On the Road: The Velologue Cyclist Interview with Justin Teisl


Name: Justin Teisl
Age: 29
City: San Francisco, California
Occupation: Barista

Date: September 24, 2012
Location: Aptos, California
Bike: Surley Long Haul Trucker

I was at a café in Aptos, just off California’s Highway 1. Parked outside was a fully-loaded Long Haul Trucker; seated inside was a cyclist with a pannier, a map, and a cell phone—obviously the Surley's rider.

We talked a bit. He was on a 6 day trip from San Francisco to Big Sur and back—2 days riding to Big Sur, two days camping, and two days on the return leg. The best part of the trip? Camping in Big Sur. I’d just been to Big Sur myself, and that part of the California coast must be one of the most beautiful places on the planet. The worst part? The cold ride on the first night of his return home, with the poison oak he picked up from stealth camping coming in second. Fortunately, he had brought (or bought) some Calamine lotion.

Thanks for taking the time to talk, Justin, and may all your rides be as enjoyable as your early autumn ride to Big Sur!

It's A Race Against Time

 It’s a race against time.

Winter is almost here, but judging by the temperatures outside, winter has already arrived. Despite temperatures in the low teens (the kind of unusual weather occurrences one might expect to see if, say, we were experiencing global climate change), we’ve had sunny blue skies, with not a hint of precipitation, so no snow in Portland.


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Freak Bikes Meet Art Installation in Miami

You're invited to ride an installation from freak bike culture. Experience artist Ryan Doyle's three part bike exhibition featuring the Hell-o-Copterthe Regurgitator, and Tall Bike Jousting.

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Remembering Sheldon Brown

 Has it already been a year?

I looked at the calendar just now, and yes, it's been a year today since Sheldon passed. I never met Sheldon, but like many cyclists, much-- no, most-- of what I know about the mechanical side of things I learned from Sheldon Brown's website. I even had the great thrill and pleasure of being corrected by Sheldon himself on a technical point regarding steel tubing.

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Xtra Tall Bike

I was riding home through the Pearl, and decided to take a detour north to avoid the worst of the stop signs. As I approached an intersection, I saw the unmistakable form of a tall bike across the intersection, locked to a staple bike rack. Was it worth a closer look? As I neared, I noticed a design detail that made a stop mandatory…

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Cyclists Welcome

There's a new condo conversion in town, and it caught my eye recently as I was walking by. It wasn't the building itself, although it's certainly an attractive building, inside and out.


Rather, it was the cycleway adjacent to the building...

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City of Cyclists? The emerging Los Angeles bike culture

In our December 24th Legally Speaking column, we discussed A Cyclists’ Bill of Rights, an inspirational example of cycling activism by the Bike Writers Collective, a group of Los Angeles cycling activists, who drafted a Cyclists’ Bill of Rights and brought it before the Los Angeles City Council, where it was adopted with preliminary approval on December 9, 2008.

Then, on December 31st, I reported on The L.A. Bicycle License Controversy, in which an Angeleno cyclist with the nom de velo Roadblock was targeted for harassment by an LAPD that apparently has nothing better to do, for—get this—not having a bicycle license.

Now, those two story lines come together in Bike Culture: Spokes People, an outstanding Los Angeles Magazine piece on an unlikely underground bike culture emerging in the capital of American car culture. Some highlights:

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The L.A. Bicycle License Controversy


(NOTE: This Velologue post was originally posted on BicycleLaw.com)

Recently, in Legally Speaking, we reported on proposals in Portland and Seattle to implement bicycle taxes, and expanded on that Legally Speaking column in our blog post "A Bicycle Tax?" In  response to that blog post, reader Rich Wilson raised some questions about a controversy brewing in Los Angeles over recent enforcement efforts:

When that Seattle Times article came up, a list I subscribe to discussed various rider and bike registration fees. Someone reported that LA has a bike registration (I think it's $4?) and that the police will ticket you for it ($161 fine?), but that it's pretty hard to actually get a registration, as they only sell them a few hours of the week. Anyone from LA have more info? Any advice, Bob, for how one might fight such a thing in court? It doesn't sound like something your avarege citizen could successfully argue in traffic court.

We looked into it, and just as Rich reported, there has indeed been at least one ticket issued for riding an  unlicensed bike. Here's what happened.

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Waves aren't the only thing surfers ride


With Portland snowed in for a white Christmas, it seems almost remarkable that a few short weeks ago, I was in Santa Cruz, California, watching the surfers at Pleasure Point.

The last time I had been in Santa Cruz, I saw a guy on a bike riding down the street with a surfboard tucked under his arm. “Only in Santa Cruz,” I thought. I saw him riding once more before I left; both times, I was wishing I had a camera with me.

Well, I flew to the Bay Area for Thanksgiving with friends in Santa Cruz (Capitola, actually), and this time I brought my camera. Before I left, I told Bob “If I see the surfer riding with his board tucked under his arm again, I’ll get a photo.”

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