Beautiful Bicycling Diversity


Last weekend was especially lovely in Seattle.  After a rainy Friday, the clouds parted and, for some of us, the Dead Baby Bike Club’s annual downhill race was a great experience.  I understand that this event is not for everyone.  In fact, only one of the three lawyers here (I, Bob– the one without kids) attended.  But we should all appreciate the diversity of those who love bikes.

There are commuters who would never race.  There are racers who would never ride to a store.   There are recumbent riders who can’t understand those who hunch over their bikes.  There are upright riders who think similarly to the recumbent riders, but then would never ride a recumbent.  There are BMX riders and tricycle people.  There are those who ride with everything all fluorescent and flashing and riders who wear all black and remove their reflectors.

This much is true: whenever we ride, we are not driving a car.  We are exercising.  We are seeing things and (hopefully) we are seen.  For the most part, it really is all good.  So let’s all get along…

I’ve never been injured in a Dead Baby event, but attorney John McHale has been injured multiple times in organized bike races.  Is the Downhill dangerous?  Sure.  It’s also dangerous just waiting at a red light on my ride to work.

On the other hand, it’s hard to view tall bike jousting as anything but dangerous… and fun.  I’ll remain a spectator, thank you very much… Here is a short video: jousting

On Sunday my wife and I rode our 1952 Schwinn tandem from West Seattle to Ballard for brunch and then around Magnolia and back to West Seattle.  That’s pretty much the Tour de France on that bike.  It was fun, but again, not without risk.  I noticed one of Seattle’s famous wheel-swallowing sewer grates inside a marked bike lane in Magnolia.

I was too busy avoiding it to take a photo, but here is one that my office played a part in getting replaced:


In Ballard, we visited the Farmer’s Market and chatted with a nice Cascade Bicycle Ambassador.  He and I traded spoke cards:

spoke cards

Cascade’s spoke cards address what to do in case of a collision, whereas Washington Bike Law’s spoke cards provide a summary of bike laws.  About 90% of our work is representing bicyclist who have been in crashes, so one might expect our cards to be more like Cascade’s.  Instead, ours provide citations to the actual laws that many people (including police) do not understand.  Both cards are free for the asking and, this being Washington, both are waterproof.

Like the diversity in people who love bikes, both are good!

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