New Poll-New Yorkers like bike lanes. Personal account suggests NYPD hates cyclists and their kids who use them

A recent NY Times poll just revealed 66% of New Yorkers think the bike lanes are a good thing. This may be insight that the cycle friendly direction the city has taken may be starting to gain acceptance.

There is also information that New Yorkers are less than enthusiastic about the proposed bike sharing program that has been delayed until spring next year.

From the Times:

Most New Yorkers Say Bike Lanes Are a Good Idea
By: Michael M. Grynbaum & Marjorie Connelly
Published: August 21, 2012
20120821-160717.jpgMichelle V. Agins/The New York Times
A bicycle lane near the Williamsburg Bridge along South Second Street.

Bicycle lanes may be little more than painted stripes on concrete, but in New York City, they have become the stuff of lawsuits, neighborhood squabbles and tense debates over the proper role of government.

Now, six years after the Bloomberg administration began its controversial campaign to re-edit the city’s streetscape, adding 255 miles of bicycle lanes onto streets previously dedicated to automobiles, a hard-fought acceptance for the lanes may finally be at hand.

When asked simply whether New York’s bike lanes were a good idea or a bad idea, 66 percent of New Yorkers said they thought bike lanes were a good idea, according to a new poll by The New York Times. A majority in all boroughs said they thought the lanes were a good idea, with support highest in Manhattan.

Read the entire article: here.

Meanwhile, as cyclists we are still dealing with severe police harassment, even when we use the bike lanes. Here is a recent report from Brian Gluck, owner of Red Lantern Bicyclesin Fort Greene Brooklyn. He was rammed by an NYPD car while riding in Grand Army Plaza with his child.

“My son and I were just run off the road by the NYPD in Grand Army Plaza. They rammed their car into my bike and made me crash into a parked car. They said my son was not allowed to be on the back of the big dummy (cargo bike designed by Surly) I disagreed and they both stood toe to toe with me shouting questions. Am I drunk? Do I know the law more than they do? Where do I live? They asked me for my I.D. My son is crying. They gave my I.D. back to me. I asked if they were going to give me a ticket. They said no, let us go and made me walk. We both had helmets, lights, a bell and were in the bike lane. We had not run any red lights. We are still shaken up. More details to come.”

I saw this posted on Saturday, August 18th on Red Lantern’s facebook page.

It seems ludicrous that the police could be so callous, especially with a young child involved, but many of the 49 comments attached to this post claim of similar experiences. What kind of message does this send to our children?

If the above poll points to signs of the city accepting bike lanes, then Brian’s personal account is a sign we have miles to go with the NYPD.

What are your opinions on bike lanes, the bike sharing program and this report by a Brooklyn parent and cyclist? Do you have similar experiences with the police?

Premium Rush, messenger movie keeping local, Vayabags Interview.

What do we know about the new messenger thriller Premium Rush? We know it stars Joesph Gordon-Levitt as the hotshot fixed gear riding protagonist. We know it’s about bike messengers in NYC and premiers August 24th. But what you might not be aware of is it was entirely shot in New York City and used a lot of real messengers as consultants, actors and stunt riders. Our own Austin Horse (who took 4th place in this years Cycle Messenger World Championships in Chicago) was Joesph’s double for much of the riding in traffic and skids.

Photo By: Sarah Shatz-
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Austin Horse and director David Koepp on the set of Columbia Pictures’ Premium Rush.
Read an article on the Austin working with Joesph in Momentum Magazine.
See the trailer:

Something else you may not know is the messenger bags used in this film are hand made right here in Ridgewood Queens by Tianna Meilinger and her lady co-workers Angie and Grace of Vaya Bags.

I recently got a chance to visit Tianna and her crew at the Queens shop to see the whole operation of this company who’d I’d been admiring for years.

Continue reading Premium Rush, messenger movie keeping local, Vayabags Interview.

Video Monday-8/20/12

More videos to start your week off, right?

Title: Flight of the Conchords-Mel Dreams
Seen on: Urban Velo
Here’s a blast from the past. Love the hair helmet.

Title: Fairdale Weekender
Seen on: Urban Velo
We’ve got one of these in house for test, so be on the lookout for a full review. In the meantime check out

Title: Portland Design Works-community Works-Summer 2012
Seen on: Urban Velo
Dan Powell is the co-owner of Portland Design Works, a sometimes contributor to Urban Velo and the real deal guy in the industry who just loves to ride a bike. I’ve spent some great times raging on two wheels with Dan—if you like Urban Velo you’d like his sort of trouble. He’s the guy grilling dogs in the Rock Racing cap. Pretty awesome to see PDW doing so well the past few years, and even better to see how far they’ve gone in spreading the love back to the rest of the cycling community. A model for us all.

Title: Bicycle Film Festival Helsinki
Seen on: Fixed Gear TV
It was a smooth and fun ride to Bicycle Film Festival Helsinki and back.
Music: Husky Rescue – Summertime Cowboy

Title:New Trials Video with Dominik and Matthias

Title: Invisible Bicycle Helmet
“If people say it’s impossible we have to prove them wrong.”

Design students Anna and Terese took on a giant challenge as an exam project. Something no one had done before. If they could swing it, it would for sure be revolutionary. The bicycle is a tool to change the world. If we use bikes AND travel safe: Life will be better for all.
Join the conversation and tweet #InvsHelmet to have your tweet featured on the Focus Forward website. Go to to see the discussion.
Check out more films in the Focus Forward series at

Title: ArtCrank Party @Bicycle Habitat – Soho New York 2012
Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide

Party in Soho. Sounds cool for Rhode Islanders. Better yet it was about bikes and art, and the cultural transformation that is taking place cities. With beer too. At the alluring Bicycle Habitat on Lafayette Street.

Music: “The Wolves” by Ben Howard
Beer: Widmer Brothers
–August 9th, 2012 SoHo. NY

Title: “Premium Rush Bicycle” aka AFFINITY (METROPOLITAN) Frame
Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide
Thank You for Affinity Cycles for the Metropolitan frame, it’s really a fast frame and a nice geometric track set up and good to be handle on the New York’s streets.
This is the same model use by Austin Horse and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the movie “Premium Rush” premiere it this August 24, 2012.

“Premium Rush Bicycle” aka AFFINITY (METROPOLITAN) Frame from Urban Cyclist Worldwide on Vimeo.

Title: Premium Rush Parody: I Am a Bike Messenger
Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide

Title: My Reasons to Ride – Lindsey Bower
Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide
This is Lindsey’s video submission for Raleigh Bicycle’s My Reason to Ride contest. She talks about her passion for cycling, why it helped her to learn a new city, and why she started her mass-themed ride group, Crank-Set Rides.

My Reasons to Ride – Lindsey Bower from Dan Krivenki on Vimeo.

Title: BFF – psycho beach party gold sprints
Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide

BFF – psycho beach party gold sprints from The Skeleton Key on Vimeo.

Seen on: Urban Cyclist Worldwide

ALLEY CAT RACE from Jean-Darcel Michel on Vimeo.

Title: Welcome to the Team Edgar “WILLO” Juarez
Seen on:

Welcome to the Team Edgar “WILLO” Juarez from on Vimeo.

Title: The “BIKE”-by Andrew Rusli
“The bicycle is the noblest invention of mankind.” ~William Saroyan (Nobel prize winner)

T H E ‘ B I K E ‘ from Andrew Rusli on Vimeo.

Title: Iridefixed Modena
Seen on: Cool Bike Videos

Iridefixed Modena from pietro occhiuzzi on Vimeo.

Title: Bike Ride for Ghana – Virginia to Montreal
Seen on: Cool Bike Videos
The goal here is not just to arrive victorious and breathless in Montreal (although.. you can count on this happening), the event is aimed to raise awareness and to raise funds for IMPACT’s mission.

Next destination: New London, Providence and Boston!

Title: ArtCrank the Movie!
Seen on: TRACKO

Title: HMPL No.15 Saddle Bag spot #1
Designed to hang nicely under the saddle of most any bicycle, the No. 15 transports all of your essentials without the burden of a backpack. Save your shirt and your dignity on a hot summer’s day, unless you always ride shirtless. It’s big enough to hold a 15-case of beer, roughly 15x11x7″ when rolled up.
The joy of the No.15 is its versatility. If you want to leave your saddle alone, you can throw it in your basket, strap it to your rack, attach it to your handlebars, sling it over your shoulder—the possibilities are endless.
Where we’re from, rain is an inevitability. Constructed from durable waterproof materials, the No. 15 will keep your things dry in a downpour. This doesn’t mean its 100% waterproof, but it’s pretty damn close.
Find out more: HMPL.CA

HMPL No.15 Saddle Bag spot #1 from Matthew on Vimeo.

Who need bike sharing, Time’s Up has 450 bikes for sale.

Ok, so no bike sharing till next year. There are some other options. Why not get your very own bike?

Time’s Up just got a whole shipment of used Dutch style bikes and they’re rapidly fixing them up for sale.

Here is more about the lot of bikes from Time’s Up:

Times Up! introduces low cost Dutch bikes to its Brooklyn space.

We ordered 450 bikes from Japan that we are recycling and getting on
the streets fast, for the cheapest prices possible. While Bike Share
stutters to a start, we are getting people on their own perfect
commuter bikes at an affordable price.

While Time’s Up! recycle-a-bike program offers all different styles of
bikes, we focused on providing a very practical Dutch-style non-gender
specific recycled bicycle. This single speed bicycle can be ridden in
the rain and includes full fenders, both front and rear, full chain
guard, and in most cases rear rack baskets, and a kick stand. The
upright safe design of a Dutch Bike provides more visibility than
typical bicycles. The introduction of low-cost (just over $100) Dutch
bikes is a way to change the mindset of New Yorkers. Many times in
America, biking is viewed as more of a sport rather than a mode of
transportation. Through the use of more practical and leisurely
designed Dutch Bikes, the American concept of biking can be
transformed from solely sport biking to an enjoyable method for
everyday commuting or enjoying the city’s bike paths and greenways.
Subsequently, bike ridership can spread to various groups of people
and increase non-polluting forms of transportation. This program has
been remarkably successful. We are starting to see more and more Dutch
bikes all over NYC

We’ll be recycling bikes in the back yard of the Brooklyn Space four
days a week every week from now on!

Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays
99 S 6th St, Brooklyn

Wednesdays and Sundays from 4pm-8pm and Thursdays and Fridays from
12noon-6pm, join us for bicycle recycling in the back yard of our
Brooklyn Location. This is a great opportunity to learn basic bike
repair from our mechanics on a one-on-one level, and also to help
Time’s Up! with this hugely important project to get more New Yorkers
on bikes – the best way we know to create a greener, more livable
city. We need people to help recycle bikes, sell bikes, input bike
sales into our database, keep the shop in order, and more! Follow us
on twitter to get the latest schedule changes – we’ll probably be
working even more hours and days than these.

This is a great way to learn bike mechanics skills and get first dibs on a great street-ready bicycle.

Now here is more on the schedule of Time’s Up events:
Continue reading Who need bike sharing, Time’s Up has 450 bikes for sale.

Bike sharing NYC, but not now…2013

In case you hadn’t heard (I hadn’t until just now) the NYC bike sharing program has officially been delayed until 2013.

Here is a more informed news service than me, the NY Times.

Bike-Share Program Delayed Until Spring, Mayor Says

By: Matt Flegenheimer & Michael M. Grynbaum
Published: August 17, 2012

Photo by: Michael Appleton for The New York Times.–
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan held a news conference to announce the program in May.

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said on Friday that the city’s much-heralded bike share program will not begin until next spring, ending weeks of speculation about the program’s fate and dashing cyclists’ hopes of seeing the city’s newest public travel alternative this year.

Speaking on his morning radio show, Mr. Bloomberg attributed the decision to software problems, which he has cited repeatedly in recent weeks amid calls for a further explanation for the delay.

Read more: here.

Not to fear however, says the NY Time’s reporter Joshua Brustein. There are several social network sites where people set there own prices and rent personal bikes like Spinlister.

Read more: There’s More Than One Way to Share a Bike.

Diamond Derby DC

Ready for some underground bike racing in a garage in DC?


Diamond Derby, September 29th, 2012


Cyclists confronts thief, gets it all on video.

Have you ever wanted to meet a bike thief? Confront them? See what kind of lowlife human being would steal our livelihoods, our modes of transportation, our friends we call our bicycles?

Well thanks to one tenacious Portland resident who got some friends together and documented the whole thing, now you can get a front row view.

Jake Gillum was the victim who’s pride and joy bicycle was stolen from his hometown of Portland. He found his bike posted on an ad in Craigslist in Seattle and went there, posing as a potential buyer. This is some great insight into what to do if you find yourself in a similar circumstance. Here is his story:

My bike was stolen in Portland. I found it on craigslist in seattle. My friends and I did a home-made sting operation. We got my bike back. And the thief got a felony arrest. It was peaceful, and no laws were broken. We got it all on video.

Here’s that video I made that basically says everything:

Check out my recent submissions on:

The thief’s name is Craig Eric Ackerman. He was booked in Seattle on 8/11/12… in case you want to look him up.

I have proof of everything. Police reports, documentation on my bike, his craigslist posts, lots of video not shown on youtube, email transactions.

I’m trying to get the word out to thieves that there are people like me that will track them down. I want to help empower victims of theft to actually stand up for themselves.

-Jake Gillum (It was my bike)

Unicycle on the sidewalk summons cleared. Whew.

A man riding his unicycle on the sidewalk in Canarsie must have been a huge torn in the side of the NYPD. 18 year old Isaih Rosemond was using non-polluting transportation to get to his high school, but was thwarted for his efforts by the cops who yelled: “Hey, Don’t you know it’s illegal to ride a bicycle on the sidewalk?”

Fortunately, a sensible judge who knows how to count things like wheels, threw out the case and said a unicycle wasn’t an illegal thing to operate on the sidewalk.

From the NY Post:
Unicycling teen gets sidewalk summons tossed

By: Antonio Antenucci
Published: August 11th, 2012

He one!
A unicyclist who took on the NYPD was victorious yesterday when a Manhattan judge tossed his ticket for riding a “bicycle” on the sidewalk.
“Unicycling is not a crime!” Isaih Rosemond, 18, crowed after Judge John Delury tossed the ticket the Brooklyn teen said he never should gotten in the first place, because it’s not against the law to ride one-wheelers on the sidewalk.

Read more: here.

Words matter. Aaron Naparstek says No Accident.

Aaron Naparstek is a writer, scholar and cycling advocate. He is the founder and editor of the alternative transportation watchdog and news blog: Streetsblog.

He has just published a piece on use of language when involved with motor vehicle crashes, specifically those involved with cyclists and pedestrians. Words matter and have a powerful effect on changing policy and addressing street violence caused by cars and trucks.

No Accident. It’s Time to Change the Way We Talk About Motor Vehicle Violence

A few years ago, the New York Times published a five-sentence brief about a man who “intentionally ran over five people” with an SUV after a fight in North Bellmore, Long Island. The driver, the Times reported, “fled the scene of the accident.” The police later located the vehicle that “they believed was involved in the accident.” One of the victims was in critical condition.

Ho hum. News briefs about the previous day’s car crashes are as routine as box scores and the weather forecast. Yet, in this case, the Times’ (and, presumably, the Nassau County cops’) choice of one particular word stood out: If a man intentionally ran over five people, how could that possibly be considered an accident? If, instead of car keys, the man had picked up a gun and shot five people, would the press and police have called that an “accident” too? No. They’d have called it “attempted homicide.” Yet, for some reason when the weapon is a car, when the violence on our streets is done with a motor vehicle, it’s always just an “accident.”

Read more: here.

Video from Ride for the American Dream

A short video from Fridays Ride for the American Dream.