Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wanna help a brother out?

So part of my recovery is, I have to keep my leg elevated and ice on it to keep the swelling down. Well, we keep buying ice and that shit gets expensive after awhile. So I had Jenn go and buy me some reusable cold compress things.




She got them at HEB. One large one and two small ones. These things work great! Only problem is this. They are 10,5, and 5 for them. I need like two more sets of them so I can be using one, and have the other two cooling off and get a good rotation of them. I normally wouldn't ask anyone to do anything for me but, I am broke from rent and not really working right now. So if anyone wants to help me out....I'd love you forever....I'd be your best friend....and I'll do something really awesome for you later...once I am semi back to normal.


til next time

OLC

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Pictures from the race

If you have some, send them to me at lesbennett@ymail.com yes ymail. It is yahoo's version of gmail. Here is what I have. Enjoy.








til next time


OLC

Austin Bike Petition

In CAse you didn't know, there is a petition that you need to sign. You can find it here.

The Austin Bike Plan petition is a chance for you to tell the Austin City Council to prioritize bicycle infrastructure so our residents can use this low cost, low emission form of transportation for most of their daily needs.

Currently, the City of Austin is updating its Bike Plan to adapt to current needs. Rising fuel costs, global warming, and an economic downturn have caused a record number of Austinites to turn to cycling to meet many of their transportation needs. Unfortunately, Austin’s infrastructure has not kept up with this demand forcing cars and bikes to share the same road space, at times in dangerous ways.

In fact, a recent report produced by the City of Austin Street Smarts Task Force found that only 1/3rd of the facilities proposed in the last plan adopted in 1996 have actually been completed- all during a period when the Austin area was growing by an average of 4000 new residents/month.

Citizens for Transportation Choices is circulating this petition to demand the City of Austin take transportation cycling seriously with several key commitments and a clear timetable for implementation.
Our Austin Bike Plan Petition calls for:

* Adoption of a Bike Plan with clear timelines for full implementation. By requiring timelines, the City can come up with a realistic plan that citizens can easily monitor the progress of. This will prevent having another 12 years pass with only 1/3rd implementation.
* Establish both an initial North-South and East-West cross town dedicated bike trail or bicycle boulevard. A recent Portland State University study found that good bike lanes encourage both regular and casual bike riders to ride more. An initial cross town road that separates bikes from car traffic, many more Austinites will take advantage of biking for transportation. The success of this route could then lead to a network of other dedicated routes connecting the entire city.
* Prohibit vehicle parking in marked bicycle lanes and establish these lanes as “tow away” zones. A bicycle is a vehicle and is treated like one by Texas law, yet the City of Austin allows cars to shut down traffic by parking in bike lanes. This forces cyclists into traffic and renders bike lanes useless. Disrupting car traffic like this would not be acceptable, and it shouldn’t be acceptable for bike traffic if the City is serious about its commitment to cycling.
* Commit to building bicycle facilities/infrastructure on all new roads and improvements to current arterial roads where these facilities/infrastructure do not already exist. Installing bike facilities is very inexpensive, even less so when new roads are being built or current roads are being improved. By requiring facilities such as bike lanes or bike boulevards on arterial roads under construction, we can make it easier for cyclists to safely travel on our transit corridors.
* Funding for full time staffing of the Bicycle Coordinator and a minimum of two paid positions charged with educational and promotional activities in accordance with best practices of other cities. The Bicycle Coordinator at the City of Austin has been inconsistently funded in the past including previous funding cuts and elimination of the position. This critical position which oversees all bike projects and the Bike Plan needs to be fully funded for a full time staff to ensure bicycle infrastructure receives the focus it deserves. Additional staff for education and promotion as recommended by the Street Smarts Task Force will ensure bicycle transportation is properly promoted and cyclist on the street are riding safely.
* Establish a permanent City Council appointed advisory Bicycle and Pedestrian Commission to make ongoing recommendations. Once a new Bike Plan is implemented, it is critical that it continue to be reviewed and updated to adapt to emerging critical needs and well as ensuring the Plan is meeting timelines. A permanent citizen lead commission would serve this roll providing continual citizen input to make sure the plan continues to meet the needs of our city.



So go do it already.....gah....


til next time


OLC

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Race results, After party, and a few other things

Ok, so I have been asked for the "list" a couple of times now, so here ya go. This is overall what place everyone came in. There will be a (G) for girls, (OT) for out of towner's, and (COS) for people who rode in costume the whole way.


1st. Will Wolfe
2nd. Cloyd Dowling
3rd. Cameron
4th. John Kroger
5th. Elliott Siff
6th. Ran Wodfin
7th. Gordon Yang
8th. Graham Robinson
9th. Ahlee Sobhani
10th.Andrew Steven
11th. Matt Whetstone
12th. Maureen Grady (G)
13th. Jay Long
14th. Lee Grisham
15th. John Anthony/Fredrick De Maria
16th. Chris Lee
17th. Charlie Alvarado
18th. John Eller
19th. Jay Atencio
20th. Justin Huffman
21st. Adam Robinson
22nd. Dan Nicely
23rd. Sarah Mattson (G)
24th. Josh Bailey
25th. Corey Fields
26th. Stephen Fields
27th. Ben Cross
28th. Joe Zugelter (COS)
29th. Daniel Weeks
30th. Mellissa Gee (G)
31st. Casey Wilcox
32nd. Jared Ferguson
33rd. Thomas Alvarez
34th. Chris Roncal
35th. Daniel Yebowitz
36th. Tobin Daniel
37th. Casey Eastman (COS)
38th. Jennifer Grayson (G)
39th. Taylor Rhodes
40th. Wyatt Brusard
41st. Devin
42nd. Jeff
43rd. Nic
44th. Joshua
45th. Vince
46th. Justin (COS)
47th. LouisiAnnie(G)....I'm not sure when you finished exactly Annie.... :(

There were more than fifty racers, I'm guessing some dropped off and had flats or what have you and went home, that you they didn't come to see me so I could write what place they were.

Guys:
1st. Will Wolfe
2nd. Cloyd Dowling
3rd. Cameron
4th. Elliott Siff
5th. Gordon Tang

Girls:
1st. Maureen Grady
2nd. Sarah Mattson
3rd. Melissa Gee
4th. Jenn Grayson
5th. LouisAnnie


First Fixed: Ran Wodfin

First Out of Towner: Jonathan Kroger

Best Costume: Justin (Aqua man)
















Ok, so now that I have said all of that, yesterday was my 100th post since starting this blog. That should have happened awhile back, but I was caught slacking. Since then I have been trying to keep up with it since I found out people actually read it. With that being said, I also have my first to followers!!!! That may mean squat to you, but to me, that is pretty fucking cool. Thanks for looking and openly admitting that you read this blog ;)

Also, keep an eye out for the APD. I just saw this on ATXBS.

Hey--

Don't know if you remember me, been on a bunch of the cemetery cat rides. Name is Chris. Friends with Mason. Whatever. Anyway, got pulled over at 10 this morning for running a red at 7th and congress. Cop didn't write down a fine, and said he had no idea how much the fine would be. He said I'd have to call the courthouse, he didn't even know if it was considered a real moving violation. What he DID know is that starting right now the cops have been assigned to crack down on all bike related offenses. They are camped all over downtown, day and night, looking for any bike offense they can find due to a large number of complaints recently. This particular cop had no interest, was pretty nice, but definitely not into letting me off with a warning. Just thought I'd let you know so you can get more word out. He said they are definitely out to get cyclists right now.

chris


So there you have it, the cops are out to get you. Yes, you. The one riding your bike. I say just don't give them a reason to stop you, and you'll be fine.

ok, enough rambling,


til next time


OLC

Monday, October 27, 2008

After the Race

Thank you to everyone that came out last night. I hope you had fun, I did up until the pain in my leg came on full force and I needed to get home to get it elevated. The race is not one that I think any of us will forget anytime soon.If you want a copy of the Manifest and map, I will post the pictures below.



Halloween Alley cat October 26th 2008
Starts Wahoo’s Finishes at Wahoo’s

You do not have to go in any particular order. You will have to take pictures at some of the checkpoints. Make sure you have your camera!!!!

Stops in no particular order.
1. Hula Hut 3825 Lake Austin Blvd
2. Draught house 4112 Medical Pkwy
3. Carousel Lounge 1110 E 52nd St
4. Old Yellow Bike Project 2013 E 51st
5. Austin Athletic Comm Intersection of Pleasant Valley and Elmont
(bus stop further E. on Elmont)
Back To Wahoo’s


Stay for award ceremony, food and beer!!!!!!!!



By entering this race, you are solely responsible for your own well being. Please think while you are racing. No prize is worth your life. We want you to have fun, but we want you alive more.

Thanks to Wahoo’s for providing food, tasty beverages, and a place to start and finish the race. Come back and support these rad motherfuckers!!!!








So there you have it. I don't have the pictures of the award ceremony yet, and Jenn has the copy of all the places. I will post those (places) tomorrow. As soon as I get pictures from everything I will post those up as well.

Again, thanks to everyone who came out, and if you didn't make it then you truly did miss out. Also thank you Becca for the shirt and reflective band! It means a lot to me that people I don't know, but "know" me are pulling for me to get better.



til next time


OLC

Friday, October 24, 2008

update

So some of you may know, some may not. I was in a bike/SUV accident on Tuesday. I was riding home from work and went through the windshield of an SUV. I had to have thirty one stitches in my arm, and what looks like twenty three on my leg. I had to have emergency surgery Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. I am doing pretty good all things considered.I am in the need of a wheelchair, so if you have one, or knows someone who has one....can I borrow it? I probably will need it for about a month or two.


**********WARNING GRAPHIC PICTURES**********



This is my arm. Some of the glass was already pulled out. Jenn took the pictures.









This is an x-ray of my knee.



Sorry for this last picture, I took it with my cell phone. It is a shitty picture, but I will replace it with a better one when I can.






stay safe out there


til next time


OLC

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

First day at Apple

It was mainly just going over HR stuff and benefits and what not. I left for work at 6 in the morning and got there at 7:20. I missed a turn and ended up going a couple miles out of the way. On the way back, I was talking to another cyclist and turned down jollyville going the wrong way, so I went about 4 miles out of the way. I ended up riding 40.88 miles. I am going to keep track of all the riding I do. Be it going to work, or just ridding around town. So check it out every now and then.


T-Minus 5 Days....Are you ready?





til next time


OLC

Sunday, October 19, 2008

T-Minus 7 Days

Make sure you register early, give me a call or shoot me an email and we can meet up. Also make sure you bring a digital camera!!!




OLC

WTF????

When I see stuff like this, it makes my blood boil.


This is absolutely bullshit. The fact that when the detective was in court and saying that he didn't slam the guys head into the ground and doesn't know how his teeth got knocked out is fucked. How is anyone supposed to believe cops or their word when video doesn't lie. They didn't take any witnesses statements or anything. I bet I know why, because they beat the shit out of a 57 year old guy going to see his dying mother at a nursing home. This is unacceptable and I hope that the cops get what they deserve.

OLC

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Pub Crawl, ESPPand realtionships OH MY!

The pub crawl was awesome!!!!!I had an Indian leg wrestling competition with someone in the cemetery....I didn't even know how to do it, but I soon learned. I lost. I thought that my legs were stronger...I guess I was to drunk , because apparently I kept trying to cheat :) all I was doing was rolling over and trying to pin the other guy....but that is not apart of the rules.



So things seem to keep heating up between Lee and the (future) occupants of the building. Just look at the comments.


And then there are the realationships part of the post....they are hard and very much confusing, all I can say is keep on trucking and roll with it.

Don't mind me..I'm drunk and wanting to talk to someone!


See you at the Tour de Fat

Friday, October 17, 2008

Update on the race and Shortest Pub Crawl in Texas tonight

Halloween Alley cat October 26th 2008
Starts Wahoo’s Finishes at Wahoo’s

You do not have to go in any particular order. You will have to take pictures at some of the checkpoints. Make sure you have your camera!!!!




It really isn't an update, I just want to make sure EVERYONE IS CLEAR




Jason, is also doing a short pub crawl, since we fellow cyclist didn't get to join him at the chronicle.

ESPP and the aftermath of the city council meeting

Jason informed us the other day of the Aftermath of the Eastside Pedal Pushers In it was a letter from Simon.

OK, so the update on Lee and his Eastside Pedal Pushers bike shop is that about 30-40 people from the bike community showed up at City Hall for the Board of Adjustments meeting on Monday evening and registered that they were against the granting of a parking variance for Pedal Pusher's landlord that would enable him to evict PP and the other tenant, Julia's, and replace them with tenants who have offered more money to open a coffee shop at that location.

A variance is basically an exemption from a requirement in city code, which in this case was to reduce the car parking requirement for a coffee shop type business from 12 spaces to 0 (zero) spaces. The main reason being that there is very little parking at that location. As a biker I'm normally in favor of waiving parking requirements, which tend to encourage driving, but in this case there are a couple of issues:

1) There is a bus stop in front of Lee's shop which means that there is no way to park in front of that location

2) There is no adequate, alternative parking, so the folks who will suffer are residents, other business owners, pedestrians and road users who have to deal with increased congestion and reduced visibility.

3) There is already an approved plan for a multi-story hotel on the same block (Medina and Waller between E. 6th and 7th) that will increase traffic.

4) There are other available locations in East Austin with adequate parking.

5. There are 2 existing coffee shops within 4-5 blocks of this location (Cafe Mundi and Progress)

So there were good and bad results to last night's solidarity from the bike community. Lee's landlord did not attend the hearing, probably assuming it was certain to pass. Due to the opposition, the variance hearing was postponed to Monday November 10th at 5.30pm, City Hall, Council Chambers, which everyone is again encouraged to attend. The bad part is that Lee's landlord called to say he was angry at his audacity in contesting the variance and gave him a verbal 30 day notice to move out.

According to Lee, he has a strong lead on a new and better location, but that doesn't mean y'all should stop and see him and ask what help he needs with the move.

Cheers, Simon


When I read this, I was sad to hear that Lee was still going to have to move regardless of what happens. It is going to be a sad day when I go to help him move to another spot. From what I understand, he has another place that is not to far and the rent might be cheaper. The only thing is it is in a warehouse on 5th and waller. It isn't to far from where he is now, it just isn't as good of a place.

So I went back and re-read the post and the comments. One of the ladies that was looking to rent out the building said this,

THE REAL STORY of East Side Pedal Pusher Drama
Submitted by East Side Show Room on Thu, 10/16/2008 - 12:55pm.

I would like to set the record straight here since, as you have admitted in most of your blogs about me and my family, you "dont know the legistics" of all this. I was brought to this space, 1100 east 6th St, because it was and is FOR RENT. From what I have understood from Lee, my realtor, and the landlord of this property, both present tenants Julia's Wedding Shop and ESPP have been on month to month for a while and were offered to sign a new lease at a higher rent and they both turned it down. Meanwhile the landlord has tried to show Lee other properties that he has turned down and continues to do so for Julia. The landlord spoke to both tenants letting them know that he will be looking for new tenants and showing the space.
This is where I enter the story. From the hate mail I've recieved from you people, let me make one thing clear. I am a sixth generation Texan, that's right! 6! So dont call me and my family fucking Yankees. I am an East Austin Resident, I work out of East Austin, I am an artist that represents East Austin, I AM EAST AUSTIN!
Lee was at his store when I was shown the space back in August. My realtor who happens to be a mutual friend of Lee's and I, asked him if he did indeed know that the building was for rent and he said YES and even later ask her to help him find a new space. I dont think it would be surprising to you that Lee was extremely kind in an akward situation for both of us and he even let me take measurements.
I had little time to decide if we (my mother, sister, and I) could indeed use this space since there was already a letter of intent for this building. And just for your information, the group trying to get this space before us is the kind of corporate development you seem to confuse us for. I dont have one investor involved, not one bank loan, I am an artist that waits tables on the side, my sister is a bilingual school teacher and my mother works for a lame temp agency. Hardly the "trumps" as you have mentioned. I have been saving for this for at least 5 years, I've been building work for this for at least 4 years, and my only partners is my mother and sister. We have every right to rent a building that is FOR RENT and try to accomplish our dream and we will continue to do so no matter how much hate mail, hasseling and boycott threats you people give us.
I feel very sorry for both ESPP and Julia's for having to move. I can relate for I have been "booted" from many of my rentals because my lease was up and I simply couldn't afford the higher rent, but I have certaintly NEVER thought to villanize the new tenants. Chances are we will not be able to use this space, so we will be back to looking for spaces just like them. I wish both present tenants all the luck and I only hope that the new places they find dont have current renters like them to make what I know all to well a difficult process to accomplish the dream of a small buisness owner.
PS. If you want to continue to write hate mail to my website, have the desantcy to leave a valid email address to hear my side. But I ask that you just leave us alone. Also, we do appreciate the appology from Julia's Wedding shop via the land lord yesterday. Thank You.


I still support Lee and ESPP, but I can see their (future tenants?) side of the story too. I understand not wanting to go to their coffee/gallery. I understand still going to the next city council meeting, because they will inevitability will have automobile traffic. I ride this part of 6th all the time, and it is already a pain in the ass. What I don't understand are all the hate mails. This isn't the answer to the problem. This will not get us (the bike community) anywhere with people who are generally against cyclist. I just want everyone to get along. I know that is corny to say, but it has to start with someone, and it should be us. The cyclist. Some people will always be assholes, but maybe if you do something nice, and not act like a jerk, then maybe it will follow. Saying that makes me think of these commercials.






Be safe and you know what? Go and do something nice for someone today.


til next time


OLC

Thursday, October 16, 2008

MS 150

So yesterday, Jenn registered herself and me to ride in the MS 150. We are both excited about riding in it this year. Last year registration closed before we could register (and we didn't have the money to pay the registration fee). This year the registration closed 7 hours after it opened. I feel lucky and super glad that she was able to get both of us registered before it closed. This is my page for it. If you want to donate something to a good cause, then please feel fre by any means, even if it is just a dollar. All the money raised is going to a good cause, so lets not be frugal ;) If you donate it is also a tax write off, so you can actually donate twice and get two different write offs.

Thanks everyone!!!


til next time

OLC

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

*Update on the bike wars* ATX

So a few days back I wrote on the bike wars that are going on in ATX. As I said previously I emailed CL and the APD. Well, I got a response from both.

This is from CL,

Hi Les,

I'm not sure, but it sounds like this may be a matter for law enforcement.
We can work directly with the police or other agencies if they need any
information from our systems. Please feel free to forward my name and
email address to the authorities if they need a point of contact here at
craigslist.

Additional craigslist contact information for law enforcement can be found
on this page:

http://www.craigslist.org/about/help/subpoenas_and_search_warrants


Thanks,
Clint



This is from APD,

Mr. Bennett, thank you for the information you provided. I just wanted to let you know that the information is being researched. Please contact me at my office if you have any additional information you think would be helpful in identifying this subject and any behavior related to a crime.



Kris Thompson #2385

Sergeant

Vehicular Homicide

974-6989



I know that whoever was posting all of the stupid shit on CL is probably just trying to have some fun, but I don't think that it is funny. Neither do a few other people I know. So APD is now involved, and hopefully if they get his IP address and find out who he is, then when he does hit a cyclist he will get in trouble. Maybe if he already hit one and it was deemed an accident, they will actually prosecute him for that.... I dunno. I just don't want to read in the paper that a cyclist was hit anymore.


til next time


OLC

Worst of Craigslist #9

This just in, things just keep getting better and better.

First up,

Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty Converted Single Speed Bike 54cm - $140 (Austin/San Marcos)
Reply to: sale-878150378@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-13, 7:33PM CDT



Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty Converted Single Speed Bike 54cm This is for a Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty Converted Single from 10 Speed Bike that is in Very Good Condition and Ready To Ride. Frame Size 54cm Stand Over 31 inches Color: Blue New Tires: 27 x 1 1/4.


When I fist saw this posting, I was thinking someone probably had some kind of janky ass conversion....and boy was I right.



$140????really? I mean I could see someone asking 140 for this bike, IF it had gears, or if it was truly converted into a single speed. This is just some ghetto ass single speed conversion, that someone is trying to get more money then what they should, because of the fixed/single speed craze.



I like how "Dbikeguy" even gave you a close up of the piece that he is trying to get rid of. I'm sure someone is bound to buy this bike, but I would rather see him put the gears back on and sell it that way, or just actually put a single gear on it, and not ten.


If that wasn't enough, "Dbikeguy" wanted to tell you about this wondeful piece of machinery was too.

Vintage Univega Rover Sport 14 Speed Hybrid Bike 47cm - $140 (Austin/San Marcos)
Reply to: sale-878139581@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-13, 7:24PM CDT


Vintage Univega Rover Sport 14 Speed Hybrid Bike 47cm

This is for a Vintage Univega Rover Sport 14 Speed Hybrid Bike that is in Very Good Condition and Ready To Ride.

Great Campus Bike.

Frame Size 47cm

Stand Over 28 3/4 inches

Tires: 26 x 1.75. They are in good condition.

Rear Rack.

Lawee Designed USA





I like how he says very good condition. I see a rusty chain, rust on the bike itself, scratches, dents, and the side walls of the tires don't look so hot either.

Another big FAIL Dbikeguy.

Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty 10 Speed Bike 53cm - $140 (Austin/San Marcos)
Reply to: sale-878125581@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-13, 7:13PM CDT


Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty 10 Speed Bike 53cm

This is for a Vintage Free Spirit Dynasty 10 Speed Bike that is in Very Good Condition and Ready To Ride.

Frame Size 53cm

Stand Over 30 1/2 inches

Color: Blue

Tires: 26 x 1 3/8. They are in good condition.

Rear Rack.





This bike is probably the best of the group. It still has its gears and looks to "actually" be in better shape.

For your money, if anyone wants a beater bike, I would suggest this one.

Western Flyer 10 speed
Reply to: sale-877989212@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-13, 5:30PM CDT




Hey for thirty bucks, you are getting a WAY better deal.


For those of you that would like to spend around $140 dollars on a beater bike, I suggest you go to your local wally world and get you a better bike. Hell spend a few bucks more and get this one.If you are REALLY tight on money, get this one.

I'm just going to say this again, and I know that it won't be the last time I say this. Do some homework first on the bikes that you are looking at on CL. Chances are the person selling it to you, bought it at wally world four years ago, and are trying to sell it for 3 times what you can get it now.


til next time


OLC

Monday, October 13, 2008

Results of city council meeting about ESPP

I think Jason summed it up best. I was sitting right behind him as he was typing this up.

Update (9:23pm): There were two people who showed up for the variance, and about 25-30 cyclists who opposed it. After a bit of discussion the board decided to delay their decision for another month so that Lee could meet with the neighborhood association. Several members of the board wanted to move to deny the motion (specifically boardmembers King and Van Olen), but they got beat to the punch by the motion to delay. One board member mentioned how parking his dually on that street effectively blocked traffic, and agreed with the adverse effects increased street parking would have. This was a good outcome.

Next meeting is November 10. More later, but everyone's leaving for beers and I'm going with. Good work y'all! See you in a month, same bat time, same bat council chamber.

---------------------------------------

Update (9:13pm): We got first crack at the podium. Lee went first, after which 6 other ESPP-friendly speakers said their peace. We went 2-minutes over, so the people seeking the variance were also given an additional 2 minutes. Since most of the points of street usage, community and historical preservation were covered, I mentioned how it would impact the commuter cyclists of the east side if the shop were removed.

The guy seeking the variance is saying that Lee's business has nothing to do with the building or the variance requested, and should have nothing to do with the issue.

---------------------------------------

Update (9:00pm): It's on. The guy who's speaking on the two ladies' behalf is a hard-ass.

---------------------------------------

Update (8:56pm): If you want to read the motion for variance in its' entirety, you can do so here:

http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/agenda/2008/downloads/e12c1520080138_101308.p...

Their specific request is to waive the requirement for a minimum of 12 off-street parking spots if they're to remodel the building for use as a restaurant or (in this case) a cafe. This would force patrons to park on the street, increasing the use of right-of way by parked cars and also increasing the danger to bicycles of being caught in the "door zone" of a parked car. Since there are no bike lanes on this portion of 6th St. and there's no way of widening the street, allowing this variance would only take away from the limited amount of pavement through which a cyclist can navigate their way down the street. Talk about some bullshit.

------------------------------------

Welcome to ATXBS' VERY FIRST Liveweblog! Oh shit! That's right, we're getting with the times...

Speaking of time, you've still got time to get down here and sign the paper to help keep them from shutting down East Side Pedal Pushers with this zoning variance. The wheels of justice turn slowly, and this is taking forever. There's probably another hour of this crap before they get to Lee's case, so if you're in the area bike down to City Hall at Caesar Chavez and Guadalupe, enter the front door (leave your contraband at home), and sign this thing. If you're on Lee's side, this is how you want to sign the paper:

C15-2008-0138 - Against - Your Name - Your Address

Afterwards we're gonna grab a drink (if I can convince everyone else to go). Hope to see y'all here!



So there you have it. The next meeting is on November 10th. Not sure what time it will be, but hopefully it won't take as long as it did this time. I was there for three and a half hours.


OLC

Race Update!!!

So I decided that if anyone wants to register for the race early you can. Call me or send an email if you do. What this ensures, is that you get a t-shirt for the race. I will be making about 45-60 shirts, but this doesn't necessarily guarantee you a shirt.

You know you want to! Plus I might key you in on what kind of check points you will be going to.

Today at 5:30 What are you doing?

I know what I am going to be doing. Eastside Pedal Pushers might have to move, because someone wants to cash in on the "eastside" and putting another coffee shop/gallery were ESPP is. We don't need another one. There are at least three in the same general area. This was sent to me in email the other day, so I am posting it up again.

Hey everyone.

Quick breakdown - strange things are afoot on the east side of Austin
TX and Lee needs help. Some hipsters are trying to remove him from
his shop to put in *another* coffee shop on the east side. You all
ride bikes, so you know we need more shops in town than we need more
coffee shops. Don't get me wrong - I love some coffee, but there are
already 3, that I know of, within a mile or so. And Progress it HUGE!

Anyway - if you like Lee, or bike shops, or fighting the power, here's
the stats:

City Council Chambers
301 W. 2nd.
5:30 pm on Monday the 13th

Show up, ride your bike (of course), and try to look *real* mean.

Thanks for your support.



So if you have the time, please come out and support a local owned bike shop that is on the eastside. We don't have to many.

til next time

OLC

Route to Work/MS 150

So this is my new route to work. It has some hills, but they are not to bad. What sucks about them is that they are long gradual hills. I would rather just fight a hill and climb it, then just have one drag every last bit of juice out of me.






So Jenn and I are registering on Wednesday for the 2009 MS 150. So it kind of works for me that my new job is 30 miles round trip because I get to train for it just by riding to work. There will be days that I bike and bus, mainly on Mondays and Fridays, that way I can take a weeks worth of clothes and some lunch. What is nice is Apple has a gym for me to work out at, and of course it has showers. So that means I will get a fresh shower every morning when I ride so I am not stinking up the place. I rode up there the other day, left at 830 in the morning and got there at 945. Temperature was about 70 and the high for the day was 89. My shirt was completely soaked. I can only imagine when it is 105 out in the summer. That is gonna suck ass, but oh well. I will soon be in great shape again. Having been in the wreck made me gain twenty pounds and shrink an inch.....AWESOME!!!! So with that being said, I am looking forward to the rides to work. It will be like "getting two birds stoned at the same time"


til next time


OLC

Thursday, October 9, 2008

It's a beautiful day.

So go out and ride your bike. It is one of the best days of the year to be out riding....so go do it. I'm heading out now!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Margot is home

So Margot made her way home after her 24 hour adventure. I was trying to not let her being gone get me down. I just had a feeling it wasn't going to be the last time I would see her. We put up flyers, went to the animal shelter and I posted a blog and a few other things on the internet. Jenn was still real sad, but I knew there was nothing else that we could do. We had planned on going to the animal shelter everyday to see if she was there, but now we don't have to do that.

Overall I am really happy that she is back. I gave her a bath to make sure she didn't have fleas and what not, plus she had burs all over her, probably from hiding out on bushes all day.

So now that I am in a good mood again, and not feeling sad. Here are some pictures of her when she was a little bitty kitty with her brothers and I think one with Lestat.







til next time

OLC

My cat Margot is missing!!

If you happen to live on the eastside of Austin, past airport and see her please let me know.







She is very much missed.


OLC

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

WOOOOOHOOOOO!!!!!!

So a little bit of a happier post now. I GOT THE JOB AT APPLE!!!! WOOOOOOHHOOOOOOOOO!!!! So when I get done with my training, all you folks who have macs can ask me how to fix them!!!!

Good job here I come!!!!!

Bike Wars continue

Yesterday I brought up this whole "bike wars" on Craigslist. It seems that this guy or girl are still going at it. The post today made me wan to do something about it.

The Bike War Continues (South Lamar)
Reply to: pers-869748385@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-07, 9:52AM CDT


Well it is going quite well! I have taken down 4 bikers in total, only one with heavy damage though. (It is a lot hard than you think to make it look accidental). Thank you to those of you who understand how this war is much bigger that terrorism or a bailout. We must make a stand and destroy all bikers



After reading this I contacted CL and said I know that the rants and raves section is just for that rants and raves, but I think this is taking it to far. I would like if you could get this persons IP address, because I am a cyclist and I feel this is a direct threat on my life and others. I am contacting local law enforcement as well. This is the post just in case it is flagged.

The Bike War Continues (South Lamar)
Reply to: pers-869748385@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-07, 9:52AM CDT


Well it is going quite well! I have taken down 4 bikers in total, only one with heavy damage though. (It is a lot hard than you think to make it look accidental). Thank you to those of you who understand how this war is much bigger that terrorism or a bailout. We must make a stand and destroy all bikers


and this is the link. http://austin.craigslist.org/rnr/869748385.html

You can go back a few days and see all the post that are about doing physical harm to cyclist. I have copied them all down via screen shots and also posted them in my blog.

Please do something about this. This is getting out of hand. I was recently hit and had my back broken in five spots and two broken ribs. This is not funny nor a rant or rave, this is assault and potentially murder.


I also then submitted a ticket with APD. After that I called 311 and asked what the next course of action was. The lady I talked with seemed very concerned and transfered me to non emergency police. I told my story again and this lady didn't seem to give a flying rats ass. She told me to call crime stoppers and gave me a bogus number that turned out to be a fax. So I looked crime stoppers up and waited on hold for about ten minutes before someone finally got to me. On a different note, the hold music seemed like is was a porno at first because there was alot of moaning and groaning, and then went into some Jesus music. So I filed a report with them and got a report number.

Jason over at ATXBS is taking it a little lighter than me. He has come up with what this guymight actually be like. I've put a little bit of thought into it (very little bit, as you can see) and I'm just imagining some 48 year old balding guy with horrible near-sightedness and a bad case of epilepsy, living in his mothers' basement and playing Grand Theft Auto all hours of the day. He's not legally allowed to drive a car, but is too out-of-shape and clumsy to actually support himself on a bicycle without falling over. His one attempt at cycling for transportation ended in a traumatic skinned knee and a lot of crying. Ever since that point his anger towards cyclists has festered and grown, slowly becoming what you see before you now.

Instead of DOING what he's talking about, he's created this fantasy world for himself based on an amalgamation of his computer gaming persona, his disappointment at never being behind the wheel of an actual car, and his resentment towards people who are in the physical condition to actually stay aloft and propel themselves on a bicycle. All the things he's been going on about have ACTUALLY TAKEN PLACE in this world he's spun for himself within the confines of his twisted psyche. In this world he's the great slayer of cyclists, routinely racking up kill rates of 75-150 a month. He's become an automobile-driving KILLING MACHINE, at least in his own mind. It's this fleeting fantasy that sustains him, and gives him a reason to wake up another day and play another computer game, secretly wishing he could be one of the ones to take to the road as an active participant, and not just the passenger he's always been relegated to.

Thank the bike gods he's not actually allowed to drive, for if he were to get behind the wheel of his mom's car he might actually be a danger to more than just himself.

At least that's how I imagine him.
I truly hope that is the case.

If you want to get involved (you should, if you ride a bike at all) then follow some of the course of actions that I did. You can call crime stoppers at TIPS Hotline - 512-472-TIPS (8477) OR 1-800-893-TIPS (8477). The more reports and calls to APD there are, means that maybe they will take some action.

Also, if you are assaulted, please contact me here, or at lesbennett@ymail.com. Also, if someone throws something at you or tries to run you off the road, you can report it. Call 311 and give them their license plate number. They will log it and hopefully the person or persons will feel some kind of repercussion from it.


Stay safe out there.

til next time


OLC

Monday, October 6, 2008

Just a little upsetting

So every now and then I peek into the world of rants and raves on craigslist to see what people are pissed off about. Some of the stuff on there is pretty funny and others are not. Today seems to be full of people who want to kill and hurt cyclist. I am just going to give a few examples of what has been said so far.


"As I drove to work today in a silly attempt to make money, I inadvertently got caught in you bike race. And after waiting for over an hour on a bridge caught in some no man's land for you lance Armstrong wanna Be's to pass me so that I could continue my drive to work. I hope many of you crashed and are laying in a pool of blood by the side of the road. But if not I am sure going to do my best to run as many of you off the road as I can on my way home today. I will now be doing this on a daily basis until my need for revenge is satisfied. Get a car you bunch of cheap bastards. I hope you guys can bike faster that I can drive or you are in for an accident! Also if any one who participated in this event would like to meet me in an alley some where I would love to beat some biker ass."




"Today is day one of the bike war! And I am one for one. Yes it was you (yellow shorts) on 360 today! Did you think the liquid that hit you was water? No it was just piss! Hope to hit at least 50 by the end of the week."


"I am through slamming on my brakes to avoid hitting a cyclist who runs a stop sign or red light. This has happened 3 time this month (Sept). I am through slamming on my brakes to avoid hitting a cyclist who zips past me on the right side when I am making a right turn. I am through slamming on my brakes when a cyclist pulls in front of me on Lavaca when I am trying to pass them in the center lane and they are in the outer lane. I figure if I can put some of these idiots in the hospital the others will get the message. Cyclist follow the traffic rules and you will not be hurt. Don't use you signals, ride with your head up your ass and YOU will be hurt. I am not slamming on my brakes anymore to avoid hitting you just because you ride a bike.
Olediablo "


"So to offend you but war is hell. It was the biker's that drew first blood. And this is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. I am going to take down at least three bikers a day. Today was just a friendly glass of warm love tomorrow it will be a little cock tale..."


"
One more dead biker.....


BREAK


THE

LAW CAUSE YOU THINK YOUR ABOVE IT

AND

FIND

OUT


WHAT HAPPENS


SPLAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"



"ANOTHER DEAD CYCLIST??? What will it take????? Maybe if lots and lots if them die, they will "get it" that they need to follow the law, too??? You know they guy who hit the cyclist will not even get a ticket, BECAUSE THEY DID NOT BREAK THE LAW, the red light running and NOW DEAD CYCLIST DID!!!!!!!!!!!!!


AND TO THE GUY WHO WORKS IN THE HOSPICE< YOU GO>>>I CAN"T WAIT TO HEAR HOW YOUR "GASSING" GOES, they deserve it!!!!!"








What the hell is wrong with people? I mean I understand that when a cyclist breaks the law it upsets you. I get it, but if someone actually hits and kills a cyclist, that is murder. I understand that sometimes there are elements at play, such as the sun was in my eyes, I didn't see them riding there and so on. What if these people are actually following through on their threats over the internet? Do they use these excuses and get away with it?

Another Dead Cyclist
Reply to: pers-868655748@craigslist.org [?]
Date: 2008-10-06, 1:02PM CDT



These are things that frustrate the ever loving piss out of me. How am I supposed to feel safe riding to work or to the store just knowing that there are people out there that want to kill me just for riding a bike? Whenever you are dealing with people there are always going to be douche bags and people who aren't douche bags. You have drivers that run red lights, stop signs, don't use turn signals, turn (while they are in the far right lane) left and cut everyone off. There are also cyclist who do it too. I am not saying that all car drivers are bad or all cyclist, but there are always bad apples in the bunch. Just because one does something that pisses you off doesn't mean you should take it out on someone else.

I try my damnedest to not get irate when a car driver throws shit at me, I used to chase their asses down and confront them, but where does that leave me? Usually getting into a fight, which didn't resolve the problem. Now I get their license plate number and call it in. Whenever someone throws something at you, that is assault, and they can be prosecuted.

I know that most cyclist are going to ride slower compared to how fast you are driving, but really how much time of a car drivers day does it take up? Maybe 10-20 seconds? Is it really worth almost or killing someone because they inconvenienced you for maybe half a minute? Do you get super irate when you are in line at the drive thru because your order is taking so long? Do you take it out on the person that is taking your money? Or when you are at a restaurant, do you get pissed off because the table next to you sat down after you and ordered their food after you and they get their meal before you get yours. Do you want to kill the waiter or waitress? do you get up and knock over he persons table who got their food before you? No, chances are you don't. So why would someone get pissed off enough to where they want to physically harm the next cyclist they see, just because they go slowed down for a second, or got cut off by a cyclist or fuck they even ran the red light.

Shit happens and not everyone is the same. Not every cyclist runs red lights. Not every automobile driver runs red lights, but you know what???? It happens.

I know that the section of rants and raves, is so you can do just that. What happens when someone follows through? Should craigslist get in trouble? I know that CL can block peoples IP addresses from posting, so why wouldn't they block the folks that are posting that they are going to kill someone and take a log of it and report it to the cops? If I hear of a cyclist getting hit at all this month, I am going to have a copy of each post (screen shot) and give it to the cops, so that maybe if someone does run a cyclist off the road or hits them, they can be prosecuted. My girlfriend works off of 360 and rides to work. Even though she is only on 360 for maybe a mile, it scares e to see stuff like this on CL. What if the next asshole driver tries to take her out? She stops at all stop signs and red lights. I would go absolutely ape shit if someone "took her out" because they are pissed at another cyclist.

Please be safe out there and watch you back. It seems that some people are going to try and "take you out" for no reason, other than you being a cyclist.


til next time


OLC

Friday, October 3, 2008

Eastside Pedal Pushers

So I just saw this post over on ATXBS.

Wanted to let you know that Lee, Scott and the rest of the ESPP community are about to be removed from their spot if the bike community doesn't take action. There are two girls who want to kick them out to build a cafe / art gallery there. I'm a little unclear as to how the bureaucratic details work out, but I know there's a hearing with the Neighborhood Association for that area on Monday, Oct. 13th that is open to the public and they're basically going to be deliberating over the fate of the space. So if enough people show up and give Lee support, the shop might have a case for community value (as opposed to yet another of the many already existing yuppy cafes on E. 5th/6th) and could reasonably work out a deal to stay put. I mean, he's got the only real legit bike shop on the east side (minus YBP of course) so I don't see how he could possibly be deemed unimportant if there's a big enough crowd.

If you know Lee, you'll know he's one of the most un-assuming and worthwhile guys around. In other words, I think it's going to take the rest of the community to be the loud-mouthed obnoxious supporters.

So if you could maybe get in touch with Lee and see what the details are more specifically, would you mind posting about it on ATXBS?

Thanks and good riding,


I just got off the phone with Scott, and the neighborhood association meeting will be on October 13th @ 5:00 pm. Scott said that the girls that are trying to buy it out are looking to have parking spaces and if they can't get them (provide them) they may not be able to buy the building.

I have been going to ESPP for about 2 and a half years now. The shop as of recently has been picking up more and more business. Lee and Scott are two of the nicest and most knowledgeable people I know. They let me come in and work on my bike, and offer and advice and answer questions when I don't know how to fix something.

If you live on the east side, and frequent ESPP then pleas come out on the 13th and show your support.




til next time,

OLC

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

It's been awhile....

A lot has happened since the last time I made a post. First there was the 26th Annual Harvest Moon Ride. This is by far one of my favorite group rides of the year. I would guess there was about four to five hundred people on the ride. My camera hasn't been working so I didn't get to take any pictures, but Brian McGloin wrote a blog about it and took some pictures. Joe Diamico from the League of Bicycle Voters took a couple of pictures as well. Yes that is fire coming out from the back of the bike with a naked dude riding it. Doug MC took alot of pictures from the ride. I'm not in any of them, but I could give a rats ass if I was.




Next was the bicycle film festival.



I didn't get to go, but there were alot of pretty cool movies from what I hear. I really wanted to see the Lucas Brunelle.
My favorite Lucas video is the drag race in NYC.



It originally didn't have the Broken Social Scene song bandwitch, but I think it fits better with the video....maybe it is just me.

Anyways, I did however get to race in an alleycat before I had to go to work. Ben put the race on, he usually does the fall alleycat. Last year when he put it on I got 5th. This year I got 5th in the race again. I think that he should just give me the prize for 5th anytime I enter one of his races. So first was Danny (bike messenger on a geared bike) second was John Trujillo (bike messenger single speed) third was Lurch (bike delivery geared bike) fourth was a kid named Andrew (I think) he was on a fixed, and then there was me. I rode my steamroller, which is set up fixed. I was happy getting 5th, because I also basically got second as far as fixed.

There is also going to be a crack down on cyclist who don't follow all traffic laws. I am fine with them doing this, but at the same time, I think that they should crack down on people in their cars who hit cyclist. I mean there are some people who intentionally try and hit cyclist, because "they" the cyclist are in the way. There in my mind is a huge "Us vs Them" mentality here in Austin. Cyclist are fed up with the way cars drive, and car drivers are just fed up with cyclist. You can look at any news story that involves cyclist and read the comments about how angry drivers are. It crosses the line when they follow through on their anger.

To piggy back on the "Us vs Them" I don't think this helps. I know that it looks fun, but this in my opinion is not helping the situation.


A Leisurely Friday Afternoon Cruise in Austin, Texas c/o Critical Mass from Jason ATXBS on Vimeo.

Jason and I are friends, and he even said that he didn't want to do it again, but it seems that comment was removed from his site ;)

We also had the tighty whitey pub crawl that is organized by Jessica.

**BEWARE THERE MAY BE SOME BALLS JUST HANGING OUT**









That was one of my favorite Midnight Ridazz rides. The next ride is the Safety is Sexy ride.




Which kind of brings me to my next part. I think as a cyclist you need to be aware of everything that is going on around you., but not only that, you should protect yourself and make yourself as visible as possible to cars. I have lights and wear a helmet. Sometimes I am caught without it on, but 95% of the time I am wearing it.

Christoper Davis was hit on Sunday the 28th. He died on the way to the hospital. From my understanding it was very early in the morning and the driver was on their way to work, and Chris on his way home from work. The driver hit Chris and stopped. That seems to be a rare thing here in Austin, because not all the drivers stop. It seems like 9 times out of 10, they don't stop. Those are not specific facts, just my guess. God speed Chris and ride in peace.My friend Allie is putting on a benefit for Chris on October 12th at the Alamo drafthouse downtown. Please come by and give your condolences and support to a fellow cyclist who died just trying to get home. I will be going to this.

I promise guys I will try and keep the blog more up to date from now one. I know that there are some of you who check on it daily and there is nothing new. Bare with me :)


Now to give you a friendly reminder




I know it is shameless promotion for this race, but I want people to come out and have a great time and eat free food and drink free beer!!!!! Just don't forget to bring a digital camera or have one in your phone!!


til next time

OLC

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