Friday, December 02, 2016

Someone complained to the city about our bikes.

Luckily we are the city, or at least enough of a part of P-town that we get word from them when something is up.
Here is the leaked complaint.

"Tall Bikes I believe these bikes are a threat to the city. I think once seen them in bike gangs many times almost hitting other bikers and almost crashing into cars and pedestrians.
I have seen clowns riding through traffic on these unsafe bikes almost causing accidents. I've been screamed at driving by them. I think this needs to be banned from Portlands streets asap. Before they get hurt.
Fact is they are higher them the visibility of cars only leaving a metal frame to see them.
I don't think lighting is enough. I think they need to be taken off the road and tickets for endangerment to others safety and for wreckless endangerment.
Please stop these rude bikers this month.
I think its nagging that they think there making a difference this way."

Here are some fun facts on the subject.
1. in over 15 years of nearly constant tall bike riding I have never, ever hit a car. Olive was hit once by a car that was backing out. I only ever crashed twice in all that time. The only one hurt was me. Once I slipped in the ice. I fell taking a turn and scraped myself up a bit. I got back up and did the show. Another time I slipped off because I had been masturbating (a friend had an emergency across town) I jumped on my ride and took off. The first right turn I took; my slicked up fingers lost purchase with the handlebars and I flew into a bush. Good times. That's it. No collateral casualties caused by me ever.
2. We are highly trained and hyper aware in traffic, you don't see us grabbing poles or making reckless moves. We strive to drive with military precision. We roll like we are keeping a standard.
3. If we are yelling at someone it's because they are being unsafe. Sometimes it's because we can see stuff happening that the drivers can't (like a little old lady crossing the street). If cute clowns are griping at you, it says more about you than they.
4. We bring waves of happiness everywhere we go. Traffic even slightly slows down around us. We are a safe bubble for other cyclists. In political protests we can even give rides to kids and injured folks during long marches.
5. We promote cycling in a world choked by cars. We are demonstrating how to commute in all weather and hauling heavy loads. We also get invited to be in dozens of parades and street parties.
6. We promote Portland. Folks have been taking our photos daily for many years, it's all over the world now. We love our city and we love that we can bring fun and wimsey to a grumpy world. The positive response from the people is overwhelming and addictive.

Well,that's 6 things off the top of my head.

No idea why someone would want to wreck our lives over zero body count.
I can't speak for other tall bike riders.
We don't roll with loose canon these days. Also, it's safe to say that cars are much less safe than tallbikes by any metric.
I see devastation everyday from cars careening into things and people. Shattered bus benches, crushed street signs. We have more cars than ever and they are hurting a lot of people.
We carry disturbing imagery of dead people. Folks I have seen killed over the years. They are all still in my head. I'm also not crazy about the constant poisonous fumes cars belch. It's like ink in my bathwater.
Lots of folks killed by cars, lots of environmental damage and all with an obsolete fuel that people kill each other over.
One of the most dangerous things we ever see automobiles do is when we cross a bridge( like the Ross Island).
Without fail, as we cross some Yahoo in a big truck gets right beside us and then blast the horn.
It takes a lot more than that to unseat Dingo the clown but the gesture of pure meanness isn't lost on me. I want to find a way to fake a fall off the bridge to see what the truckers do.
That would be so fun.
One time, a lady in a minivan gripped at me "Why do you have to be so big?" she scolded. Then we both noticed at the same time that she herself was so big she hardly fit in the driver's seat. She had food scattered all across her chest like a necklace. She was pretty big to be complaining about being big, LOL.
I wasn't even in the street. She flashed a look of embarrassment and I had a hearty laugh.

This is what the law says. Click here for a description of what the law of the land considers "a bike".

Guess how many cyclists we have seen passed away on the road? I don't know, we lost count after I ran out of fingers to count them on. Lots of people. The last few times we were among the first to roll up on the horrific scenes.

We have to dodge this stuff every day.

I carry very heavy loads long distances. Never had a problem.

I wish I could read whet they have to say about us in other places.

 Tall bikes are part of the fabric of the city.

I hope this was helpful to the person making the complaint.

1 comment:

Joe Barrett said...

Funny response, but seriously, don't get too bent about one letter from one dude who's obviously not playing with a full deck. Keep keeping Portland weird, no one's taking that away from you. #Chill