If you’re a bicycle commuter in the Tampa Bay area, things can feel pretty lonely at times. There’s only about 6 daily commuters in our area (just joking!), and there isn’t much in the way of moral support around these parts.

But wait, there’s hope!
Tampa BayCycle homepage

Tampa BayCycle is a joint effort between the New North Transportation Alliance (Julie Bond, the executive director, is one of our featured commuters) and the Tampa Downtown Partnership, as well as a host of other corporate sponsors. This organization has provided the Bay Area commuter a wonderful resource for advocacy, communication and information exchange, and recently wrapped up their first year’s “Commuter Challenge”, where riders were encouraged to recruit fellow bike commuters or newbies in exchange for the chance to win prizes. They even had a kickass party to celebrate their first Bike To Work Month, where activists were invited to enjoy pizza, billiards, bowling and prize raffles (my wife and I both won light sets for our bikes and I won a Cateye wireless computer — very cool).

In June, Tampa BayCycle rolled out their very own blog, which is geared towards providing the Tampa area commuter another way to communicate amongst themselves and to spotlight local news, commuter profiles and other information of interest to bicyclists. It’s a great resource, and you should check it out and add comments…let’s get some traffic headed their way (after all, they did put a permalink to www.bikecommuters.com on their blog site)!!

Tampa BayCycle Blog homepage

A father’s proudest moment

This doesn’t have anything to do with bike commuting or Fixed Gear Friday, but I still want to share it with you.

My 6 yr old is finally riding a bike without training wheels!

From the dumb ass Hall of Fame…

Laura gave us this heads up on this link from John Prolly’s Blog. His post is about what Congressman McHenry from NC thinks about democrats suggesting to ride a bike instead of driving a car:

http://johnprolly.blogspot.com/2007/08/north-carolinas-disgrace.html

Here’s a quote of what Congressman McHenry stated:

Oh, I cannot make this stuff up. Yes, the American people have heard this. Their answer to our fuel crisis, the crisis at the pumps, is: Ride a bike.

Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you the Democrats, promoting 19th century solutions to 21st century problems. If you don’t like it, ride a bike. If you don’t like the price at the pumps, ride a bike

Thanks Laura for the comment and the link

L.A., city of mean drivers

Jeremy gave me this heads up on this article via BRAIN.

LA Times Highlights City of Mean Drivers

LOS ANGELES, CA (BRAIN)—The LA Times recently ran a feature story on the dangers of riding your bike on Los Angeles city streets.

Times staff writer Jeannine Stein said that bicycle-related accidents have increased slightly in the past year. There were 25 deaths and 2,885 injuries in 2005 and an estimated 28 deaths and 2,910 injuries in 2006, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety.

Across the Golden State, fatalities numbered 120 in 2002 and roughly 155 in 2005.

Scott Sing, who works at Helen’s Cycles in Southern California, and who logs between 250 – 400 miles a week, said that a couple years back kids in a car threw a tire iron at him.

“If anything, it’s gotten worse,? Sing said of LA’s inconsiderate and sometimes mean spirited drivers. “As I’ve become more experienced, I feel less threatened. But twice or three times a week I hit the brakes because somebody is doing something illegal.? —Jason Norman

I guess it depends on people’s routes. I haven’t had any issues with drivers on my 2 years plus of commuting, as long as I respect them, I get respect back.