Archive for August, 2008

Drinking Man 2008 (the ecological alternative to Burning Man)
August 29, 2008

– We will ride bikes, walk, and take transit to Drinking Man as to not consume massive quantities of petroleum in our pursuit of nihilistic ‘freedom.’

– We will enjoy The City during a long peaceful weekend when the 9 to 5 artists and corporate club kids are choking on the alkaline dust kicked up by self-indulgent rolling art projects, some years in the making.

– We will salute a psychologically and ecologically sustainable lifestyle and toast the good friends who make every day a creative and wonderful experience in a real city of working people.

– We will commit to donating our spare hours over the next year to volunteering locally to make life in our city more livable for everyone who lives here. We will not just share our creativity and hard work with an elite that can pay $300 to live in a money-free wonderland, just like they do at Club Med.

– We will praise a balanced lifestyles that does not engender so much stress that it needs to be ‘burned’ off in spectacular ways at great expense to the environment.

Carfree USA Blog: Drinking Man 2008 (the ecological alternative to Burning Man).

Amen.

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Mission Cyclists Rude to Mission Motorists?
August 29, 2008

From a craigslist posting found by Mission Mission:

FYI– I am a resident of the Mission. I only drive when necessary. I walk to work and my children use muni to get to school. My autos run on biodiesel and hybrid energy. I respect bicyclists and am one myself.

Mission Cyclists Rude to Mission Motorists? « Mission Mission.

I love how people who complain about bikes and cycling always have to put something like that at the end of their rants. It’s like saying something racist and then letting us know you’ve got black friends. I’m highly suspect of this one and whatever “hybrid energy” is.

Peter Mulvey’s No Gasoline Tour ‘08 – Urban Velo
August 29, 2008

Peter Mulvey’s No Gasoline Tour ‘08 – Urban Velo.

Urban Velo has got a post about a man going on a concert tour using only a bike!

Go green by buying a car!
August 23, 2008

The Mini Cooper is the Felt Curbside of automobiles in that it’s a neutered version of something that was once authentic, it evokes racing for people who will never race, and it’s “cute” in a completely derivative and studied way. As a cyclist, I find Minis particularly annoying, because the trendier neighborhoods of Brooklyn are filled with them, and they’re generally driven by the sorts of people who text their friends to ask them what kind of wine they should pick up for the party as they roll through stopsigns into busy intersections. It’s only fitting then that these rolling graduation presents would be sold as a way to “go green.” The people “going green” these days are the same people who did graffiti or experimented with homosexuality at their liberal arts college–they enjoy flirting with a lifestyle they don’t understand in an environment where it’s looked upon favorably, but as soon as it becomes difficult, unsafe or embarrassing they conveniently abandon it. Fortunately for them, you don’t have to give up your car to “go green.” Instead, you just need to buy a new one with marginally better gas mileage. And fortunately, “going green” also allows you to measure just how pretentious you are by calculating your “carbon footprint.” Or, in the case of the Mini, your “carfun footprint.” Hey, if people want to “go green” by buying a car, or they want to go vegan by ordering a hamburger instead of a cheeseburger, who am I to complain? But I still think a much better ad would have been: “Mini: It’s Fun-tarded.”

Bike Snob NYC: Honk If You’re Hoary: Riding with the Geese

Trash-talking motorcyclist in the bicycle lane
August 21, 2008

What a morning!

First, a large re-appropriated Crown Victoria literally drifts into the bike lane — cutting me off. I’m close enough behind to see the driver has his cell phone in his right hand held below the dashboard so he can slyly text — and apparently drive on the sly. I make may around and notice his window is open. So I yell one of my favorite epithets,

“Hey, why don’t you try driving!”

To which he replies something inaudible but probably nasty.

Second, I continue along my way and I’m almost to work as I come up to a stop light. There’s a motorcycle ahead of me and in the main lane. As traffic slows, he dashes out into the bike lane in order to go around the car and get to the front — a common motorcycle move. The only problem is that I happen to be coming up that very bike lane and the motorcyclist didn’t signal nor take the time to check his blind-spot before changing lanes. Granted, we were all going pretty slow at least point so there was no real danger since I’m good at what I do, but as I pulled up around him, I gave him a look and shook my head.

That’s when he began to just swear at me. Over and over. I tried to tell him it was his wrong to almost hit me in the bike lane. Light turns green and he PACES me up the road to yell at me some more. Calling me stupid, ugly, anything he can think of… I told him I can’t talk to him if he’s going to just yell at me and I pulled off to my work.

Why can’t anyone just admit they’re wrong anymore? I make mistakes a lot when I’m biking. Buzzing pedestrians sometimes, or failing to yield to cars and other cyclists and I usually shout out a “Sorry!” or some such. I don’t immediately find fault with the offended person and begin barraging them with insults.

Whatever happened to this interchange?

“Oops! My bad.”

“It’s all good, bro!”

And life goes on…

Rob Anderson: Anti-bike facist.
August 20, 2008

The Wall Street Journal does a good summary of one of SF’s most hated anti-bike advocates.

“Regardless of the obvious dangers, some people will ride bikes in San Francisco for the same reason Islamic fanatics will engage in suicide bombings — because they are politically motivated to do so,” he wrote in a May 21 post.

Basically his argument is that it’s a waste of resources to encourage bicycle commuting in such “car-centric American cities.” My argument? Change the paradigm! Gas prices going up and shifts in where people live (more urban, less suburban) seem to be making head-way. (articles to come)