Tag Archives: fun on a bike

A quiet day, and the Feed

Not too bad today. I don’t have to go anywhere or do anything aside from posting to the blog and the usual day-to-day stuff. I don’t even have anything to do tonight, except read comics and watch the tube. I wonder what’s on TV on Wednesday night?

Up first from a rather sparse listing is this hit-and-run in FL. Police ID bicyclist killed in hit-and-run crash on the Westside Nothing on the mode has been released yet, but the witness description of the sounds of the wreck indicate that the driver probably knew he hit someone as the victim would have been unable to make any contributions to the shouting heard after the wreck as he was pronounced dead at the scene.

On the other side of the country at about the same latitude we get a similar wreck as the driver again leaves the cyclist to die in the street. Bicyclist Injured in Midway Hit-and-Run Crash Hit-from-behind wreck, so maybe the protocols would have been useful in avoiding or reducing the damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent. They should give the driver a ticket for failing to pass 3 or more feet away from the cyclist… along with all the other “stuff” that goes with hitting a cyclist in the road and leaving him or her there.

From Oz we get a rather blatant door prize caught on camera and denied by the perps. Police urged to charge passenger after cyclist car-doored in CBD What those cab riders did was hit-and-run, and it was caught on camera.

A cyclist in Jolly Olde files suit after hitting a pothole and sustaining life-altering injury. Cyclist sues council for £100,000 after pothole crash The follow-up in the comments section reports the suit was settled for £70,000.

SF decides to put in some Faahbyuluhs! infrastructure. San Francisco’s Castro district is putting in rainbow crosswalks At least drivers will know there’s something there and hopefully be a little more careful about barging through.

A little acerbic infrastructure news from CA. Avid cyclist to newbies: It’s your fault we can’t have nice things

Even Ted Rogers gets a little testy about bad infrastructure. Hermosa Beach allows LA County’s first cycle track to dangerously deteriorate; and a fresh batch of Morning Links What have they been doing to that bicycle infrastructure to cause it to deteriorate like that? Bicycles didn’t do that amount of damage.

And the ones I didn’t get to yesterday. Morning links: Your Tuesday morning bike reading list

Legal infrastructure from the Great White North. Will Ontario’s tougher measures against distracted driving, ‘dooring’ and passing bikes too closely make us safer? Whether this works will depend on the last “E” of Enforcement. You can pass all the laws you want but unless and until they are enforced they are meaningless.

Even in Jolly Olde they get it wrong frequently about infrastructure. Do we ban all pedestrians or just all men? Not the article, the report to which the article is referring.

Don’t let a little thing like it being almost 5 years since the last pedestrian was killed in NYC by a cyclist stop you from blaming them for creating mayhem… Oscar Health Insurance: “Bike Messengers Can Blindside You”

A new e-assist bike hits the streets. The New High Tech Stromer ST2 Electric Bike! [VIDEO]

Last link is infrastructure news from Springfield, home of the Simpsons. Inside The Simpsons’ Springfield Subway System It ain’t about bikes all the time, sometimes it’s about having a little fun.

And those were all the links that gave me fits or giggles today. I must say I much prefer giggles. 😉

Billed @€0.02, Opus


After a long day, the Feed

Well I’m back from my expedition to the pharmacy. I left the house at 0900 and returned about 1810, mostly because catching transfers on the way back is a nightmare of watching busses go by just before the bus I was riding got to the stop. Then I get to sit and wait almost an hour for the next bus in that direction, twice (I missed two transfers). Add to that the processing time to fill my prescription and we’re talking an all-day trip just to fill one prescription. And one very tired blogger at the end of it.

Anywho, Happy St. Paddy’s day! Here at Casa de El Poeta we had a traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner with potatoes and carrots to accompany. Mrs. the Poet got to prepare a meal without having to remove the flavor first or work from a package and it was delicious.

Up first after a long weekend is more on the SXSW wreck. Small vigil held for Dutchman killed in SXSW tragedy and Cyclist vigil for SXSW crash victims postponed even this from Houston Vigil honors victims of South by Southwest tragedy This wreck has literally left me without words. Well I have words, but they are so inadequate to express the magnitude of what happened. If something like this doesn’t lead to calls for car control and restrictions on car possession, waiting periods for car buyers and all the other things that go with having weapons of mass destruction, then I don’t know what will. Latest I hear on TV is they are not expecting at least 2 more of the injured to survive, raising the death toll to 4 out of the 25 hit.

Omaha was a bad place to be riding a bicycle last week as we get more on that wreck where a vehicle crossed the road to hit a cyclist head-on. Retired teacher, athletic trainer killed in collision west of Omaha and Woman, 82, identified as driver who struck cyclist also Driver who killed cyclist identified When a driver veers all the way across the road to hit you on the opposite shoulder there is not much you can do about it, except maybe bail to the right if you have time to react. Infrastructure might have prevented the cyclist from being there to get hit if it was completely up to Dutch standards.

A MI cyclist is injured in a hit-and-run. Bicyclist Injured in Wyoming Hit-and-Run Wyoming, MI… This appears to be another hit-from-behind hit-and-run from the narrative and the description of the debris so protocols to avoid or mitigate damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

More on a vehicular assault in MD. Cyclist Injured In Hit-And-Run Speaks Out As Riding Partner Remains On Life Support Once again we have the familiar hit-from-behind combined with the hit and run. Protocols and infrastructure, we really need that infrastructure.

You don’t need to get hit with a car to get really hurt riding a bicycle. Clearwater cyclist badly hurt as three bikes crash during ride Bobble in a peloton and you might end up like this guy eating concrete. The problem I see is there is no way to practice riding in a peloton at speed except to ride in a peloton at speed. It’s dangerous until you get enough experience, and there is only one way to get enough experience. Y’all be careful out there.

The wreck (and other) news from SoCal courtesy of Ted Rogers of BikingInLA. Morning links: LA cyclist is shocking collateral damage, fatal San Diego bike-by, NC writer gets it so wrong Ted has a few duplicate links to mine.

A cyclist in far West Canuckistan gets a judgment in his favor after getting partially wiped by a motor vehicle. Injured Nanaimo cyclist awarded $1.2 million after being hit by car

Lots of bad news out of Oz today, as another mass assault with a motor vehicle takes 7 cyclists down sending at least 5 to hospital. Cyclists injured after collision with car and Vicious cycle: injured teen Bryce Dean searched for his father after 4WD ploughed into cyclists The cyclists were hit from behind after the weapon vehicle drifted into the shoulder where they were riding in accordance with Australian law. Notice there is a Jersey Barrier to the left of the cyclists making hit from behind protocols moot as there was no place to go when the weapon vehicle came into their lane.

Trigger warning, this set my PTSD off like a bear in the face. Caught on camera: The moment when a car hits cyclist from behind I do not understand this wreck, the driver ran right into the cyclist who was almost directly in front of the driver.

Infrastructure! news from BikingInLA. Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day — Main Street Santa Monica goes neon green Isn’t it lovely?

And those were all the links that gave me fits today this weekend.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

On being hedonistic on St. Pattie’s Day, on Wreck-Free Sunday

Mrs. The Poet and I went to the Greenville Ave. St. Patrick’s Day Parade yesterday to celebrate our Irish Heritage. And have fun watching drunk people screaming for beads…

Photographic proof we were there.

It was a trifle crowded there. Since I can’t see what is in the frame with my $5 phone Mrs. the Poet was a little hidden behind my head. And I have no idea who any of the rest of those people are. But you can see how crowded it was, as Mrs. the Poet did not get any closer to me to get in the picture. And at 1030 the people in the picture (some of them, anyway) had already begun their alcohol consumption. And by the end of the parade the garbage container next to us was nearly overflowing with empties.

You might have noticed I have nearly achieved maximum fuzziage in this picture taken a week and a day prior to out annual “Shearing of the Flock” celebration at church. At this point it looks like the ritual will be after the Sunday morning service next week. Since this will be daylight I hope to get better pictures this time than last year. That would mean a late post with lots of pictures and short on text. We have been doing this particular ritual for quite a while, and the one thing we can guarantee is that the weather will be weatherish. The precipitation has varied from snow to bright sunshine with a couple of rainy days in there, too. Temperatures have ranged from below freezing to nearly 90°F. Or in other words typical “Texas Spring” weather.

I’m watching the Sprint Cup race from Bristol, or I would be if it wasn’t raining again. This has not been a good weather year so far for NASCAR with at least 2 of the first 4 races with rain delays, Daytona and Bristol. The other 2 races were in the deserts of NV and AZ, not much rain there.

Joey Logano has lost his power steering which they were trying to diagnose when the red flag came out for the latest rain delay which is a major problem with the way the cars are set up today. Back when I was working on stock cars they used something called “caster stagger” with different caster settings on the left and right sides to make the cars turn left pretty much all by itself. Turning right was next to impossible so the hot setup was to put a trace of understeer in the car so that drivers never had to turn the wheel past center to the right. Then they could use a fairly quick manual steering box without exhausting the driver too much. But caster stagger reduces the available grip in the front end. The way the front end is set up now the car doesn’t automatically turn left, but it does have more grip when the wheels are turned to the left so they use the power steering to make up the difference for the drivers’ not being Superman. That’s something I don’t have to worry about with street cars, but wide tires and quick steering ratios also call for a little power assist.

And that makes for a segue to the next paragraph. The bucket was initially designed for a Vega steering box and cross steering but the Vega box has a 20:1 steering ratio and 5 turns lock to lock. That’s too slow for autocross racing, or SCCA SoloII as it used to be called. Now it’s Solo if it’s in a parking lot with only cones marking the course, or Time Attack if they’re on a regular track. But either way, the stock Vega box won’t cut it, and the quick ratio power steering boxes available are wider than the Vega box and won’t fit the narrow T Bucket front end. I’m building my own frame, but it still wouldn’t look right with a big steering box hanging off the left side of the front end, but I have a possible solution for that. One of the things I was planning on was having a very deep section near the front end and additional triangulation and stiffness from running downtubes from the roll cage to the front shock hoop. And what I’m thinking as a possibility is to mount the quick ratio power steering box to the inside of the outside vertical web of the left frame rail, with gusseting and additional vertical supports to make up for the missing parts of the inside web. This will move the box 1.5″ to the left to clear the engine block without making the nose any wider. After I check this with the CAD (cardboard aided design) I might bulge the frame rail a bit to the left to clear the engine and for the frame rail to clear the steering arm at full right lock (the steering arm on the box moves left to turn the front wheels right).

On a programming note, I need to make a trip to the pharmacy way out in Carrollton which means I will be spending several hours riding the bus to and from the store. I will be back somewhere around 1600 to 1700, and then I get to filter the Feed which has already gotten pretty big, so I may be pushing midnight to get posted.

PSA, Opus

The productivity monster ate my blog post, and the Feed

It was my intention to get up early and get a blog post done so that I would have my evening free for this thing they call “television” that I understand is highly entertaining and something I can share with others in a communal experience. But, Mrs. the Poet had other ideas. Since I can no longer get to my tool storage areas in the garage I have taken to keeping my tools in the living room where I can at least get to them. Well today Mrs. the Poet pitched a hissy fit over all the tools in the living room, and started “cleaning up”. Unfortunately her ideas of “cleaning up” were to do things like putting the 2 and 4 pound hammers and the chipping hammer in the same toolbox as all my precision measuring equipment and on the same level. At this point I don’t know how badly my calipers and micrometers are damaged if at all, but you can understand that I was not too happy to see the big hammers in and on the precision measuring tools. This devolved into a screaming match over whose house it was until I escorted her out to the garage and showed her all the “other people’s stuff” that was in the middle of the garage and more to the sides in front of my shelves and workbench. There is literally a wall 4 feet thick and more than 6 feet tall of “other people’s stuff” in front of my tool storage area, and there are 2 bikes including my show bike, that were in ridable condition except for flat tires because I can’t get to them under the piles of “other people’s stuff” on top of them. Then I calmly explained to Mrs. the Poet that if she wanted my expensive and sometimes delicate tools out of the living room she needed to get all the “other people’s stuff” out of the way of my tool storage areas and work areas. The last time someone “cleaned” the garage to put more “other people’s stuff” in it all my bikes were shoved off to the sides to make room which also blocked access to my tool storage and workbench. And I won’t say anything more about all the times I had to go out to the curb to rescue my stock of donor bikes…

Up first is a wreck in CA. Another cyclist struck in downtown S.F. There was little to go on in this wreck narrative when I saw the posting other than the cyclist was injured and transported. Infrastructure to prevent.

Another low-information wreck report from KY this time. Bicyclist hit in downtown Lexington At this point all I have is intersection wreck with a traffic control but no information on who violated the traffic control. Intersection protocols to avoid or to mitigate damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

A wreck in West Canuckistan. Cyclist hit by oncoming traffic The cyclist was hit when drivers had a “fresh” green, which means the cyclist was already in the intersection when the light changed. I wonder if the driver of the weapon vehicle will be charged with violating the right of way of the cyclist, or the cyclist with running the red in spite of the evidence the cyclist was well inside the intersection when the light changed. Anyway intersection protocols for whatever good they would do to minimize damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

Also from the Great White North final closure on a wreck from several years ago. Injured Kanata 5 cyclist to get $1.7M This was a hit-and-run with a suspected drunk driver that wandered into the bike lane and ran over a whole peloton, injuring 5. Unfortunately by he time they caught the driver too much time had elapsed since the wreck to prove he was intoxicated at the time of the wreck. And what really chaps my backside about this is more than half the money is coming from the victims’ insurance.

SWSS wreck in UK has the evidence challenged. Cudham cyclist’s inquest evidence called into question by brother The classic SWSS narrative, the driver never saw anything until hitting the cyclist.

Another link to that horrifying UK story of the killer driver walking away from court with community service. Lorry driver who killed London cyclist is spared jail Really, 250 hours of community service for rushing and mangling a human being to death with a multi-ton killing machine? TANJ!

A mostly-infrastructure post from BikingInLA. Morning links: Undead bike lanes in Beverly Hills, 11 routes to the Valley, and a harrowing Brit Jerry Brown And that video at the end was a terrifyingly close pass. It looked like the passenger side mirror passed right over the rider’s head by a few inches which means the side of the truck was scant inches from the cyclist’s handlebars. <shudder>

Infrastructure news from West Canuckistan. Sunshine brings out cyclists & warning Canadian cyclists come out in droves when it isn’t freezing or drowning.

And a combination e-assist and infrastructure post from Jolly Olde. LAKES BIKE MARKET WILL BE ‘ENERGISED’

A FB picture that I find inspiring. Photos from Bill Drumbore’s post in I Love Bikes

Last link is a picture of the Danish Foreign Minister’s motorcade. Det ser man kun i DK. Udenrigsminister hjuler afsted søndag formiddag med flagrene slip og hipster-cykelkasse Sorry about the Danish headline but the first comment is a translation, I think. Let me Google it. Nope, Google Translate says, “It appears only in the UK. Foreign Minister wheeler off Sunday morning with flags clean release and hipster bike box.”

They finally finished counting the votes and I’m screwed, and the Feed

The votes are counted and batshit insane won out over just crazy. I’m screwed because batshit has made public statements against government spending on any bicycle infrastructure as being “socialist”. News flash for you Batshit, all infrastructure is socialist to some extent. Installing bicycle infrastructure just gives people a choice as to how they use it. Right now we have a choice between cars, trucks, and SUVs when selecting our mode of transportation, but public transit is kinda sorta useful if you have the time. Riding a bicycle is physically uncomfortable because of the climate and emotionally uncomfortable because there are so many cars, trucks, and SUVs using the infrastructure that the operators have no earthly idea of how to share with bicycles. And Batshit wants to make that worse for people riding bicycles. Of course opposing bicycle infrastructure is a minor issue with this guy, oppressing women and voters of the “wrong” kind is much higher on his agenda. This is still not good for me because I’m the “wrong” kind of voter: “not-rich”.

Up first is a hit-and-run from down south a few day’s ride. Deputies: Hit-and-run suspect later found unresponsive behind the wheel and Driver arrested in FM 1960 hit-and-run Let’s see, line of cars moving over a lane to make a legal pass on a cyclist legally using the road, one driver moves out of the line and hits the cyclist then merges back in line and leaves the scene, later found slumped over the wheel of the weapon vehicle and unresponsive to LEO commands. No toxicology report back yet but I’m willing to bet alcohol, drugs, or possibly an out-of-control blood sugar level. I’m putting my money on good old-fashioned ethyl alcohol.

Update on an OH left cross fatality. Trial date set for truck driver charged with death of cyclist The cyclist’s family is being very understanding and Stockholm Syndrome about it claiming the fact that the driver is disturbed about having killed “is punishment enough”. Listen people, everyone is disturbed about the first time they kill if they have any shred of compassion in them. The ones that aren’t just need to be placed where they can’t hurt the rest of us ever. But if drivers are allowed to kill and face no sanction for killing, no matter what the mode of transport of the victim, then there is zero incentive for the drivers that don’t have that shred of compassion to not run over the cyclist or pedestrian that causes them to have to slow down a bit. Swerve enough that the vehicle isn’t damaged too much to drive and keep on trucking, because you will get a worse ticket for tossing a cigarette butt out the window than for leaving a dead or dying human on the side of the road.

A MD driver that killed a cyclist tries to get the sentence dismissed because the felony conviction interferes with her life? Sentence in death of bicyclist stands Another sociopathic driver thinks it’s all about her after leaving a corpse in the road. Consequences are a bitch, aren’t they honey? Less than a year in jail with work release after killing a human and discarding the body like a cigarette butt and you want that expunged so you can “get on with your career”? You changed your career path when you left the person to die on the road, now you have to live with that choice. And this was not the first time you hit a cyclist either, you hit one in 2008 that left the victim with a permanent and life-altering brain injury, for which you essentially skated.

A cyclist in the UK is killed by a pothole that the relevant authority was notified about weeks before the wreck. Cyclist mown down during charity bike ride after hitting a four-inch deep pothole that police had warned about more than a month before One thing I like about UK tort laws is they specifically allow local governments to be sued when they commit an action or an inaction that results in people getting injured, unlike here in the US where most municipalities invoke “sovereign immunity” at the first hint of a lawsuit.

And another cyclist hits the pavement because it has holes in it. Exeter pharmacy staff help “pot-holed” cyclist The cyclist was lucky to not have been hit by a motor vehicle like the previous paragraph.

Even comic strip characters can’t escape the pothole monster. Frazz by Jef Mallett I do hope that one goes to “freeze-thaw cycle”, it’s impossible to test.

Lots of infrastructure news today. This one is from America’s Copenhagen, Portland OR. Video of right-hook collision shows risks at NE Couch and Grand First up this video is a near-perfect example of using intersection protocols to minimize damages from a right hook, the cyclist ran out of road before the driver finished the turn.

Infrastructure news from CA. Beverly Hills tells bicyclists to drop dead; LAPD to focus — finally — on traffic violations this year As I commented in the article Beverly Hills needs to be sued for violating CA’s Complete Streets law. They have been reminded several times of the law’s requirements, I think a little smackdown from a judge would be appropriate. More Beverly Hills City Council Disses Road Safety, Slaps Riders in Santa Monica Boulevard Session

A slightly fun infrastructure link. If Your Local Elites Have Gone Completely Bonkers, You May Have Bikelash It would be impossible to tell here, our “elite” varies between “disturbed” and “batshit crazy” every other minute.

An infrastructure link that is only marginally about bicycles. Detroit study to examine effects of bad air quality As we all know installing bike lanes reduces the local pollution on streets that have them, I don’t know how well that transfers to networks of bike lanes in entire cities. That’s something that hasn’t been studied.

A really unhappy lifestyle story from CA. Popular pre-L.A. Marathon bike ride canceled after city permit snag I thought that the powers that be liked the Crash because it acted like an additional sweep of the course the organizers did not have to pay for.

And those were all the links that gave me fits about bicycles. There were a couple more that just were kinda “blah” so I thought “Why include “blah” in my blog?” Also apparently I have been missing a lot of clicks to this blog because I don’t put a tag on the Daily Feed posts that this is about bicycles. What, they can’t look at the blog title and tell that most of the posts are going to be about bicycles? But anyway I’m going to be adding a “Bicycles” and “bikes” tag to the Daily Feed posts so that people looking for information about bicycles can find these posts.

> sigh <

Billed @€0.02, Opus

I’m having “employee” problems, and the Feed

There are two “employees” for this blog: me and the cat. Lately we have been having difficulty getting the cat out of the bed, which would not be a problem except that the bed in question is not the cat’s bed but mine.

This makes making the bed difficult. I sometimes wish that Bryan (the cat) did things that were more active and photogenic, but he’s reaching middle age for a cat and has started to “settle down” a bit. His biggest interaction “bit” is begging to be let out the back door so he can run around the house and beg and scratch to be let in the front door. Apparently this is great fun for him… Cats, if they had brains they would be dangerous.

Up first a cyclist is left for dead a hard day’s ride south of WoaB World HQ in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. Cyclist injured in hit-and-run crash in Cedar Park When are LEO going to start treating these like murders or attempted murders? Anyway, hit-from-behind protocols to avoid or to mitigate, and get the infrastructure right to prevent. And confiscate and crush the vehicles used by hit-and-run drivers. All the vehicles, not just the one they used to hit and run with.

A peloton is left crossed in CO. 2 cyclists hit by car, 1 seriously injured in LaPorte There were 7 cyclists in that pack, and the driver still managed to “not see” and hit 2 of them? That indicates severe vision or processing problems, or anger management issues. Anyway, intersection wreck, use the protocols to avoid or to mitigate injury, and get the infrastructure right to prevent.

Just because FL is no longer the most deadliest state to ride a bike (they are still figuring for the pedestrian “crown”) does not mean that it is by any stretch of the imagination “safe” as shown in this hit-and-run. FHP asks for help to find truck suspected in fatal St. Lucie County accident | Video That bike was clobbered hard. In a bike lane by someone driving a pickup truck. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that if the cyclist could get hit by a motor vehicle going that fast then the infrastructure was Not Right for that location. Nothing the cyclist could have done to avoid this wreck.

Another link to the story about the UK racing driver who killed a cyclist. Mobile phone death driver sent to prison I’m pretty sure this will be the last time anyone hears of this driver…

Intersection wreck in the UK. Cyclist hurt after Lancaster pedestrian crossing collision Intersection wreck with a strong indication of the weapon vehicle failing to yield to the cyclist with the right of way. Protocols to avoid, and get the infrastructure right to prevent as a pedestrian crossing is not proper bicycle infrastructure even if it was legal for the cyclist to use. And a repeat of the “seize and destroy all their vehicles” from one of the preceding paragraphs.

Infrastructure! news from NYC. “Cooper’s Law” Would Suspend Cabbies Who Kill Or Maim Pedestrians This one would have gotten the driver that was attempting to assault a cyclist with his cab and lost control, severing the foot of a UK tourist. In TX that would be a felony with a mandatory 20 years because the innocent person was collateral damage to assault with a deadly, but in NYC the cabbie got 6 weeks off without pay. More Mother of boy killed by cab pushes for ‘Cooper’s Law’

More infrastructure of the legal kind from NYC and surrounds, LI in this case. Wife of Cyclist Killed in Calverton: ‘The Laws Have Too Many Loopholes’ When you can drive across 5 lanes of traffic to hit a cyclist head on on the other side of the road and only get 6 months for the death, there is definitely something wrong with the laws.

Lifestyle and infrastructure from FL. Friends Remember Cyclist & Push For Tougher Penalties I’m still trying to figure out what headlights had to do with the wreck since the cyclist was hit from behind and had lights…

Lifestyle from CA. RIVERSIDE: Memorial ride honors cyclist killed in crash

Legal infrastructure combines with struggles using the built infrastructure in Portland. Q&A on ‘Vision Zero’: Three fatalities put city’s new safety promise to the test

Your daily link to BikingInLA. Your decidedly un-presidential President’s Day bike news roundup, including mayoral support for MyFig

When a bicycle and a snow shovel love each other very much, this is what you get.

We already know your car makes you sick, now we know it makes you crazy, too. Commuting makes you ‘unhappy and anxious’, says ONS Interestingly enough riding a bicycle counters this effect.

Bike parking in a Sweden. Malmö Opens Fantastic Bike&Ride Parking at Central Station They even have special Bakfiets parking. 😮

Sometimes you have to be smarter than your bike computer. Beware the route of all evil in using GPS I would not buy a bike GPS that did not have a mode for avoiding hills. I’m built nothing like Marco Pantani, I don’t climb like a homesick angel, and all my bikes are made from “sturdy steel, made to last” instead of crabon and unobtanium.

Keeping the equation balanced. When N+1 meets S-1* The ideal number of bikes is when N+1 is equal to S-1. And I ask you to read the link instead of explaining that here.

And those were all the links that gave me fits today, I’ll let you try to figure out what kind of fit went with each link. 😉

Billed @€0.02, Opus

Another grocery shopping day that I don’t have to play a mule, and the Feed

I’m waiting to see if there are any good links in the Feed today (that I haven’t already used) so a little commentary on life in general while I wait. Regular readers know that Blue was stolen back in August of 2013. What I haven’t been talking about is I haven’t had a bike I could ride without pain since then. All the bikes I have at my disposal are either too big or way too small (kids’ bikes). The other problem is my local source for small batches of steel tubing in bicycle diameters and wall thicknesses has ceased its retail operations and gone strictly to big batch orders that would be a 40-50 year supply for my operation and tie up thousands of dollars in metal inventory. This prevents me from building something on my own that would fit and be comfortable. Having tools and designs doesn’t help if I can’t get the materials to build them. And I find this to be incredibly frustrating, to have all these ideas floating around in my head and no way to make them real. The closest analogy I can think of is being perpetually pregnant, only without the bladder issues.

And segueing from pregnancy to the other problem I’m having is I’m gaining weight. I really need active transportation for two reasons, not the least of which is I need the exercise. There is a reason I don’t do the “e word” except for my rehab stuff, and that’s most of it is a waste of time and energy. I’m using the term “waste” in the sense of “for no purpose”, because if I’m going to be working that hard I want the work to be accomplishing something other than “exercise”. Most of the things I can think of to do already require some degree of fitness, they’re not things you do to get fit but they are activities that let you hold on to what fitness you already have. Also they require a degree of sociableness that I’m not comfortable with. Riding the bike was something I could do without having to participate in team sports, but it did require interacting with entitled idiots who think the world revolves around internal combustion engines. Also it was a “useful” form of exercise, I was moving my butt from A to B and frequently also various amounts of cargo so that things would get done. It was also my social outlet in that point B commonly involved interacting with other people. And it was cheap, after the initial costs were amortized. I could make trips similar in length to what people around here drive for the cost of a bottle of water and a PBJ sandwich which I would have needed to buy anyway just to keep alive. So basically for me the costs of riding a bike were nil.

First up, while I’m no great fan of JB I wasn’t a hater either until this. Justin Bieber Arrested For Alleged DUI And Drag Racing In Miami OK for someone like JB to get arrested for this in Miami where a minor pop singer from South America is treated like a foreign dignitary when he kills a cyclist while DUI tells me 2 things: first that he was so blitzed that he was a danger to himself and others, second that there has been a major change in LEO attitude in Dade County. I keep hearing rumors that Canada may deny him re-entry into the country if he tries to return. Bicycle related content: About 30-40% of cyclist fatalities involve weapon vehicle operators that are DUI.

Up close to WoaB World HQ in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell, a cyclist gets hit by a train (again). Bicyclist injured in collision with Metro rail car C’mon people, we have hashed and re-hashed this until it’s practically meat puree, not getting hit by a train is about the simplest traffic safety thing you can do. Trains can only be found on train tracks and normally have crossing guard systems or other warning devices. Granted this is light rail in the street, but there are still multiple warning systems that are supposed to keep you off the tracks when a train is coming. Add to that the size and noise of a train, even the light rail variety, and well it takes a rare combination of multiple lacks of awareness or a total disregard for what’s going on around you, or even a personal disregard for safety. Stay away from train tracks to avoid and be very careful and alert when staying away from the tracks proves impossible.

From the former most deadliest state in the US to walk or ride a bike (pending confirmation) another cyclist is hit. Lakeland Man Charged in Bicyclist’s Death OK this is another one that needs to have the car crushed with the driver inside. Drunk and hit the cyclist on the wrong side of the road (salmon driving) and swerved into the cyclist. This isn’t manslaughter it’s murder… and the cyclist was riding exactly where the haters say cyclists should ride, in a park.

From WA, it seems bike paths are a bad place to have high-speed motorcycle chases. Man on stolen motorcycle killed on Renton trail while fleeing Washington State Patrol trooper Those things are full of obstacles that (rarely) kill and (much too often) injure people riding bicycles. Riding on one at high speed with a motorcycle ain’t gonna work out well.

A little south of that wreck a cyclist is injured by a driver who did not hang around. Bicyclist injured in hit-and-run in San Luis Obispo Another candidate for the car crusher. The damage and location of this wreck lead me to deduce the weapon vehicle hit the cyclist as the vehicle left the parking lot to the store and as the victim proceeded straight. So that would imply intersection protocols to avoid or to mitigate damages, infrastructure to prevent.

Nearby a cyclist is hit with a bus. Breaking news: Pomona cyclist killed in collision with Foothill Transit bus

Final outcome in the criminal charges against a driver that hit a cyclist waiting to turn in Jolly Olde. Widow: ‘No sentence can ever match my loss’ and Family to sue driver over death crash A year’s driving ban and a six month suspended sentence. And the driving ban will most likely not be enforced because I didn’t see anything about relinquishing the keys or the car. So effectively no punishment for killing a driver waiting to turn from the opposite lane.

A wreck in Oz results in charges against the driver. Engadine woman charged with injuring cyclist at Helensburgh Nothing on the mode because it was a hit-and-run and the cyclist could not remember what happened, but it looks like hit-from-behind so protocols to avoid and infrastructure to prevent. Along with crushing the weapon vehicle, of course. Nothing prevents a second hit-and-run quite as well as destroying the means of doing so.

They REALLY don’t like bike riders in Pakistan. 15 killed, Spaniard injured in attacks in Pak’s restive areas They killed 6 national police trying to get one bike rider. I don’t think the fact he was riding a bike was the issue, more that he was an infidel foreigner. I do know how to read for content.

A bit of e-assist bike news from the EU. Working Group Decides on Standardized E-bike Interfaces When I first started working with e-assist they couldn’t even settle on a common charge plug so that you could grab a few watt-hours on the road without having to pack a charger, now they have a common software interface with the BMS. That’s progress.

And “old people” who used to ride a lot still ride a lot when they get e-assist. E-Bikes Boosts Bike Usage Among Elderly Whodathunkit? People ride bikes when it doesn’t hurt.

Along the same lines people will take cruises to locales that are fun places to ride bikes and the they ride bikes. Luxury cruise and biking? Turns out it’s a surprisingly good combination for adventurous types

Last link, runners do more damage to bike trails than bikes do to hiking trails. Runners repair their damage to park’s bike trail

And those were all the links I could find about bicycles.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

A sudden change of focus on my projects on a Wreck-Free Sunday post

Well my project focus has changed as a result of Blue getting stolen from the grocery store Friday. I had been planning on building an awesome T-Bucket, now I’m getting stuff together for that full suspension 20/20 crank-forward cargo bike. I’m going to use the tried and true “throw the parts on the jig in the correct places and build a frame to connect them” design process 😉

This is an evolution of the “Crank-forward bike that fits on a bus rack” project from a couple of years back when I discovered that Blue would rest on the frame instead of the back tire when sitting on a bike rack as mounted to buses in our local transit system, just with an extended top tube to support some cargo carrying containers. I have a back wheel, rear swingarm, rear shock, suspension fork, stem, handlebars, head tube, bottom bracket, crank, 44 tooth chainwheel, and brakes. I need to buy a shifter (I’m making this a 1 by 9 or 10 system so only a rear shifter needed), brake handles, a front wheel to match the rear one (I have the rim but I need a hub to match the rear hub), rear derailler, cassette, chain, and some nesting square tubing and bar stock to build the seat tube and seat post so they don’t twist when sat upon, and a few pieces of light 1″ round tubing. I should also mention I have a set of fresh, clean, bright yellow, kitty litter buckets and about 2 square feet of DOT reflective stickers, ready to mount for cargo carrying.

The specs are fairly straight-forward: 42″ wheelbase with a 70° head tube angle and a 45° seat tube angle so that the cockpit is open but there isn’t an excessive reach to the controls, the seat will sit close enough to the ground to get both feet down for slow speed maneuverability and balance but still allow for full leg extension as was pioneered by the Vision Thoroughbred (RIP Vision Bikes).
The bottom bracket will be 19″ from the front axle giving a slight toe overlap but not enough to be a problem giving 23″ from the bottom bracket to the rear wheel.

I’m doing this not because I don’t miss Blue or I was chomping on the bit to build another bike, but because my transportation options without a bike are severely limited in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell. Mrs. the Poet gets around strictly by public transit but that’s because she can use me on the bike to do things she can’t get to on the bus, or that the bus is not convenient to use to get to. I seriously need a cargo bike for a bunch of stuff around here. Also I need to get some practice with the new welder I bought and would prefer to practice on a practical project than just throwing bits of metal together at odd angles. But the need for a bike is greater than the need to practice welding.

And I had better get to it.

PSA, Opus

Drumming night, and the Feed

Tonight is the regularly-scheduled night of the month to drum and dance around the fire at my church, something I look forward to with great anticipation. I have been involved with percussion in one form or another since childhood, getting my first set of bongo drums at 11, playing the bass drum in marching band and snare in orchestra. I have also been a (poor) dancer almost as long, having my first dance class as a senior in HS, and belly dance for men in my 30s and 50s. I am a creature of rhythm even if I can’t spell it on the first try, ever. (I keep trying to put the voiced short “i” in the written word.) I can’t explain it so I just revel in it…

Up first on a happy note, semi-famous bike blogger Bikeyface has a new bike that she gushes about here LEFT BANK BIKE I’m sure Gigi is as happy for her about this as I am, wherever Gigi is now.

Big story, what is being described by some as a right hook and by others as the cyclist failing to use brakes, with lots of links. Cyclist dies in SF garbage-truck crash and Bicyclist dies after striking garbage truck in the Mission also Cyclist killed in San Francisco garbage truck crash More Clayton Cyclist Hit and Killed By Garbage Truck in San Francisco and Bicyclist killed in collision with San Francisco garbage truck was 21-year-old from Clayton not done yet Cyclist in fatal S.F. crash identified nearly there Bicyclist killed in Mission District identified as Clayton resident Last link Dylan Mitchell Identified as Cyclist Killed by Recology Truck Earlier reports that have since been deleted had the cyclist impacting the truck just in front of the rear wheels on the right side and being trapped in the rear wheels and dragged for almost a block. Now they are just saying “back” of the truck and not explaining how hitting the back of a garbage truck results in massive blunt trauma and crushing injuries, or how a cyclist can be dragged almost a block after hitting the back of the truck. Anyway, right hook, intersection protocols to avoid and infrastructure corrected to prevent. The truck was signalling a right turn but there is some question if the cyclist was in a position to see that signal.

Another story with more than one link is a hit-and-run in AZ. Suspect arrested in Tucson hit-and-run death and UPDATED II: CYCLIST KILLED IN HIT-AND-RUN CRASH; SUSPECT IN CUSTODY last link Sun Tran driver killed while cycling to work Intersection wreck, but at this point it does not appear that intersection protocols would have helped avoid the wreck in any way as the drunk driver appears to have ignored a traffic control when he hit the cyclist. This also strongly implies that any at-grade infrastructure that relied on traffic controls to maintain separation would have been equally unlikely to prevent this wreck and the only thing that could have would be grade separated with a barrier infrastructure which would have been unlikely in this location. I mean there aren’t even any sidewalks for the nearby residences, bike infrastructure would be secondary after pedestrian infrastructure.

An AR cyclist is hit. 7-year-old girl struck and killed while riding her bike Nothing about the mode of the wreck except listing the location as “near” an intersection, so going with intersection protocols to avoid, and getting the infrastructure right to prevent. As the wreck was in a residential area “getting the infrastructure right” would consist of making sure cars were moving at a safe speed and that intersections had good sight lines so that children on bikes could be seen.

A cyclist’s death leads to charges in the Great White North. Vernon cyclist death results in charges The cyclist was struck from behind by a person driving a vehicle in the bike lane at 70 km/hr (44MPH). Given the lack of space to maneuver and the curb to the right hit-from-behind protocols would have been not-very-useful, and the wreck was in bicycle infrastructure the driver was ignoring, so no chance of preventing either except for inventing some way of keeping drunk drivers from being able to start the vehicle…

And those are all the links that gave me fits today… and one that didn’t.

Billed @€0.02, Opus

I can’t dress properly for an entire ride this week, Wreck-Free Sunday

All of the rides I took this past week I was over or under dressed for part of the ride. The weather here in the Beautiful Suburbs of Hell has been a pattern of temperature extremes lately. Last night it was mid-50s F on the way out to RPG group, and just over 40 on the way home. On the way to church it was right at 60 out, and almost 70 back. That wasn’t as bad as last night but I was still overdressed for the trip back. And there is a huge difference in the clothing for mid-50s and the clothing for 40 F. You can get hypothermia at either temperature but a whole lot faster at 40F, and what works for mid-50s will get you hypothermia at 40F. With temperature swings like we have here in Texas, dressing for the weather is a guessing game that I play to the warm side. I will be uncomfortable but not in danger, either way. On the days where I dress a little cool expecting warmer on the return trip I’m usually right, on the days I expect it to be a lot colder on the return trip I’m about 50/50 for the amount of drop, so some times I’m too warm in both directions, and some times I’m perfect on the way back, and once in a while it drops more than forecast and I’m too cool both ways because I didn’t pack enough additional layers.

Moving on to the RPG group, I’m still waiting to level up my warlock. We have been fighting with a demon that teleports in and out of the battle and has damage reduction except against magic, meaning the only people that have been able to inflict damage against this monster are the people with lots of muscle and big weapons (our barbarians) and me. The problem I have been having is the monster knows I can inflict damage unchecked against it and has been avoiding me and the barbarians while swatting the less powerful members of the party and inflicting huge amounts of damage against them. I find this annoying to say the least.I’m hoping that since it is now dark and everybody is tired (and the monster has taken a lot of damage) that we will get to let our characters sleep and recover (and let my character get his level up) at this rate I will be at level 7 before I can use any of my upgrades I get at level 6 as we go into the 4th game session since I reached level 6 without being able to claim my level up. With the quality of the monsters we have been facing we have been getting 300-500 XP per session with bonuses for good Role Playing and I’m about 1/5 of the way to my next level already… And next level I get a bigger attack bonus and 4d6 damage from my magic weapon. (That’s a lot of damage.)

I’m still working on the 20/20 crank forward full suspension bike so I have a bike that I can take on the bus bike rack. This is important because I can take a bus through places where riding a bike would be unsafe, and because full suspension means I can ride on the worst of the roads around here without permanently injuring my back. The combination would mean that I would have extended range from transit to about 90% of the DFW area pretty safely. And I have a year to get it ready for the Autorama that I won class in back in 2004, 10 years earlier. This is the bike that the solar bike light is being built for. I think that particular feature may be the tipping point to winning next year. The time I won my competition was a pedal car kit that was built stock with a fancy paint job versus my heavily modified bike with a simple monochromatic paint job. I don’t know that my competition will be so easy this time, so I’m thinking that little things like lights made for the bike will make a difference. I’m pretty sure there won’t be more than 2 other vehicles in my class because of the number of classes available to compete in. I know I won’t be in the lowrider bike class because this bike will have a fairly high bottom bracket and not having the pedals scraping the pavement. The seat will be low, but the pedals will be at a normal riding height.

And that’s all I have today.

PSA, Opus