The Bicycle Wars Heat Up-Peace Out and Share the Road!
Let’s just face it, oil prices will spike again—it’s not a question of if, but when. One alternative? Ride a bike! Easy to preach, hard to practice in some places, like Los Angeles. I’ve barely ridden my bike since returning from Amsterdam. Partly it’s been my schedule; some of it is a few minor maintenance issues; but mostly after riding around civilized (for the most part) Amsterdam, the thought of biking in LA and facing the wrath of drivers here has not really motivated me to two-wheel it. Most bicyclists ride because of recreation or exercise. Few rely on bikes for transportation because that is just not realistic in most rural or urban areas. And then you have a small but vocal cult of bicyclists who seem to forget that the rules of the road do not apply to them. I wrote a piece on a rebranding of cycling effort that touched a tiny nerve. But a discussion on Bike Hugger that discusses whether cyclists should be a little more aware of the rules of the road, and their tone in advocacy, has struck a larger one. Most absurd is the Colorado town that actually banned bikes from their roads (Black Hawk, home to a large casino: don’t enter if you only have two wheels!). We need more bike lanes. We have an obesity epidemic in the United States. We’re furious with BP and frustrated with the oil companies. Bikes lanes are relatively inexpensive. Let’s just build them. But to cyclists, I say, please ride responsibly. And motorists, remember you will get to your destination pretty quickly, and it was your choice to sit in traffic. Oh, and Angelinos, I’ve biked from Silver Lake to Beverly Hills in 45 minutes—not much longer than driving . . .