Council Discusses Garbage, Naloxone and Stop Lights
Debate on more ART stops also featured
Sound and Fury
Trucks, Buses, Trash and Cops
Council faces touchy subjects
This IZ appetizing
War of ART
Will the Rapid Transit system save or kill ABQ?
Rapid Transit Concerns
Answer Me This
My two wheels get ticketed
Today across the country, cities celebrate national Dump the Pump Day by encouraging public transportation. By cutting back to one car, a two-person household can save more than $10.000 a year according to the American Public Transportation Association.
Teams from ABQ RIDE and the Rail Runner are doing their part by handing out goodies on various bus lines and Rail Runner trains throughout the day to promote a car-free lifestyle.
Me, I got a different kind of goodie.
As a bicycle commuter I wear a helmet and look both ways. But, I admit, I occasionally stretch traffic laws.
On June 16 at 9:43 a.m., a motorcycle cop flagged me down. He called me out on a violation of failing to obey the traffic control device at the corner of Silver and Cornell.
As surreal as it was to be standing on the sidewalk with my bike while an officer ran my driver's license through the system, it was even weirder to read the resulting warning notice.
License plate number—BICYCLE
Vehicle year—1900 (actually, 1988, but whatever)
Color—BLU (I'd call it gray and teal with yellow brake cables and red handle bars)
Under the line for make and model there is no mention of my aluminum frame Raleigh Technium other than BK. I think that stands for "bike."
Bicyclists are quick to defend our harmless commuting lawlessness. The truth is if we want to officers on our side, we need to follow the rules or pay the price just like everyone else on the road.
But is it wrong if I'm hoping my next violation is a speeding ticket?
Mission not accomplished
There's a U.S. Air Force Base in the middle of Seoul, South Korea. If the myths of the American expatriate community are to be believed, they've got a Taco Bell in there. After three or four months of nothing but gim, bap and gimbap, I’ve witnessed otherwise-reasonable American civilians so thirsty for Fire Sauce they start to plan insurrections and armed raids. While I was in Seoul, my craving for Enchiritos never reached such a fever pitch, but I finally understood that urge to overthrow the government this morning when I went to ride my bike out by Kirtland Air Force Base.
Trail-a-Week: Paseo de las Montañas
Jeez, you guys, I’m runnin’ out of trails. For this, my penultimate week on the bike path beat, I had to search the map and my soul to find one I haven’t already written about. I couldn't remember ever having been on Paseo de las Montañas, and I couldn't exactly figure out why. The map showed it intersecting Tramway just south of Candelaria, a stretch of road I've traversed too many times to count. How could it be that I'd repeatedly ridden past an inviting bike-only turnoff without ever even noticing it? The answer is that there is no inviting bike-only turnoff. I made a couple of increasingly bewildered circuits on Tramway's western shoulder before giving up and hauling my bike through the grass until I found the trail.
Trail-a-Week: Paseo del Volcan
"Dammit, Sprocket," panted my buddy Drew as I mushed him down Rio Bravo like a sled dog. "Why do I always get more than I bargained for when I hang out with you?" Our leisurely Saturday ride on the Paseo del Bosque turned into a militaristic crusade after a conversation with another cyclist at a rest stop about our mutual loathing for backtracking. "If you don't want to turn around here," he advised us, "go down Rio Bravo. You can get all the way out to Paseo del Volcan. It's great out there."
"Gross," quoth my boyfriend when I told him I'd be riding and writing on Tramway Boulevard this week. "That road is home to the most aggro asshole cyclists in the whole city. I'll never understand why they insist on riding on the shoulder when a dedicated bike path is just 50 feet away."
Trail-a-Week: Paseo del Bosque (North Half)
Mmm, how about those gravid gray rain clouds lately? August, our wettest month, is nigh. When that musty creosote tang is in the air, a low sun shining under the numinous pillar of a classic anvil-shaped thunderhead, I always feel inspired to buy a blank canvas and demonstrate my searing love for the desert monsoon season by painting an extremely trite watercolor landscape. Alas, nothing that springs from the brush of Sprocket will ever be worthy of even the shittiest Old Town gallery, so I choose to express myself through the medium of bike rides.
Trail-a-Week: Foothills Open Space
Dudes, I'm serious when I say "skinny tires." The velocipede between my legs is a single-speed street bike, so when someone suggested I get off the asphalt, I was like, ew. But then I was all, hmm. I've never been mountain biking ever. Why? It’s scary. I'm not x-treem enough. I could fall into a cholla or succumb to derailleur angst. And dirt and granite just tend to clash with my cute spandex threads.