Really busy processing all of the data I have collected over the last few weeks, but for your consumption:
As some of my readers either ride their bikes (Nyet) or at least find the article/stories about cycling interesting, here are some tender morsels.
Five (common sense) but useful rules for riding on the sidewalk if you absolutely have to copied from Commute by Bike:
- GO SLOW – This is the chief of all rules for riding on the sidewalk. All the other rules fall under this one. You should never ride faster than a relaxed jog. The sidewalk is built for pedestrians, so you should not be going faster than them. Pedaling fast down the sidewalk is a perfect way to get hurt, hurt someone else or get pulled over by a cop.
- Yield to pedestrians – If you come up behind people walking, be very polite and wait for a good time to ask them to let you pass. Never come up behind them yelling, ringing a bell or anything else that could startle or scare them. You are trespassing on their terrain so be courteous.
- Check every cross street and driveway – This is the dangerous part! Drivers are used to pulling all the way up to the road before coming to a stop and turning onto the street you’re following. Make sure when coming up to a driveway or cross street that you slow down and check to make sure a car isn’t coming. They aren’t looking for fast moving vehicles to be coming off the sidewalk, so you have to be watching for them!
- Only cross the street at crosswalks – A good way to get hit by a car is to come darting off the sidewalk into the street randomly. Again, remember that drivers aren’t looking for people to jump off the sidewalks into traffic randomly. If you need to cross the street, wait until you get to a cross walk and do it there.
- Be willing to walk your bike – If you regularly ride on the sidewalk, there are going to be lots of times where the best decision is to get off your bike and walk for a bit. This is usually due to congestion. When there is just to many people around that you risk hitting one of them, it’s time to walk. Constantly keep it in your mind that you can get off your bike and walk if things seem “iffy”.
Le Tour de France is in full swing (though you wouldn’t know it from US news) I don’t think I have seen a single mention…not even one (mind you I only have basic cable). Yeah, sure, the TDF has had a bumpy road with all the doping issues, but how is it any different from the MLB, yet people still watch all that. I figured that the greatest bicycle race in the world would at least get a passing mention. Oh well. If you want semi-decent coverage of TDF, and don’t mind a huge mass of SAAB (read: cock car…reference to Top Gear Cool Wall) commercials, check out Verses’ coverage at TDF
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This is a very interesting 30 minute video (<– You may have to click the link if it doesn’t embed properly) discussing perceptions of cycling in various parts of the world compared to America. It also looks a bit at feminism and cycling. It is from 1992, but it still a really nice film.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, an article from CNN about stubborn American perceptions and the decision o keep on driving SUVs due to some nebulus percieved need/self image.