Link-a-rama

I’m not sure where the “O-Rama” ending to describe celebrations actually comes from.

But.

Awright,

Here’s a few links to stuff I think that piqued my interest, and that are internet links:

***
Here is a site with pictures of stupid sidewalks. I like that other people than me feel the need to point this out, because, look, we’re not all actually made with cars, but the built environment (in the US anyway) is designed to move cars more efficiently than people, and frankly, that’s insane, and/or leotarded.

***
When I was a F***book user, I linked to a [icky ol’ New York Post] story about tensions between Chassids and hipsters that result from the bike lanes that use the Chassidic portion of Williamsburg as a conduit for sexy hipsters on bikes. At the time, it was just a sort of interesting aside from my general line of discussion on the basis of cycling as a minority traffic modality causing tensions here causing tensions for a very different reason, but you’ll see here what seem to be attempted assaults or manslaughters of sexy hipsters on bikes traveling through Chassidic neighborhoods. I’m fiercely in favor of religious tolerance, but it does seem as though there’s sort of a line past which one’s religion seems to become incompatible with inhabiting one of the largest, most bustling, vital, heterogeneous cities in the world. I mean, there are large, bustling, vital cities where you can safely expect a very specific level of conservative dress; in Tehran you can pretty much bet the women you meet will be in hijab, but Iran is an Islamic republic. Obviously not everyone there is a Muslim (the Borj-e Azadi, symbol of Tehran was designed by a Bahai), but given the political and cultural background of the place, yeah. Hijab. New York City? I fully expect to see plenty of people in hijab in New York, as well as people in yarmulkes, pagri, and kufi. But, and here’s the important part, I also expect to see people – lots and lots of people – without hijab, jarmulkes, pagri, and kufi. I don’t mean to imply that I think of myself as superior in any way to Chassids. I do, however, think of myself as superior to the particular individuals (whether they were actually Chassids or not) who were trying to hurt this young woman because her appearance disquieted them. I am disquieted by the appearance of a person in an NRA cap, “Never Forget” t-shirt and similar regalia, but I don’t f*** with them. You might make the argument that I don’t because they’d probably effing kill me; you’d be right about that, and that’s my point – why tolerate the offensive opinions only of the people who are bigger than you? This is ire and hurtful intent directed at young women on bikes by men in trucks on the basis of the women’s outfits.

***
And, in the vein of cycling as a minority traffic modality, here is a site where you can see photos of how utterly bike lanes fail in your town. I really don’t blame most of the drivers. Often people really do need to stop only briefly, and most halfway decent cities are only retrofitted to suit automobile traffic, having originally been designed with human beings in mind. Meanwhile the past six decades or so of culture and urban planning have impressed upon people that autos are the only way to travel. When a strip of paint is all that stands between the minority, disfavored traffic modality and the one that planning and design has favored for the last sixty-plus years that requires no effort to propel and weighs a thousand pounds or more, which one do you expect will occupy the empty space when the need arises?

This is not an argument against cycling or in favor of blocking bike lanes. This is an argument for better urban planning and a culture of sustainability.

***
Continuing in the bike-tivism (thank for that neologism) vein, this article is a favorite of mine for counterarguing the perennial (does that mean “of the perineum”?) canard that cyclists are a load of scofflaws who don’t respect the rules of the road enough to deserve its use.

***
In fact, a UM Student who was always hating on bikes decided to actually try biking, so he could really be smug. Only it backfired because he realized the things he was asking cyclists to do were actually totally unreasonable.

***
Off the Bike subject now, but still in the urban planning / urban success, this might seem like an obvious connection, but here’s a good bit on the importance of talent to cities.

***
A fun essay on why and how food is sexy, with a list of sexy food films and books (e.g. Tampopo).

***
Duh, don’t throw a thing away, use it for another thing.

***
Choose your own apocalypse.

***
What’s cheaper than a hostel? Sleeping in airports.

***
Duh, this is what escalators were made for.

***
Good seems to have a series where slightly famous people show up and describe their ideas for stupid inventions. Here is one of the few of these I’ve actually found amusing.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s