Sunday, June 28, 2015

No More Helmets?

What happens when public health professionals decide that they are done with helmets?  It is not a sign that we are Armageddon adjacent.  It may simply reflect the fact that the benefits of helmets are not clearly proven by the data (and car drivers pass cyclists wearing helmets more closely than they do cyclists without, and helmets tend to deter people from cycling).  Thus, one blogger, a public health professional, believes that the cost of helmets, in terms of public health, is too high.  Whoa!  What's next?  Letting kids play unattended with each other for brief periods of time on playgrounds?  Madness! #helmetdebate #bicyclehelmet #urbancycling
And check out

London is going to give bicycle traffic lights a try.  I suggest they educate drivers and cyclists alike before setting up the lights.  The only time I have come close to being killed was when I drove forward and right on the green bicycle light next to the White House.  The taxi driver to my right decided to turn left in front of me as I was negotiating a soft right into the 15th Street cycle tracks.  I still want to thank the cyclist behind me who went berserk yelling at the cabbie for almost hitting me.  A little Charlemagne-era chivalry, in the spirit of cyclists are part of the same culture of course. has some advice for cyclists in just this situation.  #Londoncyclists take note!  #bicycletrafficlight

Since the great highway system was built, Americans have put on 25 pounds on average.  Our collective love affair with the automobile fizzled out without a bang.  Instead it dissolved with a whimper after a decade of wars fought in remote, hostile countries rich in fossil fuels, and amidst a growing body of satellite imagery that showed shrinking polar ice caps.  Many people want to ride their bikes but they feel unsafe.  Instead of a Great Works project, like planting Kudzu along highways without considering how it would gobble up indigenous flora, Washington Post blogger, Matt MacFarland, explains how a big cycle tracks project could change our approach to cycling.  Not my approach, mind you.  Which is to just ride slow, live in the city, and worry less.  My motto - wear your dress and don't fret - cannot be shared by people living in the suburbs.  Most people's apprehension is based on the concern that they will be hit by some texting, yawning motorist while riding along that stretch of road with no shoulder.  If we built a Great Works project of cycle tracks, theirs would be a different narrative.  #cyclingnews  #MattMcFarland  #cycletracks

As it turns out, businesses are still moving to central city locations to attract young, talented workers, who prefer mass transit and cycling.  Perhaps now is the time for the next Great Works Project.


This Pope may be bringing many wayward Catholics back into the fold.  Recently he has raised the issue of humanity's poor stewardship of God's planet, and the resulting climate change (or as it once was called, global warming).  The guy takes mass transit, or did until his protective detail had to . . . well . . . protect him.  I hear he rides a bike too.

Recently there have been a number of stories in the media about micro homes and campers.  In an era where people want the simpler life, this holds a lot of appeal.  One of these campers, by Wide Path Camper, hooks up to your bike.  In an era where people also want stronger slimmer thighs, this holds a lot of appeal.  In an era where people are afraid to buy that vacation home in West Virginia that might have been built on the site of a toxic waste dump, this little trailer can help you move on down the road to the site of a former vegetable patch.  The Wide Path Camper would be fun for a single night out on the range, but for more than that I cannot help but think of Fellini's La Strada.   #widepathcamper  

So, if I see you in the bike lane, or building a bike lane as part of a Great Work, whether you are towing a micro camper or curling your eyelashes, let's be smug.
Elisa P.

P.S.  Did Sir Bradley Wiggins miss five drug tests?  Culture problem?  Yup.  Your Majesty, I suggest you better vet your candidates.  

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