Category Archives: News

News posted by instructor

Expedition: Marin Headlands

This is a guest post from Ettore Crocetti Marzotto, a USF student took “Speaking of Bicycles” last year. He bought a bicycle and has been exploring San Francisco and the surrounding area. Here is a recent report of his explorations:

I went for a ride over Golden Gate Bridge last Sunday. I took my camera and a picnic lunch with me and had a really good time, it was probably the furthest up I went.

Conzelman Road in the Marin Headlands, descending west, with Point Bonita lighthouse in the distance.

This road here was something out of a riding magazine – super fun to go down it! After that I left the main road to head for some trails and eventually ended up high, with a nice view, (the one in the second picture) and had my picnic there. 

View of Rodeo lagoon and beach in the Marin Headlands, site of the former US Army base Fort Cronkhite.

I find it so incredible that you can just go over the bridge and find such open nature, such a contrast to SF.  The only thing that I still have to find, is some good single track downhill though -haha. I thought I share this ride seeing as I had those pictures, really that first shot of the road and the biker, could be in a magazine haha!

What is a “Post”?

I often ask you to write “posts.” There are a couple ways to approach this task, but usually it should take less than 10 or 15 minutes to actually write the post (reading and viewing course material takes longer, of course!).

When you write your post, think about the kind of things you are most likely to read on the internet. You can use posts for this class as a way to practice and apply strategies that will capture the audiences you want to reach.

I set up a “Post” page with some guidelines for writing your posts. But in truth, there’s no one right way to do it, as long as you aim for these goals:

  • thinking it through
  • sharing your ideas
  • demonstrating your knowledge

(and you should include an image, picture, graph, drawing, etc.)

by Nina Paley

REPLY REQUESTED – California Bicycle Summit

We have been invited to present at the California Bicycle Summit in Sacramento in the first week in October!

I need volunteers to attend the conference with me! We’ll drive up on Thursday morning (10/5) and spend the day at the conference. In the evening, there is a dance party at — wait for it — the California State Railroad Museum that evening, but we’ll only stay for that if everyone wants to.

SO this means that you might need to miss a Thursday class, but you get an opportunity to share your ideas with bike advocates from around California!

You don’t have to give a speech or TED talk or anything — we’ll make some posters and share them, kind of as described here:

I am not going to post a video of what a dance party for bike advocates at a railroad museum might look like. It’s not gonna be pretty.

Email me with questions (or post a comment below).

Spike in Pedestrian Deaths

Use Caution!

A new report from the Governors Highway Safety Association shows a continued rise in pedestrian injuries and deaths as a result of traffic collisions.

While total traffic deaths have increased slightly (after falling for years due to increased safety requirements for autos), pedestrian deaths have increased 25% since 2010, with the highest increase rate (11%) in 2016.

More than 700 pedestrians were killed in California in 2016.

My home state (Delaware) had the highest per capita death rate for pedestrians: 3.38 deaths per 100,000…. 🙁

One explanation offered by the report: “A more recent factor contributing to the increase in pedestrian fatalities may be the growing use of smart phones by all road users, which can be a signicant source of distraction for both drivers and pedestrians.”

You can read the full report here:

The story in the SF Chron


A Post about a Bicycle

Write a blog post about a bike you own or have owned
(or wanted to own). Include some visual element
in your post (photo, drawing, graph, chart, map…).

Like this one:

In a barn sale in rural Ohio, my mother found a rusty Frankenstein of a bike: two frames and some iron pipe welded together in a frightening heap. She bought it for $20. I managed to get it to San Francisco & fix it up. I don’t get to ride it much because I live in a hilly area and it’s almost impossible to ride this thing on a hill (up or down).

There is a “tall bike” subculture in the US and around the world, usually centered in urban areas, so it was a surprise that this bike came from a very rural area. Also, it appears to have been constructed 30 or 40 years ago, which is before the current tall bike subculture really got going.

Unfortunately, this bike has a design flaw that can cause the handlebars to detach unexpectedly from the front wheel. Although the bike isn’t super duper tall, this experience is nonetheless unsettling. If I can figure out how to fix this problem, I’ll bring the bike to campus one of these days.

PS. YouTube video of the tallest bike I know of: