By Yokota Fritz
Carl ran a bike club for students at Columbine Elementary School in Longmont, Colorado. The bike club was for the Walk Or Wheels ("WOW") program at the school, which encourages students to walk or bike to school and which has an astounding participation rate of over 90%. Carl started the club as an additional impetus to get the kids out of their parents' cars and to teach them to ride safely.
Carlton talks about "get off the road for your own safety" individuals in the Netherlands(!), India and Nazi Germany. Perhaps there's a connection with this "bicycle neglect". Alan makes the point that the American Automobile Association -- which is a motorist lobbying group -- has more than 300 times the membership of bicycling advocacy groups. He writes:
In fact, cyclists are so utterly overpowered that the motoring interests hardly even have to show up. In Olympia and Salem, according to leading cycling advocates, the trucking, development, and manufacturing industries lobby fairly heavily on transportation issues. But car manufacturers, car dealers, and auto clubs rarely flex their muscle. Says [Bicycle Alliance of Washington executive director Gordon] Black, “They don’t have to show up very often, because they know the government is doing their bidding. They don’t feel threatened. They don’t see us as a threat.”
By Yokota Fritz
Carl is a member of Bicycle Longmont in Longmont, Colorado, where he's active in the local Safe Routes to School program at his school. The Longmont and St. Vrain Valley School District Safe Routes to School program is among the most successful in the United States, with up to 90% participation at one of the schools.
Carl now has a blog: Getinlost in..., which I'm obligated to link to because he posted a bicycle haiku.
Via Carl's blog I also found the Alex Draude's Straight Chain blog about fixie riding in Kyoto and other areas in Japan.
By Yokota Fritz
To cyclists, that means another hour for riding in the mornings as well as an excuse to write another bike haiku like Frank did. :-)
Here's a picture from what I did yesterday. Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park is about a 10 minute bike ride from my front door. In the photo I'm fording across the San Lorenzo River. From there I rode uphill into Santa Cruz Pogonip Park, onto the U-Conn Trail, and then I did a couple of loops through UCSC forest trails before zooming downhill into the city of Santa Cruz where I caught a bus back home. The weather was beautiful -- sunny and with a high of nearly 80°F in November! Like Jason wrote, "Being a cyclist means hating global warming … but liking it warm. Oh, the humanity!"
The bike is an old low-end GT mountain bike that's now about ten years old but still going strong.
Mountain bike tip of the day: When you hop over a 12 inch log, watch your landing zone for large obstructions! If you don't, you might face plant like I did -- that's dirt from the trail on my face after I shoveled straight in just like Steve Austin's experimental spaceplane shoveled into the runway in the Six Million Dollar Man.
By Yokota Fritz
Expressing the feelings and observations of the seasons is one of the hallmark characteristics of haiku. In his Halloween bike haiku, Jason perfectly captures the feeling of his blissfull night ride on a perfect autumn evening.
Remember, if you post a bicycle haiku and I find it, I'll link to it from Cyclelicious.
Warren combined two art forms in his Panda Haiku by combining a Panda Portait with a bicycling haiku. In case you don't know, a Panda Portrait is a self portrait of yourself on a bike while you're in motion.
It's autumn, but it feels like summer in the San Francisco Bay Area. We have highs in the 80s this week. Still, that's nothing like the hot temps down south. I spoke with my brother last night (he lives in Oceanside) and he tells me there's ash everywhere. Masiguy, who's also near San Diego, has some dramatic photos of the air and sky where he's lives and works.
Here's something I've discussed with local advocacy groups: specialty bike retailers have to decide whether to continue to focus on serving non-Hispanic white males or reach out to the growing population of Latinos and Asians, says Brad Edmonson of ePodunk.com at the Bicycle Leadership Conference. “The new America is already here. Your choice is to either join it or fade away with the old America,” Edmonson said. Read more at BRaIN.
Silicon Valley Leadership Group had a Cool Commutes conference, focusing on what companies in the Valley are doing to reduce single occupant vehicle commutes. One of the dramatic reports comes from Yahoo, where 36% of Yahoo headquarters employees get to work without driving solo. This is double the 18% mode-shift that the corporation committed to the City of Sunnyvale when building permits were first issued.
By Yokota Fritz
I'm a sucker for Bike Haiku, which are Haiku poems with a bicycling theme. If you post bike haiku and I find it, your link bait effects are shameless but effective. The best way to ensure I find your bait is to link to Cyclelicious and make sure your post is pinged so I can find your post with Technorati.
Remember, a haiku is a poem with three verses with five syllables in the first verse, seven in the second, five in the last for a total of 17 syllables. Some experts think 12 syllables work better in English, and that's okay by me.
I prefer the traditional style of Haiku where the poem contains a "kigo" and is evocative of the season, e.g. "Brittle leaves crunch underneath."
Bicycling and haiku seem to go together so naturally. Haiku often contains a juxtaposition, placing apparently unrelated or unequal things side by side, and as bicyclists we experience so much of that just in a short ride. Most obviously, we're the little scrawny guy or gal sitting unprotected on a 20 pound bike right next to the behemoth cage enveloping its occupant with four tons of steel, climate control, and entertainment. Not as apparent might be the little connections we see; I'm the highly paid computer engineer who rides through "the Projects" every day and says hello to surly teenagers hanging out at on the street and to their slightly older sisters pushing their infants in stollers to the corner store and to the middle age gang victim sitting in his donated wheelchair at the bus stop.
Bicyclists are connected to others in ways that most people are not, and these connections can make for some great haiku.
Spring bike haiku
Colorado bike haiku
Fritz,thanks for looking. The kids are already asking about the fall session.
Excellent. I went to Niwot Elementary and if I had asked my parents to drive me to or from school they would have whupped my butt. Of course, that was 1976. Good to hear St Vrain Valley is taking back the 70's.
Bicycle haiku and other bicycle blog madness
A meme in need of promotion is that it is your patriotic duty to save oil for our boys and girls in uniform.
They need your oil to fight for freedom.
It's one thing to drive a light truck if the tray is full of tools - on the other hand, commuting alone with your laptop in an SUV is an unamerican activity.
Yep, Anon, that's kinda how I feel about it. When you drive alone, you drive with Hitler or Osama or Ahmadinejad or al Qaida or whomever the bad guy is.
To change the subject slightly, I'd be interested to hear how cyclists in general scored on the GMAC driving test... because I scored a 95% as well.
Introducing Carl in Longmont
Thank you for that build up. I really enjoy your site. It has become one of the morning "coffee stops". For some more horn tooting, it was the school that my kids go to that had the 98% turnout! Thanks, Carl
Daylight savings ends Sunday
I'm jealous. That looks incredibly fun! It would appear that we switched modes this weekend; I abandoned the trails to ride in traffic.
(Note to self, it's time to find an old mountain bike and try the trails at the park...)
Autumn bike haiku Baiku 4 U. Yeah, I know, I added it to a day old post, but it just fit...
That is a great series of bike illustrations. Good find.
Summer rain baiku
Is tire a one syllable word, indeed. It all depends on exactly how you manipulate that R phoneme in your mouth. (Consider the southerners, for whom tire would rhyme with far - like the three wise men who were scorched 'cause they came from a-far.) Depending on the dictionary, "squirrel" is sometimes considered the longest one-syllable word, just in case that comes up in a trivia contest... or in a baiku, since squirrels happen to bicycles, too. I remember discussions about this stuff with my reading specialist buddies and then we'd snicker (well, some of us would) because it wasn't as if our students could hear the difference between tie - er and tar...
"squirrels happen to bicycles too" HAHAHAHA! Yes indeed, squirrels happen to bicycles.
Summer Bike Haiku
My haiku for bikes Leaves words silent and lonely Riding is better
OK, OK, I just tossed that together. I'm waiting on dinner and I'm getting a little bit crabby.
I think haiku is best when it's just tossed together.
Thanks for blooging my photo.
Ed and Fritz are right. Spontaneity is best. Just follow the rules.
Fritz, Saw the baiku post and realized that a recent post of mine lent itself to this form:
Senate Bill 80 Amends our vehicle code. Three Feet. It's the Law.
Fixed gear brake failure haiku
How's yer nuts?
Ouch, that raises painful imagery.
Coaster or regular brake?
My fixed gear bike is equipped with a front rim brake. It was this front brake that didn't work -- noticed later that the quick release was in the "open" position, and my brakes pads are worn waaaay down so the brakes put almost no stopping pressure on the front tire.
Because I use a front brake, I'm not nearly as adept at stopping on a steep downhill with the rear-wheel only that I might otherwise be. After a moment of panic, however, I managed a skip stop with about a half dozen skips before I finally slowed enough to stop.
nice save! i've had similar issues arise (like a pedal-strap breaking when i had no brakes!), damn it can be scary.
i've also had the pleasure of doing a long skid (going downhill, towards a redlight of course), and having the tire pop! just wore straight through and then put a hole in the tube! damn these fixies wear out tires (and tubes) fast...
at any rate, stay safe out there!
200 kilometer baiku
Bike + Haiku = Baiku
Heh, I've never heard of Baiku, but it's a great idea ... and composing haiku while racing is pretty creative, too.
Thanks for your commuting suggestion!
Slow Brave Athena haiku
Nice. I'm lazy so here is another:
The ice has melted Debris remains on the path I hope my tires last
More bike haiku
I owe CycleDog another link
Don't hate me, Fritz! I'm thinking about starting every post with a haiku! Ha!
Actually, I may do that for the column I write for the Red Dirt Pedalers, but I'll check with the editor first.
Okay, tag, you're it.
Winter bike haiku
Bike haiku link bait
They make for some great life, too!
Hey, do I get bonus points for using the same number of characters on each line?
More, more, more! I'm looking for bikus for The Derailleur. Winter ones would be perfect.
Natsu no hate, ne.
Ooh... that's a good one. Nice job.