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Happy Fourth....

Old 07-03-13, 11:00 PM
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Roody
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Happy Fourth....

....To my fellow Americans!

I hate riding my bike this one night of the year because I have an irrational fear of having a firework thrown or shot at me. The citizens here are obsessed with fireworks to an amazing degree. Even tonight, the Eve of the holiday, the air is hazy with gunpowder smoke. Oh well, less than a hundred miles away in Detroit, they are also firing guns into the air to celebrate. Probably at least one unlucky dog or human will be hit by a bullet falling back to earth. That's how they rock-n-roll in the D.

My family is going out of town to a big outdoor party. I will be left home alone because I have to work at 3:00. I will get a ride home from work at 11:30 because of the aforementioned firework phobia.

How about you all? How will you be observing our Independence Day?
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Old 07-04-13, 04:32 AM
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riding bikes and Falafels
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Old 07-04-13, 04:51 AM
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The oldest continued annual USA parade in Bristol R.I. The whole town is flooded with people. The amount of bikes around on that one day looks like some of the photos of more bike flooded parking areas in other countries.
Last night rode to the fireworks. A bicycle is the best way in or out of the whole town. When my kids were small I used to use the car and, arrive at 6:00 am to get a parking space for the 10:30 parade ( maybe 30 - 60 minutes driving time. Now I go by bicycle, and leave at 9:00 and get there for 10:30.

Happy 4th.
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Old 07-04-13, 05:19 AM
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Pumping water, repairing invisible dog fence, repairing plumbing, repairing roof leaks,... 14.5" of rain in the last 30 days.

Then heading 20 miles down the road to mom and dad's to meet up with my parents, sister and BIL for a small cook out. Not sure if there are going to be any fireworks here tonight. Normally we sit on our porch an watch the ones from the near by military base. But I think they may have been canceled by the sequestration issue.

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Old 07-04-13, 10:30 AM
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Fireworks around here usually start in June and go all the way through September...
Really don't know what they are "celebrating" these days anyways.

Happy Comfortable Slavery Day
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Old 07-04-13, 11:09 AM
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Usually spend the fourth guarding my property from a small valley filled with a population who's aggregate IQ is outshone by the combined number of beers chugged, Bullets discharged(usually at targets I'm guessing)and figure eights done with ratty old four wheelers on this night. If you threw in the number of dogs owned that are chained to one tree their whole lives, the numbers may be equivalent.

But I'm not bitter.

Seriously, there will probably be a couple thousand dollars worth of fireworks set off by people who, to judge by the trash I pick up on the road, eat exclusively at macdonalds, supplemented with slim jims.
And its dry.

Edit to say, I might shoot a few bottle rockets, but this is far from my favorite holiday. By far the most dangerous day to ride a bike around here.

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Old 07-04-13, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by shipwreck View Post
Usually spend the fourth guarding my property from a small valley filled with a population who's aggregate IQ is outshone by the combined number of beers chugged, Bullets discharged(usually at targets I'm guessing)and figure eights done with ratty old four wheelers on this night. If you threw in the number of dogs owned that are chained to one tree their whole lives, the numbers may be equivalent.

But I'm not bitter.

Seriously, there will probably be a couple thousand dollars worth of fireworks set off by people who, to judge by the trash I pick up on the road, eat exclusively at macdonalds, supplemented with slim jims.
And its dry.

Edit to say, I might shoot a few bottle rockets, but this is far from my favorite holiday. By far the most dangerous day to ride a bike around here.
I'm glad you're not bitter!

One important point you bring up is to be extra careful riding on these summer holidays. New Years Eve is bad enough, but on 7/4 people start drinking beer at 11 AM and they don't stop all day. A lot of them don't seem to realize that they're under the influence, maybe because they're drinking beer at a picnic rather than hard stuff at a bar or a house party.
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Old 07-04-13, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
I'm glad you're not bitter!

.

Well, yeah you caught that I am fairly disgusted at least. But I did just walk the 1/4 mile up the dirt road to the pavement from my driveway, picking up the last four days worth of sonic, B-king, ciggy packets, soda bottles, slurpy and coffee cups, ect. Takes one five gallon bag on average. The fact that experience has taught me that when a car drives by its best to stash the trash bag in the weeds and pretend I am just walking is sad. If the people who do the littering know that I am picking it up I end up with huge amounts of trash piled by my gate.

On a serious on topic note, I will be driving over to Fayettville AR to cycle the inter city bike paths with my friends and their children, just going to wait till Sat to do it. Usualy I ride the forty some miles there and stay the night, but because of the long weekend a bike is not very safe on those roads.
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Old 07-04-13, 01:13 PM
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My ride today was to Target to get a new belt for the vacuum cleaner. Most of today will be in some serious house cleaning, but there is a country club a few blocks away with a nice fireworks show, so I'll pedal over, or if I get lazy, just stay on my balcony watching the fireworks popping over the trees.
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Old 07-04-13, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
My ride today was to Target to get a new belt for the vacuum cleaner. Most of today will be in some serious house cleaning, but there is a country club a few blocks away with a nice fireworks show, so I'll pedal over, or if I get lazy, just stay on my balcony watching the fireworks popping over the trees.
Go to the fireworks. I'm worried that you're not getting out enough lately.
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Old 07-05-13, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
I'm glad you're not bitter!

One important point you bring up is to be extra careful riding on these summer holidays. New Years Eve is bad enough, but on 7/4 people start drinking beer at 11 AM and they don't stop all day. A lot of them don't seem to realize that they're under the influence, maybe because they're drinking beer at a picnic rather than hard stuff at a bar or a house party.
Around here they start drinking the night before and never stop...

NCSHP had a road block set up just down the main road from my house. They even had the mobile magistrate bus there along with the paddy wagon and a couple of tow trucks. There were about 15 cars pulled over into the adjacent parking lot. So it looks like a typical holiday weekend here.

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Old 07-05-13, 04:20 PM
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We rode our bikes over to the local fireworks last night. They take place at a park with a lagoon in it, and the major street next to the park was closed so we could watch from there. Bikes were definitely the way to travel! The streets leading up to the park were choked with cars that were not moving, but we could filter around them. In some places the gap between cars and curb was so narrow I had to get off the bike and put it up on the curb for a bit. (The curb is separated from the actual sidewalk by a strip of lawn.) The sidewalks were equally choked with pedestrians, though at least they were moving.

Going to the show, traffic was no problem, but coming out of it, cars were moving a lot faster, and there were a lot of close passes at speed, especially on and near the bridge over the freeway. And of course some guy had to yell at me for taking the lane in a stretch of road where it's basically impossible to do otherwise. Poor thing had to go slow for a whole two blocks!
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Old 07-05-13, 05:43 PM
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Originally Posted by ro-monster View Post
We rode our bikes over to the local fireworks last night. They take place at a park with a lagoon in it, and the major street next to the park was closed so we could watch from there. Bikes were definitely the way to travel! The streets leading up to the park were choked with cars that were not moving, but we could filter around them. In some places the gap between cars and curb was so narrow I had to get off the bike and put it up on the curb for a bit. (The curb is separated from the actual sidewalk by a strip of lawn.) The sidewalks were equally choked with pedestrians, though at least they were moving.

Going to the show, traffic was no problem, but coming out of it, cars were moving a lot faster, and there were a lot of close passes at speed, especially on and near the bridge over the freeway. And of course some guy had to yell at me for taking the lane in a stretch of road where it's basically impossible to do otherwise. Poor thing had to go slow for a whole two blocks!
I like to ride my bike to the fireworks and festivals too. Depending on the setup, I either lock it on the perimeter or just walk the bike around with me. Some events have valet parking for bikes, which is very nice.
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Old 07-05-13, 10:02 PM
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Ahhh the highlight of the year is taking a ride through the barrio and watching all the illegal Fireworks
It's like a 3 hour firework show.
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Old 07-05-13, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Astrozombie View Post
Ahhh the highlight of the year is taking a ride through the barrio and watching all the illegal Fireworks
It's like a 3 hour firework show.
Next year I'm going to try for this attitude, instead of my irrational fear of fireworks.

until a year or two ago, most fireworks were illegal here in Michigan. They were extremely popular anyway. People drove for hours to buy them in Indiana or Ohio. Now it's anything goes, practically.
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Old 07-06-13, 12:15 AM
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I grew up in California where personal fireworks were mostly illegal and frowned upon where legal. I was shocked to see the missiles that folks in Oregon shoot up, especially considering the incomes of who is doing it. Add in the obscene amount of alcohol consumed (I think CH3-CH2OH is the official chemical of Oregon), and it is a disaster.

The fourth of July is one of the few days of the year when I don't ride. My wife and I did a wonderful twenty mile stroll from the river to the ridgeline trail and back in lieu of riding. As we were arriving at the trailhead for the ridgeline trail, a mere three miles from our house, we were almost run over by our neighbor who had just pulled out of the parking lot while yakking on his phone. It struck us as sad that he would drive six miles round-trip to walk a comparable distance. Worse yet, he has two young children who are learning this behavior.
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Old 07-06-13, 05:06 AM
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Is the 4th the biggest celebration of the year over there?
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Old 07-06-13, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by RyderTheRider View Post
Is the 4th the biggest celebration of the year over there?
One of several...

Aaron
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Old 07-06-13, 06:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
Go to the fireworks. I'm worried that you're not getting out enough lately.
Thank you. I did. I was surprised at how mobbed it was. Still I found a nice spot on the green where the fireworks seemed to be almost overhead. It was a good show. Returning home, I was glad I pedaled over. Traffic was packed, but that was no problem for me. A special thanks to the Pleasant Valley Country Club for their graciousness. I watched with amusement as the smoke from where they launched the fireworks built up and almost seemed to cover the club house. It's possible that those of us on the green got a better view than the members.
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Old 07-06-13, 07:33 AM
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As an ex-pat I was sorely disappointed with the fireworks display by Toronto on Canada Day. The first time in my life I did not celebrate the 4th in any way. I did miss it.
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Old 07-06-13, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Jared. View Post
As an ex-pat I was sorely disappointed with the fireworks display by Toronto on Canada Day. The first time in my life I did not celebrate the 4th in any way. I did miss it.
Next year head over to Windsor. Detroit and Windsor always celebrate the two countries' national holidays with riverfront festivals in each city. More than a million people watch the amazing fireworks over the Detroit River. I went almost every year when I lived in the area.
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Old 07-06-13, 11:51 AM
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I always bike to watch the fireworks; one of the best places to watch is from a bridge on the bike path.

And I always get a good feeling about biking when I see how cars aren't moving at all - particularly when the people in cars probably only drove 2-3 miles to the fireworks.
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