Bike Burrito

Bike Burrito

0 comment Tuesday, September 2, 2014 |
Around 9:30 this evening I came across two groups of homeless folk feeding various animals and blocking the Cherry Creek bike path. The first group was feeding some ducks underneath a bridge. There were 5 ducks sitting in the middle of the path eating bread. After carefully maneuvering past them, I came by another group under a bridge feeding a fox. I didn't notice the people at first, all I saw was a fox running toward me. I was freaked out for a second until I remembered that this type of fox is pretty much harmless. After passing the fox and homeless people, I turned around and saw the fox going about 2 feet about from the people. Denver's bike paths are full of excitement after dark.

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0 comment Monday, September 1, 2014 |
The things you carry can tell about you: where you are going, where you have been, and how ridiculously big your bag may be. I've received enough questions to realize the later is true for me. Here's what I carry in my bag on the typical day to work:
1.) Copy of Denver traffic regulations, appendix 4 that pertains to bicycles
2.) Wallet
3.) Hair goop
4.) U-lock
5.) Check book (not that I write checks, I whip it out just to mess with proprietors)
6.) iPod accessories (headphones, power cord)
7.) iPod
8.) Lunch
9.) Mini bike pump
10.) Tubes (mountain and road)
11.) Tools (chain tool, spoke tool, cresent wrench, full set of hex wrenches, tire levers, #15 wrench, pedal wrench, patch kit, chainring bolt wrench, multi-tool
12.) Lights (front and rear)
13.) Clothes for work
14.) Camera
15.) Cell phone
16.) Random stuff (USB drive, cell charger, chapstick, visine, gum)
17.) Bag: Chrome "No, I'm not a messenger" Kremlin
This typical load still leaves a lot of space in my bag, which is nice - because I sometimes carry a laptop, boxes of marketing materials, extra winter clothes, and severed heads (oops).

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0 comment |
Sam's Intersection Debacle posting reminded me about last night when a driver in a Jeep Grand Cherokee followed behind me for a few blocks before becoming fed up at my slower speed. They tried to pass me just as we were both approaching a stop sign. As they passed me, I was preparing to get cut off, thinking they would swerve back into my lane, slam on the breaks and stop. But instead, she treated the road as if it we were on a one-way, coming to a complete stop in the lane next to me (facing the wrong direction). I guess it worked because no one was coming or turning into our path, but seriously?
The irony is that I actually had to obey the law and stop at the stop sign because I was making a left turn and didn't want her to run me over as she accelerated out of her illegal stop in the opposing lane. In hindsight, it's a little concerning being on a bike breaking traffic laws when traffic itself is breaking the law.

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0 comment Sunday, August 31, 2014 |
Today marks the second day in a row that I've seen a car run the intersection of 16th avenue and Franklin Street. This is the intersection from the drivers' point of view who have run it:

There aren't too many obstructions blocking the view of the signs. I guess maybe it's just a bad spot mentally for drivers for some odd reason. Or it's just coincidence. But I can say that I have seen this stop sign blown by cars three other times in the past couple years. That's four more times than any other intersection I bike through on a regular basis.
I thought it'd be interesting to see if others out there know of particularly hairy intersections where they see cars run stop signs regularly. After that, we can discuss the intersections where we've seen bikes blow through stop signs. I suspect that conversation will be a little longer.

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0 comment |
Of all the stoplights in Denver, I feel like I get caught at a particular one way more than any other: The light at 16th Avenue and Clarkson, which seems to last a lot longer than all the other lights on 16th Avenue. I usually sit in the bike lane and pick at my fingernails and wait for the light to turn, pondering why I have taken it upon myself to stop at all red lights, and what I think it's accomplishing.
Today, about 11:50 a.m., I was heading east on 16th Avenue, to work, and I came upon this situation. Police cars were blocking 16th a block away from the intersection in either direction, but I asked the officer if I could ride through and he said yes.

I don't know what the hell happened here, but one of these automobiles obviously entered the intersection at 16th and Clarkson when their light was red, and hit the other one. I talked to the guy who was driving the red pickup, and he seemed to think his light was green. Whatever went down, the Honda Element flipped, and landed directly in the bike lane, smashing the hood of the parked car.

The scary thing? Look at this photo and you can see a vacated bicycle. The guy driving the pickup told me the cyclist went to the hospital with a "pretty bad" leg injury. I'd say the guy would be lucky to get out of it with just a leg injury. Holy shit.
A guy talking to the pickup driver, when I asked them about the cyclist's condition, asked, "Was he wearing a helmet?" Wow. I'm all for helmets, but I think this situation calls for something more like an ability to dodge flying cars. Like some Matrix-type stuff.

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0 comment Saturday, August 30, 2014 |
What kept you from riding your bike today? If your answer was, "It's too cold out" - well, I have news for you.
You'd be amazed that you already have the necessary gear it takes to ride in the moderate cold - and how non-technical your gear needs to be. I was reminded of this today when talking to a co-worker. He didn't ride today because he didn't have any cold weather riding gear. I said, "Bologna".
Here's what you need:
* a sweatshirt (a hoodie gets you extra style points)
* a lightweight, somewhat wind resistant jacket (yes, your Members Only one will do)
* gloves
* thick socks
When times get tough - you might want to add a beanie that covers your ears under your helmet, a scarf, and two pairs of thick socks.
If you are mentally keeping track - you should have discovered this is the same stuff that you wore to the Broncos game this weekend.

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0 comment |
My office is business casual, so I get to wear the same thing to work as I ride in. Today was jeans and a collared shirt. Since it's winter I've been wearing my Merrells, they have slightly better grip in snow, with Smartwool Ski Socks up to my knees. My #1 piece of recommended winter gear is my ski helmet & goggles - keeps the ears and top of face warm, eyes tear free, and head safe.

Drop the fleece jacket, unroll your pantlegs, grab cup of coffee and don a forced smile - you're at work!

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