I found these great photos a few days ago via Velorution, but last night the artist emailed me and let me know that she lives in Portland! These people have some serious fashion sense, I tell you. Can you spot the helmet? And what kind of rider is wearing it?

9 thoughts on “Fietsen”

  • Chalo

    Ah, that would be a /poseur/.

  • [...] Electra is a smart company. This is big. This is emphatically a bicycle for riding in plain clothes, around cities, in the course of normal life, in style, rain or shine, day and night. It has only incidental recreational value. It’s not a toy for youth or a way to keep seniors moving (though it can serve those functions too). Bikes like it have always been at the heart of the most functional cycling cultures (as opposed to subcultures). And for a long time, you couldn’t get similar in North America without importing at considerable expense, and you’d be on your own when it came to maintenance, accessorization, etc. [...]

  • Erik Sandblom

    I just bought the book! Nice pix but it seems boring to live in a city where everybody rides the exact same bikes. In Sweden ladies ride ladies bikes like in Amsterdam, while men ride hybrids. There's a considerable number of seventies bikes coming out of hibernation as well as the odd small-wheeler. Hardly any cargo bikes though. Theft is not a big problem, apparently less than one bike stolen per week at Göteborg central station, a city of half a million people. People don't leave expensive bikes outside, but still.

    I think bikes need to be useful AND fun for a bike culture to thrive. There needs to be diversity beyond the colour of the spots on your bike.

  • Bruce Alan Wilson
    Bruce Alan Wilson February 6, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    It looks as though a lot of those people are cycling in a highly unsafe manner. Not just a matter of the lack of helmets--you all know my opinion on that--but one can't be in full control of the machine without both hands on the handlebars. And I certainly hope that in the case of the man with the pet carrier that it was empty--if there was a live animal in there I would say that it would be cruel to the poor thing.

  • Erik Sandblom

    Bruce, the safety issue is a little counter-intuitive. Denmark and the Netherlands are world leaders in terms of cycle safety. Per mile cycled, these countries have the fewest accidents. See eg A study called "safety in numbers" concluded that it's because cyclists are so common on the the streets that people know what to expect and act accordingly.

    I assume it's also a matter of these people having grown up on bikes, so they know enough to take it easy when carrying the things you see in the pictures. It's like slowing down in icy conditions. If you just don't ride beyond your ability, and if you draw from your experience, you can be prudent while still having just one hand on the handlebar.

    Safety is as much about attitude as it is about skill.

  • Laura Domela

    Hi Bruce, the guy with the pet carrier was talking to it quite animatedly, so I have to assume the carrier had an occupant. The rider was very steady though. --Laura

  • .

    Helmets are not safety.

    Why is the pet carrier cruel? Just because he is carrying it in one hand rather than stapping it to the bike ?!?

    One helmet page 13 and it's a lycra wearing, pretend race bike rider :)

  • Bruce A. Wilson

    "Why is the pet carrier cruel? Just because he is carrying it in one hand rather than stapping it to the bike ?!?"

    I can imagine the poor cat or dog inside being thrown about as the carrier swung to and fro. The creature would be terrified. And what if rider overbalanced, or hit a slick, or became involved in a collision? How would he keep the carrier from flying off to Points Unknown with a living being trapped inside it without even the chance to escape? I'd certainly never put my kitty in such danger.

    We have hashed my opinion about helmets out thoroughly here, and I will not go into it again except to say that I prefer not to have my skull bouncing on the pavement without some protection.

    YMMV, of course.

  • Val

    Wow, Bruce, it sure must be spectacular to watch you ride, based on the dire occurrences that you assume to be normal. I can only asssume that your daily rides involve all manner of hair raising experiences, such as overbalancing, colliding and flying off to Points Unknown (is that in South Dakota?). How have you survived so long? Do you have any video of yourself? (apologies to Todd for the troll-baiting; couldn't help myself)

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