Jan 12, 2015
commented on New Year Brings New Bike Lane (And Now, Cycletrack!) Blockages
I don't really mind the delivery trucks so much. They're just doing a job.
What I hate are taxis and personal vehicles that park or stop in bike lanes. On Friday, some idiot disgorged his passenger into the bike lane on Dexter, directly in the path of 20 commuting cyclists.
So I yell "watch out!" at him so he doesn't get himself pummeled (at no point did he look for incoming bicycle traffic). What do I get for my effort?
A water bottle thrown at my head.
Dec 30, 2014
commented on What I Learned from Walking Around Lake Washington in Two Days
Kirkland is my favorite eastside city simply because the downtown is built directly on the water. It's pleasant, especially compared to Bellevue.
I also think St. Edwards SP is the best stretch of lakeshore. Much better than any of the parks on the Seattle side, simply because it's mainly just a big forest. Great for walks and (hilly) bike rides.
A couple years ago I took the bus to Edmonds and walked along the Puget shoreline all the way to Ballard. This was a great walk. There's lots of little coves and woods that are technically private and inaccessible from the top of the bluff (like the Boeing family's old reserve along Boeing Creek). Nice views and you'd be amazed at the stuff that washes up on the breakwater. Highly recommended, just watch out for BNSF crews. This walk was inspired by Harvey Manning's old "Footsore" series. Great books, still useful and fun to read even if they're hopelessly outdated (last edition 1992).
Dec 29, 2014
commented on The Stranger's Staff Argues Over Whether You Should Wear a Bike Helmet
I'm a committed cyclist. 2014 will be my lowest-mileage year since taking up the hobby (due to a new baby) and I'm going to clock in just shy of 4,000 miles.
I wear a helmet. However, I think it's extremely important to note that a helmet doesn't really make cycling all that much safer. It doesn't magically make a risky maneuver any less risky. It doesn't make that car moving 45mph any less dangerous. Keep in mind that a helmet needs to provide protection of only 7mph direct impact to be approved for use. You will be seriously injured in the worst crashes -- the guy who was paralyzed by a crack in the Montlake Bridge was wearing a helmet. Most of the recent cyclists fatalities in the state were wearing helmets.
The worst thing you can do is don a helmet and act like you're safer. This makes you less safe since the only thing that really makes you safer on a bicycle is increased awareness and vigilance on a bike. Become sufficiently vigilant and your sudden endos might become a little less common. That car that "came out of nowhere" might actually be noticed and accounted for before you end up sprawled on the hood. Of course, you will still have crashes -- most recently a tourist jaywalked from behind a parked truck, leaving me less than a second to react. Boom(I didn't hit my head, BTW).
Responsible adults should be able to choose whether or not they want to wear safety equipment like a helmet (children, who are terrible cyclists who rarely crash at speeds over a few mph should of course be required to wear helmets). The "but it's selfish for cyclists to expect society to pay for that choice" argument is a stupid red herring. People make that exact kind of choice every day (overeating, sedentary living, speeding in their car, jaywalking, drug use, skydiving, hiking, whatever). Why is it different for cyclists?
Nov 17, 2014
commented on A Millionaire's Tax in Seattle?
I know you feel that it is immoral for poor people to buy anything other than food, but you do realize that everyone has to buy things that are not food, even poor people. And that these things are not always iPads and big screen TVs. Since you're a complete fucking idiot, I'll give some examples:
These are just a few of the non-food items that poor people buy. And despite your diseased worldview, it's not immoral for poor people to buy them. And because they are taxed at the same 9.5% that your friends are taxed at, they pay a higher percentage of their income for them.