A Rainy, Restful Day on the Eve of Solstice for a Bike Ridin’ Dude in Austin, Texas

Late autumn conditions have been dry, mostly sunny and not too cold here in Central Texas. Waking to some light rain and grey skies was a welcome change, just in time for winter which officially begins tomorrow. For a car-less dude like me, going places generally means getting on Sophie the Fairdale Weekender Archer bicycle and dealing with whatever Mother Nature throws at me. While I was prepared to ride in the rain, it turned out that I didn’t need to and so I chose not to take advantage and rest.

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Austin Bicyclist 2019 Death #4: Merry Daye, 45 – On the Very Road Where Bike Austin is Calling for Protected Lanes

At 2:25 am on Monday, December 16, 2019, Merry Daye, a black woman aged 45 and a male were riding their bikes south on Cameron Road. Her bike had a trailer, and she was working on it while in the bike lane. The man was on the sidewalk. A silver Dodge Ram truck (the irony of the name is not lost on me) veered into the bike lane, crashing into Merry, bike and trailer. The truck then did a hit and run and left the scene. Emergency medical services was called and came to the crash site. They found Merry without a pulse, but were able to restore her heartbeat. She was transported to the hospital where she died. For her, family and friends, it will be Christmas without Merry. Sources: CBS Austin, KXAN, Austin Police Department

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North East Austin Texas Bike Group Ride #3 to Find Bad Bike Infrastructure

Dear Austin, Texas: We know, you’re the Live Music Capital of the World. You like to Keep it Weird. You’re the People’s Republic of Austin. You got a Gold rating from the League of American Cyclists in 2015. And yes, you are making some improvements with Mobility Bond money. To be sure, you are way ahead of Dallas or Laredo or many other places. But you can’t sit on your laurels. So, A Dude respectfully disagrees about the bike lanes being paved with gold. That’s because I ride your streets practically every day, and from where I sit (on my bike seat), you have a LONG way to go. Let’s talk about one small step we in the tiny but mighty North East  Austin Texas Bicycle Group took for bicycling kind.

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Autumn Is Here-ish, but It’s Still Hot. Thanks Alot, Climate Change!

I just heard that September in Central Texas was HOTTER than July. That’s nuts. You know what else is nuts? A Dude Abikes not riding his bike most every day, and in fact, hardly at all. But because I’m working my tuchus off so I don’t have the time or energy to bike, the silver lining is that I’m avoiding having to bike in the ongoing heat wave. However, the downside of not biking is weight gain, feeling blah, and as if I’m cheating — which I am. Because, work.

Meanwhile, Greta Thunberg, the 16-year old Swede who has become the face of the climate change movement was in the US for a speech and the climate strike. I haven’t read much but what I have is impressive. And by the way, I know one thing that can help: ride your damn bikes, everybody! Of course you could say it’s hypocritical of me driving a car for work for eight weeks, and you’d be right. But I’ve done plenty of miles (20,000 and counting) and will do plenty more soon enough.

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Neighborhood Bicycle Activism: Think Globally, Bike Locally

The neighborhood I moved to almost two decades ago is one that I’ve lived in for much of the time since. Although as I detailed in my previous post, I’m in an older, funkier area. In fact, I was living nearby here the very first time I moved to Austin, long ago. Back in my usual digs, the Neighborhood Association (NA) is very organized, and it in turn has a Transportation Committee (TC). Recognizing it as a possible avenue to explore issues of Connectivity, Caution (Safety) and Cleanliness, I attended the meeting Tuesday. That’s what this is about.

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Dribs and Drabs About My Biking and Blogging

After the positive reception to my last post, The Bike Rider and the Farmer, it’s a little bit of a let-down to return to form. Little things, like that story inspired them to try a short story. Or by inviting someone to the Bike Curious social ride (in which I participated once again), they had to get their bike rack and bike in shape. Organizing a new bike gang is bringing in new people, too. But, writing about my biking, blogging, and book-writing, plus other random stuff, is mostly what I do (well, there’s a fair bit of complaining, too). So this is another brief collection of what’s up with A Dude Abikes (cue that SNL song “What Up With That?”)

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Five Bike News Stories from Around Texas

One of the blogs I follow is one I find hard to read. That’s because it seems like most days BikingInLA usually has coverage of a bicyclist fatality . It’s a major downer for me, and I’m sure everyone. But it’s important to hold the City of Angels and car drivers’ feet to the fire. Also, the author has a ton of other good stuff in there. If you can get past the gloom and doom, it’s worth a read. Here are a few Texas stories I found and thought I’d share with y’all. Thanks, BikingInLA! Keep fighting the good fight.

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12 Years (NOT) a Slave to Cars

One year ago I wrote about my anniversary of not owning a car when my car was hit on January 25, 2005.  So now it’s another year, and I suppose A Dude Abikes is a little bit proud about that accomplishment.  In last year’s post, I referenced Trump’s hair, Star Wars, real war, the environment, love and of course, bicycling.  Well, what a year it’s been!  Yes, the nightmare of a proto-fascist becoming president has come true.  But so has resistance come alive; A Dude Abikes attended the March on Austin with 50,000 friends, where he experienced a great deal of hope.  We’ve had another Star Wars movie, Rogue One, which if you think about it was about suicide bombers.  War in Syria and other places, probably some love somewhere, the hottest year on record, threats to re-open pipelines, etc. ad nauseam.  But most interesting to me, the biking.  So much biking.  ALL THE BIKING!  Did I mention I biked 5,306 miles in 2016?  I’m STILL sore!

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A Dude Abikes attended the March on Austin with up to 50,000 people, including that guy with his bike in the photo

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