Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What is Bike Omaha reading?


Here at Bike Omaha we read a lot in an attempt to stay informed about bike related news around the world that may be of help with our goal of getting more people in Omaha out riding bikes for fun or for utility.

Many of the Bike Omaha staff has been reading the "Pedaling Revolution" book by Jeff Mapes (seen at left).  It's a great read.  You can read some of our reactions in the comments of an earlier post here at Bike Omaha.  If you are at all interested in cycling for fun or utility, we highly recommend it.  You can find a copy at the Omaha Public Library as well.

Here are a few articles and news sources that we have read recently that you may find interesting.

The Bike Sharing Blog

Boulder bike count finds parking shortage

Understanding Barriers to Bicycling

Omaha bike event "Spooks on Spokes"

USA Today Anti-cyclist article

Could Omaha do a Ciclovia on World Health Day?

Gingrich: Bike power

Enjoy the reading and get out there and Bike Omaha.

4 comments:

AOJules said...

Thoughts:

This may be the first time I agree with Newt Gringrich.

I'm so miffed with the USA Today article. Miffed at the title, miffed at the content, miffed that the author is their automobile writer. Grrr. I should stop now.

I love Jeff Mapes!

Biker Bob said...

That USA Today article was extremely poor journalism. However, even with all the cyclist hate-speech showing up in the comments, the pro-cyclist comments were usually spot on and very calm and rational. Plus, they seem to be the only comments that were getting any recommendations from other readers.

Kurt said...

I bought it last week on Amazon and just got it. Can't wait to dig in!

dale said...

"Bicycle Diaries" by David Byrne formerly of Talking Heads. I read the Intro in Barnes & Noble tonight and bought the book. He's been using a bike since the early 80's to get around different cities.

Some quotes from Intro:
By the late 80's I'd discovered folding bikes, and as my work and curiosity took me to various parts of the world, I usually took one along. That same sense of liberation I experienced in New York recurred as I pedaled around many of the world's principal cities. I felt more connected to the life on the streets than I would have inside a car or in some form of public transport ... (1,2)

This point of view -- faster than a walk, slower than a train, often slightly higher than a person -- became my panoramic window on much of the world over the last thirty years -- and still is. (2)

Cities, it occurred to me, are physical manifestations of our deepest beliefs and our often unconscious thoughts, not so much as individuals, but as the social animals we are. A cognitive scientist need only look at what we have made -- the hives we have created -- to know what we think and what we believe to be important, as well as how we structure those thoughts and beliefs. (2)

Each chapter in this book focuses on a different city ... (3)

I myself find that the physical sensation of self-powered transport coupled with the feeling of self-control endemic to this two wheeled situation is nicely empowering and reassuring, even if temporary, and it is enough to center me for the rest of the day.
It sounds like some form of meditation, and in a way it is. (4)

Contents:
Intro
American Cities

Most U.S. cities are not very bike-friendly. They're not very pedestrian-friendly either. In most of these cities one could say that the machines have won. Lives, city planning, budgets, and time are all focused around the automobile. It's long-term unsustainable and short-term lousy living. (7)

Berlin
Istanbul
Buenos Aires
Manila
Sydney
London
San Francisco
New York
Epilogue: The Future of Getting Around
Appendix
Additional New York City Bike Rack Designs by David Byrne

I think this book will reveal how
riding bikes improves more than your physical well being, it changes your world view.