Without even a sleep separating them, I was walking around a canned nature experience outside of Vancouver one moment and in the surf with my sons in Newcastle the next. And now already I’m in Amsterdam. If you don’t want this to happen to you, choose a job like other people have, not something unique, like the architect of urban cycling.
Anyway I’m here in this cesspit of sex, drugs and cycling “sealing some deals”, “greasing some wheels” — you know the deal. I’m past taking photos of Amsterdam’s bikes. I’ve moved on to taking photos of stairs. If the Dutch are serious about cycling, this is one thing they really should fix.
If ever I wake up a totally different person and start applying the same standards of criticism to bikes in the city as I do the presence of cars, I might say something about the numbers of bikes parked on footpaths in cities like this one. Footpaths in Amsterdam’s canal district are basically blocked forcing pedestrians into the path of oncoming bikes. It’s a wonder the municipal authority here hasn’t forced developers to include off-street bike parking with each change of use.
The other thing that has struck me since arriving just a few hours ago (that I somehow managed to overlook when I came here last year) is the sheer conspicuousness of beautiful women on bikes. For this is the land of the hot-as-fuck hipster chick and we do the planet a disservice when we ignore that. If China had known that they might not have turned Beijing into Dubai. If heterosexual politicians knew that, they would ban cars altogether.
Have you ever noticed how the curves of a sports car echo the curves of chicks’ hips? They do, and so what kind of twisted up fruit loop would see this…
…as a substitute for something like this…
…my Primrose on her Velorbis in Outlier pants? (If only someone would put pants on that single exhaust!) Filling city streets with metal arse substitutes, when we could be filling them with the real thing, is like XXX porn on free-to-air telly. It’s worse than that. It’s like an orgy of furrys and monster trucks on the field at half time at junior soccer. It’s like something J.G. Ballard would think of, except nobody sees it. Perhaps only if a man with our eyes could be brought from the past to the present, from days when the street was a stage for real derrières to these times when the street is a stage for perversion, would anyone else see it as I do.
Indications are that this sickness will only get worse if they have their sick way with driverless cars. These don’t look like backsides so much, as devices that perverts put up them.
I was delighted to see BCBUSINESS reporting on my talk in Vancouver last week. My thanks to them and Felicity Stone for an excellent summary of my position:
Just as architects Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright envisioned cities planned around the car, today’s architects must do the same for bicycling, says architect, researcher and Cycle Space author Steven Fleming. Speaking at the Architectural Institute of British Columbia conference October 30, Fleming said replacing cars with bicycles is healthy for the cyclists and the planet, and since people in the developing world tend to emulate those in wealthier countries, it’s up to those at the top of the pyramid to set an example. Continue reading…