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Showing posts from November, 2014

A chain's gonna come!

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I think the men and woman on city council should support more bicycle lanes in Edmonton.

Not primarily or just because cycling is a good way to move. It surely is. It is good for the person pedalling (it's better to move your legs than to twitch your gas-pedal foot), it's actually good for the person driving (selfishly, there are fewer cars and trucks to deal with in traffic), it's good for neighbourhood-building, and it's just plain good for the environment.

It's just not as good for a certain kind of politician.

Bicycle commuters are a minority. That's pretty easy to see. It's seen most easily by those who are in their seats, in large part, because they are skilled in speaking to already-formed majorities. They're not as skilled at making majorities, but that is a different art. More people do rely on cars and trucks as their primary mode of transportation than do those who lean on bicycles. Many are not interested in changing that equation. And nobo…

Pedestrian Thoughts

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"So," I said, somewhat desperately, "if I can't ride my bike until this gets better, what do I do?"
My physiotherapist looked at me. He wrinkled his lips. He started to answer, and then considered his reply. The delay was just long enough to send its own message. Like a dash after a long in Morse Code.
And then he said: "Walk."

Well, that shorely makes me old, I thought. As old as the physiotherapist giving me the advice, I thought. Walk? I thought. I said nothing. But, really, waaalllkkk?

There is a scientific explanation for what is wrong with my neck and a mechanical explanation for pain in the shoulder blades and arm and the numbness in my fingers. I have my own description of it. But my mother reads these blogs, so I can't use "F---!"

The pain has knocked me off my daily bicycle commute, and that is sad. And it's dangerous, too, because the camouflaged sitting sneaks back in. Sitting at work, sitting at home and now sitting in …

And Snow It Begins

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And so it begins. *

Actually, "it" is the oldest, easiest story out there. Old because it is as old as the hills it covers. Easy because it actually falls into the laps of those, like TV news personalities, whose job it is to tell us important things and reflect us back to us.

"It," of course, is the snow.

It snowed today in Edmonton, Yes, it did. The city looks like a piece of blank foolscap ready for inscribing. And the snow means that the storyline of the last few weeks—that is, how much longer can we get away with no snow?—has given way to the new questions from TV land. These include: will the white stuff actually stick around? How much more will we get? And, should I get winter tires this year?

The winter-tires question is the penetrating one, because it gets us a bit closer to one reason we are told we so dislike the arrival of the season. It turns out to be pretty simple: it's hard to drive automobiles when it's snowy and icy.

In fact, that was the…

Thanks, Terry!

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When it comes to images of house-seller Terry Paranych, I still prefer the bus bench variety. His arms are folded confidently. He is looking ahead confidently. He appears trim and powerful and healthy and forever about 38 years old. In the suspenders, there's both a touch of the guy who has taken off his jacket to get to work for you, and a whiff of the guy who's not afraid to show you he's doing quite well by taking off his jacket and getting to work for you.

Plus, he gives the bus set a place to sit while waiting for the #1 to trundle down 102 Ave. Good guy. Nice teeth.

So, how to square that picture with the flame-throwing Paranych who emerged on Twitter recently? In a series of tweets, Paranych tried to torch the reputation of Ward 1 councillor Andrew Knack. He called Knack a "liar" and "The Great Pretender." Knack, said Paranych, made an "idiotic" decision that "let down" his constituents. He ridiculed those who support Knack a…