Monday, August 31, 2009

Critical Mass Rides Over the Coronado Bridge

Approximately 800 Critical Mass cyclists rode over the Coronado Bridge on Friday nite, August 28.

According to CM participants, approximately two-thirds of the ride made it on the bridge. The other third of the riders were denied entrance by San Diego Police Officers.

There were no known injuries caused by riding over the bridge.

As cyclists turned around to attempt to ride the bridge back into San Diego, they were denied entrance by Coronado Police Officers.

According to participants, the majority of the remaining CM riders rode around a 20+ mile route around the San Diego Bay to return to the center city area of San Diego. In addition to Coronado, the route around the bay--known as the Bayshore Bikeway-- passes through the city lines of Imperial Beach, Chula Vista, and National City; cities/neighbhorhoods that San Diego Critical Mass has never visited before. Alternatively, a minority of riders rode the ferry from Coronado to San Diego.

The San Diego-Coronado Bridge, locally known as the 'Coronado Bridge,' is a public highway segment which discriminates against cyclists and pedestrians. There is no separated path for pedestrians or cyclists, like most great American bridges of equivalent size. The bridge, however, offers free unlimited travel for motorists. Cyclists who participated on last friday's CM reportedly rode in the right-most lane of the bridge. One rider described automobile traffic on the bridge as 'light.'

Note to readers: Bic Control will be writing an 'opinion' piece on this matter very shortly. Stay blogged.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Tonite: Cretins Ride, Critical Mass, Footdown!

Critical Mass meets at 7pm at the "Big Fountain" in Balboa Park.

The Cretins "Zombie Ride" is to place within the CM ride. Dress up as a zombie!

Afterwards, check out Footdown for celebratory rage!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Public Enemy to Play The Streets of San Diego, Saturday

Public Enemy is to play San Diego Street Scene this Saturday, August 29, 2009.

Come out and watch this crew drop knowledge.

No U.S. musician has had as much mic control as Chuck D since Bob Dylan.

The above photo (circa mid-late 80s) is just so classic. It reminds me--Ian MacKaye (Minor Threat) had some epic mic control, too. His open Q&A at UCSD (organized by The Che Cafe Collective) which took place earlier this year was fascinating and impressive. Nevertheless, MacKaye's mic control, while influential and articulate, simply ain't the caliber of Mr. Chuck D (Public Enemy).

Bike The Bay, Ride Over Coronado Bridge: Sunday, Aug. 30

The 2nd annual Bike The Bay ride, organized by the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, is to take place on Sunday, August 30, 2009.

The San Diego-Coronado Bridge, a California highway segment which discriminates against pedestrians and cyclists by functioning as a public resource exclusively available to automobiles for 24 hours a day, 364 days a year, will be open for participating cyclists on the morning of Aug. 30.

Come out and help make history by participating in the most sustainable moment in the history of the San Diego-Coronado Bridge. A portion of the bridge will be closed off from Greenhouse-Gas-emitting-motorists to allow for zero-emissions-cyclists to enjoy a peaceful, one-of-kind view from atop the San Diego-Coronado bridge, locally known as the "Coronado Bridge."

Unfortunately, bicyclist's access to the public highway will not be free this coming Sunday--as it should be every day of the year, like other great public bridges in America.

Fortunately, however, the $ required to participate in the ride will be donated to San Diego's desperately needed Bicycle Coalition. SDCBC--SD's non-profit "go-to" bike advocacy group which works w/ cities throughout the county to improve bicycling awareness and conditions--organized this Sunday's event. To participate, SDCBC is charging $50 for members or $55 for non-members. All $ go to SDCBC to fund efforts to improve bicycling in San Diego county.

SDCBC has been working tirelessly for a few years to encourage the City of San Diego to re-pave Harbor Drive, an essential route for South Bay and San Diego area bicyclists and bicycle commuters. Harbor Drive is also a route which Bike The Bay utilizes to connect the above-mentioned areas. With that said, SDCBC further increased efforts to encourage the City of San Diego to re-pave Harbor Drive in time for Bike The Bay. Unfortunately, the City of San Diego informed SDCBC only last week that re-paving was an official "no go." The city explained to SDCBC that because a re-piping job at Harbor Drive is planned to take place in 2011, the city will not re-pave Harbor Drive any time before 2011.

Special note to Bike The Bay participants!: Beware of pot-holes and other unsafe, uneven surfaces which may throw you from your bicycle this Sunday!

Special note to bicyclists who utilize Harbor Drive on a normal basis for recreational and or commuting purposes!: Beware of pot-holes and other unsafe, uneven surfaces which may throw you from your bicycle everyday!

Upon arriving into Coronado, the ride will make its way down to the world-class Silver Strand bicycle path; one of the few separated bicycle paths in San Diego county.

The 25-mile ride will make use of a new bicycle path section near Imperial Beach, which opened on April 18, 2009.
As a cyclist raised in South Bay, I am extremely happy that this excellent new resource exists. The most dreaded part about the Bayshore Bikeway, before this new path existed, was riding down Palm Ave. Palm Ave is one of the least bicycle-friendly roads in the entire county.

The new bicycle path section allows for cyclists to utilize the Bayshore Bikeway more safely while avoiding the highly-dangerous Palm Ave connection in Imperial Beach. Palm Avenue (my stomping grounds while growing up in South Bay) is an 8-lane fast-food wasteland, with dozens of driveways (which allow motorists to literally drive on top of sidewalks designed for pedestrians) to access strip malls and a plethora of drive-thrus, like the Palm Ave Mc Donald's pictured here.

(I'd like to offer a mid-blog "Thank You!" to everyone involved with moving this new bicycle path forward. Special thanks to one of SD's most-effective bicycle advocates, Stephan Vance, SANDAG Senior Regional Planner and Project Manager for the new path section. Thank you, Stephan, for being one of the few urban planners in San Diego to actually a ride bicycle as a primary mode of commute).

For more info on the new Bayshore Bikeway path, visit the following addy:

Don't worry all you history buffs, I haven't forgotten about you. Along the Bayshore Bikeway keep your eyes out for old rail tracks. Over 100 years ago--as far back as the mid 1880s, to be exact--San Diegans utilized a comprehensive electric streetcar system to ride all over our city. Electric trolleys served Ocean Beach, Point Loma, Downtown, Bankers Hill, Hillcrest, North Park, Normal Heights, Kensington, Talmadge, City Heights, South Park, Barrio Logan, Sherman Heights, South East San Diego, National City, Imperial Beach, and even Coronado during the late 1880s-1940s! ('But where did all the electric streetcars go?' you may ask. Stay blogged for a far more comprehensive telling of the history of San Diego's electric streetcar system and the history of SD's automobile dependency, featured in the near future exclusively available here at Bic Control. I explored this subject in academia in a senior Urban Studies & Planning (USP) course called History of San Diego, as a Sociology and USP undergrad (turned alumni) at the University of California, San Diego. A blog-appropriate rendition of my research, along with photos of the streetcars, will be offered here).

You can thank the San Diego Historical Society for this image of an electric streetcar passing through Imperial Beach, the current site of the Bayshore Bikeway, sometime around 1913:

Bike The Bay will end at the Embarcadero near downtown San Diego. For more info, visit the SDCBC website:

For those that can't make the event this Sunday, the only time you will be to ride over the bridge will most likely be next year at the 3rd annual Bike The Bay. Another option for accessing Coronado is to ride the ferry which normally costs $3 (or ride the bus which now costs $2.25). Yet, if you drive into Coronado over the bridge, it's free. Coronado residents often complain (and rightfully so) about automobile traffic in their community wearing down roads, wearing down on-road paint, taking up space, reducing air quality due to pollutant emissions, all while putting others' lives at risk. But with a backwards policy in place which charges cyclists and pedestrians $3 (via ferry) to enter Coronado from the Downtown area, all while charging motorists nothing, what do you expect? It's actually less expensive to drive a car into Coronado than it is to ride a bicycle or walk. That should never be the case. This biased policy is an embodiment of backwardsness.

The Port of San Diego, the Ferry Company, the City of Coronado, the City of San Diego, SANDAG and Caltrans should work together to either build a pedestrian and bicyclist accessible path attached to the Coronado Bridge or work with the Ferry Company to allow pedestrians and cyclists free access into Coronado, throughout the day.

For more info on Bike The Bay, visit the following addy:

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Velodrome Philanthropist Randy Clark Passes Away

Randy Clark, a man described as a gracious philanthropist who donated time and money to the San Diego Velodrome, passed away on August 9, 2009.

Gary Westergren, M.C. and host of the many races featured at the San Diego Morley Field Velodrome, described Mr. Clark as a man who was 'overly quiet' about his 'overly generous' donations.

According to Sal from locally-based Leader Bikes, on the first Saturday (Aug. 15) following Mr. Clark's death, velodrome racers paid respect by placing a rose on the track, graciously followed by a lap around the track; the very velodrome Mr. Clark helped keep afloat.

Mr. Clark died from skin cancer. According to his friend (, Mr. Clark acquired a 'simple' skin cancer near his nose, which eventually spread throughout his body, particularly, his liver. He was 49 years old.

R.I.P. Randy I. Clark.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Bic Control hearts NYC Summertime

"I'm headin' on up to New York City ma'am":

(Intro to Midnight Cowboy (circa 1969); Joe Buck goes to NYC)

New York City, let's make fun! I'm bringing my bike, too! I'll be out in NY for 16 days. 3-4 of those days will be in upstate NY hanging out w/ Jay. Some of you may know him better as:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

See you later today, NYC.


Cult Classic 2009: Purposeful and Amazing

The first-ever Cult Classic SD which took place last Friday was amazing!

Days later, San Diego is still buzzing w/ positive energy generated from Friday nite's fun.

The event went off w/out a hitch; very well organized and attended.

The raffle was a huge success! Over $1,200 were raised from raffle sales tickets! Wow! There could not have been a better conclusion to the nite--all the money needed for Atip's Memorial ($600 for Encroachment Removal Permit & approximately $600 for custom bike rack) was raised in one evening!

Thank you to everyone who bought raffle tickets. Thank you to Leader Frames for donating the frame for the cause. And thank you to all the other awesome sponsors who were also incredibly generous in their donations.

We will keep readers updated on the step-by-step planning process required for the legal installation of Atip's Memorial, which will be in the shape of a customized road-bike shaped bike rack (read previous blog or for further details). If the City of SD Engineering Department approves our Public Improvement Project plan, and respects the motions of the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and the North Park Planning Sub-committee and (full) Committee, then the rack will be installed!

We've already come along way w/ this project. Just a few more loops to jump through before the plan is formally presented.

Look for updates in the near future, in regards to this matter.

Here are some pics of the evening which were taken by Matt Lingo


get the rest HERE

Players picked up points for how well they finished in each of six categories--1 minute freestyle, footdown, trackstand twister, u-lock pick up, sprint races, and best trick.

Congrats to Isaac for coming in first overall and for winning the PK Ripper bike, as a result!
Congrats to Joe Kelley for coming in second. Enjoy the messenger bag. Thanks for your witty Texas-style indie-rap freestyle flows at the afterparties.
Congrats to Marcus for coming in fourth! You threw down well in every event and you made Chula Vista and South Bay proud!

Out of all the games, I had most fun playing footdown. S'pose I'm a footdown kinda guy. I ended up coming in 4th in footdown which I'm pretty stoked about. The other comp I placed in Top 5 for was sprint races. Here, I came in 5th! I'll take it.

Trackstand Twister easily takes the prize for 'most innovative' and 'fun to watch' comp.

The entire evening was a blast, full of laughing, excitement, and good times.

Big ups to Dan Arel, SD Fixed, and all the kids involved w/ putting on this incredible event. The positive energy is flowing. Let's run err ride with it.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Friday nite!: Cult Classic SD! Benefit for Atip's Memorial!

This is gona be a blast! And it's a great cause!

Hopefully, if all the paperwork for the Public Improvement Project planning goes well and if the City of SD approves, then we can get an Encroachment Removal Permit to have a permanent memorial installed at Park & Uni for our fallen friend Atip!

We already have the official written support of the North Park Planning Committee, the North Park Planning Subcommittee, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition and the SD bike community! I'm looking at the permit paperwork as I type. That's almost like typing blind-folded. Woah!

The custom bike-shaped bike rack we (the kids "core-ly" involved w/ this project) have agreed on will be approximately $550-750 (depending on the level of "customization"). The permit which allows us to install something in the public right of way, like a statue, a bench, or in our case a bike rack, costs approximately $600. (These approximated figures according to the Executive Director of the SD County Bike Coalition).

The total costs for everything will be made completely transparent, obviously.

Fore more detailed information on the processes related to Atip's Ghost Bike memorial visit the account.

Come out tonite! Have fun while helping us raise some money!

Jehovas Fitness: "Welcome Back" Show & Tour Kickoff

Jehovas Fitness' highly-anticipated and first "welcome back" show at The Che Cafe last Thursday, August 6, was an important night for the San Diego DIY community.

Danny Munoz (Jehovas Fitness) who was travelling the earth, from Hawaii to Australia for the majority of 2009, returned to The Che Cafe, San Diego's historic all ages, co-op, punk rock venue to play his posi-core, upbeat, acoustic folk-punk songs to one of the largest crowds The Che has hosted all year.

(Danny and Sanipants jamming. Photos of the show taken by Daryl--

(Get mobilized)

No other musician in San Diego has as much mic control as Danny Munoz. His performances are featured here because he has a unique ability to strike a positive-chord w/ the San Diego community. Danny's art, lyrics, messages, volunteer-work and persona are valuable components which can improve and enhance one's community.

Doctor Bird, a three-piece band Danny is apart of, have played numerous pro-bike benefit shows at and for the San Diego Bike Kitchen (now Bikes Del Pueblo) and at Bike Proms.

Any event Danny plays at, whether it's w/ Doctor Bird or as Jehovas Fitness, tends to have a socially uplifting effect which increases peoples interest and passion in playing an active role as a conscientious member of society.

The Che "welcome back" show was also a tour kickoff tour for Jehovas Fitness. Keep your ears open for shows at the following cities:


As soon as Danny gets more info on venues, dates, and times, and relays that info me, I'll make the updates. (I'll try not to let take me a week (or more!) like many of my other "updates").

Jehovas Fitness would like to play some shows in the Midwest. If you can help out, send him an email. Contact info here:

Monday, August 3, 2009

Over 1,200 Celebrate Bicycling on July 31 Critical Mass

Over 1,200 cyclists showed up to ride in San Diego's Critical Mass on Friday July 31. As the stream of cyclists exited the westside of Balboa Park I was able to race up to the near-front and, like the sociology-nerd that I am, stood on the corner and counted 962 cyclists. Approximately 200-300 people were up ahead of me. Therefore, I am standing by my claim that, on the latest Critical Mass, (962+250=1212) over 1,200 cyclists (kids in trailers included) participated in San Diego's most popular, human-powered, sustainable, zer0-emissions, and free monthly-tradition.

And what a night it was! July 31st's CM was easily my favorite CM ride of the year. The route was reminiscent of the classic, old-school routes we used to frequent throughout 2006, when the average monthly turnout was 90 people. With 1,200 people en masse, the group started out going north on 5th Ave from Bankers Hill to Hillcrest, made a right on University, a left on Normal St. and connected with Park Blvd. to ride into University Heights.

The speed of the ride started w/ great pace; faster than the average CM speed, and managed to maintain that pace throughout the approximately 25 mile ride. In addition to the above-average speed of the ride, the group was able to maintain an excellent flow around corners and through intersections, while only making one main stop.

The ride took a right on Adams Ave. and headed east down Adams from University Heights to Normal Heights. The group then made a right on 3oth and continued riding south from North Park into South Park. As we zig-zagged through South Park we connected to Date St. which becomes Golf Course Dr.. Riding Golf Course Dr. had a funnel-effect on the ride. The density of the group increased and the speed of the ride slowed down as a result. The slow speed around Golf Course allowed other riders to catch up w/o having the entire group come to a complete spot. This was one of the reasons why the ride was able to remain tight.

Speeds naturally picked up as the group entered the downhill section of Golf Course Dr. The group made a well executed right turn onto 26th street where speeds further increased through Golden Hill's lone forest. The speed of July's CM ride, in addition, to it's excellently lead route made it 2008's most rollercoaster like ride, and as a result, my favorite.

The ride headed into Downtown along the bay near the Star of India. As we were riding down Harbor Drive I saw an old friend of mine who used to frequent rides back in 2006 and 2007. He said to me, "Dude, did you like that route or what?!" I responded "Yeah man, that was an awesome route. Reminds me of 2006." And he said, "haha, yeah, I was up at the front!" Turns out that the route, so far, had been lead by an old-schooler. That would explain the "locals-only" knowledge of the South Park urban grid. Dude's got bic control!

We continued to ride down Harbor Dr. through Point Loma, and stopped briefly at the intersection in OB nearest People's co-op market. From here, we rode the ramps into Mission Beach up Mission Blvd. into Pacific Beach, right on Garnet and then connected Mission Bay Dr.; a nice, clean, fast straight-shot back to Presidio Park.

Overall, an excellent ride, w/ faster than normal pace, positive communication, and fluent motion. Certainly, the best SDCM ride of 2009.

I departed from the main ride w/ a friend at Presidio Park where we nerded out and talked music and previous rides, then rode over to Footdown at Ruby Room for a deserved beverage of choice.

Another good night in SD.