Posts Tagged ‘cyclists’

Here are the Brand-New Stencils on the Golden Gate Park Panhandle Walking Path: “NO SKATING, NO BICYCLES”

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

One day somebody laid down the black background and then later on somebody put in the white lettering, perhaps on Monday or Tuesday:

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I guess they wanted to notify people at each and every intersection.

Special Bonus: Kings Things:

- RPD says the Golden Gate Park Panhandle isn’t in Golden Gate Park. I disagree. Like, is the Florida Panhandle in Florida? Oh yes it is. But I suppose we could make a 51st state by cutting Florida into two states, one called Panhandle and the rest called Florida, but that would be kind of stupid. Anyway, that’s what RPD has basically done, but, like I said, I disagree. 

- And why is the surface of this path near Oak so decrepit? Because that’s the way RPD likes it. Rec and Park could put in a new path now and then get working on their long-promised irrigation project later, but it don’t want to. Also, aren’t we in a drought? Why not let’s forget the irrigation and let the Panhandle go natural? Just asking.

Tour de France, Tour de Manche – Pedaling Downhill Through the Golden Gate Park Panhandle as Fast as You Can – Why?

Thursday, July 23rd, 2015

Just asking, Bro.

What’s the speed limit on the Panhandle bike path? What should it be?

How fast do you think you can go heading west downhill on this bike path, with you out of the saddle, on your expensive lightweight bike, with skinny high-pressure tires, with your muscular thighs, with a strong tailwind? Bro, you’re going faster than anyone – what’s the point? You’re at the 99th percentile, or 99.9th, something like that, right?

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By this point, Bro wasn’t pedaling no mo, ’cause he prolly could see that traffic on Masonic was going to slow his progress anyway. But he wasn’t racing for a light, he was racing along for no apparent reason. Strava, perhaps?

Realize that this path passes over what functions as the sidewalks of Cole, Clayton, Ashbury, etc.

Should SFGov post speed limit signs? Mmmm…

Hey, you know what’s funny? Some people want, effectively, to kick peds off this Panhandle multi-use trail. “Go use the pedestrian path on the south side of the Panhandle [near Oak]” they say.

Is that the right way to look at things?

I think not.

Anyway, that’s the ‘sperpective of somebody who uses bikes to get around, as opposed to using bikes to race around…

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition Wants Its Members to Vote Away Members’ Voting Rights? – A Rebellion

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

The Vote is On at our San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. Let’s take a look:

Why is the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition updating its bylaws?

“In response to concerns from our members, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition’s Board of Directors proposed an update to our bylaws that bolsters members’ privacy.”

Bolster member privacy? How are you going to do that?

“…the only effective way to properly respond to members’ privacy concerns is to provide members a chance to vote on eliminating the member-elected Board structure in our bylaws, and instead elect future Board members by a vote of sitting Board members. This would relieve the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition of the legal obligation to turn over our membership list referenced above.

Oh, so you want the Members to vote to take away the Memberses’ right to vote? Are you fucking serious?

(I’ll tell you, I don’t care all that much ’cause I, like most longtime cyclists in the 415, am NOT a member. And, you know, even with the Members’ existing rights, there was nothing to stop the board from endorsing Ed Lee for Mayor back in 2011, as it did, even though a fair polling of SFBC membership would NOT have yielded such a crass endor$ement, but oh well.)

Comes now Save the SF Bike Coalition to ask:

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Here’s the peanut gallery:

“I personally suspect the mass mailing was used as a pretext. SFBC’s new Executive Director, Noah Budnick, comes from Transportation Alternatives in New York City, which has a governance structure similar to what SFBC seeks in this by-law change.”

So Members, I don’t care if you vote away your voting rights, but the legal arguments forwarded by the SFBC on this topic are absurd.

Simply absurd.

The SFMTA’s Current Approach to Bikes in the Broadway Tunnel Doesn’t Seem Better Than the Old Approach

Tuesday, May 19th, 2015

After years of work and study…

BROADWAY TUNNEL BICYCLE PROJECT: Staff has sent a work order to
the Signal Shop to have the bicycle symbol flash when turned on. (No
updates)

…this the result, eastbound – a blank, nonsensical, K-Mart-looking diamond what lights up when cyclists are sensed in the BT:

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The old method of alerting drivers was similar, but it actually made sense to drivers when it wasn’t operating.

(The SFMTA seems to think that dreaming up crazy new ideas is its obligation – if you’ve never seen things before anywhere else in the world, that’s proof that the SFMTA is showing “leadership,” apparently)

Now here it is when it’s actually working, which I’ve never seen before, courtesy of Google Maps (from the northern lane – G gives you a choice):

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The big issue is how to handle bikes in the tunnel.

My method, westbound, from Chinesetown, is to walk the bike unless I see the rare ped, and then I dismount and stop while the ped passes me. In practice, this usually means riding all the way through. I think this is agin the current rules, but I don’t think I’m risking getting a ticket or anything.

Now eastbound is a different story, since the grade is generally working your way. The technique is to wait for a wave of traffic to go through and then enter when drivers idle at the red at Larkin. You’ll have a few cars pass you, but that’s better than just blithely ignoring traffic the way most do. Or, you can just ride on the sidewalk, remembering that you’re a second-class citizen when doing so.

Anyway, it seems that the generally dull-witted SFMTA is sophisticated enough to understand that going east and west is different thang here, so that’s good.

So do we want to encourage people to ride through this tunnel? IDK. I’ll tell you, westbound, uphill on the Geary Tunnel is worse and the Stockton Tunnel is way better.

I don’t know what the options are at the Broadway Tunnel. I’m sure most of them are very expensive…

Man, Teaching Adults How to Ride Bikes in Golden Gate Park Involves a Lot of Pushing of Bikes – A Lot!

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

I’ll tell you, I’ve taught people how to ride bikes over the years, and I’ll tell you the amount of hours spent teaching all those people how to push bikes, well, that has been exactly zero.

And yet in these courses, as seen in the Panhandle, that seems to be all they do, just pushing bikes around in formation:

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And we can’t have a helmet law in CA because that teaches people that cycling can be dangerous, and yet helmets and safety vests appear to be Job One here.

Just saying….

I’ll tell you man, the people who want to ride bikes in Frisco are already riding bikes in Frisco. They don’t need to be coaxed or cajoled – they’re already doing it, you know, naturally. And if you, and you know who you are, if you think that this is the way to get a five-fold increase in cycling in San Francisco in the remaining five years ’til 2020, well, you’re sadly mistaken.

Is bike riding a religion or just another way to get around town?

You tell me, Babe.

You tell me.

Tourists Riding Rented Bikes on Fell Street: Which is Worse, Cruising on the Left Side or the RIght Side?

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Up first we have the Left Side candidates, who have decided to go without smellmets:

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Cf. the Right Side candidates, spotted a few days later:

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I’m thinking I prefer the right side option, as your typical driver (which of course you should assume just got released from prison a week ago, and is uninsured, and is driving an unregistered vehicle) would be less surprised to see you there.

Mind you, none of these bicyclists was “taking the lane” improperly – all were biking legally.

But foolishly, IMO.

The best option would have been the Panhandle Bike Path, which is just to the left of the left lane of Fell, but these tourists didn’t seem to be aware of its existence.

Perhaps their tourist maps led them astray…

Biker Gang, Market Street – Going Beyond Scraper Bikes – These Looked Like Single-Speed Mountain Bikes

Monday, March 16th, 2015

Popping wheelies on the way to the Ferry Building:

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The ones I could see looked like simple, higher-end hardtail mountain bikes – less trials bike-looking than what Danny MacAskill might ride if he ever came back to Frisco. They could be on Huffys too, IDK. No road bikes, that’s for sure.

This is a youth subculture with which I’m not familiar.

This is something the StreetsBlog might cover if the StreetsBlog weren’t financed by a millionaire urbanist straight outta  Park Slope…

Our San Francisco Bicycle Coalition Has Lost Thousands of Paid Members Lately

Thursday, February 26th, 2015

[UPDATE: I’ve omitted Stanley Roberts’ video from this post as I mistakenly thought it was new as of this week when in fact it was posted almost two years old now. My apologies, Stanley. As you can see, Mr. Roberts goes after everybody (including fake monks and nuns) and certain people at the SFBC have been irritated by that over the years.]

Our San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has lost thousands of paid members lately.

Now part of that’s due to “churn,” which is something that every organization has to deal with, but most of it has to do with behavior of the SFBC itself. I’ll tell you, I’ve been riding bikes around town longer than the current SFBC has existed – no, I’m not saying that I’ve been here since the “early 70’s,” I’m saying that the SFBC didn’t really exist in the 1980’s when I came to SF. I’m saying that before Critical Mass (and its predecessor, the “Commute Clot”), the SFBC didn’t really exist – they were nowhere, man. What _did_ exist, a little later on, was the car-centric Willie Brown Administration. And all those functionaries working for Willie Brown were trying to find some “bicycle people” to cut a deal with, to tame Critical Mass, to give grant money to. But no, all the Critical Mass leaders were saying stuff like, “Critical Mass doesn’t have leaders, Man.” Eventually, the SFBC managed to practically become a part of the SFMTA, you know, conducting surveys for SFGov, receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in taxpayer and feepayer money, forcing companies like Twitter to deal with the SFBC, you know, officially, and, in return, the SFBC stopped promoting Critical Mass, and SFBC now offers pols a nice photo op every year on Bike to Work Day and it actually endorses (without consulting the Members at all) for election Willie Brown protegees like, I don’t know, Ed Lee, for example. So that’s the history, and during this history I’ve seen the SFBC grow in membership, from “over 1000″ to “over 5000″ to “over “10,000” and then “over 11,000″ and then “over 12,000″ and then, uh oh, back down to “over 11,000″ and most recently back down to “over 10,000.” What are the numbers now? IDK, 9000-something? The SFBC isn’t exactly candid about its recent loss in membership. The SFBC certainly doesn’t want people freely looking at its tax forms or its older webpages, so that’s why it recently started suppressing this kind of information. Mmmmm… I’ll tell you, of course, there’s been a huge increase in bicycling in San Francisco since I’ve come here, and for various reasons, fine. (It’s sort of funny about how the big annual jumps in cycling came exactly during the rise of the fixie craze, and exactly when the Bicycle Plan injunction froze all infrastructure changes, but whatevs.) I’ll ask you, why can’t a monomaniacal advocacy organization like the SFBC concede anything? I guarantee you that the SFBC people who went the extra mile to “reach out” to Stanley Roberts of KRON-TV are pissed off about the above video coming out right before the Big Vote on Polk Street, which is supposably [what, no red underlining for a word I purposefully misspelled? Amazing] coming March 3rd, 2015, but who knows how that will work out. I’ll tell you, IMO Polk Street is a triple beam lyrical dream the way it is now. What are the other options to go north south in the area? If I don’t take Polk, then I’d be thinking Stockton, Grant, Kearney or the Embarcadero to the east or, to the west, Steiner (it’s sort of the pass over Pacific Heights, sort of) or Arguello through the Presidio. In your efforts to pursue your goals, SFBC, which I don’t necessarily oppose, you go too far and you end up alienating people like me, a man in his 40’s, and even older people such as Junior the Bike Messenger, and, apparently, THOUSANDS OF OTHER FORMER SFBC MEMBERS.

The question is, WHY IS THAT, SFBC?

 

Open-Air Bicycle Chop-Shop, 13th Street – These are Just a Few of the Hundreds of Stolen Bikes on Division, 13th, and Duboce Ave

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Chop chop, always with the chopping, in this area:

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If your bike hasn’t yet gotten chopped and it has a serial number on it, then there’s something the cops can do about it.

Otherwise, chop chop, always with the chopping, in this area.

Back up in the hood where the rules dont shift
And the gangstas talk trills, sip purp and burn piff
You can call 5-0 and 5-0 might come
But by the time that they arrive all that dirt had been done

NIMBY’s vs. the SFMTA: Local Objections to New Traffic Signals on McAllister at Broderick and Scott for the 5 Fulton

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

This effort appears to be similar to the SFMTA’s attempt to add traffic signals on Haight at Scott and Pierce.

This isn’t the worst example of NIMBYism, but I’d say it’s fairly alarmist, fairly absurd.

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I’ll just say that, generally speaking, it’s generally harder to get around town these days by car, by bike and by MUNI, compared with ten or twenty years ago. Part of this has to do with our newer, absurdly-wide sidewalks, designed for pedestrian “comfort.”

And yet, most ped and cyclist deaths in San Francisco involve fault from the peds and cyclists. Here’s 2014:

The Police Department found that in the 17 pedestrian deaths, drivers were responsible for eight and pedestrians were responsible for nine. Bicyclists were responsible in all three instances when they died.” 

(I should do a video on how to be a pedestrian in SF. It might involve some jaywalking but it would also involve extreme alertness on behalf of peds. You see, the way to prevent a lot of ped deaths in SF would be to get inside their heads to see what’s going wrong.)

IMO, the SFMTA should leave McAllister alone and then start taking out as many bus stops as politically possible.

I’ll tell you, not that many cyclists pass by Broderick and McAllister compared with Scott and McAllister, it seems, owing to geography. So looking at McAllister and Scott, it seems that the lights will be timed against cyclists using FULTON DIVISADERO MCALLISTER eastbound as an alternative to the already-overcrowded Wiggle route to get from the Golden Gate Park Panhandle to the Financh.

So for my own selfish reasons, I’d prefer that MUNI not make these changes, but who am I to stand in their way? What the MUNI people are saying is that we’ll all be better off overall, and 40 seconds each way each day will add up to millions of seconds, eventually.

In conclusion, meh. If MUNI wants to put in lights, we should let them do it.