Monthly Archives: April 2008

Better driving

I’ve just logged another bad driver on better driving .com…. for parking on the pavement causing an obstruction and they blame us cyclists cycling on pavements!

Cycling in The Great Stink

Last week the media was reporting that London and other parts of the country had this weird sewagey pong in the atmosphere and it was supposed to have gone by Tuesday.

When I went up to London this weekend, the only pongs I could smell were ‘the usual culprits’.. the smokers, bendy buses etc.. I did come a Really Smelly Pong and discovered it came from the drains by London Bridge. It appears that the horrible pong that drifted from Europe had more or less gone.

With hefty pongs coming like that from Europe it makes you certainly want to wear a pollution mask.

Time Out

Time Out has a good article on cycling this week.. so get out an buy a copy!! It’s not just about buying a bike too but talks about ‘tarmac wars’..

Anti Pollution Mask

I’ve finally bought one for £29.00. I think it looks quite cool oddly enough but with ‘helmet and lycra’. It’s a job trying to wear one in town in ladies cycle commuting clothes. I mean it just clashes with the outfit even though wearing one is a good idea in London!

When I went to the cycle shop yesterday they said they had many people suddenly asking for them. Althoughing considering how bad the pollution is in towns one would have thought that parents who are ‘supposed to be looking after them properly, should encourage kids to wear them. Now, has anyone spotted a single child in a pollution mask? Should they be made compulsory in towns in view of the respiratory illnesses that happen.

Also pollution masks are taxed and this doesn’t make sense. It is up to the Government to tackle the problem properly. Maybe Critical Mass can write placards about this.



Today’s Chirpy Cyclist Quote

I heard this on a sunny day in London (the one and only)

Lady in bus stop (staring at a cyclist coming by)

Old Bloke on bike (with some flowers on the back)

‘nice day for a suntan!’



I like it when cyclists get out and talk to people

Manchester Motorists left cyclist to die in the road


This was an article from the Daily Mail on 17/04/08 about Stephen Wills who was knocked down by a stolen car, driven over by other motorist and passed by other motorists who didn’t bother stop to help.


Motorists who left a cyclist to die in the road after he was knocked over by a stolen car were described as inhuman yesterday.


Instead of stopping, they simply swerved around him, and detectives believe that one may even have driven over the badly injured Stephen Wills, breaking both his legs.


By the time a passer-by finally raised the alarm, Mr Wills, 55, who had been riding home from a dinner, was already dead.


The self-employed plasterer was cycling down a dual carriageway in Manchester at about 3.30am last Saturday when he was knocked over by a stolen VW Golf. The car was later found burnt-out nearby.


“It’s a pretty sad state set of affairs when people refuse to stop to help a fellow human who is clearly in dire need of help,” said a police source.

“Behaviour like this seems simply inhuman, and it’s hard to believe that drivers refused to stop and help. What’s worse is that one driver may have even driven over Stephen’s legs before heading off.


“We can only assume in some cases it was more important to those drivers that they got home instead of stopping to help a dying man.”


When paramedics arrived it was too late and Mr Wills was pronounced dead at the scene, apparently as a result of head injuries sustained in the initial collision.


He lived by himself in the Moss Side area of Manchester.


He is thought to have had no children of his own, but was regarded as a “father figure” by the two sons of a divorcee with whom he had been in a relationship.


One of them, Shahid Karim, aged 25, said last night he was horrified to hear of Mr Wills’ last moments.


“I called him ‘Dad’ even though he wasn’t my biological father, and he was a wonderful dad,” he said.

“He was the most kind-hearted man, he would always help someone. He taught me how to always be polite and how to respect women and look after your family.


“I just wish people had more compassion. He will be terribly missed.” Neighbours also said they were appalled that someone hadn’t pulled over to help.


“If any of these drivers had any feelings they would have stopped to help Stephen,” said Julia Wheat, 58. “Instead they left him lying there like a dying animal.


“Everybody is very shocked and upset. Stephen was a lovely man but he was shown no respect at all in his last moments.”



I think the comments here just show exactly how I feel about this. I just hope there is some CCTV about too.

I remember when I had an accident, no one stopped to help either. I was completely flat out for a while and I could hardly get up. I thought I had broken something (was very lucky I didn’t). I couldn’t reach my phone either as my pannier was out of my reach.

A number of times I have helped car drivers. One of them was hit and the car turned upside down with a child . I had to get the local doctor (he was nearby and didn’t want to come out!!) and we managed to get a helicopter out. They were both ok in the end.. but hey, motorists should return the courtesy

Moronic Motorist of the Day

MM was looking at the car dealership and chose to park ‘on the pavement’, completely blocking the path and partly obstructing the road where he wasn’t supposed to park. I tried to get the registration number but forgot it!

This time I am going to take a notepad and pen handy in view of my rubbish memory.

Report Moronic Motorists!

I came across this superb website about shaming bad drivers. 

You write in the car registration plate and tell the world what the driver did.  You can even ‘see’ the vehicle’s appalling driving history. (That may be a sight for sore eyes eh?)

As my brother is a Transport Manager (of all things), I will send the link to him to see if any of his vehicles are ‘up to no good’ while he isn’t keeping an eye on them.

So instead of feeling that you can’t do a thing, at least write in to this website, and contact the police if necessary.. now whether they can do anything is another matter.

It maybe something for Critical Mass to look at too.


My bike’s gone!

After I finished going to an event in London, at about about 8pm, I went back to pick up my bike. It was parked at the back of the Ritz, on some post. (Why aren’t there any cycle racks around there?).

Tense conversation went as follows:

Me: I know I parked by a Stop Sign. Is this the road by the Ritz?

J: Yes

Me: You sure?

J: Yes, ‘corse

(we walk up and down craning our necks for bicycles and walking up every little street)

Me: (God, all these bloody roads look the same)

20  minutes later

J: (trying to be helpful, what shops did you walk past?)

Me: I can’t remember, all I remember is that it was at a Stop sign, in the corner and on the road by The Ritz

J: Did you lock your bike.. properly?

Me: YES! Some scumbag has probably cut it.

walking back up:

Me: (feeling acceptance) ‘Well, at least  it’s insured. Maybe I can get a replacement ladies bike.

Walking back down again:

J: Is it that bike? (looking at a tatty black one with ‘sticky uppy’ handlebars bike parked at a Stop sign)

Me: Ewww, that’s not mine!

J: Maybe it’s has been ‘compounded’ by the police because you parked it at a Stop sign? It’s probably illegal.

Me: Bloody hope not, anyway, why can’t they leave a note?

J: Hang on

Me: Hang on?

J: This isn’t the road near the Ritz!

Me: well, it better be there!

we walked up anxiously

 And sure enough it was..




The Guitar Bicycle – This made my Day

Didi Senft, a cycling fan, made a his ‘guitar bicycle’ in Strokow, Germany which he actually made himself. It looks fabulous for a Critical Mass event.  At least no bus driver, would say he can’t see him. Actually, come to think of it, they probably will!

Questions Questions…I wonder what it is like to ride  and whether it is actually legal considering it doesn’t seem that he can see clearly round him. I wonder what it is like going downhill and has he has a crash in it yet, and how on earth he parks it in a supermarket cycle rack?!

I bet he really p++ses of motorists too.



This pic has to go in my cycling scrapbook.