Dying saved my life and other seemingly contradictory statements on a Wreck-Free Sunday

OK I dunno if I ever thought about this before so I don’t remember blogging about it if I did, but I was contemplating earlier this week about the wreck (that thing that’s never far from my mind no matter what I’m doing because it literally defines my life into 2 sections, before the wreck and after) and I was thinking about why I didn’t bleed out from the gaping hole in my left leg where it was blown apart while all those people were just standing around staring at my body in the street. And then it struck me that while I was “dead” I had no pulse, no pulse means no heartbeat, and no heartbeat means I wasn’t pumping my blood out in the street instead of keeping it in my body. So QED, dying saved my life. If I hadn’t been dead for those 2 minutes there might not have been enough blood in my body to save me when I got to the hospital. I was in bad enough condition when I got there as it was, can you imagine what it would have been like minus a few pints more? I barely pulled through as it was.

I was also thinking about the Sprint T that I’m never going to get to build now, so I said to myself “If money was no object, how would you build this car?” meaning picking the “best” components for the build regardless of the cost. And I was really getting into what would be the “best” thing for a specific use, and if compromising in one direction or another would invalidate another use of the vehicle. So I went back to the premise of the build: “A car that’s fun to drive, that can be driven across the country on highways, then raced in SCCA Solo events or Goodguys autocrosses with minimal preparation and quick return to street configuration.” Then I listed what characteristics went with each parameter of “fun to drive”, “can be driven across the country”, and “raced in SCCA Solo events and Goodguys autocrosses with minimal preparation and quick return to street configuration” then see what characteristics were shared and what characteristics were contradictory.

So, “fun to drive” category is first and shortest.
power-to-weight
good brakes
good turn-in response
good grip overall with a controllable break when exceeding limits of grip
Comfortable seating and driver ergonomics
pleasant exhaust note (muted rumble at idle with definite rumble at full throttle)

“Can be driven across the country” is different.
fuel economy
reliability
weather protection
large fuel tank (range)
easy access to refuel
luggage space
tunes
comfortable seating and driver ergonomics
not-loud exhaust (not a cop magnet)
not harsh ride

“Raced in SCCA Solo and Goodguys autocrosses with minimal preparation and quick return to street configuration”
power to weight
good brakes, both at first and after several uses (no fade)
good initial turn-in and stable in the middle of the turn
good grip in all directions
comfortable driver’s seat and ergonomics
something to carry race tires and other parts
quick-change mounts for shocks and springs
roll cage that meets SCCA standards

Common requirements
comfortable driver’s seat and ergonomics
power-to-weight
good brakes, both at first and after several uses (no fade)
good initial turn-in and stable in the middle of the turn
good grip in all directions

And basic parts needed to make the car are the body that defines the car. The rear brakes needed for street legality. If I use the Wide 5 version of this rear axle with the aluminum axle tubes and the drilled drive axles I will combine light weight, both unsprung and total, with the ability to switch from a tall drive ratio for getting to the race to a short (high numerical) ratio for racing. It allows the use of these rear hubs for lower unsprung and rotating weight. A quick steering box will be needed no matter what else I use.

If I decide to go with an independent front suspension I’ll need to use this spindle so that I can mount the lighter Wide 5 hubs or this spindle for a tube front axle. The tube axle is lighter than the independant front suspension but has higher unsprung weight for the weight concerns, but has perfect camber control for the turning concerns. And both spindles are compatible with these front hubs for lower unsprung and rotating weight.

I’m sure that those who read my blog for the bicycle news have little or no knowledge of suspension dynamics are wondering why I am stressing so much about unsprung weight. That’s because unsprung weight has impacts on both grip and ride comfort. As the wheel goes up and down over imperfections in the road/track lower unsprung weight allows the wheel to move more quickly without transferring the motion to the rest of the car. Going up and down more quickly means the tire stays in better contact with the surface making for grip (no contact = no grip) and not transferring the motion to the rest of the car means better ride. Now rotating weight obviously affects any change in speed as rotating weight has to be changed first before the car can go faster or slower.

The engine is a big question, as this will need high horsepower reliable engine with a good low end torque band, which means cubic inches or supercharging or a hot cam and lots of work with the shifters.
I could “put a Hemi in it” or go with a modern legend or the successor to that legend or a hot cam in a slightly smaller, lighter, engine.

And the engine choice has a direct effect on the transmission choice. The GM engines will require either the 4L85E or the 4L70E transmission, while the Hemi will require a compatible donor vehicle to have the electronically controlled automatic transmission because the transmissions are not sold as a crate part.

Another question that needs answering is frame materials. Aluminum is lighter, but there are two flies in that equation. First is SCCA rules prohibit aluminum rollover structure. Second is the frame will have to be farmed out if made from aluminum because my aluminum welding skills are lousy. Even with money as no object I still want to build as much of this car as I can. Then there is the interface between the SCCA required Chrome-moly rollover structure and the aluminum frame, and preventing galvanic corrosion. I know what to do and how to do it, I’m just concerned about the failure modes and what they would do to the longevity of the car. Sticking with steel everywhere for the frame material eliminates all those problems at a slight weight penalty. Also staying with steel means I can do more of the fabrication myself if I want to and that in case of a wreck the structure is more repairable: bent steel can be straightened, bent aluminum has to be cut out and replaced.

Then there is the requirement to have some way of toting the tires and other parts needed for racing with the car while it isn’t racing. That implies a trailer (or the ridiculous notion of lashing the tires to the back of the car somehow for a thousand mile (+/-) road trip.

And this has made for a very long blog post for a Sunday and I’m not even halfway done, but I will end it now.

PSA, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

It’s drab and rainy here but at least it’s not hot, and the Feed

Interesting weather here in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. Normally when we get rain we get tons of water falling from the sky for a few minutes and then it’s over. Today it was grey and drizzly all morning and never really did rain. Sure the ground is wet and there are puddles where we normally get puddles, but we didn’t get small rivers in the streets or parking lot lakes like a “normal” rain. I have taken to wearing my “slippers” today because that thing on the bottom of my foot decided to start hurting from the moment I set foot to floor and I just don’t feel like dealing with physical pain today to have to constantly be meditating away pain. I would rather just not be in pain to begin with. These are my slippers I made last year.
Yes I glued socks to flip flops and called them slippers

Up first is a NYC cyclist getting doored on video. Here’s What Getting Doored Looks Like From A Cyclist’s Perspective Notice parking to the left and traffic to the right and the taxi pulled over just outside the bike lane so that the door zone completely covers the bike lane. No escape route, but at least the cyclist was blocked from getting tossed into traffic by ht presence of cars on both sides of the bike lane. This is 100% infrastructure caused and prevented. Get the bike lanes up to CROW standards instead of AASHTO or NACTO sub-standards and nobody gets hurt. That sounds like a threat, doesn’t it? OMG am I part of the Spandex Mafia? :D

Again I wonder how many people actually saw the cyclist running this red light in CA. Cyclist hurt in crash after running red light OK, assuming the report is accurate and not just profiling, intersection protocols to avoid or reduce damages. Since the cyclist or the driver was not using the built environment as designed I’m not convinced that changing the infrastructure will prevent a repeat of this wreck, but I do know that it would prevent other wrecks.

Another CA wreck, this time bicycle on ped. Mill Valley calls for shared path safety measures after child injured in collision with cyclist Don’t hit the pedestrians. I find it interesting to note that both the cyclist and the kid were hospitalized in this wreck, as would be expected for a bike-ped wreck, and unlike motor vehicle-bike or -ped wrecks either of which can be fatal and neither of which will cause the slightest injury to the driver. And don’t hit the pedestrians, especially when they are kids.

More on the UK cyclist killed when he flipped his bike over a chain blocking a bike path. Caernarfon cyclist Rhodri Hughes-Jones was a ‘mature and careful rider’ Now it seems the HiViz added to the chain was done after the death of the cyclist and in low light with a person with poor night vision like some older people that black painted chain would be about as visible as the dark side of the moon. Actually less, because you can take that Pink Floyd album to a more brightly lighted area of the store.

Wonder of wonders, another UK wreck report with actual usable information in it. Villagers worried about road danger after cyclist crash in Stockbridge So either a trailer malfunction or just wider than the tow vehicle combined with a cyclist having to dodge road defects leads to a hit-from-behind wreck with serious injuries. You know the drill by now, protocols were made moot by the pothole the cyclist had to go around, leaving getting the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

More on the cyclist hit while waiting for traffic to clear to make a turn in Oz. Foreign student, 22, dies in truck collision at South Brisbane I dunno if I should point this out, but you can see the blood trail from the cyclist’s getting dragged through the intersection by the rear trailer of the tandem semi that hit her. And this article on the sub-standard standard used to build the intersection. Council warned of Annerley Road bike danger zone before fatal crash This is exactly why the UK has a corporate manslaughter charge for people doing things as heads of companies or governmental bodies that do things that get people killed after being advised against doing those exact things. And in this case a defense will be made using “appeal to authority” of the road standards. And where standards are clearly crap, as in this case where no provision was made for cyclists wanting to turn right (the thinking went “but they could just go an extra block and go around that block and end up pointed in the direction they want to go” after riding 4 blocks farther than someone would have to drive) not even the drive on the left version of the Copenhagen left flopped mirror image to make it a right. No, I think that in this case someone wanted to kill a cyclist, but they wanted someone else’s hands to have the actual blood on them. More Trucks ‘wheels of mass destruction’ to cyclists Laying it on a little thick, but no major mistruths there. Still more. Bikes rule the roads: Cyclists may be allowed to run red lights and cars banned from entering bike lanes and last link to the subject Bicycle Tasmania president questions laws proposed to protect cyclists

My vote for the most bizarre headline in a linked article for this blog in 2014. Waikato cycle crashes: Police urge drivers to be more social The article explains this statement, which sounds utterly absurd in a vacuum, but makes sense in the article. All three of the wrecks were caused by impatient or oblivious drivers. Of the new wrecks both were intersection related so protocols to avoid and infrastructure to fix.

Our Daily Ted. Today’s post, in which I take the day off. And am very grateful I still can. Today was Ted’s version of his Death Day.

And Infrastructure! news that was emailed directly to me by the USDoT. U.S. Transportation Secretary Foxx Announces New Initiative to Enhance Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Yes, I’m signed up as an accredited bicycle journalist with the DoT, so their standards for what constitutes a “bicycle journalist” must not be too high or I would be in the dark, too. ;) And I see that the press release went live about 24 hours before I got the e-mail about it, which goes to show that while they consider me to be a “bicycle journalist” they don’t consider me important enough to inform me about press releases prior to them being released…

And… this… Jessamine judge decides Nicholasville Road bicycle commuter violated law Basically what the judge is saying is that if there is any pavement to the right of a cyclist then the cyclist is wrong… and the fitness for riding of that pavement is not part of the question.

A little Lifestyle that I whole-heartedly support. Wounded Warriors find support while cycling

Another e-assist article. Electric bikes gaining traction globally Yay!

And those were all the links that gave me fits or giggles about bicycles. There were a lot more links that gave me fits, but not about bicycles.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

Grocery day, and the Feed

One thing Mrs. the Poet and I have never seemed to come to a consensus on is my desire for salty snacks. I mean sure she lets me buy them most weeks, but every so often I can tell she just does not understand why I want those snacks. Personally I feel $4 for a pound of cheese balls in a reusable and resealable container is a bargain, particularly when name-brand cheese puffs cost nearly that much for half as much by weight and they come in a bag that lets the uneaten snacks go stale in a couple of days. I mean look at it this way, not only am I getting a full pound of snacks, I’m getting a free cookie jar for her snacks. Also we are getting 10 quarts of Powerade for $0.69/qt because, reasons. And I’m also having difficulty persuading her to get the salt that is 50/50 sodium chloride and potassium chloride to deal with my potassium deficiency, because she can get store brand salt for $0.59 a pound and the potassium mix is like $1.50/4 oz.

Schadenfreude over a man who has done everything in his power to endanger cyclists with bad infrastructure. Toronto Mayor Rob Ford Hospitalized With Suspected Tumor Not wishing Rob Ford to die soon. That would be too kind… And really I don’t wish him to suffer, much (a few days, please?) because really if he was to get an equal amount of pain for all the pain he has personally brought on Toronto cyclists with his policies he would be in agony for pretty much the rest of his life. For those with (blessed) short memories Mayor Ford compared riding a bicycle to swimming with sharks, and said that all cyclists deserved to die horribly in a wreck with a motor vehicle. I guess all I really have to say is “Ain’t karma a bitch, Robby?”

Another hit-and-run killer, this time in WV. Man Arrested In Connection With Death Of Boy Struck, Killed On Bicycle The story actually changed as I was creating the link, first it was just a hit-and-run, then it turned into an arrest report. Congratulations to the LEO who tracked him down and arrested the driver of the weapon vehicle. Hit from behind wreck of a cyclist not even riding on the road, protocols moot, so infrastructure “up to Dutch’ to prevent. And crush the vehicles used to commit hit-and-run as part of that infrastructure.

OK strange story time in IN. Officials: Muncie man killed in bike accident; sister found dead in home next day by deputy coroner SWCC wreck for the cyclist, who knows what happened for the sister. The infrastructure that got the cyclist killed was obviously not “up to Dutch” or the cyclist would not have been able to be hit when crossing the intersection of the bike path and the road.

A SWCC wreck in CA. Cyclist killed in crash on San Juan Grade Road at Crazy Horse Canyon Classic SWCC narrative claiming a cyclist pulled out in front of a speeding car just as the car came along to hit him/her. Since there is an intersection nearby protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Another wreck in CA, this one hit-from-behind. Long-haul cyclist injured in Highway 1 crash near Santa Cruz Hit from behind 2 feet off the road, not the cyclist’s fault or much she could have done to avoid it. I’m going to blame this one on CA not being the Netherlands.

Right hook in West Canuckistan. Cyclist injured Intersection protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent. I like wrecks with survivors who will recover and simple-to-solve problems.

I can’t believe they posted this in a UK media outlet… Cyclists airlifted after van crash between Swindon and Royal Wootton Bassett As the story reads now the cyclist were hit by a van that crossed the centerline into the cyclist’s side of the road. I don’t know how long that will stay up. As the story reads now there was nothing the cyclists could have done to change the outcome of this wreck, leaving only getting the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Hit and run by a distracted driver in the Emerald Isle. Cyclist knocked down and killed by driver who was using his laptop at the wheel and Driver who fatally hit cyclist (19) with car and ‘callously’ drove away without ever taking foot off accelerator jailed The driver did not get anything close to the sentence he deserved, but as I understand it Ireland no longer has a death penalty. Pity, because hanging, drawing, and quartering barely covers what happened in this wreck. Three years in prison does not even come close for a wreck and subsequent behavior like this one.

Update on a wreck in Enn Zed. Injured cyclist remains critical Still hit-from-behind on the shoulder of the road by a driver that could not keep in the proper lane, still infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A fatal wreck in Oz. Young woman killed in South Brisbane crash Killed while waiting for traffic to clear to make her turn, surrounded by sub-standard bike “infrastructure” that failed to allow for cyclists wanting to turn. And why didn’t the driver of the semi just wait behind her? Get that infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent another wreck. More Brisbane, Fast, First: Cyclist dies in collision with truck and the latest breaking news – September 11

Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: AAA promotes 3-foot law they previously fought; Brown legalizes triple bike racks on buses Good stuff.

Infrastructure! news from Oz. Clover’s deluded death wish list for Sydney’s cyclists Really, jihad against cars? Bubba, you ain’t seen jihad if you think making a little (tiny bit) of space for some other mode of transportation is a jihad against cars.

Lifestyle from IL. Jacob Bass, Bridgeport Cyclist Killed, Has Music Scholarship Named for Him

And this review of a revamped A2B e-assist bike. A2B launches Entz e-bike with frame-integrated motor and gearless shifting

And those were all the links that gave me fits or giggles today, plus shopping for groceries. You would not believe the amount of food we bought today. It completely filled the back of a 2010 Honda Insight.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

Well, this is just wonnderfullll, and the Feed

One of the nice things about owning a laptop computer is the ability to work anyplace you can create a lap. So I’m starting this post off-line while sitting on the DART bus to go to the Lab Rat Keeper for a medication adjustment. Today will be a long one as I need to refill one of my meds they can’t keep at the LRK office, so I have to go to the pharmacy that is a 3 hour bus ride each way. I’m hoping I can find a massage therapist out in that neck of the woods because my neck and shoulders are killing me because of the lipoma on my neck. I had a pain riding Francis/es to the RPG Saturday that has abated but never quite left ever since. the lump on the back of my neck has gotten so big that it interferes with holding my head back while riding in a normal bike-riding posture even without a helmet. And as Mrs. the Poet was saying the other day, for me to ride without my helmet there has to be something seriously wrong.

On another front, I am about to have to replace my beloved tie-dye army sun hat, that I wear as a celebration of not getting permanently killed by the hit-and-run. You can see what that hat looks like if you go back earlier in the year to my post about the St, Patty’s Day parade on Greenville Avenue and look at the “selfie” I took. I have been searching for a replacement for several months now and have been unable to locate anything that would be suitable. None of my local stores that sells tie-dye carry hats of any description, much less the style I’m looking for. I still have several versions of military sun hat (boonie hat) in various kinds of camo that are in good shape, so I may have to abandon my beloved tie-dye for more conventional sun protection. I would really hate to have to do that, but sun protection is more important than metaphoric thumbing my nose at a dead guy (now that I know he’s dead).

And now that I have completed the trip to the Lab Rat Keeper I have such good news [/sarcasm]. That lump on my neck has been re-diagnosed as a sebaceous cyst instead of the lipoma we thought it was for the last 9 years. Turns out they can do this, pop up someplace and just hang out for a few years, then start growing quickly and becoming a nuisance like what has happened with mine. The sore spot on the bottom of my foot is a minor infection that healed over and built up a callus. I must have gotten it when I was walking to the mailbox barefoot. And yes, there was that much nerve damage that such a thing could happen and I not notice it until it turned into something like what I have now.

Up first is a bunch of different links from the southern part of TX. Cyclist struck, killed in NE Houston and Local man, 79, killed in northeast Harris County truck-bicycle accident Cyclist was killed when a turning vehicle went through his lane and into the ditch, hitting the cyclist from behind. The cyclist was following TX VC 551.103 and riding in the middle of the lane that was too narrow for a cyclist and a motor vehicle to safely share, other reports have the cyclist being hit from behind as the weapon vehicle completed its turn, meaning the cyclist was plainly visible crossing in front of the driver of the weapon vehicle before making the turn. I don’t know where the cyclist could have gone to not get hit in this wreck as the weapon vehicle went completely off the road and into the ditch after using the entire lane to make its turn. I’m not even all that sure that getting the infrastructure “up to Dutch” would have helped either as the weapon vehicle went off the road after hitting the cyclist, making it entirely possible that the cyclist would have been hit riding in the segregated bike lane that Dutch infrastructure would install here.

A very short distance (Texas “short”) from that wreck is another wreck. Woman, 68, charged in cyclist’s death According to this report the driver was pulled off the road looking for an address while moving and not watching in front of her vehicle when she hit the cyclist directly from behind. Again if the cyclist was hit hard enough to get killed then the driver was driving too fast for conditions, making this charge appropriate for the crime. I read the comments because I’m already crazy and can’t get any worse. I advise against any of you doing it.

More on the cyclist killed while riding in a bike lane in Harlingen. Friends remember Harlingen cyclist killed along roadway and Car versus cyclist: Drivers need to share the road And that second link sums it up nicely, cars are deadly weapons that need control constantly, and cyclists have no protection against getting hit by cars. Also there is a possibility that the driver may have been either sleep-deprived or DUI when he hit the cyclist IN THE BIKE LANE…

Getting out of TX, or at least reporting from someplace else, a cyclist is hit-and-run in CA. MAN ON BIKE SERIOUSLY INJURED IN HIT AND RUN The narrative is the cyclist was hit just past the intersection in hit-from-behind wreck, but intersection protocols would still apply here because of the proximity to that intersection, to avoid or reduce damages, and most likely infrastructure “up to Dutch” would prevent a similar wreck in the future.

Still in CA. Bicyclist killed in collision with car in El Camino Village This is another link to the cyclist killed walking his bike in the crosswalk with the light. This is a wreck that no amount of infrastructure will prevent so long as idiots are allowed to drive weapons of mass destruction around as transportation.

Another reason why FL leads the US in dead and maimed cyclists and pedestrians. Trial likely in death of Lakewood Ranch cyclist killed in April car accidentDamery was cleared of criminal wrongdoing following a three-month traffic homicide investigation by Florida Highway Patrol, which stated she suffered from attention deficit disorder and lack of sleep the day the accident occurred. The report indicated Damery told troopers she had not slept the previous night nor taken her prescribed medication.” OK am I the only person that does not see “Impaired driver” in that statement? No sleep and NOT on her meds. Even with infrastructure “up to Dutch” there is the very real possibility that this wreck would have happened anyway as the driver ran a red light when she hit the cyclist.

This multi-bike pileup during a race leaves one dead and one maimed. RF man injured in biking accident; Eau Claire woman’s injuries fatal This is why I dislike riding in pelotons. I don’t mind drafting when I’m in my car because I have lots of protection around me, but on a bike one touch of the wheels can be fatal to someone riding 3 bikes back.

A WY wreck turns tragic as the cyclist dies in hospital. Cyclist dies following Friday truck accident The current narrative reads like the semi was too close to the cyclist and something caused the cyclist to bobble and wind up under the trailer tires. Since there was no mention of any turning movements on the part of the semi I will discount the rear tires tracking inside of the tractor being a factor in the wreck, which makes the initial close pass even more puzzling. This is one I have no idea how to avoid in the built environment, but I know that in Dutch infrastructure there are many meters of separation between those two vehicle types to prevent anything like this wreck.

Far West Canuckistan has a cyclist “running” a red light. Victoria-area cyclist, pedestrian hit in morning commute OK I’m not going to say I don’t think a cyclist would run a red light, I have done it by accident myself looking for cross traffic and missing the light changing. Because of this I’m going to place this wreck in the category of “not preventable by physical infrastructure changes” even though I would bet money I don’t have that given infrastructure that works for cyclists would prevent most red light jumpers and runners.

Another cyclist tries to beat a train with predictable results. Cyclist struck, killed by AMT train in St-Jérôme I’m not even going to explain this one, it has become too repetitious even for my OCD.

A UK report of a cyclist “meeting” a pedestrian. Pedestrian hurt in collision with cyclist in Barnsley Since they never mentioned hitting the pedestrian on the “pavement” as they refer to sidewalks in the UK, this has to be a wreck in the road, one the cyclist was able to tumble away from and the pedestrian was not. I think that means a distracted pedestrian but because of UK media laws this will probably be the first and last time we read about it.

Still in Jolly Olde a cyclist runs into the chain between two bollards blocking the bike path from motor vehicles. Caernarfon cyclist dies after crashing into bollard chain I suppose that if drivers can get a pass for “not seeing” cyclists, a cyclist could get a pass for “not seeing” a thin chain stretched across his path except he died from the wreck where drivers who “don’t see” cyclists are uninjured as a rule.

Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: CHP motorcycle cop demonstrates his ignorance of the law; meet LADOT’s Seleta Reynolds I have to say I got pretty steamed at that video. I loathe LEO who are ignorant of the law they are supposed to be enforcing.

Infrastructure! news. When adding bike lanes actually reduces traffic delays

I know these things make people feel better, but do they think this would have prevented a driver both drunk and high on meth from driving the wrong way? New Road Signs, Arrows Coming to Fiesta Island

“Infra” from PA. Q&A with Bike Pittsburgh This is one of the 5 “e”s of infrastructure, Education.

Not to be outdone from the Great White North. Drivers, cyclists both need to show respect on the roads, cycling officials say Drivers need to show respect because they are controlling light armored vehicles that can kill with the mis-timed flick of a finger, cyclists need to show respect because it is polite. [sarcasm]Yeah this is a totally balanced equation here… [/sarcasm]

Lifestyle from the East Coast by way of the UK. Nephew vows to finish uncle’s romantic journey after he was killed by a homeless man while cycling to propose to his girlfriend

And those were all the links that I normally would have found had I not started at 1700 after the trip to the LRK today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

My life is getting too interesting now, and the Feed

Well, now, how can I put this? I can’t, so you’re just gonna have to take my word for it that things are getting interesting as in the Chinese curse sense (“may you live in interesting times”). I have a gig that I had to sign an NDA for because it is just that interesting… and I feel like I’m channeling Bugs Bunny Bugs the Beautician … Again

I’m trying to read other news outlets about other things besides bicycles. Can I just say the Gov Goodhair is treading on perilously thin ice? And that I make high-quality bicycle-drawn tumbrels for the most uncomfortable and undignified ride possible to that final public appearance and I’m looking for some crowdfunding… (Actually, I think that might be a good source of future income, making tumbrels and requiring the soon-to-be departed to pay for the privilege.)

NYPD hates cyclists so much that they literally would not lift a finger for one. >trigger warning< Brooklyn Cyclist May Have Found Her Hit & Run Driver, But NYPD Won’t Question Him and Cyclist seriously injured in hit-and-run, but no arrests and BSNY says Put this in your bottom bracket and inflate it. And I put those up in the order I got them in the Feed. Can you imagine having to find your assailant and the weapon vehicle and still not being able to get an arrest? (Well, yes I can, but that is a different matter entirely.)

Imagine having a wreck and getting seriously injured because you went by a bush at exactly the wrong time. Cyclist Seriously Injured in Auto Accident Near Evans and Grape That Closed Intersection Sidewalk cyclist fell off because a bush blocked the sidewalk and a car was passing at the exact same time, so infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent. Infrastructure “up to non-Dutch First World” standards would have worked also.

That wreck I linked to that I couldn’t tell if it was MA or VT? It was NH >le sigh< Cyclist Struck by Vehicle Still nothing about the mode or even a precise location as of this posting, so Infrastructure! to prevent.

More on the cyclist killed by a garbage truck in the Great White North. Grief-stricken officials defend safety measures of Ride the Rideau Of course they are grief-stricken, the victim was management-level… Scanlan: Cyclist’s death should prompt calls to improve safety Can I say I hope this conversation results in the adoption of the Dutch CROW manual for bicycle infrastructure?

Another link to that cyclist killed in Scotland. Cyclist killed in crash with car and Cyclist in Aberdeen killed in crash with car As I predicted media are now posting stock pictures of police vehicles rather than pictures of the crime scene.

Another cyclist killer facing a slap on the wrist in the UK. Motorist facing prison for causing cyclist’s death Sure prison is a “possible” sentence, but we all know that killing a cyclist in the UK is only slightly more frowned-upon than littering.

Approaching closure in Oz. Guilty plea in cyclist’s death Now we wait on sentencing…

Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: No contest plea in Phillip O’Neill case, the Times gets it on 3-foot law, AnyKicks squeaks by

Lifestyle from CO. Benefit ride Sept. 20 for injured Fort Collins cyclist

Infrastructure! news from Seattle. A rider’s review of Seattle’s new 2nd Avenue bike lane A little too late for the cyclist lawyer killed there last week.

Infrastructure news from Oz. Bike advocates want motorists to leave more space on roads for cyclists

And those were all the links that gave me fits or giggles today. Slightly higher ratio of giggles to fits than yesterday.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

Ramen on Bean Day, and the Feed

I have someplace to go this evening (as I’m writing this) and I will probably have to finish the post after I get back from my gig. I’m going to do data entry for a political phone bank this evening, since I’m crap as an operator since the wreck. I have zero improv skills since the wreck and I knew my public speaking skills were gone the first spoken word gig I had after the wreck. I was speaking like I had never been on stage in my life and had never had any training in how to use my voice. I had some slight improvement for a few years then things have been steadily deteriorating ever since. So I take my laptop and transcribe phone sheets into a database. This saves the callers considerable time and also allows people without laptops to call as quickly as they are able.

The ramen bit is I needed something that could be whipped up in a few minutes for Mrs. the Poet before I left and also be done when I needed to go, so I’m using ramen in the traditional Japanese way rather than the American way of “noodles in pot and 3 minutes later in stomach”. I’m adding leftover veggies and a couple of whipped eggs to the noodles to make the pack of ramen into a meal for two. It’s quick, it’s easy and it uses up leftovers. That makes it perfect for tonight.

It looks like a hit-and-run in South Texas is today’s leadoff story. Driver kills cyclist then flees the scene in Harlingen Scene pictures show this as a hit-from-behind on the right side of the bike lane (making assumptions from what appears to be a puddle of blood next to the curb) which means the driver of the weapon vehicle left his lane and went almost to the curb to hit a brightly lighted cyclist. This means the cyclist was riding extra legal as in as legal as possible and also means that protocols are moot for this case, the driver would have just killed the cyclist further from the road had he bailed any further to the side than he already was. Dutch infrastructure standards would be to put the person that approved this design in jail because of the inevitability of exactly this occurrence. This was a highway with speed limits much too high for a simple bike lane to be safe. Without a barrier this wreck was inevitable, the infrastructure here is simple appeasement. Ask Neville Chamberlain how well appeasement works. Dutch quality infrastructure to prevent.

A little to the north of that a cyclist discovers that when you’re carrying drugs you need to not ride salmon. SAPD: Several drugs found on cyclist riding on Broadway St. Or at least just obey LEO when instructed to ride with traffic instead of dropping the bike and running away on foot.

Sometimes it seems like everything is out to get us, even the trees. Cyclist struck by falling tree, critically injured in Winnetka and this later link Chicago actress Molly Glynn dies after being struck by falling tree The duo was riding in the forest when a strong pop-up T-storm broke nearby and the outflow from the storm on the ground toppled trees. This is in the Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot, Interrogative category or an act of [$DEITY] depending on your religious self-identification.

Still in the Chicagoland area we get a SWCC fatality. Bicyclist killed at Bridgeport intersection Note the narrative, the cyclist was unconscious a the scene and died after being transported and the driver of the weapon vehicle was operating without a license, but they still believed him when he claimed the cyclist was the one running a red light. Get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” and the driver of the weapon vehicle may have found cycling so convenient that he would not have been driving, saving two lives.

A bike-on-bike wreck in MA. Somerville Bicyclist Killed In Medford Collision With Motorcycle As of this posting with neither participant able to talk to LEO and very little evidence was left at the scene so I have no idea what to do with the built environment to avoid this wreck but since 90% of the wrecks I cover would be eliminated by Dutch quality infrastructure I’m going to go with that to prevent.

I’m not sure if this wreck was in MA or VT, but a kid paying more attention to his cell phone than where his Weapon of mass destruction was going managed to hit a cyclist from behind riding 3 feet away from the actual road. Cycling: Recent incidents a reminder of perils of riding Also a MTB cyclist pranged it a good one the same week. This is another one of “those wrecks” that human cyclists can’t evade because they are already at the limits of their escape route, and only a barrier or massive amounts of distance will prevent a similar wreck, or developing technology that causes a car to come to a complete stop if a cell phone is used in the car. Something that makes the phone catch fire if the car is in motion and the phone is in use? That might be a little safer than stopping the car while trying to call police because someone is trying to carjack you, then you can throw the flaming phone at the carjacker.

“Final” word on a CA wreck. No charges filed from Irvine cyclist killed in Newport Beach If the narrative is correct this wreck appears to be a cyclist that left-crossed himself, which is tragic but not the fault of the driver.

A SWSS wreck in CA results in a deceased cyclist. COLLISION KILLS 60-YEAR-OLD CYCLIST IN CHULA VISTA Hit from behind protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and infrastructure will prevent a similar wreck by removing the ability of the motor vehicle to get within striking distance of any cyclists.

Another CA wreck as reported by Ted Rogers. 61-year old bike rider killed in Huntington Beach; second cycling death in the city in just five days The wreck is known to have been in an intersection, and that’s about all they know as of this posting.

The initial criminal charges for a hit-from-behind wreck in ND. Man who struck deaf, blind Norwegian cyclist cited There were two people on that bike, the blind cyclist was just the stoker. And I’m thinking he wasn’t the only blind man on the road that day, knowhutimean?

LEO are hunting the weapon vehicle in this hit-and-run in AK. Troopers looking for driver in hit-run collision; 1 cyclist seriously injured The narrative reads that the weapon vehicle went off the road to hit 2 cyclists riding on the shoulder. This speaks of pre-meditation to me, or just general Dumbassery. Neither scenario leaves cyclists with much if any options to avoid the wreck considering they were already off the road on the shoulder so that leaves Dutch quality segregated infrastructure and presumed liability legal infrastructure to protect cyclists from drivers like this.

Tragedy in the Great White North as a rider on a charity ride gets hit. Ride the Rideau cyclist hit, killed by truck and Mother of two killed in Ride the Rideau cycling event Nothing about the mode, just the cyclist was hit by/with a dump or garbage truck while on the course raising money to fight cancer. I assume they do charity rides in the Netherlands, too, so get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Cyclists in Scotland are in danger. Cyclist dies after Aberdeen crash and North Anderson Drive closed northbound after cyclist seriously injured in smash What I could see in the pictures was a hit-from-behind wreck, which means the pictures will probably be taken down shortly to comply with UK media laws. So, protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Another low-information wreck from Oz. Crash cyclist seriously injured The scant description of the wreck as a “two car crash” makes me think that this might not have been a wreck that a human cyclist could avoid.

Infrastructure! argument from about 80 miles east of WoaB World HQ in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. Readers take sides on bicycles on public roadways

Infrastructure argument in far West Canuckistan. Cyclists, pedestrians collide on Vancouver’s mean streets You know when infrastructure is properly designed for everybody there are no “mean streets”. Just sayin’, yannow?

Lifestyle in Seattle. Maj. Margaret Witt reflects on fallen cyclist’s legal legacy and Hundreds gather in Seattle to honor cyclist killed by truck No, no, no. The cyclist was killed by a dumbass politician, the truck was just the murder weapon. Remember, this project would have been completed a year ago if some dumbass hadn’t delayed it to score political points. That person should be in jail now.

Lifestyle in NV. Cyclists memorialize rider with ‘3 Feet for Pete’ ride

Lifestyle in NC. Friend talks about Greensboro man killed while riding bicycle

And what does the future hold for the lowly bicycle? FUTURE BIKE: TECHNOLOGY

And those were all the links that didn’t make me want to kill someone with my bare hands gave me fits or giggles.

Billed @€0.02, Opus the unkillable badass Poet

I feel the need to post a thousand words or so about anything on Wreck-Free Sunday

I know, most of you think I have something in mind when I sit down at my computer to write these things, but that only happens once in a blue moon (actually less often than that, blue moons happen about 3 times as often as I know what I’m going to write on Sunday).

So, yesterday was RPG day. We did the Palladium game that’s based in the present day. I’m still playing as Godwin Smythe, wealthy owner and CEO of a mid-level international logistics company and nascent Mage. My character owns both a Lambo, and a Hennessy Viper that he keeps in his condo at the Texas Motor Speedway (party house, 5 bedrooms for a choice of decor), and he has a fleet of delivery vans he can divert to in-game needs (ostensibly the fleet of trucks are backups to the front line delivery vehicles). His business is based at Alliance Airport which is basically across the street from TMS and the condo, so he can talk to his security people or grab a delivery truck just about anytime.

In yesterday’s game we reset back at the bombing of the bar in Denton, only this time instead of my character being found rummaging through the rubble looking for additional survivors, I used See Aura to determine the number of survivors not standing up to be zero, then beat feet out of the scene so as to not attract attention to having survived a blast that leveled a pre-WWII building. My character used Invisibility(superior) to hide the entire group and their trails to get away from the scene, and we then called my limo driver to come pick us up and take us back to the condo, where we worked with my security staff to discover that the bombing was part of a ritual to summon >something< that was probably Not Nice from some place that was ditto. We used satellite surveillance to find where this ritual was going to be held, and when we got close we used my magic sense as a mage to pinpoint the location. One of the party members was able to use one of his animal companions to scout the location out real-time so we didn’t go into this fight blind. As a mage I knew that at the point we were at >something< was going to come through even if we disrupted the summoning because the connection had already been made to that dimension, but if we disrupted the summoning it would be a whole lot less nasty than what was being summoned. Interesting thing was that because of the summoning all magic users’ spells were 3X as effective and delivered 3X damage or healing but only cost 1/3 normal casting costs, effectively raising all our magic users 20 or so levels for the duration of the summoning ad for 30 minutes after we disrupted it. This part is very important to the story.

We slipped in by using that invisibility thing again to get past the mundanes guarding the ritual, and set up a plan that would use our magic users fire control powers to distract the ritualists’ attention away from the circle where the head ritualist was doing the summoning. Remember that 3X effect during and 30 minutes after the ritual I mentioned? Well one party member was going to cast Pillar Of Fire as a distraction for the head ritualist in the center of the circle while I used Fuel Fire to cause the torches lighting the proceeding to distract the outer ritualists away from the circle. The pillar of fire that was only supposed to singe the head ritualist inside the circle while another party member tried to stab him, incinerated him, while my “distracting” torches set all the other ritualists’ hair on fire and caused them to run around like confused ants when someone uses a magnifying glass on a sunny day. An unfortunate side effect of the pillar of fire was setting the party member that was supposed to stab the head ritualist on fire as well from being too close to the pillar. This displeased him, to put it mildly. We managed to capture one minor ritualist and put out his burning hair and render him unconscious for questioning later. The creature that ended up coming through was just a gargoyle that went in the direction of OKC to rampage, so no big losses there except for innocent population. Sorry OKC!

Funny time, while maintaining our cover as “innocent anglers” who had nothing to do with the other events nearby one of the party members caught what would be a world record alligator gar (a common fish in NTX) had we not used magic to paralyze the fish when it rolled to the surface so we could land it. And had we not been playing a RPG instead of fishing IRL. ;) This was a Grandfather Fish.

The Good News is that the process has been set in motion to get Wells Fargo away from the mortgage and pay off the mortgage the day after. Before the end of the month we will own our home outright, no mortgage, and we can start thinking about saving some money to pay for deferred maintenance like painting the outside and fixing the bathroom. The interesting thing is the loan we are setting up to remove WF is almost 2% lower APR than our current mortgage with WF and would be paid off 5 years quicker…

I’m using an old school method of doing design work on the Sprint T, I had some xeroxes made of some pictures from a magazine (Hot Rod Magazine 06/13, there was a photo montage that included the view I needed) of the body I want to use. I will draw in the structural members on the copy so that I can visualize where they should go.I will have to make some kind of demarcation in the copy that accentuates the actual interior dimensions of the body so I can know if the frame will actually connect directly to the body or only through the belly pan welded to the frame…

And that looks like enough words for today. Tomorrow is another day.

PSA, Opus the unkillable badass Poet