Jun 30, 2010

Road Scenes

At lunch I walked over to the Warehouse district, pausing to take this picture of a car parked in the bike lane on 1st Ave. What makes this even richer is that this vehicle (MN# SKA-189) had a laminated sheet on the dashboard saying something like "City of Minneapolis - Official Police Business". I badgered the Downtown Improvement District guy in the bright yellow shirt to call traffic control and have this vehicle towed just to see what he would do.  He acted real concerned, but the car was still there on my way back from lunch.

The next photo is from my ride home tonight (or rather, my ride to class). This photo is taken from the middle of 6th street approaching 3rd Ave from the northwest. This is a heavy traffic area in general, and it was made worse tonight due to a Twins home game ending during rush hour. The right-most lane, where most people would naturally ride there bikes, is in fact a right-turn-only lane. The second lane is a right-turn or straight lane. To correctly and safely ride through this intersection, bikes have to move into the second lane so they don't get a left-cross. Although I do this maneuver a lot, it stills takes some confidence to wade out there and dance with the cars. That said, I really kind of enjoy the high traffic riding downtown.

The last photo from today is my old nemesis, the Catriker. I see this woman fairly regularly, especially if I leave for work a little late or head home a little early (she must work a slightly shorter day than I do). She is... shall we say... hard to miss. She rides a Catrike recumbant with at least one flag flying - sometimes it's the diversity rainbow, sometimes a Norwegian flag, sometimes more than that.

She used to drive me absolutely ape-shit because her bike takes up the whole lane, she goes about 10 mph and usually she's talking on her cell phone as she rides. I have this tendency to be a hammer-head on the way home, so I am trying to cure that and slow down and enjoy the ride this summer. It must be working because I actually smiled when I saw her today. I am not entirely recovered, however, because I caught up to her at an intersection and when the light changed, I dropped her like a bad habit.


  1. ape shit, I love it. i really try not to be a bike snob, but these things drive me nuts. I can never quite put my finger on it, but they bug me.

    and those downtown scenes - exactly what I have witnessed. not to be a naysayer, but I'm not sure the changes downtown are working. People drive in the 'right turn lanes' and never turn right, the bike lane signage on the road is worn off, and there is ALWAYS someone parked in the bike lane. going on the cheap really didn't work for this car intensive city and I have to say I am disappointed.

    ride on...

  2. I saw (and passed) the cattriker tonight!

  3. Way to go Pete. If we keep dropping the hammer on her, maybe she'll take Oakland after awhile.

    Sigird - it sounds like you ride Hennepin. That was a debacle. I fair pretty well for the most part on Marquette Ave. and 6th, but it's busy and I need to watch out. I agree, MPLS is doing too much on the cheap and they really don't deserve their "#1" rating when it comes to downtown riding.

  4. Traffic doesn't look that bad :P but you know I have dealt with years of worse traffic in other cities. But the 10 mph bike lane hog would frustrate the hell out of me, but good job slowing down and enjoying the ride. I am trying to do more of that myself these days.