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Advocacy & Safety Cyclists should expect and demand safe accommodation on every public road, just as do all other users. Discuss your bicycle advocacy and safety concerns here.

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Old 06-13-01, 12:28 PM   #1
LittleBigMan
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Breathing

As a cyclist, breathing is one of my greatest pleasures. All the smells of fresh air are wonderful, especially when taken deep into my lungs, over and over again. The honeysuckle fragrance, the pine fragrance, the recently-rained fragrance, the mimosa tree fragrance, the fall leaves fragrance; these just scratch the surface. Sometimes breathing deeply is like drinking a tall, cool glass of fresh water. And the added fragrances, often unexpected, are just an added flavor!

But when I drove more frequently, I wasn't as aware of the way I was fouling the air. Especially when I smoked while driving.

Not only have I become more aware of the beautiful fragances in the air around me, I am also very aware of the putrid exhaust of many people's cars. There are many types, too: the diesel smell, the burned oil smell, the antifreeze exhaust smell, the sulfur smell, the gasoline smell, the new car leadfoot smell, the metallic friction smell, the hemp smell (ok, that is more from open windows,) and many others, including the I-can't-put-my-finger-on-that-one smell.

All in all, the point I'm trying to make is, cars are stinky. If anyone should have a superior ethical right, if not a legal one, to use of the road, it's me on my bike. All I do is breathe in, breathe out. Fresh air is something too many people, who are too often shut up behind doors of some kind or another, don't really appreciate like I do.

Everyone should ride a bike, if just for the breathing experience.
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Old 06-13-01, 05:02 PM   #2
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yes, well put Pete. I have noticed the same thing. Here in New Jersey the state recently went to great expense and effort to privatize the inspection stations. One of the improvements was the addition of dynomometers to test the vehicle emissions under similated driving conditions.

I could have saved the state some dough on that one. It's pretty easy to tell weather a car has bad emissions with just my nose as they speed by. I've even noticed that certain brands of cars seem to have foul exhaust more frequently.
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Old 06-13-01, 08:23 PM   #3
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Around here the Lilacs are in bloom, and the apple trees have just finished, it's like riding in a perfume factory!
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Old 06-13-01, 08:25 PM   #4
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I've got cows. Lots of cows.

There are paper mills too.

Ick.

I'll dream of lilacs next time I ride. I'll try not to inhale too.
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Old 06-14-01, 07:02 AM   #5
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Congratulations Lightboy on the 101 posts!
Now, go pass 101 cows today. :thumbup:
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Old 06-15-01, 04:53 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by thbirks
yes, well put Pete. I have noticed the same thing. Here in New Jersey the state recently went to great expense and effort to privatize the inspection stations. One of the improvements was the addition of dynomometers to test the vehicle emissions under similated driving conditions.

I could have saved the state some dough on that one. It's pretty easy to tell weather a car has bad emissions with just my nose as they speed by. I've even noticed that certain brands of cars seem to have foul exhaust more frequently.
thbirks,
I can't help but notice, that with the seriousness of your biking, you can now distinguised all those foul emission car that passes you bye when you ride your bike, maybe because of your clean lungs you can smell a foul smelling air a mile away....
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Old 06-15-01, 08:36 AM   #7
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Originally posted by orguasch
...maybe because of your clean lungs you can smell a foul smelling air a mile away....
I think cycling a lot sharpens all the senses, because of the need to be always alert. The sense of smell wouldn't be exempt--after all, it alerts us to danger when we smell smoke, etc.
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Old 08-09-01, 12:57 PM   #8
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It's also interesting that people will move further and further from the city center to avoid things like air pollution, only to bring the problem with them.

In addition, I read somewhere that people who move away from the city because of the dangers of crime actually expose themselves to a higher risk of injury and death due to auto accidents.
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Old 08-09-01, 04:37 PM   #9
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You're right, Pete. They also expose themselves to additional stress, having to drive twice as far and still get to work on time. My commute runs alongside the beach, and the breeze off the ocean can be very pleasant most days.

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