Monday, November 30, 2009

All I Want for Christmas is More Time to Ride!

As if I need a reminder that I don't have as much time as I would like to ride.   This giant clock could help motivate the rider in your life.  Think of it as the perfect Christmas gift for the time strapped cyclist.  Or perhaps for a budding time-trialist.

Description from the website:
This clock was made from a recycled aluminum bike wheel. The wheel mounts directly to the wall through the hub using a hollow wall anchor and gives the illusion that it is floating off the wall. The clock movement is a high torque German quartz movement and is attached to a set of rear cassette gears to conceal the movement. The movement is attached to the wheel by hanging it off of a screw coming out of the hub, and runs on 1 AA battery, included. This wheel measures roughly 22.5 inches in diameter and is fairly clean. Since these clocks are made from actual recycled bike wheels, condition and model may vary slightly, and their will be minor imperfections such as scuffing scratches etc. They did live another life before they were discarded. Handmade in the USA. It will make a great conversation piece on your wall or a special gift for that bike nut you know who is so hard to shop for. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Morning Music - Go Gos

I was going to post something serious and somber for a Sunday a.m. but this is just more fun.  The Go Gos sound great in this video from April of 2009.  The only thing wrong with it is that you don't see enough of Jane Wiedlin, the heart and soul of the group.  But I'm biased since I've had a crush on her since (gasp) 1983?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Fanfarlo in town tomorrow night

Maybe I'm the only person who was surprised to hear that Fanfarlo was playing Reno tomorrow night but I  only just saw it in the RNR today.  I'm calling it an early birthday present for me!  Tomorrow night, Great Basin Brewery, 10 pm, and apparently free(?).

Bicycle Tweedledee and Where to Park That Car

NPR did a couple of stories this week that caught my ear.  One was the Washington D.C. "Tweed Ride."  A British export, (there have been versions in LA and SF if I recall correctly) apparently the tweeds came out for a ride around our nation's capitol.

The other story was about the history of the parking garage and I couldn't help but be struck by how much effort has been put in over the years to make them less ugly or hide them under the ground.  About the only thing that parking garages are actually good for are practicing uphill sprints on your bicycle when the weather outside is bad and filming car chase scenes.  Has there been a more ugly piece of architecture invented?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wednesday Night Pick Me Up - Outkast

Apparently Paste magazine picked this as the best single of the decade. I don't know about that but it is certainly bad ass!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Harry Reid is a Butt?

No doubt you've been seeing more and more of these signs around Reno.  I first noticed them this past summer while on a bike tour across Nevada when I was in Ely.   Perhaps someone can explain to me why this is funny?   It's not clever or witty.  It seems right out of a Beavis and Butthead episode...."huh huh says butt...huh huh."  I don't expect right-wing wackos to be sophisticates but this is submental. 

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Sunday Morning Music - Peter Wolf

No idea why this song popped into my head but I always loved the video. I'm wondering how many takes this took and just how sore Wolf's legs must have been the day after. Ah, the 80s!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Bike Sharing in Paris Hits Speed Bump?

A couple of articles on the VĂ©lib’, Paris’s bicycle rental system, and the problems they've had with vandalism are worth checking out. One from the NY Times and the other from Treehugger. Apparently, there are some critiques of this report so it's good to have a BS detector when reading (as always). It's not enough to make cheap bikes available, you need a more holistic approach to solving transportation issues (or any issue for that matter). Still, I'd rather ride, walk, or use the Metro in Paris, than virtually any other city in the world. Cars are unnecessary.

Monday, November 09, 2009

"Bloody Cyclists"

This site is a great primer for those typical auto driver arguments against bicyclists. You know the ones:

  • 1 Cyclists don't pay road tax
  • 2 Cyclists don't have insurance
  • 3 Cyclists don't have to pass a test
  • 4 Cyclists jump red lights and ride on the pavement
  • 5 Cyclists should be on the cycle paths

  • Even though it's from a British perspective the same arguments apply.

    Increasingly drivers seem to believe that the road belongs to them and anybody who strays onto it is asking for trouble. But it doesn't belong to them, it belongs to all of us, and the cause of road fatalities is not vulnerable road users straying into the motorised lions' den, it's careless, thoughtless, aggressive drivers.

    Sunday, November 08, 2009

    Sunday Morning Music - Radiohead - Nude

    I was reminded how good Grant Gee's film, Meeting People is Easy, is after I noticed that it was newly available on itunes. I hadn't seen his chronicle of Radiohead's post OK Computer tour since it was in theaters almost 10 years ago. If you haven't seen it it is definitely worth renting. It's more meditation on the music industry than actual concert film. I know it can be tough to feel much sympathy for millionaire rock stars but the sequences peppered throughout the film of the seemingly endless interviews that the band has to endure over the course of that tour becomes increasingly excruciating and you see the band reduced to mumbling vegetables.

    One of the highlights is seeing the evolution of songs that would appear on later albums. Most notably, Nude, from In Rainbows, which I'm a little embarrassed to say I've only fully realized what an achievement that album is over the last few months. It's a grower for sure but that's usually what great albums are. One of the best tracks off that album, here is an early version from MPIE paired with the updated version. This is Thom York at his most soulful.

    Friday, November 06, 2009

    Reno's First Bicycle Boulevard

    Destination markers would be a welcome addition to the growing network of bicycle lanes in Reno.

    I've already written about the city council's proposal to set up a bicycle boulevard along Riverside. The big question was whether or not the route would have a 15 or 25 mph speed limit. Considering one of the purposes of a bicycle boulevard is to put bicycles first and dissuade auto users from driving on them it seems like a no brainer to shoot for a 15 mph speed limit. In fact, at a recent RTC Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee it was suggested by a city engineer that by definition, bike boulevards are usually 15 mph.

    Note how wide this boulevard is. And with a 25 mph speed limit.

    I'm all in favor of a slower speed limit on the Riverside corridor to cater to the ped. and bike traffic using the route to navigate to and from downtown. But my trip to Berkeley last weekend showed me that it is possible to have boulevards that are even longer but still maintain a 25 mph speed limit. No doubt in Berkeley they have some other disincentives for cars (see pic). But it goes to show there are all kinds of ways to inhibit car traffic and help create a safer and friendlier bicycle community in Reno. Now I'd like to see some of the road signs displaying destinations and distances as you travel throughout Reno's growing network of bicycle lanes.

    Note how Berkeley "inhibits" auto traffic on a bicycle boulevard...they block it!

    Wednesday, November 04, 2009

    Wednesday Night Pick Me Up - Tom Waits and his new Live Album!

    I caught the opening night of Tom's most recent "Glitter and Doom" tour so I can say for sure that the new live album will be worth it. Notably the collection doesn't include any recordings from the Phoenix show that I was at but it's not surprising since their were a few hiccups on opening night. Of course, that only added to some of the pleasure as we saw Waits cajole his band through some great renditions from his catalog. Here's a live performance of one of the final songs from his set that night.

    Bike Photo of the Day

    Tuesday, November 03, 2009

    Los Angeles = Bicycling City?

    Yeah, that's Jake Gyllenhaal...I figured an article about LA needed a movie star cyclist photo.

    It's not the most obvious bicycle friendly city when the subject comes up but Momentum Magazine has a nice piece on cycling in the city of angels written by bicycle fixations own Richard Risenberg. Definitely worth a read.

    Monday, November 02, 2009

    Dr. Thompson Found Guilty!

    Follow up to the previous post...

    LA Road Rage Trial Update

    Apparently a verdict is expected this week. It'll be interesting to see what happens but a bit surprised if the Dr. gets anything more than a slap on the wrist. Velonews has been doing a great job covering the ins and outs of the trial.