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Motorists vs. Cyclists – Toronto Newspaper Smackdown!

There were a couple of interesting items in Saturday’s Globe & Mail newspaper about The Kensington Incident. While there is some debate that the altercation was really litterbug vs. good-citizen, the obvious parallels to motorist vs. cyclist apply.

The first item was written as an exchange between two Globe & Mail writers, Michael Valpy (cyclist) & Margaret Wente (motorist – identified in the article as “Peggy”, for some reason). It kind of reads like it was one of those “reply-all” email exchanges in the Globe offices, and some editor decided to print it.

I don’t know Valpy too well, but I know of Wente because of her anti-transit rant in the Globe last summer after the hurricanes decimated Gulf of Mexico oil production and raised oil prices.

It’s a great exchange, mainly because Wente-as-motorist epitomizes the selfish driver, writing things like this about why cyclists are often afraid of getting hit by a car:

… this city has an awful lot of traffic, and drivers are occasionally distracted (duh), and sometimes they’re not paying attention, and it’s not an equal contest. They can’t hear you coming and they don’t always check their mirrors. This does not mean that they’re out to get you. The truth is, they’re just not thinking about you at all. Does that make them evil? No, just human.

It’s funny that being distracted, inattentive, deaf and blind while driving is considered acceptable, especially when having control of a giant metal motorized machine.

I could honestly quote the whole article, it’s that good. Valpy does an excellent job of bringing cyclist viewpoints to the fore, while Wente is awesome at re-inforcing all the usual stereotypes about drivers, which isn’t fair, because not all drivers are evil… just misguided.

The second article is “Two against four: the war of the wheels” which does quick work of the whole motorist-cyclist conflict, from a Toronto point-of-view, interviewing people like Darren Stehr of ARC and talking about how Critical Mass started in San Francisco in 1992.

Leah (the courier in the Kensington Incident) leaves us with one of my favourite quotes of the year (which is still young):

I’m not trying to be a self-righteous pain in the ass. But I have principles, and I think you’re supposed to act on your principles. You have to try and work on what’s right around you.


INFRASTRUCTURE: TCAT Announces Scarborough Cycles

This looks amazing.  Scarborough Cycles! The Toronto Centre for Active Transportation (TCAT), in partnership with Cycle Toronto, Toronto Cycling Think & Do Tank, and CultureLink, has launched an exciting new project called Scarborough Cycles: building bike culture beyond downtown. With 30% of Toronto’s landmass, 24% of its residents, and half a million cyclable trips (trips […]


EVENT: Sat, June 6 – McLeish Orlando’s Helmets On Kids

  Helmets on Kids is collaborating this year with a the Parkdale Junior and Senior Public School bike fair. Come join us! Date: Saturday, June 6, 2015 – 10:00 – 14:00 Location: 78 Seaforth Ave. Toronto, ON, Toronto Original Link Read More: McLeish Orlando’s Helmets On Kids

PHOTO OF THE DAY: Stripes | Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Source: Original photo – by Fryderyk Supinski on Flickr. via Flickr. See this and 7,000+ other amazing bike photos in the Biking Toronto Flickr Group.


HELP: Do you know these alleged bike thieves?

The above is showing up on facebook tonight – a shot of two alleged bike thieves taking a bike off of a porch in Leslieville.  Let the poster know via the original post if you know anything. Please help us catch these bike thieves!! They stole my bike right off of our porch the afternoon of […]

FACEPALM: Old man yells at bicycles, and fish

It’s nice that the Toronto Sun has work programs for grumpy old men who like to bitch about everything. You can congratulate Mike Strobel on finding a job despite his challenges at @strobelsun They tell me the smelts are running up in Kagawong, so spring has finally sprung. Down here in the Big Smoke, we […]


PHOTO OF THE DAY: Always Bring a Spare

Source: Original photo – by cookedphotos on Flickr. Spotted on King Street. via Flickr. See this and 7,000+ other amazing bike photos in the Biking Toronto Flickr Group.


STUFF: Bike Helmets for Your Toddler

Bicycle helmets for your toddler now come in a variety of styles, sizes, and fun designs.   Read More: Bike Helmets for Your Toddler


EVENT: Tues, May 5 – Etobicoke South Cycling Committee: May meeting

Date: Tuesday, May 5, 2015 – 19:00 – 21:00 The ESCC is holding its monthly meeting between 7 and 9 PM on May 5 at Among Friends. Below is the agenda. 1. What happened at the April 9 meeting on the Humber Bay Shores trails? 2. The city has released funding for the trail on […]


EVENT: Sat, June 20 – Cycle for Sight Toronto

Date: Saturday, June 20, 2015 – 08:00 – 18:00 Cycle for Sight is a fully supported, one-day cycling event in support of the Foundation Fighting Blindness. Whether you’re a cycling enthusiast or leisure rider, riding a single or tandem bike, Cycle for Sight will be the perfect one-day ride! We offer different distance options from […]


PHOTO OF THE DAY: Making Our Own Power

Source: Original photo – by cookedphotos on Flickr. Ikea celebrates Earth Day at Yonge Dundas Square. This photo was featured as blogTO’s ‘Photo of the Day’ for April 23, 2015: http://ift.tt/1FgtWh3 via Flickr. See this and 7,000+ other amazing bike photos in the Biking Toronto Flickr Group.

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