For example, in this hard-hitting exclusive, the New York Post reveals that Citi Bike will have a weight limit:
“If you’re 260 pounds or 300 pounds and want to ride a bike, you should be allowed to. You’re making a choice to live healthier and to lose weight,” said Jhoskaira Ferman, a 20-year-old student from Pelham Bay, Bronx.
Oh, boo hoo. First of all, nobody's going to be hanging around the bike share kiosks with a scale, so I wouldn't really worry about it until you keel over and try to sue. Second of all, guess what? You can't ride all the rides at Great Adventure either:
What is considered exceptional size where rides are concerned?
Safety is our number one priority. Guests with certain body proportions, height and/or weight may not be able to participate on certain rides if the safety restraints will not operate as designed. Specific ride information is available at the ride and at Guest Relations.
Anyway, somehow I doubt there are legions of overweight people in New York City who are feeling disenfranchised by the bike share weight limit--though if they are then perhaps this weight limit will inspire them to meet their weight loss goals.
I do admit though that I enjoy it when the Post tries to play the pathos card:
Yeah, I'm sure they're really worried about him. In any case, if I see that guy riding around on a Citi Bike I promise not to rat him out.
(By the way, the reason for the conservative weight limit is that all Citi Bikes will be equipped with Mavic R-Sys wheelsets.)
But rider weight isn't the only thing keeping the editorial staff at the Post awake at night. Now they're also complaining that the bikes themselves are too heavy:
Simply heaving the bulky, 45-pound cruisers in and out of their kiosk slots is heavy lifting. And riding them isn’t that easy, either — they’re solid to the point of being clunky to maneuver at times.
After their use, bikes must be rolled into a kiosk slot at just the right angle — until it clicks locked.
Until it clicks locked?!? Those monsters!
Still, I admit the Post makes a good point here, because you know what's not heavy and doesn't require approaching a parking space at just the right angle? A fucking car. Have you seen the average idiot in New York try to park an SUV? It's like watching an old person try to perform coitus before the Viagra kicks in.
I do think the Post should be careful here though, because they're contradicting themselves in a manner that's pitifully obvious even for them. Do they want the bike share system open to the morbidly obese who may not survive the heaving and grunting involved in moving the bikes in and out of the kiosks? Or do they want light, agile roadsters that will collapse under their weight in short order?
But when it comes to critiquing the bikes themselves (which, it should be said, is like criticizing the New York City subway for not having a dining car), nobody beats the Daily News. Indeed, I was just reading Streetsblog, where I came across this article:
Holy shit! The Daily News has its own Bike Snob?!? Indeed, they do, and here she is making a great big "doucheclamation point:"
(Bike Snob Daily News makes the universal symbol for "sideways vagina.")
Yes, BSDN has sterling bike snob credentials, and here they are:
As a proud bike snob, who is rarely without her her SE Draft steel-frame fixie, I leaped at the chance to test the bright blue CitiBike.
Wait, she knows about bikes because she rides an SE Draft? This is like saying, "As a proud gourmand, who is rarely without a six-piece Chicken McNuggets...," or, "As a proud bibliophile, who is rarely without her copy of 'Justin Bieber: Just Getting Started'..."
Really, saying you know bikes because you ride a cheap fixie is almost as ridiculous as saying you're a journalist because you write for the Daily News.
But don't tell BSDN that, or she'll hit you with the sideways vajayjay:
So what's BSDN's big beef with the bike share heaps, anyway? Well, for one thing, there's this:
My handbag could barley fit into the metal basket. The bungee rope, connected to the bike, took manly might to safely secure the purse.
Seriously? The basket's too small and the bungee cord is too hard to stretch? Is this really a complaint? It's an amenity on a public facility. Does she also complain about the toilet seats in public restrooms?
Next, she simply lapses into porn:
It was time to get dirty. Squatting my knees, I needed all of my power to tug the bike out of its holder.
Clearly BSDN is recycling the erotica she writes in her spare time by doing a search-and-replace with the words "bike" and "dong."
Oh, also, these bikes aren't hardcore enough for the mean New York streets:
But exerting all my energy got me to about 7 mph. Joggers go faster than that. Yawn. CitiBikes are too slow to survive a New York minute.
Please. I'd rather ride a bike share bike than BSDN's crappy SE Draft any day. If anything's not cut out to survive a New York minute it's BSDN, who had to hire a coach to teach her to ride in traffic in the first place:
I wrote about this back when the article first appeared, but here's my favorite part again:
Me and my breed of urban bikers obey the rules and also follow a code of ethics.
"Don't ride in platform shoes. Or flip-flops. Don't ride and text," said my bike coach John Campo, 62, who trains me on how not to die while peddling on a New York street.
Campo teaches folks how to "street ride," a culture mixed with bike messenger-styled aggressiveness (yes, we scream at drivers and pedestrians not giving us the right of way) and staying safe.
She should also hire a writing coach to teach her the difference between "peddle" and "pedal."
Also, back then BSDN rode (or, in her parlance, "peddled") a Surly Steamroller:
I hate being in the overpriced sticky subways and opt to ride my sweet Surly Steamroller instead of paying for a cab. I bike to crime scenes while on the job for the Daily News, and have no problem peddling to dinner parties sporting shorts under a fancy dress.
So why the downgrade to the SE Draft? Because the Steamroller got stolen:
You'd think someone who's been the victim of a bike theft would be more appreciative of a bike share system she's under absolutely no obligation to use. As it is, bike theft keeps forcing her to downgrade, and at this rate it won't be long before she's riding a Walmart bike that will have her wishing she was on a bike share bike.
In any event, I guess John Campo didn't cover the part about using a lock.
So would the tabloids get behind bike share if they offered, light, nimble, flickable urban douchecycles like The Budnitz? No, then they'd deride it as a plaything for the 1%--though I just this morning received an email informing me I've ordered a "Model No. 5 Titanium" (and that my name is "Oh"):
I can assure you that I have absolutely not ordered a Budnitz, so I'm going on the theory that Old Man Budnitz is trying to shake me down for $500.
Meanwhile, in sporting news, I guess it's a rest day or something at the Giro d'Italia:
And in California, in the other tour I'm ignoring, it's apparently too fucking hot:
Please, nobody tell Rapha this, because as soon as they find out that "hot" is the new "epic" they'll start having Gentlemen's Races on the surface of Venus.