06 December 2014

Embracing My Inner Magpie Leads To Englightenment (Or, Being More Informed About Cycling Advocacy, Anyway)

One thing you learn (sometimes, anyway) as you get older is to accept what you are and work with it--or let it work for you.

For a long time, I tried to suppress my inner magpie.  So, yes, I'll admit it:  I like pretty, shiny things, especially if I can recognize my own reflection in them. Then again, given what I've just said, a pretty, shiny thing is something that will, by definition, allow me to recognize my own reflection.  And vice-versa.

OK, enough of these extremely amateurish philosophical ramblings.  I accept that I like looking at pretty,shiny things and it leads me to images like this:

Instead of turning my nose up at this two-wheeled contraption (which is, however you define it, a bicycle), as I might have done not so long ago, I allowed myself to be drawn in by the pretty, shiny lights.  It led me to blog, which also contains this image:

That blog, is the most important find of all: Chicago Bicycle Advocate. I looked at a few posts on either side of the ones containing those photos.  The stories in them are all-too-familiar to urban cyclists:  getting doored (been there, done that!), a police officer who struck a cyclist and lied about it and  a driver who darted in front of a cyclist and tried to blame the cyclist for the ensuing crash.  But there are also inspiring stories, like that of the 13-year-old girl who came up with an idea for a signal system after seeing a man "doored" while she rode with her mother.

In reading those posts, and others, I was impressed by the level of analysis and clarity in discussions of the issues involved with accidents and other incidents involving cyclists.  I am going to subscribe to it, even though I live nowhere near Chicago.

Hooda thunk it:  Embracing my inner magpie has enhanced my understanding of the legal issues around cycling!

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