrian inner tube offers lower rolling resistance, combined with the kind of savings weight weenies could only dream of — if you’re wiling to pay the price.
An African photographer focuses his lens on Burundi’s bicycle taxi culture.
The best way to visit the Cypriot city of Nicosia is by bicycle, according to a local paper. Then again, that’s usually the best way to visit any city.
A visually impaired Japanese man can finally live his dream of racing with his wife after friends and family hand-built a lacquered bamboo and beech wood tandem they can ride together.
Cyclist picks the cycling team of the decade; three of their eight picks are women — with Marianne Vos topping the list.
Eurosport considers the most controversial moments in the 2019 bike racing season.
Although maybe you’d prefer watching the top riders and their crazy bike handling skills seen below.
— Velon CC (@VelonCC) December 4, 2019
When your stolen bike — and subsequently stealing it back — becomes the topic of a children’s book. If you spot a tempting bicycle sitting outside the sheriff’s office, just leave it alone, already.
And if you want to avoid ripping the skin off your penis, put some damn grips on your handlebars.
Assuming you have one, of course.