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Paris has one. Barcelona has one. Montreal, Mexico City, even our neighbors in Washington DC. Bike sharing programs! Others, too. But these five are in big cities, and Washington is especially important because “what happens in Washington reverberates around the world, and we’ve already seen the wild popularity of bike-sharing in various countries and climates.” Maybe we’ll get them up here, hon!
We could. Washington is wildly…flatter than most of Baltimore, but the waterfront is pretty flat here. We have the tourists to ride them. I was at Carma’s Cafe’ last weekend, and I heard some tourists wondering to themselves if there was a bike share program down near the Inner Harbor. I’m not making this up! You never know. We do have a Mayor with a dedication to making Baltimore more bike-friendly. There are more ordinary cyclists out everyday. A bike is a great way to see the waterfront and downtown if you’re a traveler here. For all I know, there’s something like this in the works or at least being looked at. I’d be happy to put my research skills toward this end, if there’s anyone out there working on this.
I hope Treehugger meant this jokingly. Because the comments already show that, baby, it ain’t over.
a) Drunk cyclist.
b) Drunk driver.
c) Driver on cell phone.
d) Cyclist on cell phone.
I didn’t get it right. Go here to see the answer, which is surprisingly optimistic.
Also, from the Baltimore Examiner, a scare-you article on the increase in cycling fatalities nationwide. As if they are anywhere near automobile fatalities or even pedestrians. Notice the lack of any local fatality statistics — and the asshole comments at the end! You can’t blame everything on drivers. This much is true: “‘For those [cyclists] who run traffic lights or go the wrong way in traffic — you’re hurting the rest of us.'” But let’s not forget the people in huge metal boxes that kill cyclists. You know, they hurt us more, no?
Being safe is one thing. I wear a helmet myself, have lights on my bike, use a safety vest after dark. I’m not stupid; I know that Baltimore drivers don’t look for cyclists all the time, not all of them. But I’m sick of authors/bloggers/jerks talking people out of cycling because they can’t/don’t/won’t ride. If you choose to drive, that’s your thing, man. How would you like people telling you how unsafe it is constantly, especially when, statistically, it is? Get over your issues.
Cycling is safer, mile for mile, than even walking. Look it up. Are you scared to walk?
[Image courtesy of Philip in Iowa City, used with permission.]
But not at White Marsh, of course. Still, it’s pretty awesome that Ikea thinks like they do. Banning plastic bags, marking everything for recycling, the re-purposed banana leaf chairs in my living room.
Still, I wish that the company had thought to put “Ikea Baltimore” somewhere near the city, rather than in the sprawl wastelands of big parking lots, faded to grey and crumbling. I don’t know where they could have put it. Just in actual Baltimore.