Category: WTF

Just the other day, I wrote about the proposed Coast-to-Coast Connector in Florida, which would link several regional trails and inject some tourism dollars into the state. Money was already earmarked for the projects, too…to the tune of $50 million.

It should come as no surprise, especially to our Florida readers, that Governor Rick Scott unleashed his formidable line-item veto to kill that (and $368 million additional) funding in the state budget:

One of Scott’s largest veto items: $50 million for the state’s Coast-to-Coast connector, a bike trail stretching from St. Petersburg to Titusville. Scott said the state’s ongoing transportation budget already includes more than $57 million in statewide funding for transit greenways and bike paths, and that the connector could be completed over time.

Read the full article by visiting the Tampa Bay Times page.

I’m not entirely sure how to feel about this — I knew this veto would occur, but I wonder if the existing transit funding mentioned will actually be used to help complete the Coast-to-Coast Connector. The sticking point in Scott’s use of the phrase “could be completed over time”. “Could” certainly doesn’t mean “WILL”, and over time could mean decades…long after Florida desperately needs tourism dollars.

Any Florida peeps want to chime in?

As you may have heard, Citi Bike is launching Memorial Day weekend in New York City with 10000 bikes and 600 stations.

Our friends at BreakThru Radio shared a link to the following video, where they try to capture the general “on the street” feel for what bike share will lend to the city. Reactions range from unbridled enthusiasm all the way to near-vehement hate of cyclists. Here, take a look for yourself:

One of the surprising reactions was about the loss of on-street motor vehicle parking, one of the common complaints when any bicycle infrastructure is proposed. In the above video, almost everyone had a vaguely “good riddance” attitude toward parking!

Any New Yorkers out there in readerdom who want to chime in? Let’s hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Hey everyone. Mir.I.Am here, wrapping up a solid summer season in Buenos Aires… The leaves have begun to change color just as platform birkenstock sandals are changing into platform oxfords.

I may have missed this trend elsewhere in the world, but this was the summer shoe of choice in Buenos Aires… pedal power?

As boyfriend and I count down the days until our departure, I thought I’d share one last WTF travel-themed post about our time here and the weirdo things I see during my bike commute.

But first! Why don’t we take a look at some of the bikey highlights of this last couple months of free bike love in Buenos Aires, Colonia del Sacramento, and Mexico City, huh? The Mejor en Bici program turned out to be a little better than I thought… I ended up using it about 1-2X per month for errands and coffee dates. Check out the pics:

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Mejor en Bici free bikes – better than nothing, but only used them once every 2 weeks.

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Bikes in Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay – locked up to windows.

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Tourists sight-seeing on bamboo bikes in Buenos Aires.

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Knife sharpening skills – A bike turned into a grinding stone!

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Heavy-duty delivery trikes, complete with safety flag in Mexico City.


The best Colombian cortado in Buenos Aires, and the only reason I’ll incur a penalty for taking a free yellow bike out longer than the allotted 1-hour at Full City Coffee House.


Mejor in Bici, hanging out in the garden courtyard in Full City Coffee, with a flat-tired purple friend.

Ahh yes, the seasons are all reversed on the other side of the equator… as the bike commuters of Buenos Aires gear up for fall with long sleeves and scarves, Boyfriend and I will soon return back to the states for swimsuits and sandals.

So, let’s wrap up this bikey roundup with the real  reason I’m writing today: weird things I’ve seen on my commutes. Let’s sum it up with a list, shall we? (Note to readers, Mir is a terrible smartphone user, and cannot take photos while actually bike commuting, so all images of weird things seen while bike commuting have been hastily “curated” from the Google machine).

Weirdest Sightings while Bike Commuting in BA:


This custom paint-job is one of a kind. What are they chances I’d see it in real life!?

  1. A woman riding the bike-crush of my dreams (the Rainbow folder I was drooling over on Mercado Libre a few months back) riding in Retiro.
  2. A 20-foot length of green painted bike lane + a can of spray paint + a dirty mind = Bike Lane Male Genitalia in Palermo Hollywood.
  3. A guy drinking a mate while riding a bike slightly uphill and weaving back and forth in the bike lane in Recoleta.

    Yerba Mate: sometimes you just can’t get enough, even if you’re biking.

  4. Monsato demonstration with people dressed in Haz-mat suits and Corn near Plaza de Mayo.
  5. A dude riding a sweet pink cruiser who was totally covered in tattoos (including his face and bald head) in Barrio Norte.
  6. Batman touching the hand of God Joker in Palermo.
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Insert “Arrested Development” quote here.

I know we’ve all seen our fare share of parked cars, dumpsters, and piles of fruit crates in the bike lane, but sometimes you just can’t beat Batman touching the hand of the Joker while you’re biking on your way to work. If only I had the smart phone skills to snap a photo of the obscene bike-lane-turned-male-genitals… Enjoy the weirdness, Bike Commuters!

In the “you can’t make this stuff up” category, or perhaps “fiction becomes reality”…or even a late April Fool’s-style story that turns out to be TRUE, we present to you the latest in commuter news. This thing reads like something straight out of The Onion, but it’s completely legit:

World’s First Professional Commuter Team Will Commute to Work Like A Boss

Trek UK has partnered with media empire Cyclismas to launch a new team of professional bike commuters who will compete on the streets and trails in the daily race to get to work.

The Trek-Cyclismas Professional Commuter Team (TCPCT) is a six-person team, consisting of three men and three women (all human), who commute to work by bike over a variety of distances and terrain. The team will be competing at the highest level of ‘getting to work’ sport, and will face competition from other ride-to-workers and Strava segment racers across the UK.

Read the rest of the story by clicking here.

You may remember we wrote about “Cat 6” racing a few years ago, and even before that had a guest author pen what is now a classic article about commuter racing.

We think this is a great idea — to bring commuter advocacy to the forefront with a little humor and the backing of some big names in the cycling industry. What do you think?

Okay everyone, luckily boyfriend and I were able to sign up for the Mejor en Bici FREE bike share program all in a matter of 24 hours right here in our neighborhood in Buenos Aires!  What does that mean?  Finally my whiny bikeless butt can get some bike share action.

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Overall Impressions of the Mejor en Bici Bike Share:

  • The price is right for $Free.99
  • Service can be hit or miss
  • Good quality helmets
  • Free map of the bike routes in the city is SUPER useful
  • I wish there were more stations, since the limit is one hour at a time
  • Bikes with baskets – I love it (what can I say, easy to please)
  • Open hours are Monday-Friday, 8am -8pm; Saturdays, 10am- 3pm; and closed Sundays

And a tip to share before I get into the details… If you are riding around with a bag or purse, loop the straps around your handles before placing it in your front basket to avoid purse-snatching at stops.  A tip I learned from my friend in Paris.

purse tip photo

Success: How to Sign Up for Mejor en Bici

After reading this extremely useful article on Mejor en Bici from Wander Argentina, signing up was surprisingly simple.  First, we went to the Police station nearest our house (open 24 hours) and, as we are not Argentines, we needed to get a Domicile Certificate.  We paid the 10 Argentine pesos, and waited as the officer copied down our passport information and our address.  The next day at 8am, the mail man slipped the completed form under our apartment door, with signature and stamp of approval.  We took the form, and made photocopies of it and our passports and made our way to the Mejor en Bici station at Plaza Italia.

mejor en b

Here is where we had a bit of a communication breakdown – the girl working the desk sent us to another station only 4 blocks away where the clerks spoke fluent English.  Apparently our Castellano was so terrible, that the first girl didn’t have the patience to fill out the forms and take our pictures.  Anyway, we had a fantastic experience in English, turned in our certificate and photocopies, and got a great little orientation session on the program.  Now, anytime we want to check out bikes for FREE, we can show up to any Mejor en Bici station, ask for a bike and helmet, and give our passport and pin # we and we’re good for up to an hour.  The bikes can be “recharged” at other stations in the city if you need more than an hour.  You can even check online for availability of bikes per station – it’s live.

So, I took it one of the clunky yellow cruisers for a ride to a meeting in another neighborhood and dropped it off at the nearest station.  The seat was a little low, and the quick release was rusted in place, so there was a lot of standing on this ride.  After I dropped off the bike, I gave them my number, then I walked another 15 minutes to the office.  Good thing I didn’t decide to keep the bike with me at the office, since the meeting went on FOREVER!  I would have received a penalty on my account for going over the hour allotted, and wouldn’t be able to use the free bike for a week.

Bike Mural Buenos Aires

Sweet bike mural en route… courtesy of whiskeyandtears.

Thus ends my short spell of Bikeless Butt Envy… Hopefully I’ll keep my butt happy by smashing it into these yellow city bicis on the regular.  If you have any bike share tips or stories for the world, post em in the comments box, below.  Bicibrazos, Bike Commuters!