Project Fake Commute: Bay Area Multi-Modal Mega Commute. (Part II)

In the previous post, I spent many words blabbing along before getting to the GREATEST INNOVATION IN CYCLING THAT I HAVE EVER COME UP WITH ON MY OWN! That is, the bicycle parking brake for use when taking one’s bicycle on public transportation:

bicycle parking brake on BART

Engage the brake, keep it tight, wrap a velcro strap around it. This is a very effective way to keep one’s bike from moving fore or aft on a train.  Side-to-side is another matter, but leaning it against a wall seems to work pretty well for that. A second velcro strap securing the front wheel and the downtube is helpful as well.

I’m certain that I’m not the only person who has come up with this idea, and I’ll admit that I may have seen it somewhere before. Nonetheless, I’m rather pleased with myself, and as you know, feeling smug is what this blog is all about.

Moving on.

I took BART all the way to Millbrae and I was ready to hit the mean streets of the Peninsular region of the SF Bay Area. Luckily, it was flat. And uneventful. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t have something to complain about!

San Mateo bike lane

For example,  the bike “lanes.” I’m using the “scare quotes” because this is not a bike lane. This is one line of paint, with a RAISED bike symbol to the right of it. What does this mean? Is everything from the line to the right a bike lane? Then why are all of those cars parked in it? Why is the symbol raised? Is that just to put another obstruction in the cyclists way? And 80% of the area is in the door zone. These were some sucky bike lanes. They make the Providence Broadway lanes look great by comparison.

Oh sure, just park your boat on public property, no big deal. I saw this sort of thing a few times – once even in San Francisco. At least there’s no danger of getting doored when I pass a boat in the “bike lane.”

A little difficult to see with the glare, but the sign on the left says “not a thru street.” Right next to the “Bike Route” sign. Good thing I had a GPS/phone with me or I may never have completed my fake commute.

It was a flat and uneventful ride – but I was riding on a Saturday. It’s difficult to know what it would be like on a weekday. This is by far the longest fake commute trip I have made yet. It just makes me glad that my current commute is only 2.6 miles one-way.

One more cycling innovation I tried out during my SF trip. I failed to get a good picture of it on its own, so we’ll have to take this picture:

bicycle parking brake on BARTAnd ENHANCE!

tucking it in

Difficult to see here, but I’ve tucked the show laces bow under the cross-over section of my shoelaces. Pretty clever, eh? Unfortunately, I can’t claim credit for coming up with this one on my own, I think I saw it on a fixie video that BikeSnobNYC made fun of a couple years ago.


4 responses to “Project Fake Commute: Bay Area Multi-Modal Mega Commute. (Part II)

  1. Doesn’t everyone do that with the laces when they ride with sneakers on?

    • I thought I came up with that… I guess technically I did. So did many others…

    • I know, right? I can’t believe it took me so long to come up with it on my own. Instead, I used to double-knot them, or tuck them into the sides of my shoes. Not especially elegant.

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