Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Bueller Rides High, Portland Sinks, and the Viking of E-Bikes Debuts.

". . . The Holly/Smoot Tariff Act which lowered or raised . . . Anyone? Anyone?"  Bueller is still cool.


Many bike share users in DC ride from the city to Virginia, crossing over the Potomac River.  So bike share is really linking the 'burbs.  Or more people from the suburbs want to go out drinking after work and not ride home drunk.  Somewhere there is an explanation for this, but it's good no matter what the cause.

San Francisco is funded to have 1,000 bikes and 17 new docks in the next year.  New areas include Mission and Castro.  Enjoy, but no butt chaps on the bike without a seat cover.  Not even during pride week.

Yet another writer wading in to the debate about whether helmet-less bike share riders have created an epidemic of head injuries.  This writer's conclusions?  Absolutely not.

Math can solve the bike share movement problem.  So says Gizmodo India.  Math can solve most things except the inexplicable vicissitudes of courtship.  (I offer other tart observations in exchange for re-tweets and Google +1s.)

Kansas City is getting a dozen bike share stations.  They will feature docks that sit on top of the Wicked Witch of the East.  The city has employed a number of Munchkins to move the bikes around during peak commuting times.  Bike share riders will be serenaded by a freakishly large-breasted teenager with braids, who will one day become a pill addict, take to wearing heavy make-up, and go completely maudlin whenever she is interviewed for the rest of her life.

Orlando, Florida is getting bike share.  They already have Disney World, Epcot and unattractive suburban sprawl.  Bike share will help a lot.  I look forward to seeing Mickey and the oft-ignored Pluto quarreling over the last bike in the dock.

Words you never thought you would see in the same sentence:  "founder of Quicken Loans," "bike share," and "Ford Motor Company investing in bike share start-up." Ponder, as you wonder how the movement of the tectonic plates from Iceland to Asia may be influencing corporate America.  Then wonder how a start up and a few CEOs might figure a way to make bike share profitable.

In the battle of the bike share stations, DC wins with 335.  But if you count numbers of bikes at the stations, NYC wins with 76 at the largest dock.  And even if NYC loses, the mayor will call a press conference, then declare victory and municipal superiority.

Those Chinese.  That wacky human rights record.  That whole weird Mao-smelting-pig iron-in every back yard-forced marches thing.  That gorgeous Yellow Mountain topography.  Well, before you can say "choke me with Beijing's vomit-colored fog," consider this.  They have a bike share system that kind of smokes ours.  Yup.  In the middle of that chartreuse Beijing smog.  Makes the DC/NYC contest seem like child's play.

Policy and Advocacy:

Portland, Oregon has lost its place as the number one city for cycling.  Brooowaaaahahahaha.  According to Bicycling Magazine, New York and Minneapolis are ahead now.  Credible claim?  You be the judge.

Suburban businesses are turning to bike share, according to Nasdaq.  Office park owners are sweating. That nervous, smelly kind of sweat, wholly different from the long bike ride good kind of sweat.  That is because they hear a giant sucking sound as businesses relocate to cities where young talented people want to work.  Google and Amex are doing the same thing.  Hey, they don't have walkable locations, but at least it is something.  Perhaps they will ultimately decide walkable and bikable trump manicured lawn and tired fountain off of the interstate.  #bikeshare  #nervousofficeparkowners

Jersey City is adding a car free zone.  Shocking.  And yet pleasing to the brain.

So the aloof elites are not just inflicting themselves on the Burrough of Manhattan.  They are creating cycle-blocking ironworks in London.  Really now.  You mustn't block cyclists and wheelchairs as if they were Sherman tanks spewing sewage.  #outoftouch

Former DC Transit Director, Scott Kubly, says that the war on cars does not reflect reality.  Arguably neither does the show "House of Cards," but I choose to believe it.

In Holland where almost no one wears a helmet, almost no one gets seriously injured.

We are all trying not to be fat.  Even the fat are trying to not be fat.  So riding a bike and taking mass transit apparently helps us all not to be fat.


Do you commute in Northern Finland or Alaska?  Do you leave the house when most people are just entering REM sleep, or get home after most social inebriates?  Then perhaps you need more than a bike light.  Perhaps you need a bike that glows in the dark. #e-bike

Do you own a bike shop or sell bike-related stuff?  Then perhaps you could use a crash course on how to grow your business.  The European Cycling Federation has such resources for you.  #bike shop  #bike shop owners go to heaven


Sanibel, Florida.  Playground of the elderly.  White beaches.  Trailers.  Strip malls.  Dinner at 4:30 p.m.     Pants worn high on the rib cage.  But would you think an electric-bike shop that features a Felt e-bike with a Bosch motor?

M.A.S.S. e-bikes are like the lice-covered Viking of e-bikes.  Sturdy, strong, and ready for a ride on the Kon Tiki, a slide across a frozen lake, or the celebratory pillaging of a village.  Suitable for mud, asphalt, sand, and snow.  Hence the name.  You can even drape the frame with a gamey smelling pelt.  (Seriously.  You cannot make this stuff up.)  #electricbikes  #bikesforvikings

In Europe e-bikes now account for over 50% of the market.  Wow.

Pizza is good, always.  But pizza delivered by electric cargo bike has got to be even better, always.

Lots of 4000 Euro cargo bikes have been sold in Dublin since May.  Is Dublin becoming the new London?

Would you buy a electric bicycle from a guy wearing a kilt?  Would that be a selling point?  I know we enjoy the kilt wearers hurling and hoisting heavy things at the Scottish games, preparing single malt scotch, or curing smoked salmon.  But does a heavy wool tartan in the middle of a trade fair really help peddle, well, pedals?  Apparently.


A few "don'ts" for cyclists.  Do not hit guide dogs.  Just don't.  Do not buzz walkers on the National Mall or sidewalks around the Capitol.  Do not call a nearly blind, octogenarian driver a toad or Mister Magoo when he cannot see you to make a turn.  (Complain, of course, but do not name call.)  And do not, do not, pass another cyclist at the speed of a supersonic jet without saying "on your left however fleetingly."  Shoaling is for the "under-socialized."  Never turn on another cyclist and create a conflict.  If you do it will be like Ancient Rome and the marauders.  The motorists will win and we will lose because of infighting.  #donottakemetotallyseriously  #never  #shoaling  #shoalingisrude


Fancy a man in a well-tailored suit on a bicycle?  Here is a suit designed for the bike commuter.

Random Notes:

You have to love a guy who took up mountain biking at 63 and ended up racing.  If this story does not make you smile then you need to see a doctor and be evaluated for bitterness.  Or ride a bike to treat said condition.

If you are from Minneapolis, chances are pretty good that you are nice.  But are you nice enough to help the city count cyclists?  If you are really, truly that nice, then volunteer.

Looking for a job?  Stages Cycling in Portland, Oregon is looking for a tech support/customer service rep.

Cyprus, the country, is planning an annual cycling day.  If you needed an excuse to go to the Mediterranean, you now have one.

The data support forcing drivers of cars and pedestrians wear helmets.  #no hate mail please  #mandatory helmet law

And in Australia, there is a place where most cyclists ignore a mandatory helmet law.–-non-formist’-australian-town-where-4-5-cyclists-ignore-compulsory

So if I see you in the bike lane, let's be smug.

Elisa P.

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