Daily Archives: December 1, 2009

Bicycle zombies and even scarier things, The Feed

Yes, the UK has been overrun with bicycle zombies wearing iPods, the horrors! In the US there were so many wrecks in one city in one day that the guy getting hit riding a bicycle didn’t even get a full sentence, much less his own article. and even scarier things than that, if you can imagine.

Getting to the really scary stuff first comes 2 reports on the sentencing of a man that was caught driving drunk 5 times, killing a person on a bicycle the last time. Mother of 19-year-old killed by drunk driver offers driver Bible and place in heaven and Man convicted of fifth drunken driving offense, killing bicylist unable to answer judge’s question: How to stop repeat drunken-driving offenders? I can answer the judge’s question for the brain-dead drunk: Take away their cars and crush them (cars or drunks either one). If you remove access to cars you prevent drunk driving, if getting caught driving drunk means you lose your car, well that ain’t gonna happen twice. Also require a valid driver’s license to purchase a car to prevent wealthy drunks from going out and buying a cheap car to replace their crushed one. This bozo earned the “waste of human skin” tag for this post.

The city of Chicago had so many wrecks that hitting a cyclist didn’t even merit a full sentence in an article in the paper. 6 dead, more injured in holiday weekend crashes I feel sorry for the guy that got hit, near death experience and didn’t even get his name in the paper. From the level of detail in the article about this one I can tell you that one vehicle was definitely a bicycle, if the guy had just been walking they would not have called him a cyclist. 😛 But to be fair to the paper when there are 6 people killed in separate wrecks in one day and one wreck requires 5 ambulances to transport the victims, one guy getting hit riding a bike is just a blip on the radar.

A cyclist in NoCal is hit by a passing pickup truck yesterday. Injured Hwy 49 Bike Rider Identified What struck me was the ages of the participants, the 70 YO driver failed to safely pass the 50 YO cyclist with the full length of his vehicle and hit him with the trailer. Another interesting thing was the driver was from AZ, a place known for drivers that don’t think bicycles belong on the roads. As for avoiding a similar wreck, unless you’re Superman or the Flash with superhuman levels of reaction time it ain’t gonna happen. The initial pass was at a safe distance, but the driver started pulling over before the full length of the vehicle and the trailer had cleared the cyclist. Even knowing the vehicle was there you would have to be watching it and ready to bail to an escape route or off the bike when the vehicle started getting too close. This is one of those cases where to be safe everybody has to be playing the game to ensure cyclists’ safety. This is another example of scarier things than bicycle zombies.

Another example of why I don’t ride off-road trails. Cyclist airlifted out of Crystal Cove The cyclist was less than a mile from an elementary school when he had his wreck, but they had to use a helicopter to get him out because the only other ways in were bike or foot. When I’m less than a mile from a school I want to be where an ambulance can get to me without VTOL capability. Heck I want that no matter how far I am from a school.

I have been mentioning bicycle zombies all during this post, and now I shall deliver. Sunday Times and Daily Mail blame ‘iPod zombie cyclists’ for rise in deaths OMGWTF ZOMBIES!! Yeah, as this article points out the other guys are conflating 2 things without correlation, an increase in quarterly bike wrecks with injury statistics and people wearing headphones and earbuds. There were no statistics on how many cyclists were using music players in wrecks, so there was no way to correlate their use to increased numbers of wrecks. This is a common logical fallacy and even when statistics are taken for two things, unless there is also a statistic for those 2 things happening at the same time you can’t draw conclusions especially about causality. For instance the Australian study that showed when bike helmets were made mandatory head injury went down, failed to make correlations with did people with head injury have a helmet or not. Using other data from the same study you could also say that wearing a helmet reduced broken legs because that number also went down, because the helmet law didn’t reduce head injury it reduced the number of people riding bicycles drastically, which indirectly reduced the number of people with head injuries. Beware of people quoting statistics at you without stating their sources or any other data that might refute their conclusions.

And an article about a SD LEO honoring one of their own by making a bike ride. ‘Tour De Force’ Donates To Mechels Family I have my disagreements with LEO about interpretation and enforcement of the laws, but when it all comes down to it at the end of the day they are on the business end of preventing chaos from breaking out.

And that’s all I have today, more later if anything big breaks.

Billed @$.02, Opus

My Christmas/Yule list, no bike wrecks

Yes, the first thing on my list this year is that I never have another bike wreck to write up in my blog, no dead or injured cyclists on the roads ever. And now that I have that out of the way I will turn to things that actually might happen in my lifetime, and things I could actually get.

Of the things Gigi and I need the most it’s a tossup between forward lighting and weather protection. Forward lighting allows me to indulge my tinkering gene, as I can use bits and pieces to make a nice bright light that doesn’t suck amps with LED technology. All I need is this LED mounted in this reflector and driven by this constant current driver to make a powerful spot light beam or 3 of these to get full brightness out of the light (and probably blind a few drivers). If I get the smaller single driver I will still get the same 2 hour burn I got with the old bulb that burned out (3W MR16) but much more light, because the LED chip is more efficient at the 3W current (lumens per watt). You might want to get this driver while you’re at it so I can try to repair the damaged MR16 bulb. waste not etc.

Fenders I want come from only one source, Planet Bike I need one 20″ rear and one 26″ rear to get both tires covered. Gigi has a 20″ front wheel but to keep water from getting thrown up in my face or on my feet I need more coverage than a front fender can provide. I have noticed water getting thrown forward gets blown into my face so a rather large portion of the front of the tire needs to be covered by the fender. I already have good quality rain gear, but it only works when the water comes from above, not below.

I also still need a computer that I can turn off when I’m not using it (the power supply on the computer I’m using only starts once in a blue moon but keeps running once it starts). I would really like a netbook so I could work at church (not during services, except when I’m using it for my notes for the service), or down the street at the coffee shop or at the library.

And pants, I need long pants. Mine keep falling off, and look goofy with all the waistband gathered up by the belt. I only have one pair that look decent, a pair of khaki jeans. I need a 36″ waist 30″ inseam (actually a 29″, but you can’t get 29″ inseam pants except from a tailor) I still have the custom shirt I had made a few years ago, with the 22″ collar and the 48″ chest, but I only have the one. And yes I know I’m harder than heck to fit, I have a very weird body, and that was before I got hit with a truck.

Aside from that, the usual, socks and underwear.

PSA, Opus