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Thread Box:
Critical Mass Question :
Thread started by Joe Borfo at 06.1.10 - 12:21 am

Why do we need CM when we have MR?

Please discuss.



reply


is this supposed to be rhetorical? sschtuuupes



amodone
06.1.10 - 12:32 am

reply


To promote discussion and thought.

I'm not trolling either.





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by amodone
06.1.10 - 12:43 am

reply


Good question.
While I wouldn't have the straight answer myself, I always thought it was because CM was around longer than MR.
In the case of LACM, one would've thought that it would've been absorbed into the formula of a typical Friday night ride.
But, since the spirit of CM reigns supreme in most everyone's mind, it will most likely continue to endure as the podium of choice for bicycle rights.




bentstrider
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 12:58 am

reply


why do we need borfo when we got gopez?



mandingo
06.1.10 - 12:59 am

reply


There's this street in Guatemala I want to take you on some night.



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by mandingo
06.1.10 - 1:09 am

reply


Doesn't riding later on MR rides inadvertently promote our rights ride on the road as well?

Why does it have to be a protest when a party on wheels works just as well or even better?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by bentstrider
06.1.10 - 1:14 am

reply


We don't need Critical Mass. It really does nothing to promote cycling and just brings negative attention.

The best thing anyone can do to promote cycling is ride. Ride to the store, ride to the park, ride with friends and have fun. The more people on bikes the better exposure.

It is that simple. Critical Mass is dead.



Foldie
06.1.10 - 7:34 am

reply


Critical Mass ain't dead. You had nearly 1000 riders out on Friday night.
If anything, it eclipses any other ride out there.
You can sit at home and complain about it, or you can come out and ride and try and make things better.





328rides4ever
06.1.10 - 8:34 am

reply


I don't sit home and I don't complain, but I vote with my wheels (or my feet) and I try to choose wisely.



mr rollers
responding to a comment by 328rides4ever
06.1.10 - 8:50 am

reply


I need to shave my head and trim my beard again.



bentstrider
responding to a comment by 328rides4ever
06.1.10 - 9:10 am

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328rides4ever,

I've been on critical mass in other cities. I've seen Critical Mass in other countries. All of them have been slightly different in organization and function.

I agree with you that CM isn't dead. Do you think that CM could change in better ways in the way that it works in LA? What would you improve about it if you could?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by 328rides4ever
06.1.10 - 9:24 am

reply


Two words: CRITICAL MANNERS

I just think it's going to be impossible to ever convince the LAPD that's it's ok for a thousand riders to commit numerous vehicle code violations without at least some enforcement of it.

The enforcement still needs to be reasonable, but that's a different problem all together.



DJwheels
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 10:16 am

reply


I still don't know what the difference is.

But any ride that attracts the attention that Friday night received cannot be too good for Los Angles mass rides in general.

Get ready for permits.




md2
06.1.10 - 10:18 am

reply


MR is not a substitute for CM.
That should go without saying.

CM is very fluid. Because of its public ownership and its purported nonhierarchical structure. It will change and evolve with the times or it will wither away.

------------------------------

One thing that is really interesting about CM is that it is very beholden to the media in a certain way. Yeah, I said it.

For years the mass-media has associated Critical Mass with conflict.
Since CMAS is whomever shows up; the constant messaging by the mass media that CM is a place where cars and bikes conflict, that is the association many people have with it. That notion keeps a lot of people away. It is also makes some people who show up at CM feel more comfortable about having an aggressive attitude toward cars cause, "this is critical mass" .

If you look at WE ARE TRAFFIC the founders of Critical Mass describe early CM in was that are extremely similar to the culture we associate with Midnight Ridazz.

Since the founders of CM essentially gave it to the world. It is going to perpetually be described in ways that reflect the actions of the random people who show up and how their actions will be framed by the mass media.

It is what it is.

The great advantage to CM is that it connects the bike scene to a global movement...
What other bike ride happens regularly in 1000s of cities around the world in pretty much every industrialized and semi-industrialized nation?

(CM Antarctica your day will come)
There is over 700 hours in a month when there is no CM happening in LA that's plenty of time for people to express themselves on a bike in ways that are different from the CM methodology. >>>>>

On the contrary to MR some how making CMAS obsolete, MR.com actually helps highlight what makes CMAS methodology unique. CMAS isn't bigger LA because we have all these amazing choices >>>>>

But that's healthier right?

People who are into CM can go.
People who want another experience have a lot to choose from.
More Bikes = More Bikes



trickmilla
06.1.10 - 10:33 am

reply


There is over 700 hours in a month when there is no CM happening in LA that's plenty of time for people to express themselves on a bike in ways that are different from the CM methodology.

Though I think thats a good point; you really only need on night to fuck it up for the future months.

I honestly don't see this as an MR vs CM issue. I guarantee if CM stopped, the video above would just have different ride name associated with it.



md2
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 10:46 am

reply


Not that my opinion would change anyone else's here....but I've pretty much given up on L.A.'s Critical Mass. It's not just posted on M.R. so that's why the numbers are so high on the ride monthly.

I propose someone post a ride the same night same time....not as a protest but as an alternative. Friday nights have been such an integral part of my riding bikes with all of you that I hate to see last friday's being such a downer every month.





barleye
06.1.10 - 10:57 am

reply


sorry.. meant the CM Brutality video in the other thread...

Overall, I think 4 years ago a lot of people saw this coming. The mob mentality chatter was huge then and sooo many people stopped riding with MR because they were tired of the altercations and such.

The more MR/CM attracts new riders who want to get faded, while feeling a sense of power (via large group ignoring traffic laws) -- there will be trouble.

RWNN just had a bad incident. Crank Mob had it's problems. MR rides had their problems.

Its the content of the rides that is hurting mass rides in Los Angeles. It's not the cars, police or anyone else.

If Mass Rides in LA fail, then we have no one else to blame, because in many ways the trouble rides with us. That's the truth.



md2
06.1.10 - 10:59 am

reply


to me, MR is more about fun and not about politics at all

and CM has always been more about a statement and on the political side of things...

I prefer fun over politics



adrian
06.1.10 - 11:06 am

reply


I'm loving all these thoughtful responses.

If you don't mind, here is some of my input:

I think the problem is you have a lot of teenagers out there who don't even drive yet and possibly have little clues about the rules of the road to begin with. Critical Mass rides have a tendency to parade through intersections red lights because it's more cohesive for the group to stay together. Doesn't make it rightly so to run reds.

I support group rides, but the nature of CM lends itself to a lot of rule breaking and disobedience. Other cities handle CM differently than it runs in LA. Why can't we try to improve it?



Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 11:19 am

reply


No Disrespect. But, that's bullshit.

Rides in L.A. reflect the culture in L.A.
1-5% of any group of people is going to act the fool at any club, and bar, and big group gathering.

As we grow, we will get new people, with different perspectives.
We need to police ourselves. We need assert the culture we want on our rides but if rides are free and open, there will be assholes showing up at some point. period.

But WHY DO PEOPLE FEEL COMPELLED TO ACT AGGRESSIVELY TOWARD DRIVERS UNDER THE COVER OF THE MASS?

Simply, we deal with oppression day in and day out on the road.
Ridazz experience fear, anger, antagonism, bullying, frustration, and defenselessness on the road. Usually when riding all alone.

This is not "OUR FAULT".
This is a failure of the city.

We have a RIGHT to ride a bike.
No license, no permit, no permission is necessary to ride a bike in LA
yet the environment is dangerous and hostile towards us.
the infrastructure is hostile towards us

Our rights are trampled by a city that has been redesigned around the PRIVILEGE of driving a car.

Everybody needs to take responsibility for their actions. I don't accept selfis jerkish behavior on rides. it repels me greatly.

However, its clear LADOT needs to work overtime to fix a broken system that has led to a hostile environment.

When people get bullied it is inevitable that some of them will lash out.
We need to help prevent that, but we can not do it alone
We need the la's leadership class to start working a lot harder to fix this city.
And repair a toxic environment that is too often too hostile toward bicycle riders.







trickmilla
responding to a comment by md2
06.1.10 - 11:22 am

reply


what part of "that" is bullshit? Because it seems like we're on the same page.



md2
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 11:26 am

reply


Because improving it would mean influencing the teenage chucklheads to ride respectfully. They can't even ride amongst themselves without racing through the group and crossing someones wheel or staying out of oncoming traffic. 90% of LACM is teenagers and early 20 somethings. While it's rad that they are riding bikes, they don't yet have the common sense to understand their actions are ruining the bigger picture.

On that last lacm I didn't Really see any drunk kids, just kids who don't see the bigger picture and won't until they are a decade older.



Roadblock
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 11:31 am

reply


I can't wait until World Naked Bike Ride...



FBI
06.1.10 - 11:31 am

reply


my point is that we have we the capacity to complete rides without the altercations / without participating or contributing to them. We cant help it if some asshole cops or drivers, or what not instigate something... BUT that is rarely the issue, though it happens.

For years now our own riders are instigating. That's my only point about it being our fault. You can blame education systems, god, prescription drugs, etc... If were blaming the environment for our behavior, then that's a completely different thread. But it's an argument I would more than likely agree with you on.

I think Borfo is largely correct in thinking CM and MR COULD / SHOULD occur without these incidents. Lets keep in mind -- this is LOS ANGELES, not Portland, not Amsterdam -- this is L.A.!!!

The same L.A. where Biggie Smalls was probably killed by our own police.

Whats the solution: don't hate on Crank Mob's new method of organizing rides.



md2
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 11:36 am

reply


For the Naked teenagers?



Roadblock
responding to a comment by FBI
06.1.10 - 11:39 am

reply


Why does it have to be a protest when a party on wheels works just as well or even better?

Assumes facts not in evidence.



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 11:40 am

reply


Joe, it can change. It can evolve into a better ride. We need people like you out there helping to guide these rides.
Two weeks ago a rider was attacked with a baseball bat on a group ride, that wasn't Critical Mass. Last year a rider was shot, but the bullet hit his backpack thankfully, during a group theme ride that was going through Highland Park, that wasn't Critical Mass. All the group rides run the red lights, singling out one ride as the whipping boy is the wrong strategy. We can't scapegoat Critical Mass for all the bad things that happen on group rides. I was at the last four Critical Mass rides. No tagging, no stealing. But they kept announcing that over the loudspeakers. "No tagging, no stealing." You know what else they announced...if you don't have money for tacos, someone will buy you a taco. If you want a beer, someone will give you a beer. That's how all group rides will change. People willing to step up and make the changes.
Some people even had the balls to send some riders home who had spray cans in their pack backs four months ago. Again, people willing to step up an make the change. Yeah we can have private invited rides with our friends, but that's not going to change the vast majority of bicycle riders out there. If we want change, we have to be willing to work for it. I do agree with you. We can improve it and we should improve it. I also agree with Roadblock, an 18-20 year old just thinks differently from a 30-40 year old. And hey, if they're on a bike, they're not in a car. l.



328rides4ever
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 11:42 am

reply


Are you denying that CM lends to a protest like nature?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.1.10 - 11:46 am

reply


CM never really was intended to be guided by one or two individuals, it's supposed to be improved collectively through open discussion towards implementing changes together. Chicago CM fortunately has the support of their own MAYOR! He make's sure the start of CM is helped out by some cops on motorcycle in the heart of downtown, and then the ride takes it's own course. Everyone seems to be looking out for each other and reducing/avoiding any conflicts or confrontations with motorists. A lot of courtesy and thank yous and smiling and waving going on...

I am happy to be part of a unified movement to keep CM alive for the better in LA.

I am also happy to focus on smaller group MR rides that happen at night for fun rather than just spectacle and lending towards an "In your face" type of attitude.






Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by 328rides4ever
06.1.10 - 11:56 am

reply


Very, very well said.



Ms. Stephanie
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 12:01 pm

reply


One of my biggest peeves are riders on the opposing traffic side of the street. What the fuck for?!?! - other than to potentially die or piss a bunch of people off?

Not enough stressed about staying on the right lane and acting like a vehicle should on the road. COMMON SENSE shit that goes flying out the window. How can that be improved?



Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 12:01 pm

reply


Maybe it's time for the people who love Critical Mass to start Practicing Some
"Xerocracy"


From How to make a CRITICAL MASS

In San Francisco the organization of the event has been as much a part of its success as anything else. Organizational politics, with its official leaders, demands, etc., has been eschewed in favor of a more decentralized system. There is no one in charge. Ideas are spread, routes shared, and consensus sought through the ubiquitous copy machines on every job or at copy shops in every neighborhood—a "Xerocracy", in which anyone is free to make copies of their ideas and pass them around. Leaflets, flyers, stickers and ‘zines all circulate madly both before, during and after the ride, rendering leaders unnecessary by ensuring that strategies and tactics are understood by as many people as posssible.
Xerocracy promotes freedom and undercuts hierarchy because the mission is not set by a few in charge, but rather is broadly defined by its participants. The ride is not narrowly seen as an attempt to lobby for more bike lanes (although that goal exists) or to protest this or that aspect of the social order (although such sentiments are often expressed). Rather, each person is free to invent his or her own reasons for participating and is also free to share those ideas with others. Some people are there to promote human powered transportation as a viable alternative, others seek the respect of motorists and city planners and some take part simply because they like riding bikes and feeling a sense of community with all the other cyclists on the Critical Mass ride.
This "organic system" doesn’t lead to chaos, but rather a festive, celebratory atmosphere. Great pains have been taken to avoid the common pitfalls of other movements, with much Xerocratic space being devoted to arguments against moralizing attacks on motorists and other unproductive tendencies. By presenting bicycling as a fun, positive alternative to the dreary destructiveness of car culture, Critical Mass has gained immeasurably.



trickmilla
06.1.10 - 12:07 pm

reply


excellent!

How can this also work via the interwebs?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 12:09 pm

reply


@md2 I agree with you 1000% - We SHOULD have rides without any incidents.

Actually, that last entire rant of mine seems ridiculous to me now. I got worked up at the suggestion that this conflict is entirely the fault of the larger bike community.

But actually, I do totally support what you are saying. If we want to keep bike culture healthy, we need to start making steps towards positively influencing the culture.

I would say that the "CRANK MOB 2.0" tactic is a solution.
There many other things we need to do support the internal health of the bike scene.

The very fact that Critical Mass can never, and will never, be able to be a Facebookonly project is reason alone why we should and will always have a Critical Mass.




trickmilla
responding to a comment by md2
06.1.10 - 12:25 pm

reply


viral video?

but I think zines & flyers are a more democratic way of getting competing ideas of CM floating around.




trickmilla
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 12:29 pm

reply


I really think this XEROCRACY, concept needs to be implemented. Hopefully next month I can help contribute to this. Let's do this huh? Who can help?

Flyers will be made and passed out to participants to encourage safe and courteous behavior.


"Xerocracy
In San Francisco the organization of the event has been as much a part of its success as anything else. Organizational politics, with its official leaders, demands, etc., has been eschewed in favor of a more decentralized system. There is no one in charge. Ideas are spread, routes shared, and consensus sought through the ubiquitous copy machines on every job or at copy shops in every neighborhood—a "Xerocracy", in which anyone is free to make copies of their ideas and pass them around. Leaflets, flyers, stickers and ‘zines all circulate madly both before, during and after the ride, rendering leaders unnecessary by ensuring that strategies and tactics are understood by as many people as posssible.
Xerocracy promotes freedom and undercuts hierarchy because the mission is not set by a few in charge, but rather is broadly defined by its participants. The ride is not narrowly seen as an attempt to lobby for more bike lanes (although that goal exists) or to protest this or that aspect of the social order (although such sentiments are often expressed). Rather, each person is free to invent his or her own reasons for participating and is also free to share those ideas with others. Some people are there to promote human powered transportation as a viable alternative, others seek the respect of motorists and city planners and some take part simply because they like riding bikes and feeling a sense of community with all the other cyclists on the Critical Mass ride.
This "organic system" doesn’t lead to chaos, but rather a festive, celebratory atmosphere. Great pains have been taken to avoid the common pitfalls of other movements, with much Xerocratic space being devoted to arguments against moralizing attacks on motorists and other unproductive tendencies. By presenting bicycling as a fun, positive alternative to the dreary destructiveness of car culture, Critical Mass has gained immeasurably."




Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 1:20 pm

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unless we're handing out flyers to drivers.....to the public there is no discinction been CM and M.R. or just group rides in general.

To the drivers, we're just a bunch of people on bikes....whether it be last friday of the month in mid city or any other night of the week...we're taking up each lane on our rides and going thru red lights.

I tried to get people discussing the LACM problems here last year and it went nowhere.

the kids fuck it up..plain and simple. we can't police them...there's too many of them. you try to talk to them and they don't answer back or they ride away. wheelies in the pack, brakeless single speeds, do i sound bitter? i was excited about LACM when i started riding with groups in L.A.

Now I just avoid the ride unless i'm really in the mood to ride in a group. be real....there's no political statement being sent to the drivers on LACM.



barleye
06.1.10 - 1:29 pm

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"but I think zines & flyers are a more democratic way of getting competing ideas of CM floating around."

I do, too, and I think it's a FANTASTIC idea. I just may put something together.



Ms. Stephanie
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 1:32 pm

reply


I totally understand your bitterness.

My point is that it can work in other cities, so why can't it work here?

What are we doing wrong? Is it worth even trying to improve?


I am in support of group rides, but there's got to be some encouraged outreach to the community to make effort to keep the rides safe and fun.

I feel Midnight Ridazz has the power to affect that change. Don't you?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by barleye
06.1.10 - 1:37 pm

reply


one of the disappointing aspects of the argument is that there are two kinds of problems:

1. Kids who need MR but come from f'ed up backgrounds
2. Kids (adults) who get pushed around by their cheating girlfriend M-F in Los Feliz, and then become the tough guy on Friday night mass rides.

The sad part which I've hesitated to mention before, is that MR and other great rides are pushing out (1). It's saddening because rides that try to weed out the "bad kids" tend to perpetuate the dichotomies we find in Los Angeles.

It's like private schools that promote themselves as progressive / social justice type campuses, but the only people that can afford it are rich. Sure they hand out a few scholarships to the best behaved from the inner city, but didn't justice also have the knuckleheads in their scope too?

The point being, there is a significant reason you find that the brains behind MR can largely fall under a color of skin. MR rides would probably never had been originated in South Central. If you get my general drift, you might realize how privileged you are to be able to think about creating / organizing critical mass, because that kind of thinking is foreign to many residents. Get a 100 black kids on bikes in South Los Angeles, and you have a gang. A bunch of white kids in Echo Park is bike ride.

Don't get this post wrong -- the issue is that the more MR tries to distance itself from young, inner city kids -- the move we contribute to the divide between the kids that need help, and the kids that really don't need help. The latter being able to enjoy all these "cool" things in Los Angeles", while the former get to waste away in their fucked up conditions looking for something dangerous to cure their boredom.

I don't know the answer. It's not anyone's job to babysit... what it comes down to (in my opinion) is whether MR just wants to party or if MR really wants to do more.






md2
responding to a comment by barleye
06.1.10 - 2:01 pm

reply


Why are "we" doing something wrong? Maybe it has something to do with other factors. The LAPD is known as a very militaristic police force with crap-ass community outreach efforts and a history of overt racism. The layout and urban planning of Los Angeles historically privileges the dominance of the automobile far more than cities like New York, Chicago and San Francisco. I just read in a blog this morning that at a Critical Mass in San Francisco, over 250 riders were arrested during a Critical Mass ride.

Yeah, there are some people that we need to police ourselves within our community, and there's always room for improvement, but jeebus. We're doing okay.



Ms. Stephanie
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 2:18 pm

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However, my response to this - "I feel Midnight Ridazz has the power to affect that change. Don't you?" - is a wholehearted YES.




Ms. Stephanie
06.1.10 - 2:20 pm

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Hm. I didn't see that barleye posted something new that you were responding to, so my response is a little off. Sorry about that.



Ms. Stephanie
06.1.10 - 2:22 pm

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@md2 SO GOOD. Thank you for posting that.



Ms. Stephanie
responding to a comment by md2
06.1.10 - 2:23 pm

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But like everyone says, CM is the whipping boy of the bike community. So why don't we just focus on MR style rides rather than CM style?

Why can't we be different than the way everyone else does things? We still ride our bikes, we still assert our rights, we just don't make the ride so confrontational - (Unless conflict is what you are looking for...)


CM has a rough history of conflict whereas MR has a history of FUN.








Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by Ms. Stephanie
06.1.10 - 2:26 pm

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I really wish you could contribute a bit more to this... Too busy swaggling?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.1.10 - 2:48 pm

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I think a lot of people hesitate to take an active roll of helping to shape CM.
CM has a rep of being leaderless and to a certain extent people in L.A. take that idea to it's laziest conclusion.
Whereas in SF, people took that as a sense of group ownership, that everybody was welcome to assert themselves.

Also ... there is a disconnect with trying to influence the culture of a ride from a seated position in front of a computer. These are discussions should be taking place every month at wilshire and western before the ride.



trickmilla
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 3:01 pm

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Alright, fine. I was just trying to spin some wheels, that's all.



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 3:06 pm

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Don't get me wrong.
This is a tool that wasn't around when CMAS started and I think it's great.
But many people have forgotten about the analog tools that were used to craft a ride when critical mass was founded almost 20 years ago and started facing these same issues.



trickmilla
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 3:18 pm

reply




True dat!


(P.S. - speaking of tools.... BEHOLD THE ULTIMATE TOOL. )





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 3:23 pm

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every CM that I attend and BBD is at...he announces over the P.A. what CM is all about...that goes right out the window once the ride starts.

to Borfo:

Q: My point is that it can work in other cities, so why can't it work here?

A: It rides too fast... compounding that with the fact that we don't hand out shit to the cars or hold signs to differentiate LACM from any other ride.

Q: Is it worth even trying to improve?

A: Personally I don't think so...but it is a Friday night and somebody should post a chill ride with a few stops and just have it end at the people's ride cuz obviously that's what the riders want. again...do i sound bitter?

===

I guess what I'm trying to say is that LACM to me is just another ride and being "leaderless" makes it even worse. you guys keep going at it to find a solution....i'll chime in if i come up with something spectacular.

yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeehawwwwwwwwwwwwwww





barleye
06.1.10 - 3:32 pm

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Most MR rides start late or are on the weekends where it doesn't impact traffic as much. CM starts during rush hour on a Friday. That is the difference in my opinion. all the other stuff about trying to control "the kids" from fucking up the ride is the same.

If you started critical mass at 10:00 pm and avoided Hollywood blvd this would be moot.

The same % of douchieness will happen regardless.





Foldie
06.1.10 - 3:32 pm

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theres that word again! wats CMAS?



fixie4life
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.1.10 - 3:38 pm

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Yep.

This concept is actually a repost that Roadblock once mentioned many many moons ago, but I'm too lazy to dig it up. In other words, this whole discussion is nothing new. This has all been said before and will probably be said again and again.

I'm just glad CrazyPenis hasn't chimed in yet...

(wait for it...)



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by Foldie
06.1.10 - 3:39 pm

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I move we create an LOS ANGELES CRITICAL MANNERS



Who is in?







Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by DJwheels
06.1.10 - 3:47 pm

reply




"CM has a rough history of conflict whereas MR has a history of FUN."



Hmmmmmm let's take a closer look at this.............

Shootings? MR - check, LACM - still waiting
Stabbings? MR - check, LACM - still waiting
Bike thiefs? MR - check, LACM - still waiting
Graffiti and tagging? MR - check, LACM - check
Police harassment? MR - check, LACM - check
Running red lights? MR - check, LACM - check

I'm sure I missed a few points, but I really wonder which group has really lost it's way?




fixie4life
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 3:50 pm

reply


Fair enough. Good point has been made.

Where do we go from here?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by fixie4life
06.1.10 - 3:56 pm

reply


Those of us who want Critical Mass to be different actually go on the ride, introduce yourself and talk to as many people as you can to make a personal connection with people, make zines / flyers / signs to express your reason for riding to share with other riders and maybe even with drivers, police the ride ourselves.



Ms. Stephanie
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 4:10 pm

reply


Where do we go from here?

Straight to the moon, but of course!


Change the day. Begin Critical Manners 2 weeks into the month... Start small, bring flyers, create awareness in small doses... maybe even divide the group up into smaller groups, each parading along a set route, have them meet at "meet" points throughout the entirety of the ride... repeat.






Bikekowski
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 4:11 pm

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Thanks. You interested?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by Bikekowski
06.1.10 - 4:15 pm

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Why, yes, yes I would.



Bikekowski
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 4:18 pm

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I honestly feel that unless we change what critical mass is -- essentially creating leaders-- it wont change. i think alot of these kids ride so fast because so many others are too -- and they cant tell where the real front of the pack is. I think it would be REALLY REALLY beneficial to at least designate a few people who will be in the front -- with HUGE FLAGS or BANNERS over their bikes to make it clear where the front is, and most of the kids WILL stay behind, and the ones who want to ruin stuff can smash ahead. when the whole group (or a majority of it) KNOWS to stay behind a point, they will. the people who are there to really contribute to the community and critical mass will definitely listen and stay behind, and it will be obvious to any "speeders" that they are going ahead of the leaders.... if they do this anyway, then it's obvious there's some malicious intent because they are not following "rules", and it's time for some public shaming or dropping of them from the ride altogether. I really feel that unless a leader-or group of leaders takes charge to ensure that sanity and ethics and maintained on the ride, it will continue to fail, give us a bad image, and end up in a parade-like ordinance that they have in NYC.....



superblueman3
06.1.10 - 4:18 pm

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I agree with most of this. I still think there can be more of a communal organization than a leader though...



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by superblueman3
06.1.10 - 4:21 pm

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Where we go from here is to let things be. This last CM was a fanfuckintastic ride except for the piggys that are in hot water now. Yet all people can do is think how do we get CM in shape? How bout getting your own house in shape first?

CM has survived and is kicking ass now cause of it's format. Sure it'd be cool to do a tweak here or there, but part of the appeal of it is its format. Work at ADDING to the experience, not changing it.



fixie4life
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.1.10 - 4:45 pm

reply


MR and CM have had waves of strong outgoing personalities that although may not have been the leader of CM, they were still predominantly followed... right now, it seems to lack those individuals to actually show up and participate on rides... from reading posts and comments there seems to be many smaller groups, MOMs, Tren Way, Sins & Sprockets, bicykillers, angelopes, Crank Mob, and so forth... there are meeting spots too, USC, UCLA, and so forth... what about getting these groups to be your communal leaders... or whoever is willing to pull that heavy music trailer, let them just ride and people will follow the music not the guys racing... let them continue racing and the ones that want to go out there and race, let them go... if they choose to be part of the ride they will come back if they choose to break off and do their own ride then great...

if these groups do not step up then how can it be expected that teenagers be the communal leaders, I am speaking for us that are older, we were all teens once and did not have a bigger picture outlook... we were trying to have fun and probably did stupid things, hey it's a learning process... but we need to really analyze who are community is and MD2 alluded to some issues. I saw the pictures from the last Crank Mob all we need to do is study those pictures and who those riders are... i would like to see more pictures just to get some perspective...

I like the idea from stephanie about going around and introducing themselves and what the purpose is... showing up and those outgoing personalities, those smaller groups may need to step up just for a couple of months... i still do not believe most riders there understand the purpose...

having Cmanners on a different Friday is no good.. dont you interfere with the second friday ride which is a MR ride? and i would prefer to see that Cmanners ride on the same friday as CM... let people decide what ride they want to participate... i am sure some individuals will still choose the CM as it is... while others want some change...

the group or mass should consider punishments and rewards.... if riders start to race or ride on the wrong side of the track then the ride needs to stop for a couple of red lights... make this known... CM attracts new riders every month because where ever it is posted, the ideals of CM are great... people want to be a part of it... the posting mentions that it is a slow pace ride...let us define that because many new riders get dropped since it is not a slow paced ride and since no one knows what they are doing... then the ride breaks off into smaller rides... in many pictures and videos it is amazing to see so many blinking lights together for a purpose... whether it is to promote cycling rights or to see people dressed up in pokemon outfits...

it is difficult to say how this will turn out because unfortunately we only see the same couple of screen name on these sites... i have a feeling the people on this site right now are not the issue... but it is the other 300riders that do not participate in this conversation....


















dayone
06.1.10 - 5:00 pm

reply


i meant who our community is



dayone
06.1.10 - 5:04 pm

reply


Critical Manners should be same day same time same place. An announcement can be made for the regular LACM to start riding at 7:30pm and Critical Manners can leave 5 - 10 minutes later going a different direction.

It's not brain surgery to pull off.



barleye
06.1.10 - 5:36 pm

reply


I like Bike Town Beta more



Gav
06.1.10 - 9:30 pm

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I agree that CM should start later. Maybe 9:30. There would be less kids (I think ...) and there is far less traffic to contend with. Less traffic means a safer ride and less pissed-off drivers and cops.



Hallucin8
06.1.10 - 11:54 pm

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People are talking about Courteous Mass/Critical Manners .... check out San Jose's Bike Party.

http://wiki.sjbikeparty.org/wiki/Ridership_history

They regularly have 1,000+ riders. Last year they had one ride with 3,500 riders and one with 4,000+. Their rides are like a combination of a party ride and a Critical Manners type ride.



Hallucin8
06.2.10 - 12:29 am

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But WHY DO PEOPLE FEEL COMPELLED TO ACT AGGRESSIVELY TOWARD DRIVERS UNDER THE COVER OF THE MASS?

Simply, we deal with oppression day in and day out on the road.
Ridazz experience fear, anger, antagonism, bullying, frustration, and defenselessness on the road. Usually when riding all alone.

This is not "OUR FAULT".
This is a failure of the city.


No disrespect, Patrick, but *that* is bullshit of the worst and most counterproductive sort.

I agree with Foldie's first post in the thread, except for the last sentence. No, Critical Mass is not dead in LA. It just ought to be.



PC
responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.2.10 - 4:48 am

reply


Are you denying that CM lends to a protest like nature?

What?



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 4:58 am

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...wait, I think I understand. You're asking me whether I'm disagreeing with you that Critical Mass is basically an adversarial movement/activity--something that is about being "anti-" something else. Right?

No, I'm not disagreeing with you about that. The traditional Critical Mass, as conceived in San Francisco and practiced worldwide (if not necessarily in Los Angeles), is indeed a kind of protest. I was disagreeing with your assertion that "a party on wheels works just as well or even better."

First, I don't think that Critical Mass even in its purest form works at all. I used to think it did...or, to be really honest with you, I used to want to think it did. It doesn't. It's fundamentally flawed. Take away the dumb teenagers, pointless liquor store stops, mad dash to the People's Ride, etc. etc., and it's still broken.

As a vehicle (har, har) for promoting cycling as a means of transportation, Critical Mass is a failure from the start: when the whole point of a ride is that it isn't going anywhere in particular and isn't in much of a hurry to get there, it can never be effective at making onlookers think "Hey, bicycles sure look like a great way to get places!" If anything, it makes it look as though cycling in the city is something that is only feasible you have 500 other cyclists to escort you.

As an assertion of the rights of cyclists to the road, it's also a non-starter. You can talk all you want about CM being an "organized coincidence," but to the people you're trying to reach, it's a parade, plain and simple. We've all watched parades. Do we ever come away from them with a new appreciation of the rights of flower-bedecked floats, marching bands, and giant inflatable cartoon characters to use the public roads? No? Then why should we expect car-bound commuters to see us having our little Friday night hoo-haw and go home with their preconceived notions about road use somehow shattered and recast?

There is another aspect to Critical Mass as its founders envisioned it, and that is the temporary alternative social space that it creates. In this, CM as it's actually practiced is a moderate success, even in Los Angeles. And in this, I agree with you that Midnight Ridazz and its many offshoots are just as good or better.

But when it comes to promoting cycling-as-transportation as distinct from cycling-as-recreation, or educating non-cyclists about the rights of bicycle riders on the streets, I don't think Critical Mass is any good at it and I don't think that Midnight Ridazz is either--nor do I expect the latter to be. If MR has any "message" at all (and I've always been really skeptical about this idea), it's a message about what it means to have a good time in the city. To burden it with much more social or political significance than that is, IMO, to try to turn it into something that it is not and probably should not try to be.

Does that come close to answering your question?

(Incidentally, I would like to see an end to the assumption on some people's part that being critical of Critical Mass is somehow defending the status quo. Tsk, tsk, you activist-rebel types. The late Saul Alinsky tried to tell you guys years ago that when a tactic becomes a drag or just plain isn't working, it should be abandoned in favor of something that does work. Weren't you guys listening?)




PC
06.2.10 - 5:54 am

reply



If Mass Rides in LA fail, then we have no one else to blame, because in many ways the trouble rides with us. That's the truth.

Well, if the day finally comes when there's no more party-rides to look forward to when I head to the LA area, then my reign in this state is officially done.

If it wasn't for finding out about this cool thing in July of '07, I probably would've still been truckin', but also living in a humble abode in Taos, NM or some quiet place like that.

Seriously, before MR rolled along, I hardly ever found a reason to fly over the SG-Mountains down to BladeRunner-ville.




bentstrider
responding to a comment by md2
06.2.10 - 6:16 am

reply


Finally!


So please tell me - Do you think CM lends NEGATIVELY towards any advancement or awareness of cycling in LA? In other words, is it crippling our progress?

Do you think MR is any different in that aspect? You did seem to give MR a slight significance over CM.


Do you think Critical Manners would be some sort of antidote to the negative aspects of CM. Or is it just "broken" no matter what we do?

I'm looking for solutions and suggestions here, not just stating the obvious...

e.g. Break the ride up into smaller groups, stop at red lights, have a committee of revolving volunteers rather than a couple leaders, etc.

This is not just for PC to answer either.




Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 9:49 am

reply


Well you sort of already answered these questions and provided no solutions.

What is an alternative, if any? Bike Town Beta? Or just commute on your bike daily?


I guess I'm coming from a viewpoint of wanting to see quick advancement and attention to bikes being held as a worthy form of transport in LA, quickly. I feel a lot of us, most of us, are holding that wish. I guess I just want to know if we are going about it the best way and if there is something that needs to change in order to make it happen quicker. Eh?


Thanks.



Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 10:00 am

reply


Borfo:

Are you trying to create some Utopian world where huge rides like critical mass can promote cycling?

I know you said other cities have done it, but how did they do it? Was it organized like the one in Hungary? Do the police baby sit the ride?

I guess my thought is that small rides work really well. Your Bukowski ride is a good example of how my ideal ride should be. More fun less drinking in a park.

I hope you find the answers you are looking for but I doubt much will change on the rides themselves.



Foldie
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 10:04 am

reply


Critical mass is a part of bike culture now.

It's not the whole, but what makes it special is that it draws every niche of cyclist to attend. No other event (outside of a Fat Tire Festival) draws such a diverse crowd.

I hope mass rides stay, but they need to be resurrected.

I think the problem is that none of us are prepared to handle the diverse attitudes. MR wasn't a branch of psychology intended to curb behaviors. I fear that what I'm seeing is the same story: one group of kids win and the others are left out, unless they can learn some (critical) manners.

If your vision of CM cannot have both. It is either exclusive and disfranchising, or it has to cope with the diverse attitudes. Who here has the ability to tackle such a problem? As I've said before, if anyone can solve the problems MR is experiencing with these new comers, then you can probably write a book and buy Los Angeles it's bike infrastructure.

There's an opportunity for MR... You have the kids attention... just don't push them away.



md2
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 10:53 am

reply


I guess I am.

In Amsterdam they do need a CM. Everyone is already on bikes and in traffic all day long. Paris CM has two Motorized escorts in the front to help cork. (I know, lame, but it works). Chicago did the same thing at the beginning of the ride and it works. I'm sure you've seen those amazing videos of CM in Budapest where over 6,000 people attend. They have volunteers in green shirts and seem to act as traffic cops. There is no perfect CM anywhere, I agree. New York has had a rough history with the Cops. PDX and SF manage well, but there are always reports of road rage incidents and stuff.

Smaller rides do work well, I agree. But, like some people said CM is here to stay. I just want to know how we can make it better before something gets put on the evening news nationwide about some kids who get killed by oncoming cars or something like that which may cast a shadow over the whole thing. It affects us all as riders. No?

Anyways, I really am done. I am just trying to stimulate thought and discussion rather than the normal trolling that happens on this forum.





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by Foldie
06.2.10 - 11:02 am

reply


Very good point. Is this going to be an invite CM?

Joe, you really should talk to the nearly 800 LACM members on Facebook too. Here you are only conversing with seven or eight people, which is not representative of the LA Critical Mass riders. How many of the people in this discussion actually ride Critical Mass every month? There's a whole new group of riders who are veterans of Critical Mass, you should talk to them. And the only way to do that is to go on the ride.



sgrant
responding to a comment by md2
06.2.10 - 11:06 am

reply


oops I meant to say Amsterdam doesn't need a CM.



Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 11:06 am

reply


Where is the link?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by sgrant
06.2.10 - 11:07 am

reply


I used to go on the ride in 2005 Ive been on many since. I've only seen it get more and more out of hand. I get freaked out and leave. I don't want to see bad shit happen.



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by sgrant
06.2.10 - 11:08 am

reply


Too late...



AestheticMynd
06.2.10 - 11:12 am

reply


I'm actually trying to stir the pot. I don't care if people tell me off. I'm not taking it personally. I just want to hear all opinions and create some momentum here. Alex Thompson would have something to say, but he hasn't said anything. Maybe he thinks it's not worth the effort...



Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 11:16 am

reply


Borfo:

I really appreciate your efforts by starting this dialogue. I think it is helpful for us to frame the issues and get perspective. I suspect the people that have an opinion here want to see CM be what it can be. Like many issues most people don't care about the sausage making aspects of the ride and just want to have fun.

Anyway thanks for continuing the dialogue.



Foldie
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 11:17 am

reply



Joe,

Here's the link LA Critical Mass Facebook/ I think your intentions are good. Don't get me wrong. I am just saying...that the ride has existed so long, it has a built-in LA Critical Mass culture, that anyone trying to improve needs to be sensitive to that culture. You don't want to look like the Missionaries trying to convert the Native Americans.



sgrant
06.2.10 - 11:22 am

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It's okay, I really don't care how I look to others.


I'll show them some culture!



Thanks!





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by sgrant
06.2.10 - 11:25 am

reply


You also don't want Critical Mass to look like some sensitive group that can't handle some voices talking about it. And yet, wasn't that "part" of the goal of CM -- to instigate discussion / action? If the culture is so sensitive to being talked about, then it probably has little business taking shots at other entities.

I would however be interested in knowing if you can explain that built-in culture. I think a large part of what it means when some of say this shit is dead/ dying, is that the culture is lost -- disappeared.

What exactly do you see? Maybe that will help the discussion... because we've been on LACM when there would only be a hand full of riders showing up, and now its so huge, and in some sense... I liked to understand how "that" culture is represented in such a large group or whether you're just referring to a hand full of riders.




md2
responding to a comment by sgrant
06.2.10 - 11:53 am

reply


I'm pretty amused by the idea of letting CM die. It's not going to happen. No single person on this forum can dictate the future or well-being of Critical Mass. Not in LA, not in any city.

I think I've mentioned this before on another thread, this thread is essentially the millionth REPOST for the same subject.

1. READ UP ON CRITICAL MASS. It is a PROTEST RIDE, period. That IS what it's about.

2. Every major city has a Critical Mass. It's expected, and I guarantee you that a good percentage of the people that find out about LACM and go to it have never heard of Midnight Ridazz, although they might come across this site. It would be REAL DISAPPOINTING if LA didn't have CM.

3. Sometimes CM goes by without a hitch, SOMETIMES there is CONFLICT. When there are human beings involved, things happen. It could be in a bar, in the supermarket or on the streets - disagreements can (can being the keyword) lead to misunderstanding which can lead to conflict. The trick is that cooler heads prevail.

4. Friday's events put a spotlight on CYCLING in LA and put a glaring light on the fact that PEOPLE ARE PROTESTING BP/ARCO. Those are all GOOD THINGS.

5. Until this city REPECTS cyclists, there will be CRITICAL MASS. We're a long way before LA will reach the levels of San Francisco or Portland, much less the quality of cycling in Copenhagen.

When people "exercise" their rights, in our case riding on the street, you are almost always "taking away" the "rights" of another, in this case we're getting in the way of motorists. And we know how grouchy motorists are when they're in traffic (they're always in traffic.) And when we're dealing with COPS, FTP!, they don't like it when you thumb your noses at them. Which is what we do when we ride en masse (without permit), and when we impeded traffic (even though we ARE traffic) and especially when we run stoplights (a crime deemed as offensive as stealing, apparently.)

p.s. Don’t talk to police or the FBI. No matter what, it can never help you. They wouldn’t ask you in the first place if they didn’t need your help to ruin your life and the lives of others. Remember: “I am going to remain silent. I would like to speak with an attorney.”



the reverend dak
06.2.10 - 12:06 pm

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Very well.

What about changes or improvements to CM?

Is Critical Manners worth a shot?

How can we keep everyone safe and have fun on LACM? (Same dilemma as Ridazz rides?)


Should I shut up?



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by the reverend dak
06.2.10 - 12:20 pm

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Dak,

Isn't Joe's point that the "protest", "we are traffic", "exercising our rights" aspects are lost in all the hostility?

I don't think anyone is seriously entertaining that CM will die (not exist). I think the question is whether all the points you're alluding to are being diminished by the hostility. I was a firm believer in mass rides, but it's hard to figure out what they're about anymore. Maybe I'll shut up too for now.. since Im being a little post happy...

I'd give anything to change this office into a bike ride right now.



md2
responding to a comment by the reverend dak
06.2.10 - 12:21 pm

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I appreciate this comment more now. Thanks!



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by fixie4life
06.2.10 - 12:31 pm

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Wow! Bike Party sounds like what Midnight Ridazz should focus as being more like!

My assessment from this discussion so far is that it may be true that LACM may not have the flexibility to become an improved ride due to its format and nature. It will remain as it is. It may get better or worse, but it seems that there is little we can suggest or do to improve it. We can ADD to it, perhaps.

However, I believe that Midnight Ridazz has more of a potential to improve. It has been evolving and changing since I ever got involved. I intend to advocate for more safety and common sense for these types of rides. Some people may like the ideas and implement them. Some people may disagree. But I enjoy the nature and format of a Party Ride over a Protest ride. That's just my opinion though.

I hope LACM gains positive attention and contributes to the development of bicycle awareness and possibly infrastructure.

I'm gonna go ride now.

DOT COM




Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by Hallucin8
06.2.10 - 12:56 pm

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I should also mention that Thinkpeace has been helping to run Pasadena Critical Mass very successfully for quite a long time. Congrats!





Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 1:05 pm

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This now feels like a useless thread.


bleh.






Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 1:42 pm

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Do you think CM lends NEGATIVELY towards any advancement or awareness of cycling in LA? In other words, is it crippling our progress?

"Crippling" is a strong word. I think it's hindering. It's definitely not helping. No matter how much you clean it up or improve it, I don't think it will ever be helpful enough to be worth the effort and time.

Do you think MR is any different in that aspect? You did seem to give MR a slight significance over CM.

I think MR has gotten a lot of people on bikes. I don't know whether it's advanced cycling. The jury is still out on that one. But my point is that MR isn't primarily there as an advocacy or advancement tool (no matter how fervently some people like to fantasize about it being so), and can't be held to the same standard. Thus, trying to compare MR and CM directly presents a kind of apples-and-oranges problem.

Do you think Critical Manners would be some sort of antidote to the negative aspects of CM. Or is it just "broken" no matter what we do?

It would reduce the negative effect--maybe a lot, maybe a little. That's about the best I can say for it.

What is an alternative, if any? Bike Town Beta? Or just commute on your bike daily?

Ride your bike. Ride it to work. Ride it to get groceries. Ride it to your friend's house. Ride with your friend to your other friend's house. Get together with some people and ride to a movie. Ride for the pure fuck of it. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

I think that when you and your friend/girlfriend/boyfriend/husband/wife/fuckbuddy/sancho come swooping up together to a restaurant and lock up in front of the patrons at the outdoor tables and walk in, you're doing far, far more to promote cycling as transportation AND assert your right to ride on the street than you would by attending the next 52 Critical Mass rides. Especially if you hold your fucking line on the way.

Bike Town Beta? Can't hurt, I guess.

I was trying to come up with a Friday night CM alternative and the best I could come up with was "Critical Convergence." Instead of meeting at, say, Wilshire and Western once a month and swarming around for the rest of the night like a big dumb mob, people would simply ride their bikes to work every Friday (even if they normally drive) and, on the way home, intentionally reroute so as to go through that intersection. That's it. Every Friday would see a Bike Town Beta of sorts in that area, with a great number of bike riders on the street in all four directions being visible and having some unity of purpose but NOT behaving as a swarm and NOT trying to "keep the ride together" at all costs. Now there's a real organized coincidence, no?

Ideally, there would be a Critical Convergence spot in every district. Mid City, Hollywood, Los Feliz, East Valley, West Valley, Long Beach, Watts, San Pedro...

There is a downside, which I freely admit to: the social aspect of CM would be partly lost. But, as you point out, we have MR for that now; I don't think we need CM for that anymore. And people would still spot their friends and group up a little and maybe make new friends in the process.

I also think that this Convergence would be a little more in the original spirit of CM as something that people do after work as the beginning of their night, rather than something to occupy their entire night. Of course, people who did want to make a night of it could ride through, say, the LA Critical Convergence spot and the Hollywood CC spot and the Los Feliz CC spot and the Echo Park spot...

But, like some people said CM is here to stay

Nothing in this world is here to stay.



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 1:54 pm

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Woah.

"Critical Convergence" FTW !



can we due this please? Now.



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 2:05 pm

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What, no hilarious caption for the monkey cartoon?



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.2.10 - 2:07 pm

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Okay, it says:

Lady - "Is this critical convergence?"

Monkey thinks - "Oh shit, I forgot to bring my jumprope..."



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 2:10 pm

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I think it would cause people to ride together if they had the same commutes. I think it would become a social convergence, as some people will, no doubt, stop and chat or ride together.

I really want us to do this.

I'll be back in two weeks. MAKE IT HAPPEN!



Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 2:21 pm

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The monkey's riding a polo bike...check out the gear ratio....

DTLA EVERY THURSDAY. BROADWAY AND 12TH. 7PM.



barleye
06.2.10 - 2:22 pm

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I don't think anyone is seriously entertaining that CM will die (not exist).

On the contrary, that's precisely what a few of us are "entertaining." Things are born, they exist, and they die. This particular thing is in its decadent phase and is ripe to die. More to the point, it's not worth keeping on life support.



PC
responding to a comment by md2
06.2.10 - 2:30 pm

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I used to say this and you scolded me for it.



md2
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 2:44 pm

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Were we talking about Critical Mass? If so, and even if not, I've obviously changed my mind about CM. I thought I made that clear when I said this:

"...I don't think that Critical Mass even in its purest form works at all. I used to think it did...or, to be really honest with you, I used to want to think it did. It doesn't."



PC
responding to a comment by md2
06.2.10 - 2:52 pm

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I support your Critical Convergence idea.

Can we make this happen?





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.2.10 - 3:02 pm

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HEY BORF. YOUR A RETARD!



POOP DICK
06.2.10 - 6:27 pm

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CM should lead up to better things this summer have drag races, trak stand comp...fun shit etc...........we can only wait and see



Static swagg
06.2.10 - 7:37 pm

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dood leave that for the other lame ass stupid rides out there. hahahahaha
or go drinking in the parking lot on th peoples ride. after CM'



fixie4life
responding to a comment by Static swagg
06.2.10 - 8:56 pm

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I support your Critical Convergence idea.

Can we make this happen?


I would like to make it happen. I'm not sure how. I'm just one guy. I guess I could try to write up a more coherent explanation of CC, and why I think it's a better tactic, and how exactly it would work, and an honest assessment of what I think the benefits and drawbacks would be (one of the problems with Critical Mass is that nobody seems to want to think and talk openly and honestly about whether it's really accomplishing anything) and put this stuff out there. Maybe on a dedicated website? Xerocracy?



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.3.10 - 4:06 pm

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Yes, do it.

Please let me help you too.





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.3.10 - 4:08 pm

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Sure! Get your kneepads ready.

But in all cerealness, do you have any web design skillz? I don't.



PC
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.4.10 - 3:14 am

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Pretty average. I'll work on something on my trip. Just send me the text. and concepts.





Joe Borfo
responding to a comment by PC
06.4.10 - 6:58 am

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Joe Linton forwarded this announcement from LAPD to the old LACM email list:

"The Los Angeles Police Department supports and encourages responsible cycling as well as cyclists’ right to fair and equitable use of the roadways. The Department is also committed to protecting cyclist’s 1st Amendment Right to call attention to issues affecting their community.

In keeping with the Department’s mission, and in response to the cycling community’s calls for police involvement and participation, the LAPD will be present at the next Los Angeles Critical Mass ride scheduled for June 25, 2010.

Critical Mass attracts hundreds, and at times thousands of cyclists. People come together for a variety of reasons: To assert their desire for cleaner air, less congestion, safer roads, more infrastructure, and to celebrate and ride in solidarity with other likeminded individuals.

There are however some that use Critical Mass to mask their illegal and dangerous activities which generate multiple complaints from the community. These activities are counterproductive to the intended goals of Critical Mass. Among the documented incidents of concern are:
Vandalism
Thefts
Assaults
Criminal Threats
Drinking in Public
Smoking/using illicit substances
Driving/Riding under the influence
Running red lights/Stop sign
Crossing the center line or riding against traffic

The Department will support the rights of all persons to peacefully gather and bring attention to their cause.

LAPD officers will be present to ensure the safety of all those who lawfully participate and will take enforcement action against those who violate the law or the vehicle code.

Please remember:
Participants under the age of 18 must wear a helmet
Participants should have necessary lighting equipment
All bikes must have brakes or otherwise comply with the braking requirements

Ride Responsibly, Share the Road. We will see you there!!!"

Hmm... The times they are a'changin'.

nathansnider
06.16.10 - 5:57 am



alicestrong
06.16.10 - 6:09 am

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LAPD is going to babysit the next LACM ??

Critical Manners is here, Borfo.



DJwheels
06.16.10 - 7:20 am

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I think this subject really needs its own thread.



trickmilla
responding to a comment by alicestrong
06.16.10 - 9:05 am

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Critical Mass? More like Critical Mess.



ScooterHayes
06.16.10 - 9:17 am

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just saw the email... definitely not what I was expecting to read.

1. Is this a sign of support

or

2. A way infiltrate the movement with undercover cops and ticket riders, etc?

I dont know; but on first glance it looks like a positive. LAPD has escorted MR rides many times and it always seems to get good support from the group.

LAPD + MR = BFF



md2
responding to a comment by alicestrong
06.16.10 - 9:35 am

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Hey at least there will be no confusion who is leading the ride....Just follow the cop car.



Foldie
06.16.10 - 9:47 am

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...moar...

From: DAVID KRUMER <35128@lapd.lacity.org>
Subject: LAPD and Critical Mass
To:glennbaileysfv@yahoo.com
Date: Tuesday, June 15, 2010, 5:12 PM

Good Morning All!

Attached is a flyer that we will be releasing at an upcoming press conference. The flyer will also be distributed by officers at the next Critical Mass as folks start to gather.

At the LACBAC meeting on June 2 as well as on numerous blogs we heard calls for more involvement and support. Many of you have also indicated that the majority of the participants are there for a legitimate an lawful purpose...to promote and call attention to cycling issues. The Department agrees and is committed to protecting cyclists 1st Amendment Rights. To that end we will be present at the Critical Mass ride.

The flyer is meant to discourage the attendance of, and put on notice those elements that cause discord. Those engaged in unlawful behavior are not representative of the group. The primary purpose of our presence is not enforcement...however enforcement action will be taken when appropriate.

Feel free to post the flyer on your websites. While some have asked for LAPD to be more involved there are some that may not welcome us. It is our hope that you encourage the cycling community to embrace our presence.

David


Sgt I David Krumer
Office of Operations
Evaluation and Administration Section
213-486-6059



alicestrong
responding to a comment by md2
06.16.10 - 9:51 am

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It works in Chicago CM. But the cops are just there at the start to cork the roads for a few miles and then they take off when it starts in busy downtown and reduces drivers from raging. That I could handle. Like MD2 said, the cops have helped to cork a few Midnight Ridazz ride just for a bit and it really helped and felt like they were supporting us. It really broke the tensions. This is probably the LAPD's solution to making amends with the cycling community. If so, I am actually thinking this is going to be great. But, I'm not sure if people are going to like it if they are being "babysitters"...

At least they aren't NYPD who unconstitutionally require the ride to have a parade permit or it's deemed illegal assembly.

This seems to be showing that they will support and protect, but hopefully without being the gestapo. I don't know, mixed feelings here. I'm hoping for something positive from this change. And don't be blaming me. I had nothing to do with this.

Try to deal with this positively. It may be a good thing, more than you realize for the future of bikes in LA. Show up strong and let's represent and ride responsibly.

Let's make LACM the biggest and best ever and show that we can handle ourselves... gulp.





Joe Borfo
06.16.10 - 10:10 am

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I already have my "costume" (isn't this technically our 4th of July ride?) ready! Bring on the LAPD! It will be good for them to see what the ride is really like--we're not a bunch of criminals.



danceralamode
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
06.16.10 - 10:12 am

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Hi.



Joe Borfo
11.28.10 - 1:38 am

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why no is the question?



Pedal Feens
11.28.10 - 3:28 am

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