Monthly Archives: April 2014

Still battling plant sex, and the Feed

I could almost see this morning when I woke up, and was able to get around the house without bumping in to things after I took a pill. Then this afternoon I bought Mrs. the Poet a monthly bus pass riding my bike to get to the store, and it was an unnerving trip. I still haven’t made the raised stem so that I can sit up straight and see forward without having to crane my neck, so I can’t wear my helmet. That means I don’t have any rear view mirrors and my neck issues extend to the point I can’t turn my head far enough to see behind me without them. So completely blind with only my ears to supplement my SA in a 180° arc, that’s what I call nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of grannies in rocking chairs.

Update on the AL wreck I reported on earlier with only the information that the cyclist “hit the car”. “Facebook post from a friend of the cyclist in Birmingham, AL:

From Chris Shelton: Hi all, I wanted to let the group be aware that Brian Toone ran into a car that pulled out in front of him going down one of the steepest grades in Birmingham this afternoon. He has concussion with no memory of accident I am told and many fractures to his jaw and of course lacerations etc, broken shoulder blade on right side, and swollen left leg. Going to feel it tomorrow, so be thinking about him and we wish all the best and speedy recovery.” Ouch. I am sure they are going to find some way of blaming the cyclist for this wreck.

Another wreck where the cyclist was cut off by someone pulling out directly in front of him, this time in GA. Cyclist injured in Athens wreck Again, there ain’t much you can do about these except go limp to reduce joint and muscle trauma. That is exactly opposite of most people’s panic reactions, so good luck with that. Also get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent, because that’s something else the Dutch have solved with their infrastructure, driveways across bike lanes/paths. I spent some time searching David Hembrow’s site but that article seems to have been removed or made otherwise unsearchable, but take my word for it there was a very interesting article on driveways across bike paths and how the Dutch deal with them there once upon a time.

First link from NY. Cops: Vehicle hits bicyclist on Hempstead Tpke. Intersection wreck with absolutely zero information. Getting the infrastructure right will prevent another wreck by keeping the bike and the car separated in time and space.

Second NY link. Man arrested for hit-and-run in Clarkstown Intersection wreck again with zero further information. Once again this wreck would never have happened with infrastructure “up to Dutch”.

Ted has a fatal wreck. Update: Dana Point bike rider killed in suspected DUI collision Drunk drivers that kill need to spend time in prison, or be killed. And their cars need to be crushed and recycled.

A gaggle of links to the Montreal cyclist killed in an underpass. Cyclist on Bixi killed by truck on St. Denis St and Gazette Midday: Beaulieu runs for the Bloc; cyclist’s death sparks calls for change also Cyclists demand safety upgrades for ‘tunnels of death’ and this Tributes being organized in the wake of cyclist’s death I think it’s pretty obvious from the videos and the cyclists’ comments that much of the blame is on the infrastructure going from a wide outside lane to two narrow lanes with poor lighting so that drivers don’t have enough time for their eyes to adapt and then they’re back in full daylight with bicycles becoming invisible in the gloom. And to add injury to insult the sidewalks are blocked so that cyclists can’t use them to get away from the dangerous street.

This wreck in Oz is so horrific that it would be an insult to the cyclist to not mention it. Cyclist seriously injured after being hit and trapped under a truck in St Peters The Oz equivalent of a right hook swapped because they still haven’t learned to drive on the right side of the street. A huge part of the problem is placing the cycle lane on the side of the street without any physical barrier to keep trucks from wandering into it nor separate signalization to keep the bikes away from the trucks when the trucks are moving.

A little levity in Our Daily Ted. Morning Links: Turns out most bike riders don’t run red lights after all, and TdF winner LeMond fixes le flat You need to watch both of the flat fixing videos. How to Fix a Flat: with Lance Armstrong

And those were all the links that gave me fits and giggles. Damned few giggles, but more than last time.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Plants are having unprotected sex and I’m the one suffering for it, and the Feed

OK this is getting really annoying now. Today was the third day in a row I woke up blind because of all the gunk in my eyes with the pollen triggering my allergies. Use a condom you dang trees! Getting serious for a moment, this is really getting on my last nerves. Beyond the fact that I can barely see well enough to type and get around the house, and my allergy meds are making me want to constantly take a nap, I have things to do that require me to leave the house, further than from the front door to the mailbox. Because the mailbox is about as far as I can get by myself in these conditions. I need to get a BMX stem and get it ready for installing on Francis/es so that I can sit up and not have my knees hit the handlebars when I’m riding and so I don’t sit on the wrong part of my butt and saddle, and cause blood stains in my underwear.

On another note, I have been enjoying Shiner FM966 Farmhouse Ale lately. I got a 12 pack that was marked down to under $7 which makes it taste better (good beer for cheap tastes better than the same beer expensive). There is the malty bottom flavor that has some slightly bitter but not overwhelming hops notes on top of that. This is an ale that I genuinely enjoy drinking, in moderation. One of these days I’m going to ride from that campground I was at when I wasn’t posting, the 33 miles to the Shiner brewery in Spoetzl TX. We have to ride by a sausage factory so we might have a mini-Oktoberfest ride that week.

Up first was a hard decision today. But I think this display of unmitigated Stoopid in the state that has once again taken “top” honors for killing the most cyclists has to take that “honor”. Father Of Driver In Fatal Hit & Run Of Bicyclist Speaks Out and Bicyclist Struck and Killed in Fort Lauderdale Sorry Daddy, but the evidence states otherwise than your scion. I’m sure that what you related was what he believes because the brain does some pretty strange things when trying to process missing information, but the physical evidence says your son hit the cyclist square from behind in the bike lane, not in the travel lane where that big ugly truck was supposed to be. Protocols might have helped avoid or prevent injury, but getting the infrastructure “up to Dutch” would have prevented this wreck. Dutch infrastructure would have never placed an unprotected bike lane adjacent to such a fast and heavily-traveled road as that.

Moving completely across the country on the longest diagonal of CONUS, we get a cyclist running into a police van. Cyclist injured after riding bike into parked Seattle police van and Woman without helmet injured after slamming bike into prisoner van 27-year-old bicyclist hits parked police van There was a report (since removed) that the cyclist had been run off the road by a vehicle making an illegal U-turn. Otherwise this wreck is completely unexplained. And while I was trying to find a cached copy I found some really bad stuff from the UK.

Closer to home, be looking for this depraved individual if you ride in Austin. Aggressive driver reportedly aimed for cyclists, runners on Great Northern Seriously, this dude needs to be taken out before someone else get seriously injured or killed. Seriously, this idiot tried to hit a mom pushing a stroller, that’s sociopathic if not psychopathic.

Another cyclist hit in AL. Bicyclist ‘fair’ after injured in Vestavia Hills crash Not much information on this one as “cyclist struck the vehicle” could mean the driver cut the cyclist off and the cyclist had no choice about hitting the vehicle, as in right hooks left crosses or a swoop and squat. There are some possibilities that include a cyclist running a stop sign where the cyclist is at fault, too. Just not enough information to process the report. Infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A car cuts a cyclist off in ID. Bicyclist hit by car in Eagle, driver cited The wreck was the result of a vehicle leaving a main road entering a side road and hitting the cyclist on the main road, so intersection protocols to avoid or reduce injury, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A dead cyclist is identified in CA, finally. First S.F. Cyclist Death Of The Year Finally Identified The cyclist was salmon in the bike lane when he was hit, and died about a week later without regaining consciousness. To avoid don’t ride salmon, and get the infrastructure to the point that riding salmon is an annoyance rather than a fatal mistake, like it is in the Netherlands.

More on the cyclist beating down a driver in CA. Bike vs car: The rest of the story So, cyclist gets hit with a truck, drunk jumps out of the truck because the cyclist damaged mirror on truck when he hit the cyclist with the truck, drunk driver’s drunk buddy also jumps out, and the cyclist beats the driver senseless in self-defense, then the cyclist is the “bad guy”? TANJ!

Another “Are you kidding me?” moment from America’s Paradise. Hawaii Driver Allegedly Hits Bikers On Purpose At Bike Safety Event No words, I have no words for this. More 5 cyclists hurt, 2 motorists held in dust-up on Century Ride

A really bad wreck caused by really bad infrastructure in the Great White North. Cyclist, 33, killed while riding bike through St. Denis underpass and Cyclist killed by truck under Des Carrières viaduct This is an abysmal place to ride but unfortunately one of the few places to cross this urban wall highway. Since there is no place to go except to sideswipe a concrete wall protocols are mooted here. There is nothing a cyclist can do except hold line and ride as fast as they can to get away from that death trap. Get the infrastructure right to prevent another death, or just be ready to bury another cyclist and accept the blood on your hands.

Scary-looking wreck in Jolly Olde. Watch: Shocking CCTV shows cyclist being rammed from his bike by a car Nothing the cyclist could have done as the driver swerved into the bike lane and sucker-punched the cyclist with the car. Even the normally car-centric and non-committed UK LEO say this was a deliberate assault.

Perhaps it’s not a good idea to be listening to loud music and high on pot when you ride? Killed cyclist ‘distracted’ by music Not quite sure how the cyclist was “distracted” by “loud music” when headphones were not mentioned in the report… Intersection wreck, use the protocols to avoid or reduce injury, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent. Remember that pot is legal in the Netherlands and they have a very low cyclist injury and fatality rate because even stoned drivers and cyclist are as separated as possible.

More news from Ted in LA. Morning Links: A disgustingly auto-centric driver, and the rest of the story on that biking tech exec beating

Lifestyle in CA. Bicyclist Able to “Finish the Ride” That Nearly Killed Him

Infrastructure! news in IN after a cyclist died from bad infrastructure. Cyclists call for safer bike lanes; tougher penalties This was not far from where the cyclist was hit in the bike lane by a driver who failed to yield when making a left turn.

And last link is infrastructure news from Jolly Olde. Town council want lights back on after cyclist injured in Harwich Standard (BS approved and legal) bike lights are only effective as “be seen” lights so more light is needed in town.

And those were all the links that gave me fits today. No giggles at all, sorry.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Thinking about Patreon, and the Feed

I have been thinking about subscribing to Patreon so that my income is more linear and more predictable and less “manna from heaven” between long bouts of poverty. I’m still checking with Automattic (the company that hosts my blog) about putting a Patreon button in one of the sidebars, or if I will have to put a link in every blog post to remind people about it. Having Patreon in the blog is totally kosher as far as they are concerned because it is just another link off-site like all my news links. The “other” problem is incentives for supporters. How should I reward supporters without spending everything I get on incentives? Put names in the headlines? Autographed pictures? One free ride on Francis/es? I have been thinking about making T-Shirts as a promotional item and to sell, so maybe a t-shirt at one level, with an autograph at a higher level? I made good some money last year amounting to just under $3K, but doing the blog keeps me from doing other things that I could be doing to make money that while not as much fun would be a steadier stream of income. I await comments and will continue to ponder.

Up first the Really Big Story is the driver that killed one of the three cyclists she hit on an arrow-straight flat road at 0130 is suing the trio (including the dead cyclist) for “ruining her enjoyment of life”. >retch< Woman sues parents of cyclist she killed with her SUV, complaining “her enjoyment of life has been be lessened” and Driver of SUV that hit cyclists suing dead teen’s family more Driver that fatally hit cyclist sues family and this Canadian Female Motorist Who Killed Teen Bike Rider Suing His Estate not done yet Woman who killed teen on bike sues teen’s family for $1.3 million for ‘emotional distress’ not done yet Driver sues dead teenage cyclist she knocked over and killed for HER “emotional trauma” still more Driver suing teenage cyclist she killed Can I just say that even the thought of suing the parents of a dead child for the psychological harm you suffered in killing that child is abhorrent to me, but doubly so in this case. The wreck was on an arrow-straight road that had an unobstructed view for miles, the 2 bicycles closest to or in the road had reflectors, all the riders had reflective raincoats on because of the drizzle, and the combination of clothing and reflectors should have given the driver a minimum of 30 seconds to see, identify, and avoid the cyclists by moving to the other lane that was free of traffic. Only one of the cyclists (the deceased one) was completely in the road, one was on the line between the shoulder and the travel lane and the third was completely in the shoulder at the time all three were hit… Maybe riding side-by-side was not as safe as all 3 riding single file in the shoulder, but the driver had more than enough time to move to the empty lane and make a safe pass had she been, you know, looking out the front of the car.

Moving a little closer to home, I have ridden this very train. A-train strikes cyclist I don’t know the crossing but local knowledge reports state that there is very obstructed visibility and no crossing gate where the cyclist was hit. Unfortunately I can’t get a recent Street View of the scene so I can’t say one way or the other.

Speaking of cyclists getting hit by trains, we have more on the one hit in NM last week. A preventable, tragic death: Some lessons Based on what was known last week and this new information SFPD garners new details from video of fatal train/bicycle crash Video always helps, especially good clear video. And now this becomes super puzzling, because people that know the victim and rode with her had commented on how careful and law-abiding she rode with them, and this report states she was crossing the street against the light and then turned directly in front of the train, going the opposite direction from the original reports. So Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot?

Still on the cyclists hit by trains theme, on in IL. Cyclist struck and killed by freight train after falling on tracks in downtown Elgin Nothing solid except the cyclist would not have been hit had he managed to stay upright. Still in all these cases the standard mantra of avoiding getting hit by trains applies. Trains are only found on train tracks and you can avoid getting hit by never being on the track at the same time as a train. That said all of the reports today are just confusing as to how the cyclists ended up getting hit.

A PA wreck with low information when I was filtering links. Coroner IDs cyclist killed in Silver Spring Township The bicycle in the picture appears to have been hit from behind, but I can’t see if the cyclist went under the wheels or if he was just clobbered and knocked to the side. Also can’t tell if the cyclist had lights or reflectors as that part of the bike was mangled. Also I can’t see what the clear visibility was but what little I can see of the scene suggests that it was straight up to the point of impact and had the cyclist been visible he would have been visible for some time prior to the impact. Late night and 74 YO cyclist could mean either the cyclist or the driver could have been drowsy. Hit-from-behind protocols to avoid and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

Another wreck that LEO are sitting on all the information about. Name of victim in bike/SUV accident released by investigators The location and even the facts of was he hit or not are all being kept way to close to their vests for my liking.. I smell a cover-up.

A CA wreck has more questions than answers. Santa Cruz Bicyclist Killed in Friday Night Hit-N-Run So they have a hubcap that might have been from the weapon vehicle, and a dead cyclist. LEO are claiming the cyclist was riding salmon in the bike lane but at the same time stated he fell from his bike and was laying in the travel lane when he was hit, so how are they sure which way he was going before he fell? At any rate the direction of travel is immaterial to this wreck if the cyclist fell over and was in the travel lane when hit.

Our Daily Ted link. Morning Links: Successful Finish the Ride, state hit-and-run bills advance, and an Agenda 21 conspiracy fail

And this unfortunate news from Ted. Today’s post, in which I win the genetic lottery, or why you haven’t seen me on my bike — or anywhere else — lately I don’t like the symptoms Ted is reporting, low energy and high blood sugar are tripping my alarms about other metabolic disorders, not diabetes.

A hit-from-behind wreck in Oz. Cyclist death leaves community mourning Protocols and infrastructure…

Hit-and-run in Oz. Driver flees scene after cyclist dies at Inglewood, west of Warwick Hit from behind, protocols and infrastructure including confiscating and destroying all vehicles used in hit and run. With the driver in them if they killed someone. 😡 More Police ask for help to find hit-and-run driver who killed cyclist Dr Martin Pearson at Inglewood

Lifestyle from CA. Cyclist who lost part of leg highlights hit-and-runs with bike ride This was the guy who got hit by a driver driving on the wrong side of the street to try to get around a long line of traffic that then turned on to an onramp for I-5 and dragged the cyclist almost a quarter of a mile. More Cyclist struck in hit-and-run looks to ‘Finish the Ride’

Sorta kinda lifestyle in IN. Man killed in collision with bus loved to ride his bike The thing that gets my goat on this one is there is no ambiguity in the laws about this wreck, the driver of the school bus was 100% at fault for hitting the cyclist while the bus was turning left.

More lifestyle from PA (I think). Bicycle event shows injured veterans are capable of anything

Infrastructure! news from south TX. Prioritize making S.A. friendly to pedestrians, cyclists Whodathunkit, a Texas politician actually espousing entering the 21st century as far as infrastructure is concerned. And all it took was one constituent a month getting killed in her district. >:P

We should be so lucky as to have this problem. Netherlands reports rise in bike-on-bike cycle path injuries There are so many people riding bicycles (as opposed to “cyclists”) that the bicycle paths are getting congested and people are having wrecks. But on the bright side, many fewer cyclists are getting hit by cars because the infrastructure there is the best in the world. Even the best in the world needs improvement, though.

More legal infrastructure problems in Jolly Olde. Campaigners say justice system is ‘failing to protect cyclists’ Yep, a prosecution rate of just over 10% is never going to win any friends except in the group doing the killing, who are literally getting away with murder. More Cyclists slam low number of car smash court cases The amount of money sounds huge until you stop and think that is the cost for rebuilding one freeway interchange. Then think of how many thousands of interchanges there are, how many dozens have to be rebuilt each year, how many miles of roads are being built between those interchanges and then you realize that the money is just a drop in the bucket compared to motor vehicle infrastructure spending. And the facts that even when a driver breaks the law they have a 9 in 10 chance of walking away without even a ticket.

And bad infrastructure continues to kill even after being alerted to replace it. Coroner demands safety action from council at Holborn junction where cyclist was killed Couldn’t there be a charge the next time someone was killed or injured trying to negotiate this intersection by bicycle? Like a criminal charge against the people dragging their heels about getting this fixed?

Last link, if this breakthrough can transfer over to rechargeable batteries it could spell wonders for all forms of EV including e-assist bikes. ‘Revolutionary’ advanced battery leaps theoretical maximum boundary Right now this research is only applicable to primary (disposable) batteries, and could mean less frequent battery change surgery for implanted devices, but there is hope that there will be secondary cells that can benefit from the research if not the actual discovery.

And those were all the links that gave me fits and giggles today. Sadly way too many fits and not enough giggles.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Had to miss church because I can’t see where I’m going on a Wreck-Free Sunday

Pollen and I are not getting along today as I have goopy eyes as a result of an allergy attack. I can see well enough to type a blog post (most of the time anyway) but I would be a danger to myself and others on the roads if I was to try to ride my bike. Add to that the constant drowsiness caused by my allergy meds and it is not a pretty picture. I’m almost finished with my second 16 oz. “cup” of coffee this morning and I’m still just barely awake enough to type. Needless to say I’m having to go back and correct typos every few words as I constantly hit the wrong keys or the right keys in the wrong order.

Last night the group I game with had almost half out for one reason or another and we couldn’t do our regular campaign because there were seriously important party members missing, like 2 of our 3 healers and both our Rogues. We might could have managed without the 2 healers with the reduced party, but without Rogues to scout and defeat traps we were doomed to fail as a party. So we rolled up some high-level characters and started an “episodic” campaign. The characters had to be 11, 12, or 13 level and were allowed to use the “Roll 4 and reroll ones, then take your highest 3” method of rolling stats, which usually results in some pretty strong characters. I rolled a 12th level Warmage, which is an awesome combat character with slots for 39 spells a day from a spell list of more than 150 spells. The only problem I see with this character is a total lack of utility spells for encounters using parties lacking certain skills. I mean whoever heard of a magic-using character that did not have “use magic device” as a class skill? Seriously, no better at using wands or scrolls than the average fighter or other non-magic user?

Anyway the first encounter we had was an anomaly in the slum district that resulted in a portal to a dimensional prison being opened up inside some poor schmuck’s apartment, resulting in the tenant being sucked into the portal and disintegrated by one of the prison guards, a living spell of disintegration that was supposed to zap anyone that managed to get out before they could cause problems in the material plane. It failed to do so because it was not sufficiently sentient to actively pursue the escapee that wandered into the city and it attacked the people trying to get the mess cleaned up. It was a pretty powerful spell as it hit one party member with 136 points of damage in one attack, and also capable of shrugging off non-magical attacks with less than 10 points of damage. It took several rounds to destroy the spell so that we could get close enough to see what turned out to be a dimensional prison, and also see the results of the spell that had allowed one of the prisoners to escape to our plane of existence. We learned the name and nature of the creature that had escaped (A Pleasure Demon, similar to a succubus but non-fatal unlike the succubus). I have to say I like this format of high-level characters taking on single battle encounters.

Because I was with the RPG group last night I missed the Sprint Cup race at Richmond on the tube, but I understand it was a barn-burner of a race. Joey Logano (the driver formerly known as “Sliced Bread” as in “the best thing since…”) snuck through to win in a 4 car battle. I wish I had been able to see it.

Now I’m sitting through a rain delay for the Barber Motorsports Park Indycar race in Alabama. They have rain tires for this series but they are not any good with standing water on the track and the downpour they are dealing with has completely flooded the track in some places. Plus there is lightning in the area and local officials won’t allow spectators out when that happens. So they have bumped the Indy Lights race coverage from after the Indycar race to before. I like the Lights class, especially with the new 2.0 liter 4-cylinder turbo engine replacing the previous 3.5 liter normally-aspirated V-8.

Something I would like to see in Indycar racing is more manufacturers in the chassis segment. I know they went with the single-make format to reduce costs, but for us gearheads it kills a great deal of the “fun” of watching the races. Part of that is seeing where some chassis have advantages over others, and managing where your chassis is weak so that you can use your strengths to get an advantage. But with the “spec car” series the battle of the crew chiefs fades away somewhat although they are still trying to get the setup of the cars right with good grip and balance.

And they just started the race on wet tires and there are some really dicey spots in some of the corners and two laps in there was a spin. I’m going to get comfy and watch the rest of the race.

PSA, Opus

If I can ride Francis/es on doubletrack I should be able to ride to church, and the Feed

If I can ride a loaded cargo bike on doubletrack, I should be able to ride the same bike to church for a social or a service, right? I mean controlling more than 200 pounds of bike and cargo on a dusty slippery, rutted path used mostly by cars and ATVs at 5 MPH should be lots harder than riding 8 feet of bike in light traffic, right? Well I’m going to find out tonight when I ride Francis/es to Heathens and drum jam tonight at Sacred Journey Fellowship. The only bad thing I see about this is I will have to leave my helmet at home because I can’t tilt my head back far enough to see past the visor, which means I will have to use my ears much more than I usually need to because I have “West Coast” mirrors on the helmet to give me a panoramic view of what’s behind me. I am building a new stem that will allow me to ride more upright and see what’s in front without having to kink my neck and force my head against the lipoma on the back of my neck. I know it’s a terrible thing to have to build something that will let you ride the way you’re most comfortable when you drop 11 benjamins and change on a new bike, but that’s reality. The fact that I was able to get a Dutch-style cargo bike for so little is solely because they aren’t custom made to fit. That option would raise the price by 50% or more.

Up first because idiots won’t let me ignore it is a letter from a concern troll about that wreck in the RGV of extreme south TX where the perps in a hit-and-run left with the cyclist’s body in the back of the truck and dumped that body in a ditch on the side of the road several miles from the scene of the wreck. LETTER: Cyclist killed The level of “entitled” evident in this letter is disgusting. Using bicycles as your only source of transportation is a “want” but driving your fat ass with your fat ass kids in the SUV to Burger King to load up on Big Kings and double bacon cheeseburgers is a “need”? Please, spare me.

Update on another wreck where the victim was hauled away from the scene of the crime and dumped elsewhere. Bond denied for man accused of leaving injured bicyclist behind dumpster This was the FL wreck where the cyclist got stuck between the rear window and the rear spoiler on a Fox body Mustang and the drunk driver dumped him by the dumpsters at his girlfriend’s apartment. Said GF is now an XGF if what I read otherwhere is true, which I hope it is because it means the XGF is more human than the animal that dumped the body. At least they are keeping this animal in a cage for the time being.

Update on the cyclist left-crossed by a school bus in IN. Bicyclist killed by school bus on Indy’s north side The investigator for this one needs to be fired yesterday. “It was unclear who was at fault, police said.” The cyclist was through traffic, the bus was turning, and traffic making a turning movement across through lanes must yield to through traffic. The bus failed to yield to through traffic, where is the ambiguity in that?

Moving to OH trial has been set for the drunk driver who killed a cyclist and then abandoned the weapon vehicle in a nearby parking lot to go drink in another bar after the wreck. Trial set for man charged with killing cyclist I’m really glad I have some funny links to post later in this blog or I would turn into one of those mass murderers you see on TV and read about in the newspapers. Fortunately I don’t own any weapons of mass destruction needed to do that, the closest thing I have to a WMD is Francis/es which is only slightly more deadly than your average CF road bike.

Because there was a second vehicle that ran over a cyclist involved in a hit-and-run, the driver of the first vehicle gets a free pass over killing him? Barnstable woman convicted of lesser charge in bicyclist’s death

A CO cyclist killer may never get to trial after having a stroke while in custody. Competency review rescheduled for Patrick Ward in Lyons DUI crash that killed cyclist AFAIK he’s more sentient than a rutabega, but less than your average tree.

Report from Ted Rogers that another SoCal cyclist has been hit-and-run. Bike rider killed in San Bernardino County hit-and-run This must be terrible for Ted as much of the SoCal cyclist scene is less than 4 degrees of separation from Mr. Rogers. It looks like there was a witness to the wreck and the weapon vehicle was running a red light as the cyclist crossed the intersection where he was killed. There is exactly nothing a cyclist can do to avoid a wreck like this and even Dutch style infrastructure is helpless against a driver that ignores traffic controls when a cyclist is crossing the street. Speaking of Dutch infrastructure I will have a link to bad Dutch infrastructure that US cyclists would hold hostages to get later in my blog post.

Another wreck in Oz, with minimal information. Cyclist killed on highway outside Naracoorte, driver suffers critical head injuries in ute rollover Once again we know more about an injury car wreck than a fatal bike wreck.

And a wreck in Jolly Olde faces the dock over civil compensation for the victim. Metropolitan Police Sued by Family of Injured Cyclist They can’t directly sue the driver because he was supposedly on official business at the time of the wreck, so they have to sue the employer.

The rest of your Daily Ted. Morning Links: An inspiring and horrifying interview, outrageous bike news, and send a guy on Climate Ride Go Ted!

A combination of infrastructure and lifestyle news. Flipping anti-bike arguments on their heads (+funny video)

Using all the facts to get good infrastructure. HOW MONTREAL BUILT A BIKE LANE BY DEBUNKING THE AUTOPARKOLYPSE Don’t let antis keep the focus on just that one small stretch of street, widen it out to the entire area and count all the parking spots.

And after you get all those separated bike lanes you have to keep them clean or people will stop using them. TECH TALK: THE BEST STREET SWEEPERS FOR CLEARING PROTECTED BIKE LANES

Bad Dutch infrastructure that is still orders of magnitude better than anything in Texas. On-road cycle-lanes. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly (mostly bad and ugly) Where he sees “ugly” and “bad” Dutch infrastructure I see stuff I wish we had here. I have seen pictures of what they consider “passable, but could be better” and I just want to cry…

A bit of cycling lifestyle courtesy of Traffic author Tom Vanderbilt. The Ride on Chicago

Where do people ride their bikes? Where there are people and bikes. Peep popular bike routes in this hella-detailed national map

Riding a bike heals broken souls. Injured Veterans to Cycle 450 Miles from Covington, Ky., to Nashville, Tenn., for the 2014 UnitedHealthcare Ride 2 Recovery Bluegrass Challenge

Last link is a video that shows you don’t know how to ride a bike, while it shows riding a bike burns a ton of Calories. Calories See the guy with the beard? Yes, he rides a bike better than you. (No spoilers)

And those are all the links that gave me fits and giggles today. Still more fits than giggles, but the ratio was a bit better today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

This is going to be a busy day, and the Feed

The lawn needs to get finished mowing, to do that gas must be bought and returned to Casa de El Poeta, I’m supposed to be cooking dinner tonight (Spam stir fry), and I have a blog post to finish sometime today, Oh yes it’s grocery day and there is almost no food in the house because Mrs. the Poet was sick last week and I was out of town so nobody bought anything more to eat. Add to that the minor(?) annoyance that one of the scars on my leg has decided to start itching (and I can’t tell if it is a real itch or a Phantom Itch) and let’s say I’m in a frenetic mood today.

Up first today because the wreck still pisses me off annoys me greatly is the memorial ride for the cyclist killed when a hit-and-run driver drove away with the cyclist in the bed of his truck. Memorial ride scheduled to honor cyclist killed in accident I’m sorry, this ceased to be an “accident” when the driver left the scene with the cyclist in the bed of his truck, that’s when he crossed the line into Capital Murder and earned a shot at the needle, or even better make him ride a bicycle down a freeway at night without lights until he gets run over since that seems to be such a popular way of killing people in TX.

Another bike wreck in TX. Bicyclist hit by a car in Harlingen Intersection wreck but other than that LEO are sitting on the details of this case. That usually means the driver was totally at fault and they can’t figure out a way of spinning it to make the cyclist look bad without making everybody look bad including the investigating officer. Intersection protocols might have helped avoid or reduce injury, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent altogether. The pictures that showed up when the page refreshed make it look like the cyclists (there are two wrecked bikes in the pictures) were riding salmon on the crosswalk when the driver pulled into the crosswalk hitting one in the back tire and catching the other between the front wheel and fender of the truck. That is indicative of the driver rolling a right on red at a fairly high rate of speed. IOW the only reason he didn’t hit a pedestrian is the cyclists were there first.

Another school bus/bicycle wreck, this time in IN. Bicyclist killed by school bus at Northside intersection The description is a perfect left cross wreck, driver turning from east bound to north hits a cyclist going west through the intersection without turning. Intersection protocols to avoid or reduce injury, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A NE child rider is injured running a stop sign, maybe. Boy critically injured in car-bike accident The Street View of the scene shows a restricted view to the right at the stop sign, and a 3 lane highway with a 35 MPH limit that I’m sure is honored more in the breach than in reality for the cyclist to cross. Anyway, intersection protocols to avoid or reduce injury, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent. And be careful crossing highways in the middle of residential areas.

Another link to the laughable sentence for killing a cyclist while DUI in CA. Woman gets 3 years, 8 months for death of cyclist in Boyle Heights And she got to keep her car and driver’s license…TANJ!

Double Ted today. Morning Links: BOLO alert for Brentwood hit-and-run driver Yep, be looking for a car that was likely repaired our of state several weeks ago and driven back under wraps. I’m with Ted on this one.

Second Ted is a bit of bicycle history direct from a SoCal park. Born in West LA — LABAC member traces the beginnings of BMX to a Westside park

And another link to Houston driver unable to pass a bicycle with a flag showing what a safe distance is under the law. Houston cyclist uses 3-foot pole to keep drivers in their lane Oh look, the concern trolls come out for the party…

And those were all the links that gave me fits and giggles.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

The grass is partly mowed, and the Feed

The short answer to the “Huh!?!” question of the headline, I ran out of gas both actually and metaphorically and will have to continue operations tomorrow. From what I could see from this morning’s efforts the mower needs some extensive maintenance to continue operation, if the trail of leaking gasoline from the primer pump is an indication. Fortunately I have a vehicle capable of transporting the mower to a repair shop now, thanks to Francis/es.

Up first is not a wreck, but a sad fact of life for cyclists. Police investigate downtown strong-armed robbery Since as cyclists we are not encased in a light armored cocoon it is very easy for someone to walk (or run) up to us and deprive us of our possessions, including the bike we are riding. I have no suggestions aside from learning unarmed combat techniques that employ your bike as in this movie

From CA we get more on the gentle caress on the wrist for a killer driver who was still over the DUI limit more than 12 hours after she hit-and-run a group of cyclists, killing one. Los Angeles woman sentenced to 4 years for killing cyclist, injuring 2 others in 2013 DUI crash And by my count 44 months is 4 months shy of 4 years, unless you’re using some exotic 11-month calendar.

Ted Rogers sees thing pretty much the same way in today’s Daily Ted. Morning Links: Wrist slap for drunken hit-and-run killer; Breaking Away’s Dave Stoller was sort-of real Lots of really interesting links in that post there Ted.

I keep telling people how not to get hit by a train, but this one has lots of people wondering. Questions linger after death of avid bicyclist in train collision Here is what I think are the facts on this wreck: Experienced cyclist with thousands of miles on her personal odometer, riding on a bike path that runs parallel to the tracks until a right-angle turn to cross the tracks and continue on the other side, no crossing guard on the bike path and the signals for the nearby road crossing are not visible from the bike path, when traffic is heavy on the adjacent road the noise level gets pretty high and the wreck was near the peak traffic time of the day for that road. So we get no signals, no crossing guards, and an environment loud enough to drown out an oncoming train, leading to an experienced cyclist crossing directly in front of a train.

They have a picture of the suspect in a NYC hit-and-run that killed a cyclist. Police Seek This Man For Allegedly Killing Cyclist & Driving Away If you see this man remember that he has to be taken alive so no hammers over 2 pounds head weight, don’t use the claw or pick end, and nothing to the head. Besides leg and arm blows are more effective in restraining the suspect without making him un-triable. If he can’t understand the charges because of brain damage he walks.

Still in NYC NYPD is hanging on to bikes of dead cyclists instead of releasing them to plaintiff’s attorneys for use in their civil cases against drivers at fault for killing the cyclists. NYPD Refuses To Return Bike Of Slain Williamsburg Cyclist This is actually a crime, and the person preventing this could be subject to prosecution and imprisonment.

Another link to the vile cabbie who ran over a pedestrian on the sidewalk after trying to run over a cyclist. Cabbie who blamed cyclist after he maimed pedestrian back behind the wheel This one is from the UK, the home country of the victim of this case.

What appears to be a left cross in IL. Cyclist Struck, Killed By Van In Roselle Intersection wreck, use the protocols to avoid or reduce damages, and get the infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A low-information report on a wreck in Oz. Cyclist injured in Brisbane’s north Aside from the notice that a wreck has happened there isn’t any “there” there.

Infrastructure! news from MO. Highway Patrol encourages motorists to ‘Share the Road’ for Bicycle Safety Month I just wish they would say up front and repeatedly that “Share the Road” does not mean “Bicycles get the Hell out of the Way”…

Infrastructure from NYC as a hotel that has been mostly served by residents arriving by motor vehicles fights any effort to change that even if it means more customers with more money. Plaza hotel, NYC face off over bike-sharing rack

Infrastructure from East Canuckistan. Chris Turner: Cycle tracks are the sustainable choice

Could this be the road of the future? Sandpoint innovators’ solar road panels remove snow, generate power Imagine the amount of power that could be generated by all those parking lots that are mostly empty outside major shopping areas.

Last link is to a competitor in the upcoming Little 500 bike race (made famous by Breaking Away) recovering from a training wreck. Local bicyclist slowly recovering after wreck at Little 500 The headline is more than a little misleading as the race isn’t until next month. This was a training/practice wreck.

And those are all the links that gave me fits and giggles today, more fits than giggles but that’s the way of the world. Sometimes you’re the windshield, sometimes you’re the bug.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Running late again from the neck cracker, and the Feed

Here I am again starting this post right about dinner time because I spent half the day getting to and from the chiropractor. The good news is I’m getting better, they almost have the pelvic tilt straightened up as long as I keep the lift in my shoe. The even better news is now they are moving on to fix other things that have been not right, like the shoulder that keeps me from being able to raise my arm much above horizontal or rotate my palm as far as the good arm. My good arm has 270° rotation at the wrist when I combine the rotations from the elbow down with the shoulder, the bad arm as a little over 180 or basically from the elbow down only. Between throwing wood for the camp fire and loading Francis/es for trips around the camp site I didn’t do it any good this past weekend either. But as I said, things are improving.

Up first for your anger management class testing is the news that the cabbie who cut off the foot of a British tourist in NYC last summer as he was trying to hit a cyclist and drove onto the sidewalk is back driving a cab. Cabbie Who Maimed Tourist In Midtown Is Driving Taxi Again Yeah, I’m angry and upset about it too, but what can you do? The DA refused to even charge the guy after he publicly admitted he was assaulting the cyclist (who had only minor injuries) when he ran over the tourist.TANJ!

Closer to home a rare sentence that is almost fitting for a drunk driver that ran over a TX cyclist. El Paso woman sentenced to 10 years in prison in bicyclist’s death She will be eligible for probation in another 5 years, but I didn’t see anything about her losing her license to drive.

The cyclist that survived the double collision in NOLA when a blind driver hit two cyclists from behind with an empty lane to the left of the wreck is making great strides to recovery. Cyclist injured in deadly crash making strides At this point they are not saying if he will recover the use of his legs, but reported signs are hopeful. The driver was still in jail as of the last report on that situation. That makes almost a week that hitting those cyclists has kept him from reaching his destination for the day.

A MI cyclist is injured while having a separate medical emergency and does not have wearable ID. Deputies seek public’s help identifying injured cyclist found near Dutton This is another reminder of why wearable ID is not just a good idea.

And here is our Daily Ted. Morning Links: Torrance father rides for his daughter, and court hearings for Wendy Villegos and Jose Gonzales I have a suggestion for the DUI driver that killed the cyclist, if no prison then force her to ride a bicycle for a period of 10 years instead, with some way of monitoring her location and speed to make sure she only walks or rides that bike wherever she goes.

A blotter report on a cyclist getting hit in Oz. Street Watch: Police blitz snares officer over the limit As the article is posted at the moment the cyclist wreck is second down. No mode given, so infrastructure “up to Dutch” to prevent.

A little Infrastructure! news from SC. Myrtle Beach aiming to be more bicycle friendly This from the state that is 4th in cyclist deaths and 34th in bicycle infrastructure spending.

Legal infrastructure news from Bike Portland. Get Legal: Doored? The law is on your side (but that might not be enough)

A little Lifestyle from the UK. Cyclists turn out to help brave Linthorpe teen Ben Honeysett on the road to recovery after crash

Gothamist loses their collective minds over a cyclist riding without a helmet and carrying a little girl in a Citibike. Photo: Father And Daughter Enjoy Death Defying Citi Bike Ride
Not what I would recommend as a way to move a child around a busy city, but I’m not the parent in charge, presumably the grim-faced adult in the picture is.

And some real fun from SF CA. ‘Big Wheel’ Race Down Crookedest Street In The World Thrills Thousands, Dings A Few This looks like it would be so much more fun with smaller heat races qualifying for the final run so that the riders had some room to really cut loose.

And those were all the links that gave me fits or giggles. Lots of giggles today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Wreck-Free Sunday on a Monday, or how I spent my spring break

I got back from my camping trip late last night nearly exhausted from my adventures and somewhat the worse for wear. I’m nursing a sunburn on my scalp again because I had to remove my hat to be able to see where I was going during part of the campout, and in spite of wearing long sleeve shirts every day I managed to get some sun on my back and arms somehow.

This was Francis/es public debut as a working bike, and I couldn’t have hardly picked a better demonstration ground than where I was. Spirit Haven is ~100 acre semi-primitive camping area about halfway between Austin and Houston, about 2 miles north of Flatonia and 26 miles west of LaGrange, just east of TX 95. There is one “road” that loops around the grounds that is about 3/4 of a mile around from the front gate to the point where the loop comes back to itself (AKA “the end”). This “road” is actually more of a double track with some mud/dust, some gravel, lots of ruts, and washboard. IOW small enough to make riding a bicycle easy and pretty much a wash over going on foot, but rugged enough to make riding a cargo bike a challenge. Photography was limited to your own camp site so I can’t show much in the way of pictures, but I did get a few.

This one is a typical load I moved around from Vendor’s Row to a camp site.
not very heavy, but hard to steer around

My best customer as a passenger, she took like 5 trips to or from Vendor’s Row.
Passenger service
As you can see a Clyde can be used for passengers. It just isn’t as easy as a dedicated pedicab.

This was not without complications. The roughness of the road and the geometry of the bike combined to have me wind up with blood in my shorts twice in 4 days of working the event because of bad fit. I really need to raise the handlebars about 6-8″ from where they are in the pictures in order to have the hardened parts of my butt resting against the saddle, and probably a broader saddle to absorb the bumps. Riding around getting blood in the shorts from resting against the wrong parts of the butt is a highly sub-optimal condition for making money on a cargo bike.

Speaking of making money I did make a few bucks at $1/ride or delivery anywhere on the grounds. Delivery was for anything that fit in the cargo bed and less than 300 pounds, and I had a wood delivery that came very close to those maximums. I also had a passenger run that did likewise 😉 Running close to max loads caused the front tire to deflect a lot bouncing over the washboard “road”, but the ride was smoother with a bigger load. Launching caused Francis/es to live up to hir name as a stubborn mule especially in the open field of Vendor’s Row, but I never lost a load or rider on launch. I did dump one rider at the end of her ride when I pulled off the “road” and into a hidden hole that caused me to lose my balance. Because of the way the bed was built it was a “no harm no foul” kind of a dump, but I still felt pretty bad about the rough end to the ride, especially as she was recovering from a really bad car wreck (a semi running near DOT maximum GVW T-boned the car she was riding in from the driver’s side at 70 MPH, killing her husband instantly and putting her in hospital for 3 months).

The group I was camping with blesses their camp fire at the beginning of the camp, than never lets it go out until either the end of the event or some weather emergency requires all open flames to be extinguished. The evening fires can have flames over 8 feet tall from a stack of wood right at 4 feet tall, and let me tell you it can be quite a sight. Having a fire going that long and that hot causes a lot of heat to get down into the ground under the fire pit. This picture shows how much heat there is after burning for more than 4 days continuously.Boiling water in the fire pit
That water is boiling furiously 5 minutes after the fire was put out. Yes it really was that hot.

Now that I have this post almost done I have 5 days worth of e-mails to sort through and file before I can get my online life back in order. Not to mention 5 days worth of comics to get caught up on so I don’t lose the threads of the plots.

PSA, Opus

I was not expecting to be here, and the Feed

I got the news last night after putting the blog to bed that my ride to the festival was going to be delayed by the driver having a doctor’s visit that was rescheduled and not something that could be rescheduled again. So, here I am. While I was waiting something interesting came in the mail: the bill for my new health insurance policy, showing how much I owed and how much my subsidy will be. I’m going to be walking to places that allow me to pay it in cash, because my premium after subsidy is pocket change, literally. I find more change in the roads and on the sidewalks every month than my insurance premium, which means I can pay for health insurance while I’m walking to pick up groceries and any number of other things.

Up first is a couple of links to what now looks like an assault with a motor vehicle on triathletes training prior to an event in NOLA. Athletes compete in New Orleans Ironman Triathlon the event and the updated wreck report Motorist accused of killing cyclist, injuring another before Ironman race says wreck not his fault Driver claiming a SWSS is thwarted by a witness and by LEO capable of interpreting the physical evidence that showed otherwise. I would state that things like this (driver claiming SWSS refuted by other evidence) would happen much more frequently if more cyclists had cameras recording their rides. The weapon vehicle in this case had two impact sites on the front as well as two impact sites on the windshield that showed the trajectory of both cyclists, and if I’m reading the report right (that I can’t link to my blog, sorry) the trajectory of the second cyclist hit, the one that survived, showed him moving to the right when he was hit, away from the car.

A cyclist is killed riding in the bike lane in America’s Paradise. LETTER: Hawaii Bicycling League Weighs in on Kihei Fatality Hit from behind in the bike lane, is there any better example of “entitled” driver than that?

Our first Infrastructure! link is from MIT via Austin TX. MIT maps Austin bike wrecks and includes worst streets for accidents The map looks pretty much like a street map of Austin, with some streets a little brighter lighted than others. Austin

A similar treatment for L.A. Interactive Map Shows Where Bike Crashes Happen The Most In L.A. There are significant blank areas in the L.A. map. Are they due to a lack of surface streets or a lack of cyclists willing to use them? And I noticed a lot fewer intersections are lit up compared to mid-block wrecks.

Is this a “breakthrough” in bicycle safety for cyclists in America’s Copenhagen? With grant application, PBOT finally acknowledges ‘safety issue’ with streetcar tracks Cyclists have been telling them for 7 years that they placed the tracks in such a manner that cyclists were at risk, and now they are paying attention and trying to determine just how bad it really is. First step in fixing a problem is seeing if you have a problem and what the problem is. Also apply that statement to the maps in the above links.

I can totally see these installed in areas with little electricity or street lighting. Glow-in-the-Dark Roads Are Finally Here What these have over retroreflective paints is not needing an external light source to work, making “seen by” bike lights more effective for cyclists. If the road shows you where to go, then all you really need is something that lights up things above the surface to get obstructions hanging over the road.

More infrastructure news from GA. Cyclists cautiously optimistic about bike path changes You can tell a lot about the problems riding a bike in Hotlanta is “Subjective Safety” to quote Hembrow .

I guess this is Lifestyle? Stolen bike spotted while woman reports it stolen My reaction to this is if someone tells me they have a gun in their bag while I’m trying to detain them with stolen property, beat them senseless to keep them from getting inside the bag. But then I beat up a truck that passed me on the right last year, and I’m 3-0-4 against pickup trucks lifetime (I totalled out 3, none have “totalled” me yet, and 4 others have withdrawn from battle after first strike).

And now a word from our Ted. Morning Links: BOLO for dangerous San Fernando Valley driver and disappearing Bike Plan bikeways I hate when planned-for things are dropped from bike plans, leaving gaping holes in the network.

And those were all the links I was not expecting to be home to share today. Enjoy!

Billed @€0.02, Opus