I could write so many words about ebikes. Just riff after riff after riff on even the emotions of whipping around on an ebike. So, you know what, here’s exactlyContinue Reading Ebikes make you feel like a kid
If you take Seattle’s Greenwood Avenue North almost all the way to its upper end, there’s a turn down towards the Puget Sound—its dark grey waters somewhat in the distance, out to the left. You take the turn and cruise past Shoreline Community College, then the expansive Shoreview Park before arriving at Hidden Lake, off to the right.
You can barely tell the lake’s there, past dense trees. That’s probably for good reason, as it’s pretty grody—Boeing Creek was artificially dammed there, and stormwater runoff and sediment fill the lakebed.
Anyway, off to the left is 166th Avenue NW. At the end is Innis Arden Beach Trail—as pleasant an urban trail as you will find.
It winds its way along the right side of the ravine carved by Boeing Creek, eons before it shared a name with the company that makes planes and bombs. The path is superbly well-maintained given the surroundings, naturally precluded to erosion, mud pits and various debris.
It winds it’s way down the ravine a little less than a mile before arriving at the most wonderful gateway to the shore of the sound. Boeing Creek trickles to the left, splitting a low railroad underpass with a walkway that, in a high tide, has saltwater waves lap their way up it.
It’s the best purchase I’ve ever made. The sooner I can get to that point, the better. It usually doesn’t happen as early in real life, when some hapless stranger triggers an excitable 10-minute conversation because they asked me about my bike.
Eventually though, I get there.
It’s a little bit like writing this blog post. I meant to write it at 1,000, 2,000, 3,000 and even 4,000 miles since I purchased mine in November of 2019—but even since the last figure I’ve clipped off another 600 miles. So instead of delaying further or making this any more complicated, I’m gonna riff.
Here’s owning an ebike.…
Nobody’s perfect, but when it comes to the types of radical policies that make urbanists drool, it almost always feels like they’re coming out of France. Well, we’ve got another one as France took a step towards incentivizing—in a major way—citizens to swap their vehicle for an electric bike.
From Streetsblog USA, via Reuters:
In a preliminary vote late last week, the French National Assembly voted to expand its cash-for-clunkers program to include pedal-assist bikes in addition to electric cars, offering erstwhile motorists a grant of €2,500 ($2,975) to buy an electric bicycle if they trade in a gas-powered vehicle at the same time. A spokesperson for the French Federation of Bicycle Users, Olivier Schneider, applauded the government body for actively investing in mobilité territoriales vertueuses —or “virtuous forms of transport,” as the French refer to sustainable transportation beyond electric cars — and for recognizing that “the solution is not to make cars greener, but simply to reduce their number.”
The article goes on to note we’re at least starting to see efforts like this here stateside, even if they are limited in scope.
I love Seattle. I love it so much. I can’t imagine living anywhere else in the world. I also tend to be a bit defensive. When people criticize the things and places I like, I jump. Can’t help it.
With Sinclair Broadcasting’s KOMO 4, our ABC affiliate in Seattle, debuting the trailer to their sequel to Seattle is Dying—a news program so into shaming those most vulnerable that FOX News picked it up—I had a lot to say. Others I respect did as well.
The crowd present for the first Saturday at a just-opened public park in Seattle was about what you’d expect. For one, bike parking was in high demand as my fiancée and I rolled our Radwagon ebikes up to Fritz Hedges Waterway Park on Seattle’s Portage Bay. Ours were third and fourth Radwagons—a Subaru Outback in bicycle form—inside about a 25-foot radius.
“This is really nice,” an older man in flannel shirt said to his significant other as they strode out the metal dock overhanging the water.
“We need more of these,” she responded.
I am an excitable person. Getting me going on a particular subject can be a regrettable experience for whoever made such a mistake. I’ve come to acknowledge this. The subject could be Mariners prospects, my favorite neighborhood brewery, progressive politics or Williams’ 1995 classic pinball adaptation of Dirty Harry.
Or it could be my bike, as happened the other day. Picking up beer at my favorite neighborhood brewery. But that’s another post.
This is that excitable rant about a bike.
Continue Reading Ebikes are an urbanist’s dream—and my dog’s, too