Monday, November 30, 2009
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This cue is approx 42 miles depending on where you start in the boro. From Hot Foot about 40 miles. The cue follows a creek for about the entire ride. This is such a great ride, almost flat yet scenic. On many back roads, and we pass the Kennett Y for bathrooms, Landhope for food, and a bike store and food stores on Rt 52/Kennett Pike.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I read this letter (below) to the Editor in the Philly Inquirer this morning and found that this letter just about sums up the biking and car fight going on in all parts of the country today where cylists and cars share the same space.
This attitude of cyclists thinking they are right and motorists thinking they are right has not changed in many years. A cyclists gets hit by a car, car's fault, a motorist is hindered by a bike, cyclist's fault. I have never seen a discussion where someone actually looked at the accident from both sides. Who really was at fault?? and what can be done to prevent it again??
There is no planning anywhere except a few cities such as Portland and Boulder. In cities in the "rust belt", there is little planning and if there is, it is not with cars and bikes in mind. One side pushes its agenda and the other side pushes its agenda.
I was biking on rt 52 in Delaware this morning riding along this rather busy highway in a nice bike lane. I get to the Pennsylvania border and voila, no more bike lane.
I do think bike lanes along heavily traveled roads are a good idea. A nice wide shoulder is all it takes to lessen the anger between motorist and cyclist.
The disconnect between motorist and cylist had made no progress at all over the years. Read the letter below to see an interesting point of view.
Although the dedicated bike lanes in the city were well-intentioned, they were ill-conceived. Very few people are foolish enough to actually use them. They are dangerous for the bicyclist, pedestrians, and drivers - who have accidents trying to avoid the bicycles.
Technically, almost all drivers break the law whenever they make a right turn across the bike lanes. But what is the alternative? The laws regarding turns over a bike lane - if there are any - are vague and unenforceable for practical reasons.
As more and more people join the foolish few who ride their bikes in city traffic, it is inevitable that more people will get killed or injured. You can blame the driver, the cyclist, weather, pedestrians, or anyone else, but the real blame should go to the myopic-minded folks who approved this blunder.
Center City traffic is already horrible during commuter hours. Apparently it made sense to our city planners to spend a bundle of taxpayer money to take one lane away from cars and create a lane that very few people use.
Vernon J. Linder
Friday, November 27, 2009
Our Thanksgiving table discussion lead to talking about bikers and cars and who is right when it comes to using the roads.
Most thought the bikers had the right of way, deserved to be on the roads and the cars should just wait. Bikers have every right to be on the roads and if cars are behind the group, too bad, just wait to pass.
But that is where the discussion turned, cuz at that point, the car passing is now in a predicament of being in an unsafe position, being forced into the oncoming lane.
So who is right?? I was biking with my son the other day and he really kicked it up into high gear and zoomed past me. I saw first hand just how fast the elite riders can go on their bikes. I cannot imagine trying to pass a large group of these elite riders. Not only would it be difficult, it would be dangerous for the car.
It would certainly put a car at risk trying to pass this group. The bikers tend to forget this part of the problem. All I hear are bikers talking about getting buzzed and this or that damn car speeding past them.
All the talk in Philadelphia now is about ticketing bikers for riding on sidewalks, not stopping at stop signs and more. The bikers are outraged.
But is that outrage justified?? I lead a group of riders, we are not elite riders, we are what is called the C riders. Our groups are not large and I make every effort to watch for cars and do all i can to make passing us easier. I have even pulled over so cars can get around us without having to put themselves in the oncoming traffic lane.
The cyclist tends to think only in terms of himself on the road and his right to be there. But I hear little about how hard it is to pass a cyclist on the road. I think every cyclist riding in a large group should stop and think about what it takes to pass a group like this.
It is not always me, me, me and more me. Maybe it should be more of us, us, us. How to make cycling safer for the cylist and the car?
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
To all reading this blog, please please do me a favor, STOP driving, biking or walking with your cell phone attached to your ear.
Today I watched a lady talking on her cell while walking, well she was so engrossed she walked right off the curb into an oncoming car. The car was an emergency vehicle (not on an ER call) and I think he anticipated the stupidity of this lady.
He laid on his horn so hard the lady fell over, still attached to her phone, she gets up and keeps going, still attached to the damn phone.
This lady was walking while talking on her phone and still could not concentrate enough on that simple skill. Can you imagine how IMPAIRED you are if driving or biking and talking on a cell phone? Yes I have seen cyclists talking on the cell.
So unless God has called you while you are driving or walking or biking, put down that phone before YOU KILL me and anyone else in your path.
Who are you talking to any how?? who is so important that you are willing to risk the lives of yourself, your kids if in the car and the other folks who cross your path?
DO me a favor and GET OFF OF THE ROAD. I cannot think of anyone on the phone other than GOD that would warrant you answering the stupid phone.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Even though I was out for sometime with knee surgery last winter, I did manage to bike so far for this year, 2100 miles. Recommend Bike Journal to track your miles.
These are all Chester County miles and done mostly with the Chicks. So if you have not done this many miles, you have missed ample opps to do so. I am the 3rd highest ride poster in the West Chester Cycling Club.
Next year I am hoping to double those miles if the winter is not too brutal. First local area sponsored rides will be the Chester County Cancer Ride and Pedal to Preserve. Both are 50 miles and both are quite nice. The CCCR is challenging but doable, remember, if I can do it, anyone can. This ride takes place at the end of May and starts right at the Cancer Center on Marshall Street. Pedal to Preserve is the first Saturday in June and is one nice FLAT ride. Both rides tend to be small, so they are not over crowded and are close to home.
So if your bike needs repairs and upgrades, now is the time to do it. I recently needed a new bottom bracket for my bike. I went to the West Chester Bike Line. I know many folks bad mouth Bike Line, but the fellows at this Bike Line have been there for a long time. The mechanic is top notch. They fix your bike promptly. They are friendly. I highly recommend this shop.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
I was watching George Stephanopoulus this morning on ABC. He always has a good panel with good discussion.
But today, one of the panelist, got me so mad I am compelled to write about it and complain. Yeah I know, who wants to hear me complain.
Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla was counterpointing Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn and of course it was heated and a useless debate as neither side was willing to even listen to the other person.
Wasserman got my blood boiling when she countered Blackburn about mammograms. Blackburn and Stephanopoulus both agreed, the Senate Bill had classified the mammogram as level C and therefore, not covered at all times.
Wasserman then jumped in and said, " no way, with the Senate Bill mammograms will be free!"
Really, free, you mean the hospital will not charge anyone a penny for a mammogram. Gee that sounds wonderful. Really free tests from apparently really generous hospitals.
What Wasseman meant is this; it is not free, someone is paying, just not you.
I once worked with a wonderful women at a community center. She was careful to tell her recipients of scholarships and grants, "this is NOT free, you are just not paying for it, but someone else did!"
What does this have to do with biking you ask? Well nothing, but if you are lucky enough to be biking on a custom bike or an expensive store bought bike and you have all the gear, GPS, tights, helmets etc etc etc
I don't want to hear you complaining about the cost of your health insurance premiums! Instead, count your blessings. Cuz if you are healthy and fit enough to bike, you are not a drain anyhow on the health care system. You are doing everything right.
Yesterday 4 of us did a fabo ride from West Chester PA to Delaware along creeks almost the entire ride. Spectacular ride, all back roads, few cars and lots of flat land. We had a few hills but if you are biking regularly in Chester County, they were no biggies.
We wound down rt 842 and onto Marlboro and Newhall, through the back roads of Kennett Square and then down to Delaware on an appropriately named road, Creek Road. We came back on rt 52 in DE and then appropriately AGAIN, Creek Road in PA.
So for almost 43 miles we were on roads named Creek Road. Saw lots of other cylists as well enjoying the beautiful day we had.
It just does not get any better. Those of you staying at home doing all those never ending errands
you missed one fine ride. Sometimes you just have to make the time.
Friday, November 20, 2009
great news for the kid, bad news for the other 6th graders who are stuck in reading test prep and music
the better news would be some enlightened educator might decide that gym every day for middle schoolers would be the best solution
most middle school are war zones, kids dont want to be there, teachers get angry daily and we have multiple discipline problems
i think some running around might be just what the middle school wasteland could use
this whole story though to me is a great summary of all that is wrong with public education, kid says i feel good when i exercise, school says, too bad, if we give you gym, then the other kids will want gym every day
Thursday, November 19, 2009
When in grade school, he had recess right after lunch and was able to run around and get exercise. But now in middle school, kids are stuck inside all day long. The classes he would miss are test prep for the state exams and music.
The case is being taken to arbitration. Is this where we are now in education?? Where to get outside or to move around in school, you must get a lawyer.
As I have said before, when I was in school we either walked or biked. In grade school, we went home for lunch and again, biked each way.
Now today, we have legislated out any activity for kids other than the structured gym or the many organized sports parents drag their kids to after school.
We have created communities where biking or walking to school is impossible. Kids get picked up from school in cars, then get driven to organized soccer or football or whatever sport is being offered.
I have many kids in my neighborhood and I rarely see them outside. What the heck are these kids doing? The bike is the perfect exercise tool for children. But today, in order to have your kids biking for fun, you are going to have to bike with them. Since our streets and neighborhoods are so bike unfriendly, it does require a parent to participate with the child.
This is probably not going to happen. Kids today have little chance to get spontaneous exercise.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
We have runaway crime in Philadelphia, chances of getting murdered in Philly are greater than for our soldiers in Iraq. Kids are quitting school at alarming rates. Kids are shooting the cops. Kids are shooting kids. Cars park everywhere, run lights and disobey signals all the time. Folks text and talk on cell phones, many work on their business right from the front seat while driving.
But lo and behold, the great city council of Philadelphia decides it is time to regulate bikes. Yes, that is just what the city needs to do. Top priority for sure, forgot all the other stuff, these runaway bikes are a menace. " No brakes" bikes will be outlawed. Isn't that what we rode as kids for years and years and years? We wore no helmets, and had to bike in dresses and skirts in those days cuz we actually used our bikes to get us to school.
I can walk my dogs any morning of any day and see many many cars run stop lights, run stop signs, speed in a school zone and I cannot count the folks using cell phones, just too many. Yet my bike is the biggest problem the city of Philadelphia wants to work on.
One of my favorite blogs, The Wash Cycle, has a classic post on scofflaws. It is worth your time to read it.
Now the only bike reg that might need to be addressed is biking on sidewalks but I am sure there are already regs on the books for that. Maybe the cops could enforce it. But again, is this really what you want the Philly cops spending their time on? I mean, selling drugs daily from street corners just doesn't seem to generate the same anger as seeing a kid or even worse, an adult on a bike on a sidewalk.
Kids killing kids also does not generate much anger but mention a cyclist going down a one way street the wrong way, and holy hell, he should be arrested!
Gimme a break!
Monday, November 16, 2009
PRINT THIS CUE, DO THIS before 9 am Saturday morning!!!
Suggest you take a look at it. Study the map that is linked here so you have some idea where you are going. Compare cue to map, if you find errors, LET ME KNOW. Map my ride generates the cue automatically and since i have spent the last 2 hrs doing this, I have not checked it, maybe someone can do this for me. thanks
This ride will take us right past the YMCA in Kennett, we can use their bathrooms.
Or we can dig holes, I swear, they must not pee in Kennett!
Sunday, November 15, 2009
CUE # 42, this cue goes down to Kennett again but is longer, about 40 miles. This ride will leave Hot Foot at 930 am. Pace will be around 12.5.
Possible rest stops, are Wawa in Kennett or McDonalds. The cue continues south of Kennett, crosses rt 52 in Delaware and comes back on Fairville and rt 100.
Depending on the group, I am up for stopping at Hanks for a meal. If no one is interested, we will continue home up rt 100 (S. Creek). Will find out where bikes are safe to park at Hanks.
Bring plenty of drinks and food, do not depend on rest stops for food.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Wish i could and wish I could bike in a city like Copenhagen, I cannot even imagine it. Living in a city as beautiful as Copenhagen, well I hope you natives wake up each morning and count your blessings. I have never traveled except in a few places in USA, I have biked in FL and CA as well, both sons lived in those areas, that was fun, CA is all about the sport of biking, FL as well, racing bicyclists every where on high tech bikes with high tech gear
The bike in those states is strictly for sport and exercise, triathlons being the rage in both states. Aerobars are popular and large groups of racing folks take over the streets.
Pennsylvania, where I live, is rather hostile to cyclists on the roads. Not so bad around the large cities, Phila and Pittsburgh, but forget biking in spandex in northern PA, better cover up in a plaid shirt, ya might be safer.
Bike chic seems to be for those who live in cities with support for biking. Flat terrain and easy access to nice roads. Many cities in northern USA are hilly and have brick roads and roads filled with potholes as well.
So chic is not for me. Right now I am biking in gloves, shoe covers, tights and Windstopper jackets. But for you chicks lucky enough to live and work in a city that loves the bike, enjoy yourselves. Many of us will never have that opportunity and many of us will never see the scenic cities of Europe and Sweden.
Some day in my dreams I will bike in Copenhagen.
Had a comment below on my post of "common mistakes" requesting what to do when buying a bike.
I guess this is much harder, as it does require the buyer to do some homework.
1. Get educated, most ladies do not want to bother with this but it pays in big dividends if you do, a good place to start is on the Terry Bicycles Website. This video is a start. Also go to the Terry site and view ALL the videos.
2. Ask someone you know who bikes a lot and KNOWS bikes to go with you when you shop for a bike.
3. The price of a bike is determined by several things: frame, components, pedals, saddle and shoes. These can vary greatly in price and what you choose will depend on your budget. Knowing a lot about components takes lots of research and lots of visits to many different bike stores.
4. Beware of glitzy bikes with cheap components. Beware of bikes in the front of the store with a sale sign, while this may be a good bike, buyer has to be cautious.
5. Getting a good fit is also one of the hardest things for women to do. You must feel comfortable on the bike, you MUST not be stretching for the handlebars. I have seen plenty of women on poorly fitting bikes. They are stretching so far for the handlebars that they end up with sore backs. WATCH the Terry videos on bike fit. DO a search on You Tube for instructional bike videos and watch many as each specialist has her/his own feel about what makes a good bike and what makes a good fit.
6. DEMAND a knowledgeable salesperson. Make sure to tell the salesperson that you are a serious rider and want a serious bike.
After making your purchase, you are still not done, you will need shoes, shorts and bike tops and of course a helmet. Bike gloves are necessary as well as 2 water bottle cages and bottles.
YOU NEXT important thing to do is attend one of the Biker Chicks clinics that teaches bike maintenance and repair. You must carry tire changing equipment on your bike.
LOOK for a newbie clinic next spring. Do some homework over the winter and you will be ready to buy a bike in the spring.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
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• Minimum of six months experience driving a like-sized commercial vehicle within the last three years is required
• One year commercial driving experience strongly preferred
Bring work history documentation for immediate consideration!
Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00am - 3:00pm
FedEx Home Delivery
600 West Ave
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Monday - Friday, 8:00am - 2:00pm
109 Fairview Park Dr
Elmsford, NY 10523
You may email resume in advance. Put "TD" in the subject line.
FedEx Home Delivery
When posting ad online, classify as "Temp" or "Contract".
Posting "Location" should be: Stamford, CT "Company name" should be FedEx
I highly recommend the Pumpkin Bars posted a few posts down. Zap the bars in the microwave after freezing them and you would think you are eating pumpkin pie. Serve with some whipped cream or frozen yogurt or just plain. These are yummy. Another good choice is the apple pie posted below.
using a Crock pot and cooking for 6 hrs on low
wash and core 4 small apples -preferably from a local orchard
chop 1/4 walnuts and mix with 1/4 cup raisins
stuff each apple with the nut/raisin mixture, place in crock pot
drizzle some honey over each apple
add some apple cider to bottom of crock pot or if not apple cider, use orange juice
once cooked, eat these yummy apples with either milk, cottage cheese or low fat icecream
tastes just like apple pie without the fat
Get your kids to help make them and serve them for dessert any night of the week
Suggest putting them in a nice bowl, cut them up and serve with a spoon, pour some of the apple cider from crock pot over them as well
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Mighty Independence Party Chair Knocks Out Andy Spano In Fourth Round
On Tuesday, Election Night, The Guardian was present at the Astorino victory celebration at the Crowne Plaza in White Plains. At about 10:30pm a man in the room yelled out, “Giulio Cavallo knocked out Andy Spano.”There was a round of applause and cheers for Dr. Cavallo,
the maverick Chairman of the Westchester Independence Party.
As numbers continued to come in, it became clear that what the man had said was, in fact, true. The powerful political fat cat, Andy Spano, a Democrat, in a Democrat-dominated County, where Republicans are outnumbered two to one was, in fact, knocked out by the leader of the Independence Party, a small but mighty third party with fewer than 23,000 registered voters countywide.
That knock-out punch had come from the hand of none other than civic leader and party chair, Dr. Giulio Cavallo.
Dr. Cavallo has led the Westchester Independence Party for more than 12 years. In that time he has supported Democrats, Republicans, Independents, and Conservatives alike in elections throughout Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam, and Dutchess Counties.
This year was special for Doc. After four years of arrogant, excessive taxation, and economic enslavement perpetrated by Democratic Party County Executive Andy Spano, and County Legislator Bill Ryan, Dr. Cavallo vowed to step up to the plate and fight the administrations he had helped elect in the last election cycle.
Cavallo had declared, “It’s about doing what is right. Our elected officials have forgotten that they were elected to serve and not to be served. The duty of the Independence Party is to represent the interests of the People, all the People.”
In January 2009, at a meeting in New Rochelle, Dr. Cavallo, the Westchester Independence Party Committee and Guardian Publisher Sam Zherka decided to join forces to organize the Westchester Tea Party, an anti-tax movement determined to reduce Westchester’s bloated County Government.
On April 25th, the Tea Party Rally was held at the Westchester County Office Building; and an estimated three thousand angry and frustrated citizen taxpayers assembled to petition and protest against Andy Spano and his Administration for their “tax and spend policies” which had turned Westchester citizens into “the highest taxed citizens in America”.
Spano and his Administration attempted to downplay the Tea Party event. However, that event clearly elevated stock in the Westchester Independence Party which helped deliver the knockout blow.
On Election Day The Guardian visited many polling places throughout the County, questioning voters before and after they cast their votes. One voter, a man in his 50’s, from Tuckahoe named Charles, stated that he was fed up with the status quo, and wished “for a revolution; a
revolution is what we need to teach our politicians a lesson, maybe a ‘tax strike.’” When asked if he had attended the Tea Party in White Plains back in April he indicated that he hadn’t, but that his family members had.
Another man, George Nivkor, accompanied by several family members at a polling place in Yonkers, when asked if he was happy with Yonkers and Westchester County politicians and taxes, said, “We feel like we are being extorted. I’m watching rampant waste and theft all at our expense; and we are tired of it.”
When asked if he was a Democrat or a Republican, Nivkor replied, “Some of my family are each, but this year we are Independent and voting Row C, the Independence Party.”
It’s clear that the Independence Party has struck a nerve, and the numbers show it. Over the last three countywide elections, the Independence Party received between five and seven thousand votes. This election, they more than doubled that number, with well over 12,000 votes, which Dr. Cavallo attributes to the Independence Party’s role at the Westchester Tea Party Rally and all the mailings and telephone calls the Party faithful did to get out the vote.
“We mailed literature to thousands of taxpayers, asking them to join us,” Cavallo said. He went on, “Unlike the Conservative and Working Families Parties, the People of Westchester County know where we stand on the issue of high taxes. The Conservative and Working Families
Parties have done nothing to combat the tax problem. In fact, both minor parties endorsed Andy Spano, but didn’t make a difference.”
Cavallo reiterated that as a civic leader and party chair, it is his duty to stand up against politically-entrenched, power-hungry politicians when it comes to issues that negatively effect so many lives as high taxes do.
When asked where the Independence Party will be going from here, Cavallo said, “Nowhere but up; we are the third largest party in the state, and maybe one day we’ll be the second, or even the first, but in the meantime, on Election Day, we were the most important party and the deciding factor for some of the most important races in Westchester.”
Political insiders have confirmed that Andy Spano made numerous attempts to obtain the Independence Party endorsement; but was rejected every time by Dr. Cavallo. It is clear that had Spano gotten that endorsement, he might have remained King Andy for a fourth term.
For now, we must hail Dr. Giulio Cavallo, a true leader with the moral fortitude and courage to do the right thing. He is the most powerful political figure in Westchester.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I have been helping women and older folks get into the sport of cycling for awhile. After 4 years, I have noticed a few common problems that usually help to derail a lady or an older cyclist.
The energetic enthusiastic lady shows up for one of my newbie rides. She comes on a heavy huge cross bike or mountain bike. She has on street clothes and a soft sneaker. She has one small water bottle, usually one bought in a convenience store and she usually loses it when she hits her first bump as these bottles are too small for bike water bottle cages.
What is wrong with this picture and why is it bad to use a cross bike or mountain bike for road riding?
1. the bike is too heavy, climbing hills is impossible, coasting is also impaired
2. you end up working 3 times harder than the lady on a nice road bike
3. most likely the bike does not fit you either
4. biking in street clothes and soft shoes means a sore bum and sore feet
SO what happens after your first ride. YOU QUIT!
So why is it that women especially end up on the wrong bike??
Most women cannot see themselves as an athlete and think the road bike is for racers. Bike shops see a lady or senior citizen and think, "this person is never going to do any serious biking, might as well sell him/her a cross bike."
Women and older folks think they are safer on the big heavy bike.
They do not want to spend the money needed to buy a good bike, so they waste $500 on a cross bike that they will never use.
Road bikes look scary to the older cyclist and to women. The thought of clipping in to the pedals sends shivers up their spines.
I often bike on the Schuylkill River trail and see many many many women and senior citizens on big heavy awful bikes. No wonder they can only go 3-5 miles. They are exhausted.
Biking is probably one the best activities for women and seniors. With the right equipment, you can easy hit the roads and do a nice 1-2 hr ride. Not only will you feel better, you will improve your fitness level quickly.
Several short rides per week and one longer ride is all it takes. There is no special science to biking. No training necessary.
Simply bike. Get a good road bike and bike well into retirement. BUT GET THE RIGHT BIKE!
Click on Street View Trike and VOTE
Thanks to everyone who voted for the Schuylkill River Trail in the first round of Google's Street View Trike competition. Now we need you to vote again. As one of the first multi-use trails highlighted in Google Street View the local and national profile of this trail would be raised enormously and may help give us the political muscle to complete the trail.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Weather is supposed to be mild and looks to be great for a nice ride. I have picked cue #226, never have done it before. Heads down to the Kennett area with a nice rest stop at a Landhope. So bathrooms will be available and snack food if needed.
Visit WCCC ride page to download the cue sheet. Lows so far for Friday night are 40, so this ride will start at 10:00 am. Try to plan for 3 hrs.
Make sure to dress correctly, coats and gloves and headbands. Tights and nice heavy socks. Riding through the winter is my goal. I am hoping some chicks will do too.
I am closing in on 2000 miles for this year. My goal for next year is 3000 miles. Hopefully I will not be having any surgeries and missed biking time. I hope to motivate some other chicks to match my miles.
I again recommend the Bike Journal for tracking your miles.
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Plan on doing around 30 miles.
Tuesday afternoon ride, open for suggestions, all i want to do is around 20 miles. Something easy.
Email me if interested libbydotmaxim@gmaildotcom
Saturday, November 7, 2009
We all had long tights, thick socks and some type of windstopper or good jacket. A nice headband that covers your ears is necessary as well.
Re-visit the blog page where I discuss winter clothing.
I do plan on TRYING to run a ride every Saturday. As long as it is not snowing and not below 32 degrees, I will try to run a ride. Biking through the winter makes a HUGE difference on your riding next spring and summer.
Hanging the bike up for the winter is just NOT necessary. You miss a good amount of riding and it can be equally fun.
Here in West Chester, PA, we have nothing in place to support folks biking to work. We have many roads that are narrow with no shoulders, we have no bike lanes and we have no bike to school safely routes either. There seems to be little interest in providing anything for the residents of Chester County. Car is king in the burbs!
We have had the Chester Valley Trail in progress for 20 yrs, when, if ever built, will provide a bike route from WC to King of Prussia. This trail should have been completed years ago. I just hope I am not dead by the time this trail completes.
My boro council should be right now making plans to get a bike lane in place to connect the boro to the Chester Valley Trail. Right now there is no way to get to the trail from the boro except by car. The roads to the trail have NO shoulders at all and carry high speed traffic. This leaves the kids in the boro unable to access the trail. What does my boro council do?? talk about how to keep West Chester historical. Well it is historical alright, good for horse and buggies on the back roads.
The boro streets are jammed with cars and absolutely no places for bikes. No bike racks either.
When PennDOT resurfaces roads, what do they choose out here in Chester County??? tar and chip, the worst surface known to mankind for the cyclist.
Counties with high traffic roads get macadam, we would not want the cars on rough roads. Biking out in the burbs is not for the faint hearted. You must be in good enough shape to cover 15-20 miles, about the average commute to work, you must have a good bike and good bike gear.
If we had some decent bike trails, which tend to be flat, more folks could bike. And more folks could bike with less than great bikes. Biking in my county is a hilly job. Biking in my county requires gears and shifting knowledge. Biking in the burbs is a sport and not for commuting. Too bad!
Friday, November 6, 2009
Nancy's Pumpkin Bars
- 2 omega-3 eggs (or 1 whole egg + 1/3 cup egg whites, or can use all egg whites)
1 1/2 cup lowfat cottage cheese
- 2 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 scoops Swanson Whey Protein Vanilla Powder
- 1/3 cup Swanson Milled Flaxseed
- 2-3 tablespoons Swanson Organic Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon (approximately) of each:
- 1/2 teaspoon Swanson Himalayan Crystal Salt
- 1 teaspoon NuNaturals More Fiber Baking Blend
- 2 (15 oz.) cans pumpkin puree (unsweetened)
- 1 cup Swanson Organic Walnuts, toasted
- Swanson Organic Ground Cinnamon, sprinkle to taste
1. Spray 9 x 9 baking pan with canola oil.
2. Using a 14 cup food processor, blend eggs until creamy.
3. Add cottage cheese, molasses and vanilla to eggs. Blend until thick and creamy (approximately 1 minute).
4. Add one can of pumpkin at a time to the mixture, blending in between.
5. Add remaining ingredients, except nuts, and blend until mixed.
6. Mix in nuts until blended.
7. Taste the batter to check sweetness. Add some stevia or more spices according to your liking.
8. Pour into the sprayed pan and sprinkle cinnamon on the top before baking.
9. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 45 minutes. Rotate the pan at 50 minutes to ensure even browning.
10. When the bars are cool, cover with plastic wrap or foil. Cracks will appear on the top and will flatten when the bars cool. Note: Bars must sit overnight for the flavors to meld. They will not taste good right out of the oven.
Nancy's Inspiration: "I make these healthy treats nearly every week for my trainers at Cressey Performance [training facility] located in Hudson, Massachusetts. They are highly nutritious, packed with fiber and they taste amazing. We often keep the tub of pumpkin bars out for the clients that need a little "extra something" during their workouts. This does the trick."
Makes 16 bars. Serving size 1 bar.
Per Serving: 140 calories, 9g protein, 7g fat, 9g carbohydrates, 3g fiber, 167mg sodium
3/4 cup fat free plain yogurt
1 cup fat free cottage cheese
splenda or stevia to taste
4 large egg whites
2 cups oat bran
1 cup oats
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large bananas, mashed
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup oats
3 tablespoons creamy natural peanut butter
stevia or splenda to taste
Preheat oven to 350F, and spray 2 8x4 inch loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray.
Make bread batter by beating yogurt and cottage cheese cheese at medium speed with electric mixer until creamy.
Add splenda/stevia and eggs, beating until just blended.
Combine oats, oat bran, baking powder, and baking soda in another bowl. Gradually add this to yogurt/cottage cheese mixture, stirring just until blended.
Stir in bananas and vanilla. Pour batter into pans.
Make streusel by combining the oats, stevia/splenda, and peanut butter in a small bowl. Cut in the peanut butter with a pastry blender or fork until the mixture is well combined and crumbly.
Sprinkle the mixture over the batter, and bake for 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. If necessary, shield the top with foil for last 15 minutes to prevent browning.
Cool bread in pans for 10 minutes, remove from pan, and allow to cool on a wire rack for another 30 minutes
Most folks reading my blog post on Bike Chic misunderstood my stance. What I hate is the fact that bike chic for women TENDS to be women in skirts and spiked heels. And this is true of any fashion chic involving women. I do not care what women wear on their bikes, but I do care that "chic" is skin and sex.
And what prompted my blog post in the first place was the TV show Oprah did on the same issue except it did not involve bikes.
She had her show guests pulling average looking women off of the streets and redoing them. Off came the sneakers, pants and backpacks and on came heels, skirts and expensive purses.
This is what got my blood boiling. And now I see this same thing with women and bikes. IF you want to bike naked, go for it, just don't proliferate the Net with pics of ladies on bikes half naked and call it "chic."
That term needs to be redefined to include lots of ladies on bikes. To me any lady biking, be it in heels or bike gear is a chic lady.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
I live outside of Philadelphia, a small town with ZERO infrastructure for biking. When my youngest son was in grade school, he wanted to bike to school. So we did. We had to bike on a 4 lane highway, navigate very narrow no shoulder roads and finally we got to school. There was no place to lock his bike. Finally we found some metal post around the back of the school. The school janitor saw us at the end of the school day and he said he wondered how the heck my son's bike got there.
Why is it that biking and walking to school is now looked upon as an unsafe activity for kids. Schools do not want to be liable for kids biking to schools. Well yes, the way our stupid roads have been built, I would worry too, but it is HIGH time our communities get into action and make biking and walking to school a reality. Portland, Oregon has some great bike lanes into the city. But for the suburban kids and country kids, there is nothing on the horizon. My county, Chester, is a prime example. We have NOTHING to make biking and walking to school a reality.
Latest research on biking infrastructure. Read all about it.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
My recent blog post has brought out some comments about women and biking, this is great news for us ladies. As April Streeter from Sweden commented, at least women are biking and discussing it as well.
But my pic of the hot chick did come from Copenhagen and I must admit, I am beyond jealous of how bike friendly the European cites are for all. Bike lanes, bike racks for locking bikes, and I assume less hostility than we have here in America.
For us lady cyclists in the good ole USA, we have to fight to not get run over while biking. Pick-up trucks buzz us, folks give us the finger and yell out of the windows for us to get off of the roads.
Philadelphia put a bike lane on Spruce Street and guess what they biggest problem is now, folks parking on it, hey they say, now we got free parking!
I see pics of the best biking cities and Copenhagen is always near the top of the list if not the top.
We here in America would kill for some of the biking infrastructure that Europe has. Where I live, we have nothing to support bikers on the roads. No bike lanes and the road shoulders are usually covered with tree debris and holes.
Getting ladies to ride on the roads here in my area is a full time job as most of the time they are afraid of the roads and the traffic. Afraid of the cars, afraid of the hostility. So for most women cyclists, safety is probably their number one issue and way more important than what we wear.
My county has been trying to build one stinking 15 mile bike trail for the last 20 years. No one wants it in their backyard. This trail would connect to the famous Schuylkill River Trail. If this trail ever comes to fruition, I could bike from my little town on the outskirts of Phila, all the way into the Art Museum and never have to use a road.
I am not holding my breath for this trail to be completed. But I do wish there was some way to have a bike infrastructure (that a few USA and many European cities have) here in the suburbs. Just a nice wide shoulder without debris would be a first start.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
No matter how hard women try to become equal in the workforce and life in general, I stumble on stupid Bike Chic websites showing women looking sexy on their bikes. Gimme a break!
Not only does this lady look ridiculous, it is just plain unsafe to bike in high heels. What, you put on a sturdy shoe and suddenly you are unchic (not a real word).
What is the difference between these two ladies and the one above. NOTHING! both look stupid and both are at the same place, trying to look good for someone. Only thing separating these ladies is time cuz nothing else does.
Now this is a cyclist. Riding for her pleasure and no one else's.
Oprah spent a full hour yesterday making women get out of their comfortable shoes and clothes and put on high heels. Why, so men will think they look good? Have we made no progress??
I am sick of it and cannot understand why Shoe Chic, Bike Chic and Purse chic is in some way helping women.
Today I was at Johns Hopkins Hospital. I noticed all the ladies, all had sturdy shoes, many carried the purses Oprah made fun of. One lady had a big red tote bag, she pulled kid's toys out of it. hey why not?? she had her daughter with her, she also had on striped knee socks, peasant skirt, and big floppy hat.
But all those Bike Chic websites, do us all a favor and show some real women exercising.
Monday, November 2, 2009
So I will resurrect the Donut Ride. Will upload cue to the WCCC ride page. Ride will not start till 10 am and we will stop at Northbrook Orchard for donuts and hot cocoa.
The Donut Ride is about 25 miles which is about all you want to do in cold temps. With all the clothing, and cold breezes, doing 25 miles will be plenty.
Check WCCC ride page for last minute changes.