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I'm not sure what to make of this event. While I empathize those ridfers injured and killed while cycling and their impact on their families, I'm not sure if this is the right vehicle to get the message accross. Any thoughts, comments?
 

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Sure there are other ways to get the message across but I think hundreds or thousands of cyclists riding at funeral procession pace through a major downtown area is going to attract a lot of attention, the media in major cities will also probably cover the event and bring even more exposure to it.

So I think it has the potential to bring cycling a lot of exposure and hopefully serve to educate a fair number of motorists out there especially if some of the media outlets couple their coverage with a "what to do when you encounter a cyclist" segment like I can recall seeing somewhere in the past.
 

· You're Not the Boss of Me
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I think it is a great mechanism and always gets good press here. The somber mood, the polite, single file, slow pace, etc., and usually intertwined with some stories of deaths from the previous year. A great reminder for motorists.
 

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Well after just completing the Houston Ride of Silence I have to say if anything that ride would have put us in an even worse light with motorists and was not a good way to raise awareness due to the idiocy of large numbers of people on the ride.

How hard is it to ride two abreast at no faster than 12mph for under 10 miles and obey all the road rules along the way? People were riding at least three or four abreast and often taking up two lanes on a busy downtown street, plus people were constantly jostling for position, there was a reason my buddy & I were riding slow and not trying to catch the next pack of riders and that reason was the whole damn point of the ride! I even saw one guy blatantly roll through a red light and most people didn't stop for stop signs, ordinarily the slow roll through is kind of okay but not in a ride like this!

There were three or four crashes just in front of me as well as we had to cross some railway tracks at an awkward angle, didn't look like anyone got seriously hurt though so that was a relief. That can be a lessons learned for next year to let people know about the railway tracks at the pre ride meeting.
 

· What the Hell is going on
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Would have . . .

Sounds like a good thing until I received this via email from a local organizer. Here 'tis:

http://www.geocities.com/RideOfSilence/

http://www.rideofsilence.org/

A flyer is located on our local web site.

Please bring a light and a black armband. This will be a very flat, very
slow & somber, very easy 10 mile ride around the Old Town / Downtown San
Diego areas.

To everyone who wants to know why the ride is a Wednesday night at 7 pm,
please direct your questions to the international headquarters.

Many Thanks to the many folks who have already told me they have every
intention of showing up.

See you there.

Sincerely,

Frank Paiano
Ocean Beach


NOTICE: Due to Presidential Executive Orders, the National Security Agency
may have read this email without warning, warrant, or notice. They may do
this without any judicial or legislative oversight. You have no recourse nor
protection save to call for the impeachment of the current President.

I don't think the last part is appropiate at all. I'm conflicted
 

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Everything is about politics.

Of course the Ride of Silence is a good thing. It's a perfect way to draw attention to vehicle-bike conflicts and pay respects to people who paid the ultimate price for riding on roads on two wheels. If you don't like it, don't ride. Simple as that.

Ours was rained out tonight. I feel lousy. I hope we reschedule during Bike Month.
 

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Ours here in Oklahoma City was very good. We had a OKC police escort so we did not have to stop at any lights or stop signs. I was very impressed with the other cyclists staying two abreast and using hand signals when needed. The whole experience was very moving.
 

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The one in Dallas has a ton of people, but suffers because it is in a low traffic area. I doubt as many as 200 motorists saw it. And given the declining importance of local news not many others saw it as well.
 

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We have rescheduled ours after it was rained out last night. One week. 7 next Wednesday. We have a parade permit, police escort and we are cutting straight through the Twin Cities on the busiest thoroughfare. And I don't give a hoot if the Republicans don't like it. Another two years of Bush in the White House and you wont be able to find one. :p
 

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Los Angeles

jaseone said:
Sure there are other ways to get the message across but I think hundreds or thousands of cyclists riding at funeral procession pace through a major downtown area is going to attract a lot of attention, the media in major cities will also probably cover the event and bring even more exposure to it.

So I think it has the potential to bring cycling a lot of exposure and hopefully serve to educate a fair number of motorists out there especially if some of the media outlets couple their coverage with a "what to do when you encounter a cyclist" segment like I can recall seeing somewhere in the past.
Major downtown area? check
Funeral procession pace? check
Media coverage in a major city????

I said - media coverage in a major city? *crickets*

only 40-45 people showed in L.A. A few motorists and some people waiting at bus stops asked what was going on. Maybe that's enough to spread the word, otherwise it was just another "critical mass" to gawk at. It really could have used way more exposure, especially outside of the cycling community.

we now return to fighting for our rights in the streets...
 

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Doesn't a police escort kind of defeat the whole point of the ride? Well of course it still honours those that have been killed or injured while cycling on the roads but it is also about raising awareness of cyclists with motorists and showing them that we can share the road & obey the traffic laws.

I don't know about you but if I was sitting in a gas guzzling tank trying to get home with the Chinese takeout in the passenger seat and I came to an intersection that was blocked by police while a large number of cyclists ride past then I would be awfully annoyed with cyclists right about then. "Damn cyclists why do they get a police escort and get to block the road?" That would be the kind of comment I'd expect from the people that we are trying to educate and hence one of the goals of the ride wouldn't be met.

I may be totally off base with this but it is the way I see it at least.
 

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Ours was pretty good here in Austin. About 300+ cyclist, mostly well behaved. One thing I didn't like was when people asked what we the riders were doing, they were unanswered out of the riders respect for the silence moratorium. I can see how this would come off as rude or snobby, and was concerned it might generate animosity towards cyclist, which is directly counter to the spirit of the event. I was thinking of contacting the ride organizers to see if there was some way to address this issue next time around.
 

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Weather forced us to reschedule in Bloomington IL until next Wednesday at 7. We have small posters that we are wearing that explain its a ride of silence and the reason for it.
 

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For the 2007 Ride of Silence

For my 2¢ worth (OK, maybe a nickel's worth...)

One thing to remember folks, we are honoring fellow cyclists who've been killed. In effect we are a funeral procession and allowed to stay together as a group, passing through traffic signals and stop signs. Having police escort adds legitimacy to this. (be sure you discuss this with your police agency)

To let the motoring public know we were indeed a funeral procession, here's what we did in Grand Rapids MI last year, and will do again in the future:







A local bike shop donated 100 of the bike flag sticks. (all were returned the next day)
We then printed the orange funeral flags on card stock (just like a car funeral flag), with Ride of Silence printed on them and attached them to the flag sticks, and offered them to any rider who wanted one. Many did as you can see. (also note another local bike shop SAG van with large R of S banner on it)

A local frame manufacturer, Jade Cycles, who's prez. is a strong advocate for Share the Road signs, mounted one on his bike and was the last cyclist in our ride. https://www.jadecycles.com/cycling advocacy.html

For a Ride as large as Dallas, obviously this would be VERY difficult to pull off. But in our Ride of about 100 cyclists in Grand Rapids, the flags worked out very well. I've a formatted Word .doc of the funeral flag, if anyone would like it, as well as many other formatted Ride .doc.

markpedal
Ride of Silence, National Board Member
Ride of Silence, Mentor
Ride of Silence, Michigan Director
Ride of Silence, 2005-07 Grand Rapids MI Ride Organizer
https://www.rideofsilence.org
[email protected]
 

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Chris Phelan, the Ride's founder, sent this quote a few hours ago, and it certainly applies to what we hope to accomplish.

“And if three people do it, three, can you imagine, three people walking in singin' a bar of Alice's Restaurant and walking out. They may think it's an organization. And can you, can you imagine fifty people a day, I said fifty people a day walking in singin' a bar of Alice's Restaurant and walking out. And friends they may thinks it's a movement. And that's what it is...” – Arlo Guthrie

And that’s what we are, a movement that hopefully will make the road safer for cyclists, and runners and roller bladers, and joggers...while letting us remember our friends and family who’ve been injured or killed.

A non cycling buddy of mine called me tonight, having just read the GR press article on the Ride, while on his way home had to pass a Dad on bike pulling a kid-kart, with the Mom on blades pushing a stroller on a wide shoulder. He slowed way down and made sure he gave them plenty of room.

We can make a difference!

Article on Grand Rapids Ride: http://tinyurl.com/29g7ga

As of this morning, you are riding with cyclists in ALL 50 States tomorrow night (email confirmation today from 2 cyclists in Sioux City SD that their club was holding a Ride there, uniting all 50 states. How often does that happen), in 267 locations listed (actually over 270 as S. City, Santa Barbara CA and a few other locations I know haven’t posted yet), in 13 countries around the globe.

Everyone, have a SAFE and memorable Ride.

Thank you all again.
Mark
Mark Hagar
Ride of Silence, Board Member, Mentor & Club Communications
Ride of Silence, Michigan Director
Ride of Silence, 2005-07 Grand Rapids Ride Organizer
http://www.rideofsilence.org
[email protected]
 

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JaeP said:
NOTICE: Due to Presidential Executive Orders, the National Security Agency
may have read this email without warning, warrant, or notice. They may do
this without any judicial or legislative oversight. You have no recourse nor
protection save to call for the impeachment of the current President.

I don't think the last part is appropiate at all. I'm conflicted
I agree that it's unnecessary. I even agree with the basic message, but there's no reason to mix issues needlessly and put people off.
 

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We are ready for tonight in Bloomington, Il. We have a parade permit, police escort and people coming. No idea how many. We have 50 for the first ever here last year after a couple of rain delays.

The ROS is a perfect way to get the word out - too many cyclists are killed on the road by motorists who are not paying attention.

Here we also have a bill pending for a 3 foot clearance rule. It sailed through one house and is waiting for action in the other.
 
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