Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Indignity of Commuting by Bicycle: My ElliptiGO Got Up and ElliptiWENT!

Well the big news in cycling is of course that Chris Froome chased a Pokemon up Mont Ventoux today:
Gotta catch 'em all.

Indeed, after Monday's post I was worried about having to dodge gamers in the bike lane when I set out for an "epic" round-trip commute to Brooklyn recently that would span three (3) boroughs.  I was also worried about falling victim to the latest bike crackdown, since as I understand it once you go below 96th street you're fair game.  So to that end, I made sure to ride a bike with a bell on it:


As it turned out I was spared, though I can only speculate as to how things might have turned out if I'd been riding this:


I also wonder if the NYPD includes ElliptiGOs in their dragnet when they're doing a bike crackdown:


Because I see a helmet and a handlebar bag, but I don't see a bell:


Just think how much time Froome would have put into his rivals if only someone had passed him an ElliptiGO.

There are various bike lanes and greenways to choose from between my home and Central Park, but once you get below 59th Street the options for getting through the commercial thicket of Midtown are a bit more limited.  While you can opt to circumvent it altogether by heading to the extreme east or west sides, I generally opt to whip out the machete and charge straight down Fifth Avenue:


Before long I'd dispatched with Manhattan and was on the bridge to Brooklyn:


By the way, we can debate the efficacy of bike helmets until our faces are Citi Bike blue, but I think we can all agree there's no difference between wearing a helmet in the manner pictured above and not wearing one at all.  (In fact it's probably much safer not to wear the helmet, since that thing's liable to choke you.)

Sometime over the last ten years someone must have discovered a cache of vintage Cannondales and brought it to Brooklyn because they're absolutely everywhere:


Apart from the helmet right at dog leg-lifting level I give this locking job high marks--though I can't say the same for this bike locked by the front wheel only:


If I knew where the owner worked I'd show up with their bicycle as well as a copy of my book.

Speaking of bike security, this green bike caught my eye:


As far as I can tell, this is a Breeze bike share bike:



So if anyone's got an explanation as to what this one's doing in Brooklyn I'd love to hear it.

Anyway, after my eight-hour spa treatment I headed back towards home by way of the Manhattan Bridge, where as usual the outbound Cat 6-ing was at a fever pitch:


I myself was soundly Cat 6-ed numerous times:


Though the most crushing instance was when this rider rang her bell at me like she was attempting to summon a recalcitrant butler and then, when I didn't move over fast enough (or, to be honest, at all), flew right by me on her Free Spirit:


It was rather humbling, if not downright formidable:



I reached Manhattan with my head hung low and made my way uptown, only to find the NYPD had commandeered pretty much the entire 4th Avenue bike lane:


I'm not sure if they were assembling in anticipation of some protest or else just honing their bike lane-blocking technique, but either way it was an impressive show of force:


It was also an impressive show of irony given the sign I soon came upon in Central Park:


As you know, I love to be admonished by signs while riding in parks, and this one did not disappoint:


I particularly appreciated this order:


How many Central Park cyclists are traveling significantly faster than 20mph for a sustained period?  Even the most enthusiastic Fred or Tridork is really only doing that on the downhills.  Meanwhile, a car won't even trip one of the very few school zone speed cameras Albany lets the city install unless it's traveling more than 10mph over the limit.  Then again, I didn't have a radar gun to clock this pair:


As for me, I stayed well shy of the speed limit, and I'm pleased to report I made it to the northern tip of Manhattan without incident:


And once over the bridge I made a point of stopping and treating myself to a recovery beverage:


Which I of course shared with the trusty Son of Scattante, née the Ironic Orange Julius Bike:


Riding here can be fraught, but when it all comes together you can almost be forgiven for thinking you live in the best city in the world.

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

POOO DUMM

Ted K. said...

152. Generally speaking, technological control over human behavior will probably not be introduced with a totalitarian intention or even through a conscious desire to restrict human freedom. [28] Each new step in the assertion of control over the human mind will be taken as a rational response to a problem that faces society, such as curing alcoholism, reducing the crime rate or inducing young people to study science and engineering. In many cases there will be a humanitarian justification. For example, when a psychiatrist prescribes an anti-depressant for a depressed patient, he is clearly doing that individual a favor. It would be inhumane to withhold the drug from someone who needs it. When parents send their children to Sylvan Learning Centers to have them manipulated into becoming enthusiastic about their studies, they do so from concern for their children’s welfare. It may be that some of these parents wish that one didn’t have to have specialized training to get a job and that their kid didn’t have to be brainwashed into becoming a computer nerd. But what can they do? They can’t change society, and their child may be unemployable if he doesn’t have certain skills. So they send him to Sylvan.

Anonymous said...

Word up.

N/A said...

Eliptigo in the bike lane, then ina deeetch!

weasel said...

3rd

balls™ said...

Top teen.

cdinvb said...

Malooly!

Synonymous said...

Gotta say, Ted has some good points today.

Sax Huret said...

The best thing about the Froome thing (other than everyone involved in the crash being OK) is that this year Pinarello rolled out a new model for him to ride with a rider weight limit of just 150 something pounds and it of course broke in its first crash. Good thing the jury saved ol' Fausto's name and didn't truly penalize Froome.

wle said...

top ten i think

''fraught'' - ha ha - reminds me of ''frottage''

wle

Anonymous said...

In case you were wondering, yes, there are electric assist elliptical scooters...

http://www.cyclelicio.us/2014/an-electric-assist-elliptical-scooter/

Anonymous said...

top XX !!

In SF, they are counting double parked cars in the bike lane today.

Augusto Mori said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Yesterday on my morning commute I treated a red light as a stop sign like I always do (checking around for police first of course) and about a block latter I heard an amplified voice say, "you, on the bicycle, you have to stop at red lights, you can get a ticket like everyone else." Checking my mirror I realized it was an older pickup truck pulling a trailer of lawn mowers, I pretended not to hear and rode on. He caught up with me four blocks latter and I expected him to roll down the window and yell at me but my disguise as a crazy homeless junkie must have been working and he stared straight ahead like he didn't know anything. I was ready to say, "no, I can get a ticket easier than everybody else given what I see cars doing that polic just ignore." A darn good line and a shame I didn't get a chance to use it.

Anonymous said...

Number seven

billyhacker said...

top XXX

oh, wait, can I write that here?

N/A said...

A Breeze bike in NY? That's a hell of a commute, son. I'd probably lease a Hyundai.

recumbent conspiracy theorist said...

8 hour spa treatment?! Wow you are living the good life.

Bryan said...

Was that Batman on a Brompton?!?!

Dorothy Rabinowitz said...

Avast me hearties
as ye might be distraught
that me lady canoe be fraught
with crabbies!

clyde said...

TOPPUS XX
Ellipti-Gos for all

Bryan said...

So, back to Froomey - He was eventually given a neutral bike but "didn't like it" and "had problems getting up to speed on it" - anyone check his bike for a motor yet?

Anonymous said...

Whoa ho there, maties, I am attempting to have a media black until tonight when I get home and watch the Tour de Froome - ears and eyes closed, ears and eyes closed! Wanna keep the surprise and suspense until after my daily job/grind of this measly little cubicle and measly fat boss from hell. Crap, he's coming to see what is on my scre

ca h said...

Maybe the Breeze bike share bike was actually one of these http://www.oregonlive.com/commuting/index.ssf/2016/07/nike_dressing_up_some_biketown.html already stolen from Portland.

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

I was wondering what the cops were doing just south of Union Square too. Maybe sharpening their skills with Excalibur for the coming Day of Rage!!!!!!!

I massively transited it today because I thought there was gonna be some rain. But so far so hot.

Maybe the Citibike cross country guy took a left coast bike here ...

vsk

Dooth said...

Whatjerseyyourunning, Froomey?

Anonymous said...

Breeze bike in NYC because the bikeshare company Social Bicycles that makes them is in DUMBO. Prob an employee's bike.

wats7 said...

Maybe that Breeze bike was ridden back from Calif by the guy who rode the Citibike from NYC west?

bieks said...

It's too bad that cat 6, bell ringing girl's hair is so long; it sort of looks like the hash tag says

#passedbyagirl

Grump said...

Hey Snobby, my first "real" bike was a Cannondale R400. It got a little expensive to ride though. Every month I had to visit the dentist to replace fillings that had been jarred out.
PS. Why not mount a cow bell on your bars? This way, you could constantly scream "More Cowbell".

Powerbar Farts said...

Wonder how Froome did on the swim portion.

JLRB said...

too hot to comment

JD Torian said...

best ever: http://mashable.com/2016/07/04/penis-tour-de-france/#p4SyxKH._Gqr

bad boy of the north said...

Tour de pokemon.....well,that's everywhere now.

Some guy from upstate said...


Is alcoholic ginger beer specifically made for redheads with a drinking problem?

Anonymous said...

With apologies to James Taylor...

You can run but you cannot ride
it is widely known
tell me what you gunna do with your foolish pinarello
when you hit a motorbike

Anonymous said...

RE police at once blocking and demanding bike lane usage: "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." -RWEmerson

leroy said...

I don't mean to brag, but my dog assures me there is no consistency within my little mind.

He still wouldn't share his umbrella with me this afternoon though.

bad boy of the north said...

Is there a fat tire version of the eliptiGO?

Anonymous said...

Obviously the police were obstructing the bike lane because that sign was in danger of toppling over onto unsuspecting cyclists (and ellipticists) and needed two officers (in ten minute rotating shifts) to hold it in place.

JLRB said...

CAVE PORN on today's letour

bad boy of the north said...

no joy in france,again.

Peter Lichfield said...

"Boston Globe columnist and chinless shitbag Jeff Jacoby"

I'm still laughing at this from a week ago. No I've stopped laughing at it now, no, hold on I'm laughing again.

Bagpipes said...

Hoot Mon, Carabbie's. My father was a native Scot who came here after WW2, but he never drank Crabs. Scotch, he drank lots and lots of Scotch. Myself, I happen to like Crabbie's, but really never developed a taste for Scotch, go figure.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Snob, but America-bottled Crabbie's is not gluten free. Only the stuff bottled over there is good to drink.

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Flazz Bet said...

I love what you are doing here, and definitely think the painting and collage work you have been doing recently have primed the pump and given you a fresh new perspective!

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