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What are Your Desert Island Bike Commuting Accessories?

11 Comments Topics: Commuting, Commuting Gear, Tananarivize Written by Ted Johnson
Photo: Hiroyuki-H

Suppose you were going to be on a small deserted island for up to a year and you had to pick some bike commuting accessories to take with you. Okay: Not you, but me. And not a small island, but the fourth largest island in the world. And definitely not deserted: Population 22 million or more. What I'm trying to say is that in September I'll be going to Madagascar for awhile -- for nine months -- for work. The gig? I'll be workingHuman Network International (HNI), an NGO which has developed a mobile data collection and communications service designed for international development organizations worldwide. I will be bike commuting in the capitol, Antananarivo. This is the intersection of bike commuting and bike touring. I've purchased ...

 

Music and Cycling: Should They Be Combined?

15 Comments Topics: Commuting, Musings, safety Written by Melanie Colavito
Music and Cycling: Should They Be Combined?

Is it ok to listen to music while you ride your bike?  It's a question that's almost as controversial as the great helmet debate.  And it's a question that appears to never really be settled.  As long as there have been portable noise making devices and bicycles, people have been putting the two together and arguing about whether or not it's safe. As is common with debates like this, it was recently brought up again.  Just a few days ago, another piece appeared in The Telegraph, positing the very same question, "Should cyclists be allowed to listen to music?"  The article's author, Sam Walker, was hoping to follow up on London major Boris Johnson's threat from last fall to ban cyclists ...

 

Thule Pack ‘n Pedal Commuter Panniers – A Review

5 Comments Topics: Commuting, Reviews Written by John Coe
Thule Pack ‘n Pedal Commuter Panniers  – A Review

A big drawback to using a pannier that doubles as a messenger bag is that, at some point, without thinking about it, youre going to throw it over your shoulder and smear road-dirt and dried mud all over the back your clean work shirt.

But thats about the only drawback to Thules Pack-n-Pedal system commuter panniers.

Winner of the 2012 Eurobike and 2013 iF Design Exhibition awards, Thules Pack-n-Pedal panniers borrow a number of key features from other well-known bike-bag designs such as off-bike portability via an amply-wide shoulder strap and handle, roll-up drybag-style top-loading access, a detachable rain-cover, a translucent pocket for your tail-light, and a snug interior laptop pouch.

However, the Pack-n-Pedal panniers also incorporate a number

...

 

Ryders Eyewear: The Gia Standard and Polarized Sunglasses

2 Comments Topics: Commuting, Commuting Gear, Reviews Written by Karen Voyer-Caravona
Basking in the Arizona sun. Eyes well protected by Ryders

Until we moved to perpetually sunny Arizona, sunglasses were an occasional accessory, purchased at Target to wear while driving or at the rare trip to the beach. I just didn’t put much thought sunglasses and because I tended to lose them so often. During undergraduate school, I quickly lost the only pair of expensive sunglasses I ever purchased, a pair of Ray Ban Wayfarers that I couldn’t afford. What a waste. And like every pair of sunglasses I’ve worn before and since they constantly slid down my nose and fell to the ground. Since then, I have never paid more than $15. I just didn’t see the value. Then came our move to Arizona and my relationship with sunglasses became one ...

 

Bicycle Face

5 Comments Topics: Cycling, Musings, Stories Written by Melanie Colavito
Bicycle Face

I learned about a fascinating new topic this week thanks to Vox.  Apparently, when women started riding bicycles en masse in the 19th century, doctors coined a fictitious disease called bicycle face in an effort to scare then off from cycling.  From the Vox article: "Over-exertion, the upright position on the wheel, and the unconscious effort to maintain one's balance tend to produce a wearied and exhausted 'bicycle face,'" noted the Literary Digest in 1895. It went on to describe the condition: "usually flushed, but sometimes pale, often with lips more or less drawn, and the beginning of dark shadows under the eyes, and always with an expression of weariness." Elsewhere, others said the condition was "characterized by a hard, clenched jaw and bulging eyes." It ...

 

Is Rollin’ Coal the Mirror Image of Critical Mass?

12 Comments Topics: Advocacy, Commuting Written by Ted Johnson
Is Rollin’ Coal the Mirror Image of Critical Mass?

It's been said that for every activist there's an equal and opposite reactionary. So I'm just asking: Are these "Rollin' Coal" trolls just the natural polar-opposites to Critical Massholes? Rollin' Coal, if you haven't heard of it, is a phenomenon where people modify their diesel trucks to make them less fuel efficient. The modifications, which can cost up to $5000, allow the driver to belch out thick black smoke on demand as a way of expressing "anti-envrionmentalism." Often this smoke is directed at pedestrians, cyclists, and fuel-efficient automobiles. Critical Mass, if you haven't heard of it, means you are a sweet and innocent person visiting a bike blog for the very first time, bless your heart. It also refers to events where bicyclists ...