Saturday, May 31, 2008

Thien's DIY tire patch kit

See detailed step by step instructions with even more photographs over at Spare Cycles. Writes Ken, "I plan on undercutting him by offering a $1 kit -- $2 for double strength."

To Ken and Thien -- I won't be able to make next Tuesday. I have something to do with my wife that evening. I blew off last Tuesday; if I do it again she will shoot me.

Friday, May 30, 2008

San Francisco bicyclist survey

If you're an involved cyclist in San Francisco, you no doubt already know of this survey.

The San Francisco Senior Action Network is conducting a survey to understand why cyclists ride on the sidewalk in San Francisco. Sidewalk cyclists who have taken the survey so far say they would avoid the sidewalk if more bike lanes were available, if traffic laws were better enforced, and if there were a separate set of traffic laws for cyclists. In a pedestrian survey, 10% of pedestrians answering the survey indicate they have been hit by a cyclist on the sidewalk in the last two years.

If you're a cyclist in San Francisco, you can take the sidewalk cyclist survey here.

The annual car vs bike vs transit challenge

Transportation Alternatives in New York City held its 7th annual Commuter Challenge yesterday. Streetfilms had cameras on each of the car driver, cyclist and public transit user and Elizabeth Press stayed up all night to create the video of the challenge in less than 24 hours!

More here.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Export Land Model

The Wall Street Journal does a good job covering the big reason that oil prices have risen so dramatically over the past year: exports fell 2.5% last year in spite of a 57% increase in prices. The conventional wisdom is that higher prices always lead to technological improvements and more investment. This drop in exports "defies traditional market logic," according to the article.

One of the big factors in decreased exports mentioned in the WSJ article is what geologist Jeffrey Brown calls the "Export Land Model." Picture an oil producing country -- "ExportLand" -- that produces two millions barrels of oil per day. It keeps one million for domestic use and exports the remaining one million to the United States at $50 per barrel. As prices rise to $100 per barrel and more, all of that American cash flowing in to ExportLand leads to more consumption, bigger houses, more roads, more SUVs to drive on those roads, suburbs, big box outlet stores, yachts and private jets. This results in more domestic consumption in Exportland, which in turn results in a drop off in exports.

ExportLand has a finite quantity of oil, so that two million barrels per day production is declining over time. In the real world example of Mexico, production dropped a dramatic 15% from 2006 to 2007 while domestic consumption increased. Similar things are happening in Norway, Russian, Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East.

Another real world example is the United Kingdom, which went from a major supplier to a net importer in only six years. One time exporter Indonesia became a net importer. Mexico is expected to become a net importer within five years. Even Iran -- the world's fourth largest oil producer -- is expected to become a net importer in a few years.

The question to ask yourself: When all of the large oil exporters become oil importers, who will they import the oil from?

"The sense in the market is that peak oil is here and that things will only get worse," says Lehman Brothers oil analyst Adam Robinson. He continues, "the verdict is still out on that," because of ultra deep water drilling planned off the coasts of Brazil, Australia, West Africa and the Gulf of Mexico. Going for the difficult oil that's only profitable when oil is above $100 per barrel is, of course, part of the very definition of Peak Oil -- when the easy stuff is gone, you must spend more time, effort, resources and money in squeezing the last little bit that's left in the sponge.

Read more in the WSJ. The article explains things fairly well, IMO. Thanks to Jack in STL for the heads up on this.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Orange bikes take Manhattan

Do you remember the DKNY orange bikes of fashion week? A short film by Kalim Armstrong documents the backlash to DKNY's ad campaign. "Orange Bikes Take Manhattan" screens this Friday at the Bicycle Film Festival in NYC. Here's the trailer.

Orange Bikes Take Manhattan - Bicycle Film Festival 2008
Friday May 30th 7pm
32 2nd Ave. at 2nd St.

Orange bikes documents the reaction to a guerrilla marketing campaign during fashion week. Orange monochromatic bicycles appeared chained as part of DKNY's "Explore your city" campaign. The bikes were reminiscent of the Ghost Bike memorial project, white painted bikes that serve as markers where cyclists have died in traffic accidents. This film explores the backlash to the marketing campaign.

Activist shareholders

The Rockefeller family put their name behind several shareholder proposals to split the leadership, limit greenhouse gas emissions and encourage development of alternative fuels, proposals that were defeated at the recent annual meeting.

Currently, the CEO and Chairman of the Board positions at Exxon Mobile are tied up in a single individual, Rex Tillerson. Shareholders, including large institutional investors, are concerned that Exxon Tillerson's day to day responsibilities as CEO detracts from the Chairman's job of directing the company's strategy and thinking about the future of humanity. As even Exxon acknowledges the reality of global warming from human activity, many shareholders believe that they need to protect their investments by effectively countering the threat of global warming.

In the realm of politics, one time vice-presidential candidate Senator Joe Lieberman expressed his outrage over oil company profits and support for McCain's gas tax holiday.

Truck drivers blocked roads into London to protest high fuel prices, which have gone up over 20% in the UK since the beginning of this year.

Maybe it's time to ride a bike. I'm supposed to meet up with Josh Muir of Frances Cycles of Santa Cruz in the next couple of weeks. He's starting up production of some interesting cycletrucks this summer that should be interesting to see.

Too many bicycle shoes

Here's the view under my desk at work this morning. That's three pairs of cycling shoes with clipless pedal cleats under my desk.

3 pair of bike shoes under my desk

I brought my street shoes home Friday before the long weekend and I forgot to bring a replacement pair into the office. I get to pad around in my stocking feet or clomp around in bike shoes today.

It's not about the bike. I had a nice 22 mile ride to work this morning from San Jose with Dan, who manages a BIOS group in my building. I was wearing in the neighborhood of $400 of cycling gear riding a 17 pound carbon fiber bicyle and carrying only a wallet, while Dan was on his old steel LeMond Buenos Aries wearing worn out discount bike shorts and a ratty t-shirt that flapped in the wind. Dan is a year older than me and had a backpack distended with enough luggage for a weekend trip, but it took just about everything I had for me to keep up with him as he powered down Central Expressway at 25 mph. I have no excuses. Bah.

IKEA bicycle

After IKEA buyers and managers were seen at recent international bicycle shows, Bike Europe reports that the Dutch furniture retailer IKEA sells bicycles in the Netherlands now. Read more at Bike Europe.

Elsewhere in Europe... French President Nicolas Sarkozy wants to cut the European sales tax (VAT) on fuel to reduce fuel prices. Fishermen have blocked French ports for the last week to protest high fuel prices as prices for diesel for fishing boats has doubled over the past six months. More at the BBC.

In Canada, Dorel Industries had their annual stockholders meeting yesterday. They expect bikes to be big business for them as gasoline makes travel more expensive. In spite of the slowing economy, sales were up 54.9 per cent in the first quarter, compared to the same period a year ago. Overall, Dorel revenues rose 22 per cent to $556 million, and earnings went up 25.7 per cent to $35.1 million, or $1.05 a share, from the first quarter in 2007. Shareholders were told that Dorel plans to aggressively develop its bicycle business.

"The purchase of Cannondale and SUGOi immediately establishes huge IBD positioning for Dorel and will help us move toward a dominant worldwide position in the bicycle industry," Dorel CEO Martin Schwartz told stockholders. "Our intention is to seek further acquisitions in similar high quality, performance bicycle companies and create new innovative products."

Dorel sells bicycles under the Schwinn, GT, Mongoose, and Cannondale brands through mass merchant and independent bike retail stores.

My friend Tim Grahl has his 15 minutes of fame through a mention in this article at Forbes Magazine. Tim made Forbe's list of richest bike riders in the world. Or something like that.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Norcal bicycle blogs that you read

On the survey, I asked what northern California bicycle blogs you visited. Personally, I think of NorCal is the region north of the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento, but in common usage the SF Bay Area and even the Monterey Bay area are included -- I see a lot of Nor*Cal logos on trucks and surfboards around Santa Cruz, for instance. For Cyclelicious I'll use the common usage because, frankly, there aren't that many people in Chico, Redding, Eureka and Arcata, California.

Here are the blogs you mentioned:

Elsewhere in California

  • Somebody mentioned that Commute By Bike covers cycling as transportation in the South Bay, and that's because I'm a contributor there.

  • Somebody also mentioned C.I.C.L.E., which is a very good resource that I follow in Los Angeles.
There are, of course, several others in Northern California and elsewhere around the Golden State. Feel free to post links to your favorites and your own blogs in the comments!

Philadelphia: Top city for bicycle theft

The city of brotherly love is now the city of bike theft in Kryptonite Lock's latest ranking of top American bicycle theft cities, beating out New York City for the first time ever. "Our premier line [of bicycle locks] is the “New York” line because we know, in the US, that’s the bike theft capital," says Kryptonite marketing chieftress Donna Tocci. "But now I’m wondering if we need to change the name of our products," she jokes.

In the 2007 list released this morning, New York City dropped all the way to third place on the list, while Washington DC dropped off of the top 10 list altogether. Read more at Unbreakable Bonds, the blog of Kryptonite Locks.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

I've actually been far away from any Internet connectivity spending time in the outdoors with my family this last weekend. The posts you've seen come to you via the magic computer software that automatically publishes these pre-written posts.

In the United States, Monday is the Memorial Day holiday, a day set aside to remember those who died in military service. Memorial Day began first to honor Union soldiers who died during the American Civil War. After World War I, it was expanded to include those who died in any war or military action.

Traditional observations include visiting veterans cemeteries and memorials. These days, most view the three day weekend as a chance for barbeques, car races and family gatherings. The price of gas jumps up as millions of Americans (including myself) drive to get away.

With mounting war deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan, many Americans are again remembering the solemnity of Memorial Day observances. Enjoying the high consumption American way of life requires the sacrifices of young men and women half a world away, and whatever your politics I encourage you to do what you can to minimize the necessity of these sacrifices.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Monkey Electric wheel lights (and a coupon code)

Susan and Judy look at my Monkey Electric bike lights I'm showing off the Monkey Electric wheel light to my co-workers Susan and Judy. Dudes and dames, flashy bright stuff on your bike work well to attract the opposite sex, drawing them like moths to a porch light or fireflies to each other.
I'm not that great of a photographer and these things are devilishly hard to get good photos of, especially when I'm using a broken camera, so you'll just have to trust me when I write that I love my Monkey Electric wheel lights!

This gadget attaches to your wheel spokes with zip ties. The set of bright, colorfully flashing LEDs makes cool persistence of vision patterns as you roll. These even work well in shade (like we have in the Santa Cruz Mountains) and overcast skies (like we often have in San Francisco).

These guys do a fantastic job lighting up the ground around you.

These are about twice of the price of comparable Hokey Spokes. Monkey Electric lights do not sync up like Hokey Spokes do, but then you don't need two or three units to make a decent pattern, and the LEDs on the Monkey Electric lights are much brighter and colorful. Some people like the aesthetics of Hokey Spokes better, and I think Monkey Electric are a little bit less resistant to theft since all you need to do is snip three zip ties to take these things; Hokey Spokes are secured with screws.

For details and online purchase, visit Monkey Electric. Use the coupon code "BIKECULT" for 25% off of your order until July 15, 2008. Order fulfillment is quick, shipping is fast, and installation is no problem at all.

Santa Cruz fire evacuations

Several hundred people living in the Santa Cruz Mountains have been forced to evacuate their homes as over 3,000 acres of dry woodland burned overnight. It's good see people are leaving their homes with the things that are important to them.

Photo from the San Jose Mercury News.

All the smoke in the air made riding my bike this morning a little tough. I went slow to keep myself from breathing hard.

Mini velo bicycles now in USA

Minivelo style bicycles from Organic Wheels and Rad Innovations.

"Minivelo" bicycles are bicycles with small, 20" wheels but with road or city / hybrid bike design influences rather than the BMX bike look. Though at a glance these compact bicycles look like they might be folders, they're not typically folding bicycles.

Because the small size lends to easier storage, minivelo bikes are hugely popular in some Asian countries, Japan, Korea and Taiwan in particular. They have a following in Europe and the UK, also. These lightweight bicycles "feel" a lot like a normal bike. Unlike many comparably equipped folding bikes, they tend to be reasonably stiff and responsive. Many people carry minivelo bicycles onto light rail and train systems as part of a multimodal commute.

Organic Wheels in Oregon Spinburn minivelo bicycles for the US market under the "Minivelo USA" brand. Purchase is currently online through PayPal, with bikes ranging in price from about $700 for 7005 aluminum bike equipped with brand X components up to almost $1500 for the SRAM Rival equipped "Minivelo USA Race" on a Reynolds 525 CroMoly double butted steel frame and carbon front fork.

The "Reach" line of folding bikes from Rad Innovations is clearly inspired by Asian minivelo bikes. They're meant more for traveling rather than multimodal commutes -- they pack into a size that will fit a standard suitcase, so the folding is not as compact or quick as many folders. The ride, however, is surprisingly nimble. There's not the squirrelly feel that's typical of many compact folding bikes, probably because of the somewhat longer wheelbase. Rad Innovations has suspension front and rear to make up for the inherent bumpiness of smaller wheels. The suspension adds just enough give to take up road shock without adding a lot of weight. The Reach bicycles I've tried felt a lot like a "normal" bicycle -- the Rad Innovations people did a very good job of designing this bike.

Rad Innovations Reach range from $1000 for a Shimano Alivio eqiupped bicycle up to $1500 for a Tiagra equipped bike. All Reach bikes are 7005 aluminum. Reach bikes are available through local dealers.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Santa Cruz approves "Bikes In Lane" signs for Mission Street

State approval required before signs installed

Santa Cruz council approves "Bikes In Lane" sign for Mission Street
In a meeting last week, the Santa Cruz City Council unanimously voted to request "Bikes In Lane" signs to be installed on Mission Street, where two cyclists were killed by passing traffic over the past eight months.

Local cycling advocates, traffic engineers, and officials agree that Mission Street is too narrow to share safely, especially with the heavy truck traffic that travels down the road. The city's hands are tied, however, because Mission Street is California State Highway 1 and is under the jurisdiction of Caltrans District 5. Caltrans originally refused to install anything besides "Share the Road" signs, but after People Power Santa Cruz asked for state Assembly Member John Laird's assistance, Caltrans relented and agreed to install signage that the city of Santa Cruz considers more effective.

At the meeting, the decision to make was between three different signs: an advisory "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" sign that's becoming more common in California, a yellow "Watch for Bicycles Using Lane" sign proposed by Caltrans, and the "Bikes In Lane" sign that was approved by the council. The Santa Cruz police department opposed the "May Use Full Lane" sign but supported the "Bikes In Lane" sign.

Mission Street sidewalk cyclist
This cyclist rides on the sidewalk alongside Mission Street near Bay in Santa Cruz, California. While the sidewalk is empty on the mid morning when I took this photo, pedestrian traffic is typically heavier on the weekends and other times when traffic is high on Mission Street.

Bill the cyclist Bill of Boston rides his heavily laden bicycle down the middle of the lane on Mission Street in Santa Cruz, California. One citizen at the council meeting said cyclists should use the sidewalk. Riding on the sidewalk, however, does nothing to protect cyclists from right hook collisions.

Several traffic engineering experts explained how to improve the safety of bicycling on Mission Street. John Ciccarelli of the Bicycle Technical Committee of the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices explained that the "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" will likely be in the 2009 edition of the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices published by the Federal Highway Adminstration. The MUTCD is the standard used by all U.S. transportation departments for their road signs -- it's the reason all stop signs in the United States are red octagons with white letters with a standard size and standard height.

Santa Cruz police chief Howard Skerry said they may ticket cyclists who in their view impeded traffic, regardless of any signage installed by the city. If bicyclists did not agree with that interpretation, he invited them to let the courts decide the matter.

Bob Shanteau spoke after the CHP and noted that the California Vehicle Code for impeding traffic only applies to 2 lane roads, not 4 lane highways such as Mission Street. "As long as the lane was too narrow for a bicycle and a vehicle to share side by side,' says Shanteau, "then the bicyclist was allowed to take the full lane."

"People have been taught since childhood to stay out of the way of cars, and that two bicyclists in Santa Cruz had followed that advice and they were both now dead. We need to make sure that never happens again," Shanteau continue as people in the council chambers applauded him.

Selection of non-standard sign may hinder final approval by state

While the engineers and advocates wanted the Bikes May Use Full Lane signs, the city voted for the "Bikes In Lane" sign instead. People Power Director Micah Posner said, "In the end not that much different. Having the sign will really improve the campaign to encourage awareness. It's about informing cyclist and motorist and it's about cyclists asserting their rights. These signs will be a big step forward."

Posner expressed some exasperation about the police department's threat to ticket cyclists who "impede" traffic. People Power has already gone to court on behalf of ticketed cyclists and "we beat it in court based on California Vehicle Code."

Caltrans still must get approval for the proposed sign from the California Traffic Control Device Committee, which meets next week. Because the city of Santa Cruz endorsed the untested "Bikes In Lane" sign over the standard "May Use Full Lane" sign, state approval is uncertain. The city council approved the Bikes In Lane sign thinking that Caltrans could get them installed this summer, but their selection of a non-standard sign will possibly mean a delay until this fall at the very earliest.

More: Thank you to Micah Posner and Bob Shantaeu for the details.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Saab Story, check your email

Those who entered their email addresses during The Great Cyclelicious Survey had a chance to win the CycleAware Stow Away bag. I picked an email address on May 7 and sent an email to "Saab Story," but I haven't heard back. If I don't hear from you by 10 AM on Friday, May 23, I'm going to pick another name from the hat.

Thanks to those who responded to the survey. Some factoids and observations:
  • 18% of respondents report that you're from the San Francisco Bay Area, with another 11% from elsewhere in California. The 29% of survey respondents in California compares against 19% reported by my web logs.
  • Most of you are interested in transportational cycling and "bike culture," though a significant number are also interested in professional road cycling and any kind of cycling for personal fitness. Several pointed out an important category that I missed: Cyclocross! One of the more interesting uses for a bike: "Using my bikes to explore port that my ship pulls into."
  • When you read other blogs, most of you read cycling blogs without a regional focus. Most of you also avoid regional bike blogs. In other words, you seem to like the general purpose bike blogs over the ones with a local focus.
  • The overwhelming response from "the money question" was that Cyclelicious should remain general purpose. I got a ton of comments on that question, with most of you saying I shouldn't narrow the focus. If anything, I should perhaps add northern California content but only if I don't sacrifice the more general news, links and information.
  • I got a lot of good feedback and words of encouragement on the comments. I really appreciate that and it means a lot to me.
Again, I really appreciate the notes you've sent. I aim to please!

And Saab Story, if you want that bag you need to respond to me with your mailing address!

Bicycle Haiku

Boing Boing's Xeni Jardin talks with WIRED founder Kevin Kelly's book Bicycle Haiku in this video. Kelly rode his bicycle across the United States in 1979. Bicycle Haiku is a reproduction of the sketchbook he kept from that trip.

More at Boing Boing.

Silicon Valley cycle style

Ken has some humorous observations on Silicon Valley cyclists.

If you visit Cyclelicious, you might notice some random "XXX is your new bicycle" text near the top of the page. What do you think of that silliness? You're free to grab the Javascript code for your own website if you want -- if you know Javascript its fairly easy to figure out, but if you need some help and you're interested then let me know. I've even made it so you can easily replace "Cyclelicious" with your own name.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Drive your bike to work day is May 21

Drive your bike to work day. To participate, hoist your bike onto your car and drive it to work!

Real Ultimate Power

Real Ultimate Power

Hi, this is site is all about bicycle, REAL BICYCLES. This site is awesome. My name is Fritz and I can't stop thinking about bicycles. These guys are cool; and by cool, I mean totally sweet.

1. Bicycles are mammals.
2. Bicycles fight ALL the time.
3. The purpose of the bicycle is to flip out and kill people.

Weapons and gear:


Sharpened bar ends

Skanky used shorts


Bicycles can kill anyone they want! Bicycles eat people ALL the time and don't even think twice about it. These guys are so crazy and awesome that they flip out ALL the time. I heard that there was this bicycle that was riding through town. And when some cager ran a stop sign the bicycle killed the whole town. My friend Mark said that he saw a bicycle totally uppercut some recumbent just because the recumbent opened a window.

And that's what I call REAL Ultimate Power!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you don't believe that bicycle have REAL Ultimate Power you better get a life right now or they will chop your head off!!! It's an easy choice, if you ask me.

Bicycles are sooooooooooo sweet that I want to crap my pants. I can't believe it sometimes, but I feel it inside my heart. These guys are totally awesome and that's a fact. Bicycles are fast, smooth, cool, strong, powerful, and sweet. I can't wait to start spinnig classes next year. I love bicycles with all of my body (including my pee pee).

Q and A:

Q: Why is everyone so obsessed about bicycles?

A: Bicycles are the ultimate paradox. On the one hand they don't give a crap, but on the other hand, bicycles are very careful and precise.

Q: I heard that bicycles are always cruel or mean. What's their problem?

A: Whoever told you that is a total liar. Just like other mammals, bicycles can be mean OR totally awesome.

Q: What do bicycles do when they're not cutting off heads or flipping out?

A: Most of their free time is spent cruising, but sometimes they skid. (Ask Mark if you don't believe me.)

Inspiration from the Real Ultimate Power Hippo Page.

Bicycles in the news

MAKE looks at the amazing Monkey Electric LED lights. Use the coupon code "BIKECULT" for 25% off when you order these from Monkey Electric. I got a set and they are very colorful and amazingly bright, even during the day in the shade or overcast conditions.

The San Francisco Bay Guardian published several bicycling stories in its Bike Issue this week. The San Francisco MTA is holding meetings to update the community on the city's progress with the Bike Plan.

Women's liberation arrived on bicycle.

Alderwoman from St. Loius suburb rides a bike and is assaulted by passing motorist.

More below this photo by Mark Stosberg.

James reflects on reflective parts on bikes and accessories. And New Hampshire passed a new law last week that, among other things, mandates reflective clothing for night cyclists.

The Spokesmen podcast talks about National Bike Month and Masiguy's crash.

Bike boxes in Brooklyn.

Cozy Beehive: Cardboard Bicycle.

Another bicycle blog: Eco Velo.

Jim Westhouse's solar powered trikes.

Very cool SHARE THE ROAD: SAME ROAD, SAME RULES, SAME RIGHTS bus wrap advertisement on Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District buses. Via Sue.

On the streets of New York City, we see that Specialized has licensed its Langster New York City design to sweaters.

None of the janitors showed up at work today. I've gotten to know a few of them and practice my Spanish and I've seen their pay stubs which, frankly, are the pits. One guy I know has worked for the same company for 16 years and makes just a hair over minimum wage.

~ I'm sure that's enough for now, folks!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Girls and Gear in Portland, Maine

Dana tells up about the Girls and Gear event that took place at a bike shop in Portland, Maine. In the video from the event, Fuji Marketing Director Karen Bliss talks about women's specific design bikes from Fuji.

More bicycle news

Bikes for Kids Utah received a $40,000 grant from the Sorenson Legacy Foundation to help provide new bicycles for 1,000 underprivileged third graders during Bikes for Kids Utah's annual bicycle giveaway.

"Bicycles give children the chance to exercise, learn about safety, develop great skills and just have fun," said Joe Sorenson, trustee of the Sorenson Legacy Foundation. "We are delighted with this unique opportunity to enrich the lives of kids in our community."

On Saturday, May 31, Bikes for Kids Utah will give new bicycles and helmets to 1,000 pre-qualified third graders from the Boys & Girls Clubs throughout the Salt Lake City region. Visit Bikes for Kids Utah for more information.

Megabus cancels San Jose to Los Angeles Service. More here. Remaining bus options include Greyhound and California Shuttle Bus.

Silicon Valley Ride of Silence takes place Wednesday evening, May 21st, beginning at the Homestead High School student parking lot in Sunnyvale at 6:45 PM. The ride will be in silence and will proceed at about 12 mph. Riders are asked to wear black arm bands, or red arm bands if they have been injured in an accident caused by a motor vehicle. The 4 ¼ mile ride will go to the Stevens Creek Reservoir Parking, passing by a memorial for Matt Peterson and Christy, the cyclists who were killed on Stevens Canyon Road on March 9.

Santa Cruz Ride of Silence on Wednesday meets at Sprockets Bike Shop (1420 Mission Street at Trescony) at 6:30 PM on Wednesday, May 21. The 10 mile ride begins promptly at 7:00 PM. Helmets are required. The ride is open to any and all riders who would like to show their support, young or old, beginner or expert, recumbent or fixie, road or mountain.

Cozy Beehives links to a cool video on how bicycle helmets are made.

CyclePong 2.0. Wow.

WIRED blog's tips on Five ways to make bike commuting easy.

Instructables: Solar powered tricycle.

Another way to help Fat Cyclist and Susan

Most people who read bicycle blogs already know that Elden's (aka Fat Cyclist) wife Susan has recently taken a turn for the worse. Her cancer has spread to become inoperable brain cancer. Susan has been told that she only has months to live, and Elden and Susan have had to pass that news on to their 12 and 14 year old boys and their twin six year old girls.

Elden and his wife have health insurance, but costs obviously continue to mount for hospice care, travel for family members, and of course just the day to day expense of living. Ways you can give to Elden are numerous, including buying Fat Cyclist jerseys and other gear and donating directly via PayPal.

UltraRob (aka Rob Lucas) is also helping out by pledging all income from his site today and Tuesday toward Susan's fund. If you're going to buy cycling and other athletic gear anyway, go buy it through Ultra Rob's online cycling store.

DKNY orange bicycles in London

Do you remember the DKNY orange bicycles during Fashion Week in New York? They're now in London advertising that underwear for men are now available.

DKNY orange bicycle in London

Photo: DKNY Bike by Rachel Clarke, CC License

Who invented the mountain bike?

In this video, Charles Leadbeater talks at conference on collaborative creativity, in which he uses the creation of the mountain bike. Mountain bikes did not come from a big bike corporation or from a lone tinkerer, but from a community of young enthusiasts who got together to ride their "klunkers" down the hills of Marin County in California.

Consumers created a whole new category of bikes because the mainstream bike industry was not motivated to innovate and invent something that is now 65% of the bike market.

Occasionally I'll see something truly interesting from the big bike and component companies, but usually innovation tends to be more evolutionary than revolutionary - more gears, new frame materials and geometries, lighter components and so forth, but a lot of this innovation seems to be driven more by increasing sales rather than creating something truly new, fun or useful.

Even among amatuer enthusiasts, a lot of innovation is rejected by the larger world of bike geeks because we're all so conservative. I'm a dyed in the wool jersey roadie, and I finally got around to trying a mountain bike for the first time three years ago. There's not a lot of cross fertilization between mountain bikers, road cyclists, and utility cyclists. My short time riding technical singletrack has improved my road and street cycling skills significantly, and I think we could see some interesting things come about if different disciplines got together.

Part of the reason I love going to events such as Maker Faire is because I can look over the fence and meet the people who don't know the rules and see what kind of crazy stuff they come up with. Twenty years ago I might have sneered because We Just Don't Do Things That Way, but today I try to be much more open minded and see the possibilities.

One of my favorite blogs is Bicycle Design because James tends to cover some of the far out and the impractical that design students create.

What do you think of the state of cycling? Do you see anything truly interesting and new in the near future?

Props to Paul in Denver for that interesting video.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Strong sales in bike trailers -- Help Wanted

Josh Lipton started the Bike Trailer Shop two years ago in Flagstaff, Arizona. Since then, he has seen online sales explode to the point where he now has an opening for another full time Sales Associate.

"With the rising price of gas and the growing interest in cycling as an alternative to automobile transportation, we've been experiencing very strong growth this season," says Josh. "People call me and tell me they just sold their car and they need a bike trailer," says Josh. People from all over country buy bike trailers, racks and bags from the Bike Trailer Shop.

Josh wants me to mention that they need "a new employee to join" their "social-entrepreneurial venture" in Flagstaff, Arizona. Josh is looking for somebody with "a strong knowledge and passion for cycling." Check out the About Page for details about the sales position.

Also see the Bike Trailer Blog for some interesting information about bike trailers.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

San Lorenzo Valley Critical Mass

Over 500 cyclists participated in the 4th Annual Rail and Trail Day on Saturday, May 17 2008 to celebrate rail and bike travel and support local efforts to create a 31 mile trail along the Union Pacific rail corridor that runs along the Santa Cruz coast from Davenport to Watsonville, California.

The cyclists met at Santa Cruz Depot where they loaded bikes, trailers, and other gear onto a train chartered from the Roaring Camp Railroad. Adults and children had fun as they talked and shared snacks on the ride up the San Lorenzo Valley through redwood groves to the Roaring Camp depot near Felton. After they got off the train and unloaded their bikes, they cut over to the Henry Cowell State Forest visitor center parking lot and lined up for the ride down Highway 9 from Felton back to Santa Cruz.

Fish Taco
The purpose of the ride is the drum up support for a proposed rail trail along the Santa Cruz Coast. The Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Agency has agreed to purchase the rail right of way from Union Pacific, but funding is not available. According to Friends of the Rail Trail (FORT), the county can use Proposition 116 funds, and to get those funds the county must implement public transportation service along the corridor. Ride organizers encouraged participants to contact the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission to express their support for the coast railroad acquisition.

Micah Posner, director of the bicycle and pedestrian advocacy group People Power Santa Cruz, joked that there wouldn't be a "5th Annual Rail Trail Day because we'll have our trail by then!"

My children and I had a great time on this ride and we topped it off with a visit to Marianne's Ice Cream on Ocean Street afterwards. Yum!

Friday, May 16, 2008

I can ride my bike with no handlebars

The song "Handlebars" by Denver hip hop group the Flobots is amazing. The subtle theme of the song caught me by surprise, and the animated music video accompanying the song serves to drive the point home.

If the embedded video doesn't work, this is the link to the video on YouTube.

Read more at Urban Velo. See also Flobots website.

I'll be on the Santa Cruz rail trail bike train tomorrow with my children. I hope you're having a good weekend. And for a final word for this Friday night I give you this recipe for pain: Ride 30 miles on a fixed gear bike in hot weather + jump into a cold pool = excruciating leg cramps!

Twice as many bikes as cars on Market Street

There were twice as many bicycles as cars headed downtown on San Francisco’s Market Street on the 14th annual Bike to Work Day. Bicyclists made up 64% of the eastbound traffic at Market St. & Van Ness Ave., while motorists comprised 32% between 8am and 9am today. (The remainder was transit vehicles and taxis). This is a nearly 31% increase over the number of people biking last year on Bike to Work Day. The counts were taken by the Municipal Transportation Agency.

One of those riding this morning was first-time bike commuter and mother of two, Ali Linder, who credits Bike to Work Day with motivating her to switch from driving or taking transit to pedaling from the Richmond District to the Embarcadero. "There were a ton of bicyclists out. It was fun to be a part of it, especially because it was a Spare the Air Day. I felt really good about not being in my car, and I got exercise during the time I'd normally be sitting down. I will definitely bike to work again."

A record number of city leaders bicycled to work including Supervisors Jake McGoldrick, Aaron Peskin, Carmen Chu, Ross Mirkarimi, Chris Daly, Sean Elsbernd, Bevan Dufty, and Gerardo Sandoval, as well as the heads of City departments, including Nat Ford of the Municipal Transportation Agency. They joined San Francisco Bicycle Coalition (SFBC) members on City Hall steps for a visual spectacle quantifying the financial, health and environmental benefits of bicycling.

“I’m thrilled to see so many people biking to work today. Thanks to growing interest in healthy, sustainable commuting and our efforts with the City to ensure that cyclists feel safe and welcome on the streets, more people are making the switch to biking,” says Leah Shahum, Executive Director of the 9,000-member SFBC.

Local bike shops also report seeing more people switching to bicycling. “Commute bicycling is clearly growing,” says Zack Stender, manager of Mike’s Bikes in San Francisco. “I talk daily to customers about the high cost of gas. People are feeling more comfortable on the streets because there are more people on bikes. There’s safety in numbers.”

[ San Francisco Bicycle Coalition press release. Photo by Bugsmack and used with her permission. ]

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Bay Area Bike to Work Day photos

I bike today - Bike To Work Day San Francisco

I posted my mostly lame South Bay Bike To Work Day photos to Flickr. Good photos are hard to take when you're camera is broken!

Luckily, several other people carried their cameras on Bike To Work Day. Here's Frank Ogawa Plaza in Oakland.

Bike to Work Day Oakland California

Adam posted his photos from San Francisco.

Bike to Work Day San Francisco

Sasha, too.

Bike to Work Day San Francisco

My friend Jerry his Apple Bike To Work Day photos to Picasa. See also Bici Girl's nice photos from Oakland, San Francisco photos from vs Goliath,

All photos shown here with permission or with CC license. Click on the photos for attribution and captions.

Bicyles and the Sartorialist



See also Scarlett Johansson, Ashton Kutcher, Zooey Deschanel, and Jay Hernandez racing their bicycles in this advertisement from The Gap.

Happy Bike To Work Day

When this is posted on Thursday morning, hopefully I'll be on my way biking and doing my tour of South Bay Energizer Stations. I plan to stop off a the Energizer Stations at San Jose Depot, Mountain View Castro Street, Palo Alto Wilkie Way, Palo Alto California Avenue, Palo Alto City Hall, and Menlo Park Willow Road taking photos all along the way. Be sure to say "Cheese" for my camera!

Here's what the San Francisco Bay Area news media says about Bike to Work Day:

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Bike week bloggers

Design O Jek says it's Bike to Work Week in Kansas!

WashCycle says it's Bike To Work Week in the Washington DC area!

Riverfront Times says it's Bike to Work Week in the St. Louis!

Ozone Bike Department says Bike To Work Week and Day in Austin!

Other stuff:
  • wjc responds to jwz.
    Still, I’ve never heard of anyone who has reportedly ridden bikes so much for so long with so little interest in cycling culture or knowledge about bikes. Srsly, if you’ve been bike commuting daily for 10 years, paying a bike shop $20 to fix a flat is like a unix geek paying an intern $20 to write a 2-minute shell script.

  • MAKE reports on the bikes at Maker Faire.

  • Masiguy can't type, so he did a podcast instead, where he describes his crash in detail. I feel his pain. Ouch. He severs his thumb, is knocked unconscious, spends several days in the hospital, and then apologizes for his lack of blogging. What a trooper.

  • "I am opening myself up to negative comments from the legions of gold plated Italian component fans on the web," writes James.

  • Rich Kelly: Doping in pro baseball.
  • A boy sold his bicycle to raise funds for Hillary Clinton's campaign. "I was thinking one day how could I make money for the campaign," he says. "And I just went through my closet and found things I didn't need."

  • Rechargeable lantern for your Nalgene bottle.
  • Amanda Annis seemed like such a sweet kid. Her boyfriend James Bausch was on his way to pick up an engagement ring when she was hit by a motorist running a red light and killed. James was planning to meet her father to ask Amanda's hand in marriage last weekend.

  • MONKEY ELECTRIC. I have a set of these on the way!
  • Back to Maker Faire: Guy Kawasaki took lots of bike photos.
  • Danny in Seattle wrecked his car. What should buy to replace his ride?
Enjoy your bike riding this week!

jwz on cycling in San Francisco

Jamie Zawinski aka jwz is a well known computer programmer who helped author the original Netscape Navigator web browser and made significant contributions to the open source Mozilla browser and XEmacs (a text editor). These days he runs a night club in San Francisco.

He posted jwz's bicycle wisdom to his blog. His feeling are apparently hurt because some people disagree with his "wisdom", but it's still a worthwhile read. I agree with some of his collected wisdom, and some I disagree with. Big deal.
I've been using a bike as my exclusive transportation in SF for about ten years. I've always ridden, but that's when I stopped driving a car except under extreme duress.

Here's how to begin your adventure as a commuter-bicyclist in San Francisco....
Read more at jwz bicycle wisdom.

Bicycle news in the Bay Area

100,000 to bike to work in Bay Area

East Bay Business News: Up to 100,000 in the Bay Area expected to bike to work.

Mercury News: Oh so smug in spandex: I bike to work

Palo Alto Weekly: Bike commuters of the year.

Palo Alto Weekly: List of Palo Alto Energizer Stations [PDF]

Mercury News: Panel of judges overturns manslaughter conviction of truck driver who hit and killed a cyclist.

Santa Cruz Sentinel: Dead cyclist's parents sue over death on Mission Street.

Santa Cruz Sentinel: Cycling along Mission Street is awful. Doh!

Santa Cruz Sentinel: Mission Street cyclist ban impractical.

Trips for Kids conference at IMBA National Summit

Trips for Kids National (TFK) today announced it is hosting a Pre-Conference for TFK chapters in conjunction with the 2008 International Mountain Bicycling Association's (IMBA) World Summit taking place in Park City, Utah, this coming June. The conference will cover how to start a Trips for Kids advocacy program, promote it, respond to challenges and how to ensure long-term chapter success.

The TFK Pre-conference is scheduled for Wednesday, June 18, 2008, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Park City Marriott, and is for current TFK chapters and those interested in starting a new TFK chapter.

"Trips for Kids is honored to partner with IMBA at its upcoming World Summit," said Marilyn Price, founder and director of TFK. "Many TFK chapters consist of IMBA members, and IMBA clubs are natural vehicles to start TFK chapters, so it made sense to meet together before the conference to share ideas and best practices."

The TFK Pre-Conference Workshop will address how to start and promote a program, respond to challenges, use the bicycle as an education tool and guarantee the long-term success of an individual chapter. From 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on June 18, there will be a facilitated workshop for TFK and other youth biking groups.

"The goal of adding youth topics to the IMBA Summit agenda and including Trips for Kids in the session is to identify barriers, find solutions and ultimately inspire more youth biking programs around the globe," said Mike Van Abel, director of IMBA.

To that end, Quality Bicycle Product's Advocacy Director Gary Sjoquist requested that QBP's sponsorship of the IMBA World Summit be directed toward making Summit scholarships available to Trips for Kids chapters.

"With more than 60 chapters nationwide, it made sense to use our sponsorship funds to help get these folks to the Summit," said Sjoquist. "Kids are the future of mountain biking, and both IMBA and Trips for Kids are helping get kids on mountain bikes and out on the trails."

The 2008 IMBA World Summit begins immediately following the TFK Pre-Conference on Wednesday, June 18, and ends Saturday, June 21. Price and TFK Chapter members are also participating in panel discussions concerning mountain bicycling and trail stewardship among youth during the Summit.

Bike to work day weather and pollution forecast

Here's the Silicon Valley forecast for Bike to Work Day 2008.

San Jose bike to work week weather and pollution forecast

In a nutshell: sunny, hot, and with elevated ozone levels. The "USG" in the graphic means "Unsafe for Sensitive Groups." I still encourage you to ride your bicycle as fewer cars means less ozone, but stay hydrated, take it easy if you're not heat acclimated and avoid routes with heavy traffic if that's at all possible in the South Bay.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

How green is your bike ride?

Mr. Green is the Sierra Club's answer guy. He has a column about all things green that he updates weekly. In honor of Bike to Work Day, he's put out this discussion of the carbon emissions of biking vs. driving. He puts to rest the myth that fueling a bike (by feeding a person food that has been grown with fossil fuel inputs and traveled to them) is worse for the environment than fueling a car.

Read the discussion in Hey Mr Green, is driving better than cycling?. A hat tip to Carolyn in San Francisco for this tidbit!

The most popular vehicle in the world today is the bicycle

Visit Cozy Beehive for the full sized graphic of this cool poster.

Then and now

Railroads in the United States pay for their own police forces. They are certified law enforcement officers and carry full police and arrest powers. Railroad police have full peace officer status in some states, while in other states they are limited to enforcing the law on railroad property.

From the Union Pacific Railroad Officer Down Memorial Page:

  • Monday, August 19, 1878: Special Agent Robert Widdowfield and Special Agent Henry Vincent were killed when they were ambushed while pursuing a suspect from a train robbery in Carbon, Wyoming. As the officers approached the suspect's campsite they were ambushed by the suspect. The suspect was later arrested and sentenced to death for the murders. Before being executed he was lynched by an angry mob.

  • Saturday, July 9, 1977: Special Agent Boles was shot and killed after interrupting a burglary in progress in Denver, Colorado. Agent Boles called for backup, but by the time they arrived Agent Boles and been shot and killed by the suspect. The suspect was later arrested and convicted for Agent Boles' murder and served 15 months on a reduced charge.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Bike to work challenge

My employer's Eco Responsibility group and fitness center is offering incentives to those who can spend 2,000 minutes biking to work over the next 12 weeks to promote alternative transportation, environmental awareness and wellness. The human resources department sent an email to all USA employees promoting this program, and I've actually heard people who normally don't bike to work in the hallway talking about it.

2,000 minutes is a genuine challenge -- it'll take effort even for me to get those many hours in. I know the people who put this program together, but unfortunately I don't think it will do anything to encourage newbies to try bike commuting.

Bicycle love


Welcome to fair weather bike commuters

Jonathan at SFist writes:
We were there through the bitter season--the mud, the rain, the cold, the mid-afternoon sunsets. With dripping, grime-streaked rain gear covering our heels and neckties, we rode our rusting, filthy commuter bikes to the Caltrain station all through the winter, a sweaty, soggy bunch, smelling of mildew and Tri-Flow.

And now, with the arrival of the easy, sunny days of spring, you’ve joined us. And we’re happy to see you, really.
Cyclists disembark Caltrain at Palo Alto Station on Bike To Work Day
As Jonathan writes, the bike cars on Caltrain have been getting awfully crowded lately. I too see a lot of shiny brand new bikes, some with price tags still dangling just like those showing what Minnie Pearl paid for her big hats. Welcome aboard, and please read the Caltrain tips for newbies page. Read more at SFist.

In other news:
    BART experiments with removing seats to make room for bicycles and luggage.
  • SF Weekly: "Can't we all just roll along?" examines how public policy and attitudes impact the safety of bicyclists.
  • When you ride your bike, try not to hit the train. Caltrain spokeswoman Christine Dunn said this was the first incident she had heard of involving a moving bicyclist striking a moving Caltrain.
  • There was a "celebrity bike ride" this morning in San Jose. I saw them gathering at Diridon Station but they got going too late for me.

Bikes Belong Awards $44,200 in Grants for Recreation Projects

Bikes Belong is celebrating the joy of cycling and trailbuilding this spring by awarding six recreation-focused grants to grassroots groups across the country. The projects—all made possible by dedicated volunteers—include a riverfront path, a freeride trail, a BMX freestyle park, and some really sweet backcountry singletrack. From all of us at Bikes Belong, enjoy the ride!

Willimantic Whitewater Partnership—Hop River/Airline Extension Bike Path (Willlimantic, CT)
The Willimantic Whitewater Partnership will receive $10,000 to help build the Hop River/Airline Trail Extension bike path as part of their riverfront recreation park. Bikes Belong's grant will match SAFETEA-LU and Recreational Trails Program funding for the dynamic project, which also includes a whitewater park for kayakers.

Willimantic Whitewater Partnership is an innovative community coalition of corporations, families, and nonprofits working together to revitalize the historic riverfront and create a recreation hub in the town of Willimantic. The multi-use path will link to the East Coast Greenway, a national trail extending from Key West, Florida to Calais, Maine.

More about WWP. . .

California Off-Road Bicyclists Association—Mount Hillyer Freeride Trail (Los Angeles County, CA)
The Concerned Off-Road Bicyclists Association (CORBA) will use their $10,000 award to help build a freeride trail in the Mount Hillyer area of the Chilao Recreation Area and enhance the surrounding trail system. Bikes Belong's funding will leverage pending grants from local businesses as well as donations from CORBA members and other local riders.

CORBA has gained the full support of the Forest Service for this exciting project, which sets a huge precedent: It will be the first legal freeride trail in Angeles National Forest.

More about CORBA. . .

Vermont Mountain Bike Association—Green Mountain Trail Access
The Vermont Mountain Bike Association (VMBA) will receive $9,200 for their Green Mountain National Forest Access Program. This grant will help VMBA in its effort to reconstruct and extend three sections of singletrack in the Green Mountain National Forest's Moosalamoo National Recreation Area—previously off-limits to mountain bikes. Bikes Belong's funding will leverage a National Forest Foundation grant as well as state funding for this important mountain bike initiative.

VMBA, the state's stellar mountain bike advocacy group, works to increase ridership in Vermont while minimizing impact on public lands through sustainable trailbuilding and stewardship. They also foster active, healthy lifestyles through Trailheads, their youth mountain biking program, and are working to promote mountain biking at eastern ski areas in the summer months.

More about VMBA. . .

Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship—North Yuba Trail Extension (Downieville, CA)
Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship (SBTS) will use their $5,000 grant to help complete the final 4 miles of the North Yuba Trail—referred to as the Golden Spoke—which will connect 14 miles of singletrack. This non-motorized trail will enable cross-country mountain bikers to ride to the renowned Downieville trails from town instead of drive.

SBTS has established itself as a strong partner with the National Forest Service and promotes community support for trails through their innovative Trail Adoption program. They've also garnered state funding for this project.

More about SBTS. . .

Friends of Pathways—Order of the Arrow Trail Construction Project (Jackson, WY)
Friends of Pathways will receive $5,000 for their "Order of the Arrow" initiative, which will replace 10.5 miles of eroding, illegal trails with fun, sustainable singletrack on Teton Pass. Bikes Belong's funding will bolster grants and volunteer hours from the National Forest Foundation and the Teton Freedom Riders. More than 650 Boy Scouts from the trail's namesake service team will donate their time to trail construction this summer.

Friends of Pathways promotes active healthy lifestyles through great trail facilities. Their advocacy and fundraising work helps to connect and enhance communities and recreation opportunities—from paved paths to backcountry trails—in and around Jackson Hole.

More about Friends of Pathways. . .

Village of Mexico, New York—Freedom Skate/BMX Park
The Village of Mexico, New York, will use their $5,000 award to complete the Freedom Skate/BMX Park. Bikes Belong's funding will go toward bike-specific elements in the park and help leverage city funding as well as money raised by the BMX and skate communities. The Tony Hawk Foundation has also contributed to this great project.

The shared-use facility, which has strong support from the city's mayor and parks & recreation commissioner, will provide a place for freestyle BMX riders and skaters to coexist happily—and free of charge. It will also be a venue for events, clinics, and after-school programs.

Don't miss the IMBA World Summit!
If projects like these get your adrenalin pumping, head to Park City, Utah, June 18–21 for the IMBA World Mountain Bike Summit. Bikes Belong is a proud sponsor, and we'll be representing (and riding) at the event. Hope to see you there!

More about the IMBA Summit. . .

About Bikes Belong

Bikes Belong Coalition is the U.S. bicycle industry organization dedicated to putting more people on bicycles more often. Bikes Belong lobbies to increase federal bike funding, awards grants to support innovative bike projects, promotes bicycling and its benefits, and backs crucial national efforts such as Safe Routes to School, Bicycle Friendly Communities, and the National Bike Summit. The affiliated Bikes Belong Foundation focuses on improving bicycle safety and enhancing children's bike programs.

Since Bikes Belong's Grants Program began in 1999, we have funded 166 grant proposals in 44 states and the District of Columbia, awarding nearly $1.3 million in cash and leveraging more than $476 million in federal, state, and private funding. Our facilities grants alone have helped finance nearly 1,400 miles of bike paths and trails that link close to 6,400 miles of trail facilities.

For more information, visit

Sunday, May 11, 2008

In the news: Bike shops report strong sales

Teacher Joyce McCusker of Herndon, Va., owns a bicycle for the first time in years. She bought it last month and uses it to make the eight-mile trip home from work.

Bicycle shops across the country are reporting strong sales so far this year, and more people are bringing in bikes that have been idled for years, said Fred Clements, executive director the National Bicycle Dealers Association.

Mark Krenz, 48, is giving it a try. The Bismarck auto-parts store manager recently spent $750 on the 24-speed bike and is building up his mileage to prepare for his hilly commute.

"In this business, everybody is constantly talking about how to save gas," Krenz said. "I bought a bike because I figure it's a good way to save money, get in shape and save wear and tear on my pickup."

Rocky Schell, owner of Val's Cycle in Minot, said this may be one of the best years in the history of the shop, started by his father in 1960.

It's seeing a spike in the number of tuneups and repairs, which had been declining for the past 15 years. Schell said he's also selling lots of bike trailers designed to haul children — customers are using them for groceries instead.

Dahl, the Bismarck bike shop owner, said he's worked several on "dusty and rusty" bicycles that hadn't been ridden in at least 25 years. He said many families have told him that that they intend to go on a bicycle tour this summer instead of driving somewhere for vacation.

"Millions of people have bicycles hanging in the garage and they're getting them down and riding them," said Rebecca Anderson, advocacy director for Trek Bicycle Corp. "People are looking at the bicycle as more than just a toy."
Read more in this Associated Press article.

See also: Remember, May is National Bike Month in much of the United States. Bike To Work Day is Thursday, May 15 in California and many other locations.

Bay Area bicycle discussion forum

Bikeness is a new bicycle website with discussion forums for casual and avid cyclists in the San Francisco Bay Area. Check it out:

Saturday, May 10, 2008

You and me in our sport utility vehicles

Oh you and me in our Sport Utility Vehicles, cruisin' to 7-11 for a bag of Frito-Lays! Oh you and me in our Sport Utility Vehicles, we'll slam into 4 wheel drive, and pick up a dozen eggs.

You and me in our Sport Utility Vehicles cruisin' to Dunkin Donuts for a cup of steaming Joe! Oh you and me in our Sport Utility Vehicles we'll slam into 4-wheel drive for a scoop of rocky road.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Mellow Johnny's opens on Saturday

Mellow Johnny's (maillot jaune, get it?), Lance Armstrong's new bicycle store in Austin, Texas, opens this weekend.

Armstrong anticipates that the majority of the sales will be high end road racing gear at his Trek dealership, but he says that the bike will be an important way for people to get around. Besides offering fitness training, Mellow Johnny's also has secure bike parking and showers specifically for commuters who cycle into downtown Austin.

Read more about Lance Armstrong's hopes for his new shop in this Momentum Magazine interview with Lance Armstrong.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Separated bike lanes proposed for S.F. Market Street

A group headed by the business-backed Market Street Association, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and the civic think tank San Francisco Planning & Urban Research Association is hatching a new idea to improve Market. The thought is to create dedicated bike lanes, physically separated from vehicles, such as has been done in Frankfurt, Germany; Copenhagen, Denmark; and closer to home in Eugene and Bend, Ore.

Proponents of that idea have sketched out a primitive design in which sidewalks and traffic lanes would be narrowed along some downtown segments of Market Street to accommodate a dedicated bike path.
Read more in the San Francisco Chronicle: "Despite efforts, Market Street traffic lingers"

Clipless mishap leads to broken ribs

Most of us who use pedal retention systems have experienced the embarrassing moments of failing to release from the pedal when we first learn use them.

I was talking with a friend last night whose fiancée tried clipless pedals for the first time last week. As she keeled over during a stop, the handlebar flipped around and she fell right on the end of her flat bars! After a few days of pain, she went to the doctor who diagnosed the broken ribs.

What's the worst newbie injury you know of from failure to disengage from the pedals? What about injuries from unintentional release from clipless pedals?

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Thank you for taking the survey

Thank you to all of you who took the Cyclelicious survey. I'll look over the responses over the weekend. I really appreciate that you've given me your thoughts about Cyclelicious and I really appreciate the encouragement that several of you gave.

I've selected a winner and sent notification this evening. I used a random number generator from to select from among the email addresses that were entered.

Thanks again!

I'm fairly busy this week, so I'll direct your attention to a new bike blog I ran across: Cycle Pig. CyclePig is Pete, and his site is not about racing or the serious side of cycling; it’s about how to have fun on a bike. Whether you are a recreational cyclist or long distance cycle tourer you will find hints and tips that will help you get more out of your cycling.