Destroying e-bikes for profit

early last year i wrote about the joy of using JUMP e-bikes during a short stay in San Francisco[1]. Turns out that less than one and half years after being introduced, these bikes, while still being perfectly good and much needed, are getting retired and destroyed by the truckload. This seems to be the outcome of an unfortunate but probably inevitable collisions of the logics of startup consolidation and the dysfunctional way how the US legal system structures liability. As many others have poi…

On urban cycling and electricity

I have always considered myself to be a fairly accomplished urban cyclist. These days i am finding myself learning again, this time trying to master the art of drafting-off e-bikes in urban traffic…

Cheating in San Francisco

The last time i rode a bike in San Francisco was in 1996 when i was here for the Cycle Messenger World Championships. Since then the city has changed a lot, and while much of that change has not been for the better, when it comes to cycling things have improved a lot. In 1996 bike messengers where pretty much the only ones cycling and as a cyclist you had to fight for your space on the road which was pretty much constantly challenged by ignorant/agressive motorists. These days the city is full o…

What is a bike messenger?

Couple of days ago boingboing ran a post about a SF bike messenger who claims to work while tripping on LSD. Today i finally read the whole text (as opposed to just the short quote on boingboing which focusses on his cycling while tripping experience). Turns out that the his entire rant is rather amusing and that it contains one of the best descriptions of how the bike messenger business works i have ever come across: In big cities, cars are fucking everywhere. It’s a wonder people still buy the…

Best cycling jacket ever

Usually i do not promote products on this page, but i am so happy with my (relatively) new cycling jacket that i make an exception here. My new kättermusen einride jacket is more or less perfect for a cycling jacket: The einride jacket (which is for some strange reason marketing as a mountaineering/trekking garment) has the perfect cut for cycling including a hood that that protects your head against the rain without impairing your field of vision or your ability to move around your head. but th…

WTF? Area secured by DNA spray

Thursday night when cycling home from the north i spotted this sign on a lamp pole at the beginning of Ferdinad Bol straat close to where i live: Area secured by DNA-SPRAY – the police I am not even sure how many things are wrong with this sign, but here are a few that went through my head after i had taken this photo: how the fuck to you secure an area with a (DNA) spray? does it randomly spray something on people that are deemed to be a threat to security? or do they mix something into the air…

The motorized mountain bike(s) of Damascus

Back in december when walking through Damascus I ran into this mountain bike rigged up with small combustion engine: Mountain bike fitted with a combustion engine on Khalid ibn al-Walid street in central Damascus (photo taken from a different perspective here) If you ask me this is quite a marvel of engineering and although I never spotted a second one during the 3 days that I spend in Damascus I am pretty certain that this is not a unique modification but rather one of many that are produc…

I have changed my mind...

About the Noord Zuid Lijn: i really think that instead of finishing of the line and having subway trains running somewhen past 2015 they should just finish the tunnel and then turn it into a super deluxe underground bicycle express-path. The tunnel would dramatically cut down the time needed to get to the center, prevent you from rain and would probably be used by more locals on a daily basis than a subway ever will. The thing needs to have lots of smooth on- and off-ramps that connect it to the…

bikeboard.pl

A while ago i got a flickr request by someone from a polish cycling magazine called bikeboard.pl if they could use my Ōmiya Keirin keirin photo set to illustrate an article about keirin in their upcoming issue. i said yes and they promised to send me a copy. Today i received two copies of the mag which contains a 7 page article about weird cycling cultures (at least that is what i assume since i do not read polish at all). The three pages dealing with keirin are entirely illustrated by pictures…