Riding to Remember
Memorial honors the 100 New Mexico bicyclists killed by vehicles in the last two decades
Sunday, Sept. 20, was the perfect day for a ride—temperate weather, no wind and the rain clouds hovered over the distant southwest valley. Two-hundred bicyclists gathered in a parking lot at the corner of Jefferson and Copper.
Got a Light?
More sunshine is the key to illuminating shadowy government shenanigans. Councilors delayed but did not kill a proposal to shine a beam on the city’s financial business. Councilor Rey Garduño asked for expedited approval of his transparency bill at the Monday, Sept. 21 Council meeting. Some councilors agreed with Garduño, saying there was no reason to wait and they should just “get it done.” Councilor Trudy Jones and the city’s administration reminded everyone they're required to have a fiscal impact report ready for inspection when the bill comes up for approval. Garduño’s measure did not have a fiscal impact report attached yet.
Bikes and Bruises
Cyclists say roads aren't safe for two-wheeled travelers
Larry Kepley was peddling south on Tramway near Spain.
As he approached the right turn lane, Kepley suddenly lost control of his bike, flying over the handlebars and landing on his shoulder, hip and face. He walked away with a bad bruise that didn't require any major medical attention. Though the accident happened last year, he still remembers how he felt when he landed. "I was pissed off," he says. "It was as if someone had reached underneath me and pulled the bike from under me."
Kepley says the cause of his crash was uneven paving on Tramway, which created a ridge in the road that sent him sprawling. Diane Albert, president of the Bicycle Coalition of New Mexico, says stories like Kepley's are all too common. She says the state Department of Transportation (DOT) must do a better job of keeping roads suitable for cyclists. "These types of crashes dissuade people from biking because they perceive it to be unsafe," Albert says. "These road conditions are all over the state."
Odds & Ends
Dateline: Nigeria—A housewife has filed for divorce from her husband because he will not stop defecating in the family’s cooking pots. According to the Online Nigeria website, Oluwakemi Ogundele told the Igando Customary Court in Lagos earlier this month that her husband, Oluwafemi, is a violent drunkard. To add insult to injury, Oluwafemi has an unfortunate habit of pooping in cooking pots and on dinner plates when intoxicated. Mrs. Ogundele asked the court to dissolve the marriage because Oluwafemi no longer provides for her or her children and because she does not love him. Oluwafemi denied charges of spousal abuse and crockery defecation, but admitted there is no love left between the couple. The court adjourned the matter until later this month and warned the couple to remain civil with one another in the meantime.
I am a student who works 60 hours a week and I cannot afford health care. To those who will say that a public option will encourage people to "stay on welfare" or "give deadbeats another handout," I would ask you to consider my position. I pay taxes and I work hard, and I am not an exception. Call it socialism, call it communism, call it whatever you want. If it means that every person can see a doctor when they’re sick or hurt, if it means that families won’t have to choose between groceries or medicine, then I will happily support a socialist medical system with my taxes. I urge everyone to contact your representatives and demand that they provide a public option for the working-class. Let them know that health care is not a luxury, it is a human right.
A Gathering of Naturalists
Bernalillo County Open Space is hosting a series of livestreamed gardening events on the Bachechi Open Space Facebook page. On Saturday, August 8 starting at 2pm, A Gathering of Naturalists will have a panel discussion with members of the county’s master naturalist program about what a naturalist is, what they do, what projects they work on and some interesting facts about our metro area’s Open Space gems. This open to all-ages free discussion will include how the field of environmental conservation is evolving in an era of change due to the global COVID pandemic, social justice and the climate emergency. Not your style? Then what about on Saturday, August 22 at 2pm you check out a virtual field trip to look for the tracks and signs of wildlife that are found in our uniquely beautiful urban forest we call the Rio Grande Bosque. The virtual tour will be led by Michael Cox, a member of the county’s naturalist program and a volunteer at the Sandia Mountain Natural History Center. This free field trip is suitable for all ages of bug and critter trackers. For more info log on to www.bernco.gov/openspace.