Monthly Archives: December 2011

Podcast: What we talk about when we talk about bikes

Our latest podcast is the first one to feature Dottie and me together. It was recorded during my November Chicago visit over what might have been one Manhattan too many. The original idea was for Dottie to interview me, but what it turned into was a long, wide-ranging and extremely informal discussion about our cycling stories and preferences. It’s not available in the iTunes store yet, but you can stream it here or right-click to download it to your computer. Enjoy!

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Bright Colors and Winter Sunshine

The mild winter weather continues to make me so happy! Sure, it’s cold, but not freezing cold. Sun shining on my shoulders and clear roads are all I need to stay in high spirits.

My bright red coat, instead of being my one source of winter color, is merely one of many bright colors on my commute. Look – not only is there a Carolina blue sky, there’s also green grass!

In case any driver fails to notice my bright red coat, I’ve taken to wearing a neon yellow slap bracelet around my ankle. This is the same nifty free bracelet I posted about wearing on my wrist during the summer. A little extra color never hurts, plus it’s just too fun and easy to leave at home.

The darkness of the evening commute feels more like winter, but I’m still rocking my holiday lights. Plus, today the weather warmed so much by the time I left work, I did not need my scarf and unbuttoned my coat.

This type of winter weather makes Elisa’s advice about dressing for winter bicycling in New Orleans relevant for bicyclists around the country, even us Midwesterners.

Whatever your particular weather experience is right now, I hope you’re enjoying these first weeks of winter!

p.s. I wrote this last night and this morning I woke up to heavy rain and 40 degree temps. Weird weather!

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Love for Atlanta Bicycle Chic

I have a new blog love: Atlanta Bicycle Chic!

This is a fabulous blog filled with original photography of stylish cyclists around Atlanta.  Such a high-quality blog focused on bicycle street style with posed portraits is a rare gem  (the only other that comes to mind is Chicago’s Bike Fancy).  If you’re not already familiar, you should check it out immediately!

Looking through the archives really makes me want to visit and ride around Atlanta!

 

 

 

 

Atlanta Bicycle Chic is an off-shoot of the style blog Atlanta Street Fashion, both by photographer Cameron Adams.  I had a quick email chat with Cameron to learn more about his blog and Atlanta bicycling.

Cameron Adams on a Bianchi Milano

What made you decide to start a blog dedicated to Atlanta bicycle fashion?

Great looks are everywhere and bikes make stylish accessories.  The convergence of street fashions and city cycling is a global trend and one worthy of its own forum, so I started Atlanta Bicycle Chic.

I think of Atlanta as a car-centric, traffic-heavy city. What is the bicycling scene like?
Yes, Atlanta is a car-centric town, but bike commuters are daily shaping the future. One leading the way is Rebecca Serna of the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition and organizer of our Heels on Wheels. ABC also organizes group rides like the BeltLine (Atlanta’s rails-to-trails project) Tour and has participated in a mass ride to the state capitol campus in support of the three foot law. Progressive politicians like Kwanza Hall keep our infrastructure needs at the forefront of the city’s legislative agenda.
You often feature photos from the Heels on Wheels ride. Could you tell how readers in the Atlanta area could join?

Interested? Look to their facebook page. The ladies meet on first Saturdays spring, summer and fall for leisurely rides on Peachtree Street for fun and fellowship.

What is your personal history with bicycling?

A younger version of me commuted in the streets of my hometown Richmond, Virginia, but now I ride daily for exercise on the lovely riverside trails in north Atlanta and take my bike into town by MARTA rail or car for style blogging expeditions. Both Bill Cunningham and Scott Schuman know there’s nothing like being a pedestrian for intercepting other pedestrians.

Thanks to Cameron for maintaining Atlanta Bicycle Chic and for taking the time to chat!

{Check out other Atlanta-area bike blogs, Sweet Georgia Brown, I Dream of Bicycling, and Cycle Kabob. Who did I miss?}

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One Year’s Difference

Exactly one year ago today, I posted about biking in the snow after several inches fell over Christmas, adding to the snow that had already fallen throughout December.  The temperature was in the teens.  My studded tires had been on Oma for two weeks.

This year, snow is non-existent.  The temperature is in the mid-30’s.  A raincoat over a sweater is enough to keep me warm and protected.  I’m still riding my Betty Foy and have not yet bothered to pull out Oma’s studded tires.  This kind of weather is more like the winters I experienced when I lived in Nashville.

I’m certainly not complaining about this surprising situation!  (As long as it’s not due to global climate change or anything.)

There are fewer bicyclists on the road now, which makes me think that many people automatically put away their bikes when the winter months roll around, without considering whether conditions are actually bad enough to justify it.

For those still on their bikes and new to winter cycling, check out the LGRAB Guide to Winter Bicycling.

A Happy Bike Ride to University of Chicago

Hello, there!  Since today is dark and rainy and I have to go back to work (sad face), I’m starting the morning with something bright and happy.  I just stumbled upon these photos and realized that I never posted about this ride.

On the last Sunday of October, a day of perfect weather, I biked to Hyde Park to enjoy brunch at my friend’s house.  Hyde Park is a neighborhood on the southside where the University of Chicago is located, about 15 miles from where I live.  After brunch, I took the opportunity to explore the area by bike. The campus is beautiful, as you can see below.

At the time, I thought this was my last warm weather hurrah, but winter has yet to take hold of Chicago for real. The high temps this week will be in the 40’s.

I wish I could post something about biking during my Christmas vacation in North Carolina, but sadly my hometown is not conducive to biking. Did any of you make time for a nice holiday ride?

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Happy Holidays from North Carolina!

I’m in North Carolina for Christmas again this year, visiting my mom, dad, sisters, nephew, and in-laws. No bicycling, just lots of eating, drinking, and laughing.

Happy holidays to you and yours! :)

The Mr. Dottie Family Farm

 

Review: Mini Monkey Light

For the last two months, I’ve been dazzling Nashville with my Mini Monkey Light M210 from Monkey Electric. And I really mean that—while it’s no Christmas light set, this is the sort of lighting option that draws oohs and ahs from pedestrians and is difficult for motorists to miss. Very important attributes when it starts getting dark at 4:30!

The Monkey Light is easy to install, with a battery case  (3 AA) that rests on top of the wheel’s hub and a small circuit board that fits between the spokes like a baseball card.

 

The on/off button, and the button that allow you to select which pattern you want the light to display, are on the circuit board, as you can see below—they’re labled “Power” and “Theme.”

You may also notice that there’s a “tire” and “hub” indicator, and mine is facing the wrong way.  This did not seem to affect its performance, although I’m sure it alters some of the patterns, so I changed it around after these photos were taken. I attached the Monkey Light to my rear wheel only; I felt like both would have been overkill and I was worried that the battery pack would affect the bike’s performance. That does not seem to have happened,  although my definition of “performance” is doubtless less stringent than most.

Sadly, I can’t seem to get a picture of the light at night to save my life, though I’ve made a few efforts. Whitney finally helped me out and got the best snaps yet. I believe the pattern I have selected is the red “fireball” shown here. I may look like a ghost, but you can definitely tell the lights are BRIGHT.

Luckily, they have a video that better displays what the Monkey Light can do (and has me thinking that maybe I should install it on both wheels after all?).

You can find out more about Monkey Electric and the Monkey Light on their site, or their Kickstarter page. The Monkey Light Mini will be available in February for $49.99, but you can pre-order now. While the price is a tad steep (especially if you want to use the light on both wheels) this light definitely delivers when it comes to visibility (and in two months of use, I haven’t drained the batteries).

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Deck the Bike with Holiday Lights

Fa la la la la, la la la la!

Every year around the holidays, I think about how cool it would be to go all out with Christmas lights on my bike. And every year I punk out by throwing on ribbon and a couple of ornaments.

Not so this year!

I finally bought a string of battery-operated lights, one that’s colorful and blinks in fun patterns. Installing it on my bike was easy – I simply wrapped it around, starting from the handlebars, down along the top tube, and ending at the rack, where I tucked the battery pack under my cargo straps.

This set up makes me ridiculously happy. (It’s the little things that count.)

Plus, I’m the most visible bike out there by far! :)

Do you decorate your bike? I know several of you put lights on your bikes and encouraged me to do the same, so thanks!

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Winter Group Rides – Critical Lass

Chicago’s monthly Critical Lass ride continues on, even in the dark cold!

Usually I avoid winter group rides because biking for a long time at slow speeds in freezing temps is a great way to freeze my extremities off.

The ladies behind Critical Lass understand these problems and have adjusted the winter rides accordingly. For the next few months, the ride will be short (3-4 miles) and end at neighborhood bars that are close to home for as many of the lasses as possible.

This plan worked perfectly for December’s ride. A hardy group of 16 lasses showed up and spent much more time drinking pitchers of beer in a cozy pub than pedaling in the cold.

To stay up-to-date on the different dates and locations for Chicago’s Critical Lass ride, check out the Facebook page.

What do you think about winter group rides? Have you been on one this year?

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Biking to Harpo Studios

Yesterday was a special day for me, thanks to good luck. I won tickets to a taping of The Rosie Show where Tori Amos was the guest, by writing an essay about my love for her music. When I got there, they sat me front row center, the best seat in the house!

Rosie tapes her show in Harpo Studios, where Oprah used to tape. Riding there from my office was a breeze, since I could take the Kinzie protected bike lane and side streets the whole way. Riding from there back home was a little crazed and stressful. I wasn’t familiar enough with the area to attempt side streets at night, so I took a main route full of fast traffic, which then detoured because of construction, putting me on an even busier street, and *ugh* reminding me why I prefer side streets. At the same time, the experience also reminded me that I can confidently handle the messy stuff when it comes my way.

Outside Harpo Studios, I was disappointed that I couldn’t find bike parking, forcing me to lock to a light pole. There is very little bike parking in the West Loop neighborhood in general.

Here is the view from my seat in the studio, not zoomed in, right after the show ended when we were finally allowed to take pictures. You can see Rosie to the right and Tori’s piano straight ahead.

I also had the pleasure of seeing Tori in concert at the Chicago Theater on Saturday night, a sold out show. Chicago Theater is the best for seeing bigger concerts.

Okay, I’m done with my fangirl stuff. (Everyone has a favorite artist they’d be super excited to see up close…right?)

The weather in Chicago is back to being oddly warm. It’s in the 40’s now and will get up to the 50’s tomorrow. Weird but good for winter cycling!

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Podcast: Women of West Town Bikes

For the second LGRAB podcast, I talked with three women of West Town Bikes: Kim Werst, Liz Clarkson, and Mia Moore.  West Town Bikes is a non-profit organization with the goals of promoting bicycling in Chicago, educating youth with a focus on under-served populations, and fostering Chicago’s growing bicycling community.  The women I talked with focus their efforts on Women/Trans Night and the Girls Bike Club.

Women and Trans Night is an offshoot of WTB’s adult program, a weekly open shop night that offers a comfortable and welcoming environment to work on bikes and learn more about bike maintenance.

The Girls Bike Club is an offshoot of WTB’s earn-a-bike youth summer program that teaches bike mechanics and safe cycling skills.  They saw a need for a girls-only group and started the Girls Bike Club.

Some of the teen girls from the Girls Bike Club and their mentors joined our Women-Who-Bike Brunch last month. I wanted to learn more about this fun and impressive group.

To hear about the importance of women-only spaces, the challenges of getting girls on bikes, and how bicycling empowers, listen to the interview below or visit our iTunes page to download the podcast.

West Town Bikes is currently raising money to send the Girls Bike Club to a national bike conference in NYC to give a workshop on how others around the country can organize their own Girls Bike Club. You can DONATE HERE. Click on “Donate Online” and then type “Girls Bike Club” in the designation line.

Did I mention you can DONATE HERE? Any amount helps!

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New addition to the Nashville bike scene: The Hub

Last Friday, I went to the jam-packed “pre-opening” party of Nashville’s newest biking establishment: The Hub.  It’s a truly unique entry to the Nashville biking scene: in addition to being the home of the Green Fleet Messenger service, The Hub will sell bike accessories and provide bike rentals. Starting this spring they’ll also offer bike tours around Nashville.

Your friendly Hub owners and operators Thomas Solinsky and Austin Bauman

The shop feels warm and  welcoming, with its old brick walls partly whitewashed and partly left original—and completely decked out with bikes, baskets, bells, jerseys and T-shirts.

I’m pretty psyched that visiting friends and family will no longer have an excuse not to participate in my bike obsession. Judging from the bikes in the shop during the party, there’ll be a wide range of models available (alas, I didn’t photograph them all).

The Hub is located in Edgehill Village and open for business. Find them on Facebook for info on special holiday deals.

Green Fleet Hub
1579 Edgehill Ave., Nashville, TN
M-F 11-6; Sat. 10-2
p.s. speaking of riding in Nashville, our next bike brunch is TOMORROW at 11 am at Tavern in Midtown. Email me if you can make it.

 

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Best Albums of 2011

I’ve had a bad cold for the past week and haven’t been riding my bike much. So when Dottie suggested we entertain the blogosphere with our own Best of 2011 lists, I was on board. Using the terribly scientific method of “which list is easier to come up with” we’ve decided to do albums first. So without further ado…here are our lists.

Dottie’s Favorite Albums of 2011

Night of Hunters by Tori Amos – Making classical compositions her own with fresh arrangements and poetic lyrics, Tori creates a modern song cycle about a shattering relationship. Gorgeous, lush, heartbreaking, and simmering with darkness, this album is as dense and rewarding as a great novel.

The Old Magic by Nick Lowe – How his voice can sound both weathered and smooth is a mystery, as is his ability to write lyrics that feel familiar but are totally free of cliche.  While some may call the sound retro, to me it’s a breath of fresh air.

The King is Dead by The Decembrists – Sometimes I need toe-tapping, foot-stomping music.  This album gives me that in a brilliant package.  I grow weary of bearded indie rock music that currently dominates, but The Decembrists get a free pass for being the best, always.

Wild Flag by Wild Flag – Fun, energetic, loud, guaranteed to get me thrashing around my living room.  They’re always in total control of their tight sound.  Riot grrrl forever.

Bad as Me by Tom Waits – Dude, it’s Tom Waits.  That voice!  Those beats!  Weirdness!  Usually, you either love him or find listening to him impossible.  Guess which side I’m on.

Ceremonials by Florence + the Machine – This is even better than her smashing debut, an addictive combination of STRONG vocals and mesmerizing rhythms.  I keep playing it over and over again.

Biophilia by Bjork – Gorgeous, creative, playful, like nothing else out there.  Sounds like it could have come from a different universe, in a good way.  Planet Bjork.  This is my favorite album of hers in 10 years.

Passenger by Lisa Hannigan – I almost swept this one off the list because it’s so calm and unassuming, but then I listened to a bit of one song, then another, then another, etc., and realized that every song triggered a slightly different feeling in me, all positive.  So this quiet beauty stays on my list.

The Light of the Sun by Jill Scott – Smart, engaging, and smooth.  Starts with some great uptempo songs before easing into a long series of slow, thoughtful songs.  While the album as a whole is somewhat melancholy and less playful than her previous albums, it’s never maudlin.  I always feel better after a listen.

50 Words for Snow by Kate Bush – Pure strange beauty.  The sound is like soft snow falling all around, a magical snow that warms instead of freezes.  The shortest song is 7 minutes and the longest is over 13 minutes – one of many indications that she pandered to no one, least of all music executives, staying true to her own artistic integrity.  Thank goodness.

Favorite bonus release of the year: Box Set by Neutral Milk Hotel – The band’s last release, 1998’s In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, which I discovered in 2008, is one of my all-time favorites, behind only Tori Amos’s Boys For Pele.  Listening to it affects me more than any other album, novel, movie, painting, or poem.  So one of the highlights of my year was news of a new Neutral Milk Hotel box set with several unreleased tracks.

 

Trisha’s Favorite Albums of 2011

So Beautiful or So What by Paul Simon. What can I say about the genius of Paul Simon that hasn’t already been said? This really is his best album since Graceland. The harmony on “Dazzling Blue” is right up there with classics like “Diamonds on the Soles of Her Shoes.”

Oh Land by Oh Land. This first U.S. release from the Danish singer/songwriter is polished, fun and smart, full of interesting musical riffs that will make you want to move. The rare album where I’m never tempted to skip a single track.

Wounded Rhymes by Lykke Li. OK, I have a thing for Scandinavian pop, although the Swedish Li’s album is much darker and weirder than Oh Land’s. From the danceable “Get Some”—one of my favorite songs of the year—to the eerie “Sadness is a Blessing” and the wordless “Ladies’ Love,” the tracks on these albums are varied, complex and show influences from Bat for Lashes to Kate Bush to Bjork.

The English Riviera by Metronomy. Fun, ’80s inspired electronic pop that doesn’t feel dated. I also love bands who swap out their lead singers. Check out the amazing dissonant harmony on “Everything Goes My Way.”

Torches by Foster the People. By the time I figured out what “Pumped Up Kicks” was about, it was already entrenched in my head. If tapping your foot to a song about a high school shooting is problematic for you, try one of the other equally addictive songs from Torches, like “Helena Beat.”

Bon Iver by Bon Iver. No surprise here, but damn he’s good. I wore out his first album and this one is equally listenable, moody and haunting.

21 by Adele. Another obvious selection—but another rare case where hype matches the quality of the work. I loved 19 and saw Adele in concert here in 2008. It made me a lifelong fan; her voice is just as beautiful in person. This album is even better than her first.

A Creature I Don’t Know by Laura Marling. Folk musician Laura Marling is just 21, but her beautiful voice and intelligently constructed albums and songs seem to belong to someone quite a bit older. She sounds like no one you’ve heard before, and her albums (this is her third) are the type that reward repeat listens.

The Head & the Heart by The Head & the Heart. More folk! Full of beautiful harmonies and creative arrangements that range from spare to orchestral, this first album is a keeper.

Barton Hollow by The Civil Wars. Another album that’s been in the spotlight this year, for a reason. The title track is my favorite, but they are all standouts. One of the reasons I love Americana and folk so much is that it usually emphasizes vocals—namely harmony—over raging guitar solos and the like. Joy Williams and John Paul White’s voices were made for each other. Can’t wait to hear them at the Ryman in January.

Honorable mention: A few songs I’ve loved this year whose albums aren’t on the list. “Lights” by Ellie Goulding; “Begging Me” by Florrie (from an EP); “Bluebird” by Christina Perri; “Another Like You” by Hayes Carll; “Shell Games” by Bright Eyes.

 

Share your top 10 list or fave album of the year in the comments—part of the reason we’re doing this is to discover new favorites!

A New Red Coat on the Bike Path

Bright red seems like the best color for city cycling, getting drivers’ attention while still looking stylish off the bike. Chic, classic, and bold.

For this reason, I’ve been searching for the perfect red coat for two years, especially since seeing this post on Copenhagen Cycle Chic. Yesterday, the miraculous happened: I finally found “my” red coat. I was walking through Anthropologie during my lunch break, which I often do to torture myself because I usually can’t afford their beautiful clothes, when I spotted this unique red trench for half off.

Everything about the coat is perfect for me. The bright red “hi-vis” color. The classic trench styling. The length. The cinched waist with a bow.

And the laced back! Just the kind of quirky, personal touch I love.

Best of all, the coat will get me through three Chicago seasons: fall and spring over whatever I happen to be wearing, winter with a cashmere or wool sweater and my lightweight windbreaker underneath. There’s a nice lining that makes it a bit more substantial than the usual trench.

Plus, the red matches my other Oma accessories.

I also purchased something else on sale that I’ve been searching for: a digital camera. I wanted an affordable compact camera with manual controls and sharp photos, which I found in the Panasonic Lumix LX-5. I love shooting film, but for blogging purposes digital is faster and cheaper.  I (and my huge gloved hands) will be able to post more daily photos of my commute, more quickly. Yay!

Moving beyond consumerism to talk about actual biking, I had a lovely commute this morning.  I took the Lakefront Trail for the first time in a while.  I’m going to make a video of this route (with HD video on my new camera!) because it’s so beautiful.

Pure bliss = rolling on Oma down the quiet trail, listening to Jill Scott, enjoying the sun in my face and the wind at my back. Makes me wonder why I ever bother riding to work among car traffic.

Now is the best time of year to bike the trail – the crowds have left, but ice is not yet encroaching from the lake.

The weather today is suddenly colder, in the low-20’s. Winter is pushing its way through, slowly but surely. At least I have my red coat. :)

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Not Bicycling to the Ball

This weekend, Mr. Dottie and I got all fancy and attended my employer’s annual charity ball. You can imagine how much I wanted to ride my bike to show that I could, but I knew that was not going to happen. The venue was 8 miles away, the night was cold, and my hair and face had undergone extensive work. Oh, also, I was in a ball gown with a mini train.

If the ride were much shorter, like the fundraising gala I bike to two years ago , I might have tried it, but 8 miles of riding would have torn some sequins off my gown, at the very least, and Rent the Runway would not have been pleased when I returned it. I love bicycling, but I’m not going to cycle when it would be wildly impractical. Greg could have easily biked in his tux, though.

I was going to take the L train, but my boss told me to please take a cab and have the costs reimbursed. So I did. It felt weird to ride in a motor vehicle that was not a bus. Such luxury, even though it was a little scary and smelled a little funny!

Have any of you biked to a black tie event? I’d love to hear about it! You can post pictures in the comments, if you have any to share.

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December’s women-who-bike brunch

On Sunday, Chicago’s lovely bike ladies got together for the final brunch of 2011. The weather in Chicago is unseasonably mild and I was able to get by without a coat, wearing a sweater dress ($2 from Salvation Army!) and glittery Cynthia Rowley tights (a gift from Trisha last Christmas).

About 15 of us met at The Southern in Bucktown and boy was it good!

I had to get the fried chicken, biscuits and gravy (hey, I’m from North Carolina!).  There was enough left over for yummy dinners on Sunday and Monday.

Martha seems to be taking her benedict seriously in this photo, but she liked it.  And Ash her donuts.  :)

For real, these cinnamon donuts with fruit and coffee dipping sauce looked amazing.

After a leisurely meal, we headed outside for our usual bike talk.

Maria, Samantha and Seri showed off their wintery white helmets.

Jen, Ash and Holly modeled their oh-so-lovely jackets.  ;)

Catherine made a strong case for purple and green together.

Martha’s bright red scarf and Samantha’s neon yellow gloves were great pops of color (visibility!) next to their black coats.

And check out Martha’s new Yakkay helmet cover.  Swoon!

April and Holly brought some spring colors into the mix.  (Stay tuned for a full review of April’s raincoat coming later this week.)

So cheerful on a grey winter day!

I think I managed to get everyone’s photo this time except Stef and Carrie, so I’m posting these that I took at prior gatherings. (A bit underdressed for December, aren’t we, ladies? :) )

After brunch and bike talk, some of us headed to the nearby Renegade Craft Fair Holiday Market.  A perfect Sunday morning!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the lovely ladies for coming together every month.  I feel like our group is really something special and I’m so grateful for the friends I’ve made.

Cheers to an excellent 2011!

{Are you a Chicagoan who wants to join our fabulous group?  New women are always welcome!  Email me at LGRAB@letsgorideabike.com.}

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Video: a busy Chicago bike commute

Earlier this week, I posted a video of my commute along quiet side streets.  To show how different the ride is along a busy route, on Friday morning I took Lincoln Avenue, a popular street for both bikes and motor vehicles.  I considered this taking one for the team, because I hate this route during rush hour.

A few notes before moving on to the video:

  • Lincoln Avenue is a major bikeway, with either bike lanes or sharrows along the length of it. As I discussed previously, it’s a pathetic set-up for such a popular bike route. Nevertheless, most bicyclists would take this street from my neighborhood to downtown.
  • This route takes about 25 minutes to my work, while the side streets route takes about 40 minutes.  Lincoln is faster because it is diagonal, a straight shot to downtown.
  • The bicyclist who happens to be in front of me for most of the video is carrying a child on the back, very cool.  I position myself a little further in the street and away from the parked cars than she, to avoid the door zone.
  • There’s a lot of traffic during rush hour and I generally filter on the right to get in front at stop lights.  This is the safest place to wait, but it’s important to position yourself in front of cars and trucks, not next to them.  Also, I know the light cycles well and go ahead only when I have enough time to do so safely.
  • The video is sped up by 250% and shows only 1/3 of the ride.  My memory card got full right before I passed three solid blocks of traffic-jammed cars.  That’s always smugly fun.
Without further ado, I present another low-budget LGRAB production:

The song is Beat Culture by Midori and I found it on Free Music Archive (thanks to Vee for the tip!).

Can you see why I prefer the side streets?  Which route would you take?

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Video: a calm Chicago bike commute

Here is a little video I made of my morning bike commute through relatively quiet side streets. Not the most interesting video ever, but I wanted to show how it’s possible to commute into downtown Chicago while avoiding busy streets and scary traffic. This is part of the quiet route that I often take, which I blogged about a few months ago here.

[UPDATE: May not work for international readers. Sorry!]

It’s hard to hear what I’m saying in the beginning and my memory card became full about 1/4 of my way to work, but you get the idea. The speed is 2.5x faster than reality.

I’m no Leslie Knope with iMovie, so please excuse the poor quality. (If you don’t get that reference, you didn’t watch Parks & Rec tonight – shame on you.)

Major shout-out to super sweet reader Ambrose, who gifted me her old bike camera mount after I posted my last ridiculously shaky handheld video. It made a huge difference. Thank you!!

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Ladies: “Don’t” scandalize yourselves on bikes!

Reader David Pertuz thought LGRAB readers would be particularly interested in a post on the Detroit blog m-bike.org written by Todd Scott, called 1895: Don’ts for women riders.  (Thanks, David!) That’s right – 41 “don’ts” to be exact, from an 1895 article in New York World.  The list is both hilarious and horrifying.  We are lucky to be looking at this from 115 years in the future.

A few of my favorites:

  • Don’t be a fright.
  • Don’t faint on the road.
  • Don’t boast of your long rides.
  • Don’t refuse assistance up a hill.
  • Don’t imagine everybody is looking at you.
  • Don’t ask, “What do you think of my bloomers?
  • Don’t go out after dark without a male escort.
  • Don’t appear in public until you have learned to ride well.
  • Don’t ignore the laws of the road because you are a woman.
  • Don’t scream if you meet a cow. If she sees you first, she will run.

In his post, Todd makes a good point:

For those who get nostalgic for that 1890s golden era of cycling, it’s important to realize it wasn’t golden for everyone.  Major Taylor can vouch for that.

Yeah, really. I enjoy Tweed Rides, but there’s no way men would have “let” me join them back in the day for a drinking ride from pub to pub, especially with all my fainting, screaming, and bloomer talk.

Full list of “don’ts” at the original m-bike post.

What’s your favorite “don’t”?

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