Wednesday, October 10, 2018

New Outside Column!

This week's Outside column is all about "avid" cyclists:



Though avid cyclists may take issue with it:



Also, Bicycling says the Number One Cycling City In Canada's Coccyx is...Seattle!


Right now, things are going the way they should in every city: There are currently 60 miles of low-stress neighborhood greenways in the works, and connecting existing protected bikeways is a major priority, says Dongho Chang, a traffic engineer for the city. The Vision Zero initiative has also been taken seriously. “We timed all 300 traffic signals for 23 miles per hour,” says Chang. That’s significantly slowed traffic, which is a major tenet of reducing bike and pedestrian deaths. The city has also narrowed lanes and inserted speed tables and traffic islands—all of which calm vehicular traffic. Fucoloro even says that the will to reduce speeds was surprisingly universal.

Congratulations Seattle on receiving the Bicycling Kiss Of Death--after all, a #1 ranking from Bicycling is like a positive review from me.  (New York City was #1 a few years back so what does that tell you?)  That notwithstanding, precipitation and helmet law notwithstanding, Seattle has certainly impressed me with its bicycleness on previous visits so I'm sure the designation is warranted.

Also it's a short, scenic ferry ride from Classic Cycle, so there you go.


That was an enjoyable trip.

63 comments:

NHcycler said...

23 mph is a fairly sprightly average for bike cycling. Of course, one could ride at 11.5 mph, but those speedometers don't do fractions.

Also, those 60 miles of bike lanes in the works means a lot of construction sites to navigate around. Where did I read about a solution to bike lanes blocked by construction? I can't recall...

JLRB said...

Harumphhh-a
(Saving the article for a lunch snack)

huskerdont said...

Before I even go read it, I will say that I am apparently and avid cyclist. I occasionally pick up things from Western Bike Works, and they ask you how you would describe yourself, and since I don't consider myself really a racer and am certainly not an occasional cyclist, "avid" it is. So there.

Also, helmet use is fine, but stupid helmet laws are stupid. The surest way to make me an outlaw cyclist rather than a mostly law-abiding one is to mandate helmets (or maybe licensing; that's a close one).

huskerdont said...

"(if there are two groups who won’t shut up about their lifestyles it’s cyclists and vegans)"

Coincidentally, these are the two groups that Stephan Pastis of "Pearls Before Swine" feels able to malign with impunity. Disclosure: I'm vegetarian but not vegan. I also don't care what you eat or what/where you ride. I think that's the "avid" thing at times: some people get so wrapped up in something that they can't see that others may enjoy doing it differently and that that is fine. Just have fun and maybe try to be nice to others, or at least not be mean.

pbateman threw nonaero bars at the eye of the storm as it passed said...

i think i encountered an avid cyclist at my LBS saturday. he was making a point of explaining to one of young shop guys how ENVE no longer makes the tri bars he uses because they were just toooooo expensive at $1,500.

until you have spent $1,500 for your bars, you are likely not avid.

in fact, avid is reserved for the dura ace of riders.

we are likely Tiagra at best compared to someone spending $1,500 for bars.

best of luck to all the panhandle freds. that stretch of coast is a very pretty, real hidden little gem and its a damn shame its about to shave off some serious grams.

Anonymous said...

Wildcat,
You know most of the "avid" Cyclists I know don't even consider themselves cyclist at all. They are simply normal everyday people who ride bikes. Usually not so much because they want to, but because it's a situation life has thrust on them. Not much is said about these folks, (many of whom are mentally disabled). I see these folks a lot when I stop @ my LBS to just hang out and it certainly makes me a little self conscious to park my pricey sled in the stand when they pull up on their Basic Mongoose Mountain bike lookin to get their flat fixed so they can go to the shelter or their dishwashing job. I am sure they have this sort of "Cyclist" where you live as well, but nobody ever talks about them; they don't go to community meetings, city council meetings, Etc., But I hear their stories and most of them are darn lucky to be alive. Motorists cut them no slack at all and most report it's not unusual to be run off the road by motorists. I used get a little bit perturbed by overly cautious Motorists; the ones who waive you through intersections when it's their turn to go or drive 11MPH 15 feet behind you & don't pass. Then I came to the realization that these other "cyclists" are what they are used to. Unfortunately the term Cyclist is more of a catch all then Motorist, but the thing is we are all People & we need to work together, if we are as divided as the Democrats and the Republicans neither will win. - masmojo

Anonymous said...

Regarding "vehicular cycling", I've reviewed these theories and while they may have made sense 20 years ago, in this age of Cell phones, Texting and Infotainment systems. Along with cars with "lane assist", Brake assist or in the case of Tesla "autopilot" we can no longer assume that motorists are fully engaged in the exercise of operating their vehicle! Cycling infrastructure is a necessity. - masmojo

Chazu said...

Haven't read the outside article yet, but I did revisit the Seattle/Bainbridge/Classic Cycle post, with another hyper-link detour to the Eddy Merckx human rights post.

I read those posts shortly after they were written, years ago. And I read them again today. I like my "Merckx" frame (built in Chattanooga by Lynskey when they owned Litespeed), but the Merckx decals are coming off. I bought it, gently used, back in 2002. My money went to the original owner, not to Merckx.

I'd like to read a profile on the people who are buying subscriptions to WeDu. Who does that? I'll be in Austin soon, I kinda feel obligated to buy a coffee at Juan Pelota's just for the irony factor.

Holy shit, I'm getting old! But I have the new Outside entry to look forward to, and here I go.

#21 said...

Ow! Your coccyx!

Ellie said...

I ride bikes all the time and when people say, "oh, you're into cycling or you're a cyclist" I say no, I like to ride bikes. No lycra involved, either.

dancesonpedals said...

PBateman-

All very confusing. How can Avid = Dura Ace, when there is a company named Avid that makes bike parts?

Dirk Montero said...

The way things SHOULD be in every city is 60 miles of greenways BUILT, not "in the works" and conecting existing protected bikeways DONE, not "a major priority". Cycling still sucks in Seattle, Portland, and Berkeley/Oakland/SF compared what is done in so many other countries, and yet these are the BEST we've got and magazines need award issues to keep circulation up...

Dirk

Grump said...

To me, avid cyclists ride in groups, laugh at pain, and race on the weekends.

Uncle Rico said...

Your grandma broke her coccyx.

theEel said...

yeah #1........and the WEED is legal

Anonymous said...

Classic Cycle is well worth the ferry ride and a must see if you're in Seattle.

DaveD said...

I know an "avid" operator of a bicycling cycle who calls himself a "biker."

L

huskerdont said...

Well, yeah, should. I'll be in Jersey City this weekend to see a band and I'm trying to figure out how to bike to NYC. Really should be pretty easy, but looks like it'll have to be multimodal. I suppose a ferry will be cool. I suppose.

Bicycle Church said...

VC's loudest advocates IME are either old white men who either rarely ride a bike or ride one too fast too often, or the wives of said old white men. Mostly motorists who occasionally cycle for recreation.
VC is a great idea if you think you save time riding 25mph instead of 15mph in the city (you don't)

BikeSnobNYC said...

huskerdont,

Yes, you want either ferry or PATH.

--Tan Tenovo

janinedm said...

The Outside illustrations are always good, but this one was pure gold.

I'm not sure anon 10:12 read the article or read the whole article.

I like to describe myself either as "a person who goes pretty much everywhere by bike," "a person who hates the subway," or if I'm feeling saucy " 'bout that #bikelyfe; check the quads." I pretty much save the latter for people who ride track bikes as a way to take the piss.

janinedm said...

huskerdont, you're going to ride in the city this weekend! Autumn in New York is the best. Not just for cycling; I think it's the best season here. I don't want to tell you your business, but think about heading up the greenway and going to the Cloisters. Autumn is when it looks the best, IMO. Plus, hills!

leroy said...

Well this is odd.

I read the Bicycling Magazine article about top ten cycling cities and tried to get my dog to chant with me "We're number nine! We're number nine!"

He demurred, informing me I don't know number two.

I don't get it. I've been to San Francisco.

He's so opaque sometimes.

Pist Off said...

Bike infrastructure is the necessary future. I commuted as an unwitting “vehicular cyclist” on my old Mb-0 on mountain highways for years, was a roadie for a few years, and now years later avoid riding on public roads as much as possible. Today’s traffic speeds are faster, the vehicles are bigger, and the drivers are distracted. That isn’t a good combination for cyclist safety.

leroy said...

Dear Mr. pbateman @9:40 AM - Does it have to be your $1,500 that you spend in bars to qualify you as avid? Asking for my dog who insists he was merely enthusiastic. Stay dry!

Dear Mr. huskerdont @1:01 PM - janinedm @1:47 is right. Autumn on the greenway is very nice. The little bridge crossing the Amtrack tracks near the George Washington Bridge is still closed, so you'll have about a 20 block detour starting around 150th Street, but still worth the trip. (And every bike shop has a free NYC bike map so you can find other routes.)

Alternatively, my dog wants me to tell you I recall Central Park in the Fall. I don't know why, but he told me danke schoen. He assures me you're into music, you'll understand.

pbateman does tend to date diva like women said...

Just realized that Avid spelled backwards is DIVA

diva sounds pretty spot on for any asshat that attends council meetings to gripe about how bike lanes might destroy the fabric of their neighborhood.

what was that one lady ya'll had up there? dorothy...something....

Dorothy the Diva?

Snob, its a wonder you aren't more of a diva...given your exotic wood bike, extensive collection or hand made shorts and your garden hose in the 15 foot sizeway.

huskerdont said...

Thanks, the PATH I've taken without a bike and don't think I wanna do it with a bike. Someone on a thread was suggesting the GW bridge, which terrifies me in a car so that's right out. Ferry it is.

Not sure I have time to get to the Cloisters (ride has to be pre-show since must head back to DC that night), but that looks really cool and will be done on a different trip for sure when more time.

Victor Kaminski said...

vsk said ...

Sadly I've become a tepid cyclist, yelling "get off my lawn" about the lack of CitiBikes when I actually need them (was fine at lunch time today but to go multi modal down to the really cool East River ferry.nyc, not so much). They corral them up at the most needed times. I've seen it, it's a .gov conspiracy!

What the blog-a-log could benefit from is some more Fly6 footage! That thing was awesome! drill a few holes in the Renovo, or epoxy a mount.

vsk / formerly avid or commuter or something.

BikeSnobNYC said...

huskerdont,

GWB itself is great on a bike and heavily cycled, but I don't think getting up there from JC is very pleasant at all. (Though a local could tell you better.)

--Tan Tenovo

Chazu said...

Here is an actual quote from a neighborhood online forum (nextdoor.com). This was written in May 2018, and it ignited a troll-fest. The resulting "conversation" revealed some hateful anti-bike bigots, including those who resent bike lanes and the people who ride bicycles in bike lanes. (not to mention people who ride bikes in roads without bike lanes... such "people" were ultimately deemed far less intelligent than the average motorist.)

"I love cycling, this isn't a post hating on cyclers. I am one myself and feel very fortunate to live in such a great area for cycling. But I do have an honest question... When we have a beautiful bike path, why do cyclers still insist on riding in the road?

Especially on Raintree and Split Log where there are some very constricted areas, why not use the bike paths designed to keep everybody safe? I know you have a right to be on the road and I'm happy to give 3 ft and all that, I'm just curious as to why you make that choice."


The OP was asked to expand on his statement that he is a "cycler" himself, and he replied that he "doesn't ride as often" as he'd like, and that he "sometimes" rides to the office. He went on to say that he rides in the roads on his way to work. Bullshit.

Musuem-going cyclist said...

Shhh...Cloisters are (is?) cool - can't be beat, IF you ride there, good food on way back downtown after seeing it. Don't tell anyone, though.

bad boy of the south said...

Yep,the cloisters is pretty cool.ya might even see a unicorn or two,from what i remember.

Anonymous said...

The whole commentary on the first kind of "avid cyclist" can be summed up in either four or seven words, the first four of which are "With friends like those..."



Select all images with

CARS

Gregski said...

Dear Snob,
I think I must be one of the targets of your "Avid Cyclist" article. I ride 8,000+ miles per year including 3,500 within San Francisco. Next week I will be at a City Hall public meeting arguing against a proposal to replace a 15-foot-wide, straight, smooth, clean "legacy" bike lane with a 6-foot-wide, lumpy, crooked and, inevitably, trash-strewn "segregated" bike lane which the local bicycle coalition is begging for. So, your article is misleading. I am not arguing against bike lanes that keep people safe. I am arguing against foolish bike-lane "improvements" that make life more dangerous and terrifying for cyclists.

Another thing you get wrong: I am not Public Enemy Number One. In a decade of advocacy not once have my communications had one iota of influence on surface transportation policy. If I'm your #1 enemy you are LIVIN' LARGE. Or, maybe we greybeards are on to something and your ego can't handle it?

What you get right: Having been rear-ended 12 times by wheelsuckers, crashed into (as a pedestrian) 14 times by sidewalk cyclists, terrorized every week by bike-lane salmon and cussed out by motorists simply because I use the same conveyance as the reckless velo-scofflaws who blast through stop signs, middle fingers extended, YES, I DO hate a lot of cyclists. Who wouldn't?

Anonymous said...

Remember when the author (used to be a blogger) used to post these really cool remnants of his actual rides in NYC? Now he can't be bothered to leave the burbs on more than the rare occasion.

Some guy from upstate said...

Oh God no, you brought up John Forester. Remember what happened last time? Prepare for the deluge.

beck the biker said...

Seattle - high-viz outfits https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/meet-the-man-transforming-seattle-one-curb-at-a-time/ and a 23+ mph pace. Is this North America's Dayglo version of the Green wave? I rode Seattle a few times this summmer, very familiar with the city by bike since '93 (and might be blind to the improvements due to experiencing incremental improvements over the last 3 decades) but I left dissapointed for the rest of my cycling brethren. A chronically disconnected bike network, the infrastructure fade-outs, the neighborhood greenways indistinguishable from the rest of the street grid...and a suprising lack of cyclists.I might have been on the wrong streets as I tend to ride the big roads. The west side of the Sound is pastoral, many good thousands of miles in the saddle over there.

Dooth said...

As an avid reader of Bike Snob NYC I zzzzzzzzz...

saftsack said...

Leaving the adjective out is to normalise some property/mood/state/whatever of the person using the bike when it's the use of a bike that should be normalised.

Disc-lamer: I run BB7s

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 7:28pm,

I didn't realize I'd moved to the 'burbs, last I checked I lived in the Bronx.

Please tell me more about my new home.

--Tan Tenovo

Carly Simon said...

psstttt -Gregski - maybe the blog isn't about you at all

Anonymous said...

Bicycling curse of death must be retroactive.

https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/data/seattle-bike-commuting-hits-10-year-low-census-data-show/

ClevelandYeah said...

I'm not so much into names but my bicycles have curly handlebars, I commute to work daily via a bike and ride the weekend club rides.
I've been riding to and from work for 7 yrs and initially was a huge proponent of separate bicycle infrastructure. Not so much now. Part of my commute involves roads with multi-purpose paths and bike lanes. The problem with riding on the paths is in the summer they're filled with walkers, runners, children, strollers and dogs. In the winter they aren't plowed or salted so are covered with snow and ice. The bike lanes collect garbage in the summer and ice in the winter. Even the fire station plows their snow into the bike lane.
I ride in/on the road and adjust my style to fit the situation, sometimes taking the lane and sometimes riding on the shoulder if it is wide and clear. I always take the lane at stops. I am bothered by cyclists who pull up next to vehicles at stops and then get upset when they are right hooked. What did they expect?
The disclaimer of course is that I'm riding in Cleveland and not NYC. In NYC I'd probably just take the bus.;)

pbateman doesnt need breaking in said...

@gregski

rear ended 12 times and crashed into 14 times....

that's 26 incidents...at some point you are either wearing a cloak of invisibility or you may want to look both ways and consider a class on situational awareness.

and for the love of lob do not take up deer hunting!!!!

spoken like the true diva cyclist i am with my track record of virtually no major incidents (cracked my head open as a kid but you gotta get extreme on a BMX homie)

furthering to my divaness, bro, my brooks saddle is blue and comfortable with no break in period.

bro, do you even dura ace?

bad boy of the south said...

Avid diva...is there such a thang?no offense pbateman.

Anonymous said...

Most "avid cyclists" at community board meetings love riding bicycles in a similar way as our current president loves Mexico.

On another note, I've noticed that few cyclists go up Lookout Hill when they are riding the Prospect Park Loop -- for me, Lookout Hill is a highlight of bicycling in Prosepct Park.

BikeSnobNYC said...

Anonymous 1:52pm,

Are you allowed to ride a bike there?

--Tan Tenovo

Anonymous said...

We need more elephants?

Al said...

I guess I'm avid cyclist, Mr Snob. Sometimes I ride my Surly Long Haul Trucker, sometimes I ride my Colnago Master Light, sometimes I take the bus and sometimes I drive my 4 wheeled shitbox. Sometimes I wear Spandex, sometimes I wear regular clothes, sometimes I wear a helmet and sometimes I don't. Sometimes I ride in the bike lane and sometimes I take my lane. Sometimes I feel like every motorist is out to kill me and sometimes I have so much joy in my heart. Sometimes I ride my bike to get coffee, sometimes I ride my bike to drink beer and smoke some weed. All I know is that life on this orbiting madhouse is better when I ride my bicycle.

janinedm said...

I'm seeing a lot of people feeling aggrieved, so I'm going to share my takeaway from the Outside article. [Please read the rest of this with a Jeff Foxworthy voice.] If you saw the Dan Hanegby video and your first (or even third) thought was, "aha! headphones!!!" you might be an "avid cyclist." If you get angry when you see a picture of a person on a bike who is not wearing a helmet, you might be an "avid cyclist." If the price of your bike is greater in dollars than the number of miles that you rode in the last 3 years, you might be an avid cyclist. If you think that participating in Bike MS most years makes you an authority on etiquette or infrastructure, you might be an avid cyclist.

bad boy of the south said...

Perhaps you'd like a zebra penny farthing....

JLRB said...

It's the hour of the wolf and the ghost of Michael's winds are dying down - do I ride or go back to bed

Scott B said...

"I'm an avid motorist—I race my 911 at the track on weekends and even enjoy my car commute every day—but I have to say some of these drivers are idiots."

If you compare this to the cycling instance, I think you see that the idea of qualifying the position from which you speak is unobjectionable in the motorist version. On the surface, the cycling version should be equivalent.

It is not. The reason it isn't equivalent is that motorists are a politically dominant group, and cyclists feel justifiably threatened. We cyclists expect some loyalty from each other, so when a cyclist uses this framing, we experience it as a lie and a betrayal. If they were really cyclists, we feel, they would show some loyalty to and concern for other cyclists.

Women and minority groups face this all the time—a statement or position is held to be equivalent when, because of power disparities, it cannot be equivalent.

bad boy of the south said...

Ah,delancey and allen.my old hood in the 80's and 90's.
I wonder if the pickle barons are still there...

JLRB said...

Scott B - In addition to the cagers being a politically dominant group, there is also the life threatening disparity - cagers are surrounded in metal cages (duh) with airbags, etc. Cyclists are blissfully surrounded by air.

ps - Nobody cares but I went back to bed and avidly rode at a civilized hour

janinedm said...

Scott B writes true.

Gregsko said...

No, Scott. I’m sorry, but you totally missed the point of this latest Outside “article,” which is clearly a personal attack on me. It’s all about me, and as usual nobody understands me, even though my perspective is the only reasonable or rational one. If you had been born at the center of the universe you would understand, but there can be only one, after all.

wishiwasmerckx said...

Talk about a humblebrag!

On the weekends, I like to race my 911, then go home and fuck my high-fashion model wife in my high-rise penthouse with floor-to-ceiling windows and...wait, what? I got off on a tangent...

dancesonpedals said...

"I'm an avid motorist—I race my 911 at the track on weekends and even enjoy my car commute every day—but I have to say some of these drivers are idiots."

Unfortunately, he's driving on the local high school track, scaring the joggers.

pbateman aint afraid of no ghost or avid followers of zeul said...

Snob, if you dont write for a couple days, or if you don't ride your wooden tenovo, does moss start to grow on the north side of the blog and the bike?

i'm an avid collector of spores, molds and fungus so just curious.

Anonymous said...

moved to SF a few months ago after a couple decades in NYC. Think SF is overrated as a cycling city as far as safety and infrastructure and NYC is underrated, based on Bicycling's rankings. As far as weather goes and places to ride, you can't beat SF though. The drivers here are super aggressive, I definitely don't feel any safer than I did on streets of New York. also the bike commuters here are kind of helmets. There is no such thing as a casual commute home, someone will obnoxiously shoal past you at a light and then you have no choice but to race them. annoying, but getting faster.

STG said...

I'm with Gregski.

I do not think protected bike lanes -directly- enhance the safety any cyclists. Look, without VC, there would be no cycling. Period. So don't knock VC.

I love me a good old, open, painted on bikelane where I can see and be seen and move around obstacles. Just make it big enough for me stay out of the door zone.

Protected bike lanes which are separated by a row of parked cars are blind, but they can work if and only if you ride slowly and passively. Drivers -will- cut across your line and they will not see you. Protected bike lanes protect you from being hit from behind, which statistically is the least likely way to be hit. It doesn't reduce your chances of being right hooked, T-boned, doored, or hit head on. It increases conflicts with pedestrians, wrong-way riders, and drivers exiting their vehicles.

The indirect benefit from protected bike lanes is that it offers a mental break from traffic for a few blocks at a time. It serves as a physical barrier to prevent a child from swerving unexpectedly into traffic. However, the biggest benefit to cycling is that protected bike lanes offer a false sense of security, which results in the real numbers of cyclists increasing. This leads to a net benefit in safety for cyclists because an increased mode share increases driver's awareness of cyclists presence.

HOWEVER, I will always advocate against these types of protected lanes. The more that are built, the more cyclists will be pressured to use these subpar facilities against their better judgement. IE I never ride in the 1st ave bike lane, its suicide. I choose to ride in the road, but face endless harassment from drivers. Ride up 3rd ave and I get very little.

Ride big in the lane, ride 16mph+, but don't filter up through traffic at lights unless you can keep ahead of everyone you pass.

Sean

dotcommie said...

This is the city... Los Angeles. My name is Friday(1) ... I ride a Brompton ... in office clothes.

(1) Actually, it isn't, but the above only works if I name myself Friday.