Daily Archives: January 13, 2009

Stupidity thy name is politician

Actually there is a lot of noise being made about a toss off phrase used by the House Minority Leader on one of the Sunday talking heads programs. Analyzing Obama’s Tax Plan Obviously the Good Representative has no concept of bike paths designed for transportation, and is referring to the paths to nowhere in parks and whatnot, but still the inference is that bikes are not transportation. You can try to pursued him at this e-mail addy: asktheleader@mail.house.gov even though I don’t think it will do much good. If you try remember that while he is an idiot he is a very sensitive idiot, and calling him an idiot won’t help matters any. Show him that cycling infrastructure will reduce traffic congestion, reduce pollution (by both reducing congestion, and by having fewer cars running to pollute), reduce obesity, reduce health care costs, reduce the amount of money we spend on foreign oil, and that properly designed cycle infrastructure will last for decades without maintenance beyond sweeping the dirt off from rains and wind storms. In short cycling infrastructure that takes people where they want to go is a good investment.

Billed @$.02, Opus


A “scattered” Feed

Well thematically today’s Feed was like a dog’s breakfast: all over the place. I had articles on indoor cycling, hand cycling (tricycles for people without the use of their legs, that have much the same advantage over wheel chairs as bicycles over hobby horses), the usual road rage reports, an unusual road rage report, and some bad news for AZ riders who may have been hit, or may be in the future hit by drunk drivers. Well shall we begin, Dear Reader?

Lets get the bad news for AZ riders over with first. Judge rescinds order for DUI breath-test device code The judge in a case that is trying to get dozens, maybe thousands of DUI convictions thrown out is forced to withdraw her order to make the source code for a certain model of breath tester available to the defense. This may put drivers who had lost their licenses back behind the controls of dangerous killing machines. Arizona riders should be aware of the sudden rise in stupidity behind the wheel.

From just down the road in Austin comments are being made about an assault on a cyclist that resulted in a destroyed bike and broken bones for the cyclist that police are treating like a fender bender. Cyclists are not a priority The person writing the article stated that had there been 2 cars involved instead of a car and a cyclist, with equal injuries there would have been a full-blown investigation. I have a better one for you, if the weapon had been anything other than a motor vehicle and the victim had been anyone other than a cyclist, there would have been a full blown investigation. As for how you can avoid the same situation, well the cyclist in this case did everything right and still got hit. the only thing I can say is leave yourself an out, if you have a choice of getting hit or going over a curb, look for a soft spot on the other side of the curb. That is not a good answer, but it would be the best of a bad situation as hitting the ground gives you some control over what gets hit and how hard, vs getting hit by a motor vehicle.

One of the Feel Good stories I got was about a former ski racer who was partially paralyzed in a wreck on the slopes, who now uses a hand cycle and other devices to continue being active in sports. Kelly Brush Wins Prestigious NCAA Inspiration Award She’s doing good work trying to improve safety of her sport.

Another Feel Good story is about cyclists going nowhere fast. BYOB: Classes let cyclists use their own bikes to train I have done classes like this and the geek in me loves them. I can get somewhat obsessive about data, especially power numbers. Unfortunately when I did this back in the early ’80s the state of the art for measuring the low power numbers generated by human beings was not as reliable as it is today and I destroyed the power bike I was riding. I did discover it wasn’t the amount of power I was generating that made me so slow, it was the enormous amount of me that made me so slow. I’m still working on that, unfortunately I’m getting hindered on that front by my own body. As I lose fat through exercise my body creates more muscle mass and makes my bones even more dense. C’est la vie. I’m destined to be large and heavy even when I’m not fat.

From far away Oz we have a report on road rage where the rager was trying to claim self defense when he got out of his vehicle to “talk” to a cyclist. Rex Hunt to claim self-defence over assault charges I don’t know what the laws are in Oz about this, but here in TX if you get out of your vehicle you are “escalating” and can’t use self-defense as a defense in any criminal or civil proceedings.

And a Road Rage story that’s also Feel Good story. Ride Story The driver in this case showed extremely poor judgment, and was extremely lucky the guy he hit was a martial arts expert instead of a marksmanship expert. He’s in jail charged with assault when he could be in a morgue. I’m not saying that you should beat up someone when they get out of their car to give you a bad time, but if they pull a weapon (pipe, or walking stick, or anything that can be used as a weapon) then anything you do to them is considered self-defense in TX and many other states.

And that’s what I have for you today. As always if I get anything more during the day I will update with another post, so keep an ocular organ pointed in this direction.

Billed @$.02, Opus