Daily Archives: April 20, 2011

A jam-packed Feed

It’s a good thing I pre-screened the Feed last night before I went to bed, because there are enough links that my computer is bogging down only having 2/3 of them open. Fortunately many of the links are to Infrastructure! reports, not wrecks. And I’m still getting used to the new headlight, as I haven’t had this much light on the road since the headlight that was stolen with Gigi. From what I can tell this headlight uses much less power in for light out than the one that was stolen with Gigi, but it has less light in the splash area. No actually what it is is that the light I built for Gigi had a smaller splash area with no hot spot so the light that went out was confined to a smaller area, making it seem brighter. The new light has a ton more light output, it’s just a matter of learning how to aim the light and use what it has. And I’m mpre determined than ever to build the other headlight that I started, only I want to pack as many LEDs as I can behind the beam guard that makes the horizontal cutoff, which by my calculations is 144. That will be an interesting comparison, 144 LEDs with a carefully focused beam with a sharp horizontal cutoff powered by a 12V battery against 1 with a high-tech reflector powered by 4 AA batteries. Now that I know how to plot my drilling pattern, and actually have a few $$ for more LEDs, I can do this, all I need are a few 36 hour days to get everything done. 😛

Up first today is a hit-and-run in AL Mobile bicyclist struck by car in Demetropolis Road hit-and-run For those not familiar with USAian geography, the cyclist was from the city of Mobile (pronounced MOH-beel), not that the cyclist was getting around. Anyway, hit-from-behind with no warning, I’m sure a little more SA and using hit-from-behind protocols (as spelled out in the link at the top of my blog) would have helped as the cyclist. That doesn’t excuse the hit-and-run.

Moving a little further west, a salmoning cyclist in Yuma is hit by a right-turning car. Cyclist seriously injured OK this was an easy one, even in bike lanes you have to ride with the flow of traffic. That period in the 1970s that had cyclists ride against traffic in some states has killed more people than STDs and continues to kill even to this day. Between the drivers that think cyclists should be riding against traffic and getting all peeved off about the ones obeying the laws as they are now, and the cyclists that think it still is the law to ride against traffic we are getting far too many cyclists killed. I wish I could go back in time and Nerf-bat those idiots stupid(er) before they could even propose that stupid legislation. When you ride against traffic you make yourself invisible to drivers looking for threats from the left when crossing a road, while you’re coming at them from the right.

In NYC a TV host appears to be laughing at pictures of dead cyclists. Video: Chelsea Handler Laughs at Cyclist Deaths As my computer will not let me view videos I have to take other’s word on this one that she’s laughing at the dead cyclists. Still, finding amusement in the presentation of dead cyclists, much like finding amusement at those dreadful old driver’s ed films with the blood spattered car wrecks, is not in “good taste”.

Moving on to Oz, a driver that killed a cyclist gets a severe penalty. Texting teen driver jailed for five years This sentence is so out of the norm for a cyclist death in the absence of alcohol that I wonder if the recent disdain for teen drivers that text on the roads is somewhat responsible for the severity of the sentence.

Still in Oz, we have an infrastructure problem. Spills prompt bike-lane safety fears Since this appears to be only happening at one particular intersection perhaps there is something else causing the wrecks? Or a combination of one bad installation with lots of road film combining to create a very slick surface for a short time at the beginning of a rain?

In Japan they are seeing a lasting rise in bicycle commuters as a result of the recent earthquake and tsunami. Asahi Bicycle Sales Double as Commuters Haunted by Quake Seek Alternative As reported elsewhere, immediately after the quake and for several days after the only reliable modes of transportation were feet and bicycles. As many in Tokyo and other large cities work more than 10 miles from their homes, walking was not a viable means of transportation, which leaves bicycles. In many areas near the epicenter of the quake motor vehicles are stranded by a lack of fuel, trains still don’t run because of twisted tracks, and the only way food is getting in is by aircraft, and bicycle from local farms. Many bikes are being converted to cargo bikes to keep food rolling into the towns. Eventually the trains and trucks will roll again but I don’t see the frugal and long-remembering Japanese as ever completely abandoning cargo bikes and bicycle commuting.

Back in the US, WI cyclists fight the Tea Party to keep cycling laws and infrastructure intact. Bike summit to address cyclist vs. motorist legislation Since they completely defunded cycling infrastructure they should do the same for roads and bridges that cyclists aren’t allowed to use. Seems fair to me.

Finally another report on the motorcycle racer that rode a bicycle from San Diego CA to Daytona FL for spinal cord research. ‘Miracle’ Cyclist Rides for Spinal Cord Research Yeah, I support this, and suggest you do the same. It doesn’t matter that he used to be a motorcycle racer, he’s a cyclist now (and one that crashed twice on this trip) which makes him one of “us”.

And that’s all I have today.

Billed @$0.02, Opus