February 4th, 2019: Salt Encrusted

Last week's polar vortex now seems like a bad dream:

Monday Weather

Monday Sunny, with a high near 51. South wind 3 to 5 mph.

Monday Night A 30 percent chance of showers after 1am. Increasing clouds, with a low around 39. Light south wind.

Sunrise: 7:03am

Sunset: 5:17pm

Try not to worry about why the temperature's fluctuating so much and just enjoy it.  Anyway, you're riding a bike so it's not your fault.

Of course, while they cold may have (temporarily) abandoned us, there's still plenty of salt on the streets, and if you've ventured over the GWB recently you may have found that whatever they're using over there quickly becomes a goopy mess:

Well, I received plenty of amusing replies to my query:

As well as this informative one:

From the thread:

Why this kind of salt: They're hopefully using an environmentally friendly product, since it will end up in the river. Many of these don't have calcium chloride and do contain urea, which gets real clumpy and messy.

Plus in a pinch it probably makes a decent tire sealant.

In other cold weather news, the Times took a look at what working cyclists wear when it gets brutally cold:

James Whitefox, 35
Bike messenger

“Outlier trousers. Chrome socks. Leggings. And move fast.” Mr. Whitefox also said he keeps a mental list of friendly coffee spots where you can sit, or grab a cup in 30 seconds or less.

Mr. Whitefox seemed to enjoy the cold.

“It brings out a lot of good in people. People give free coffee, they hold open doors.”

He used to work in San Francisco. The weather there, he said, was “boring.”

Let's see if he still thinks California weather is boring in five years.

Speaking of working cyclists, some may complain about ebikes, but nobody's complaining about having food delivered to their door no matter how horrendous the weather--including the people responsible for confiscating said ebikes:

“It’s so crazy,” said one delivery worker who declined to give his name after he dropped off lunch for one of the NYPD employees at Police Headquarters. In all, Streetsblog witnessed 13 e-bike deliveries to the home of the e-bike crackdown in one hour.

Several workers said they had received tickets of $500 and had their bikes confiscated in other precincts. A single $500 ticket nullifies roughly 10 days of work for a delivery rider.

Ironically (or not), one worker told Streetsblog that he never gets busted near 1 Police Plaza.

Yeah, but how do they tip?

And while the streets may be a salty mess, the bike lanes in Sunnyside are now a lot tidier:

Always wear your cleaning helmet.

If only drivers cared so much for their environment:

What a sad life he must lead.

In Brooklyn, a cyclist has died a week after a collision:

Susan Moses, 63, was riding south on Kings Highway near Van Sicklen St. just a few blocks from her Gravesend home Jan. 26 around 6:50 p.m. when she collided with a Toyota SUV, cops said.

In other words, the driver hit her with a Toyota SUV.

And it's always good to see reporters asking the important questions:

Police did not say whether Moses was wearing a helmet at the time of the collision. The driver of the SUV remained on the scene and has not been charged.

It would be just as relevant to ask if the driver was wearing a helmet.

Finally, here's how they do it in Chicago:

Well played.