Book Review: Policing the Open Road

Lisa Caballero (Southwest Correspondent) by on April 20th, 2021 at 9:29 am

The idea that cars = freedom is a pervasive American myth. The truth is that the rise of the automobile — and rampant illegal behaviors that have always accompanied it — helped give rise to an armed street security force that too often acts as judge, jury, and executioner.

Sarah Seo’s book, Policing the Open Road (2019, Harvard University Press), is a cultural history of how we arrived at the system we have today, told through the lens of jurisprudence and law enforcement. It’s about how governments scrambled to regulate the automobile revolution, about the overwhelming volume of laws they created, the need to make them uniform, and how the process of creating the rules of the road, and enforcing them, transformed America’s concept of privacy and freedom.

Take, for example, driving on the right side of the road. After being ticketed by a state trooper for driving on the wrong side, a man hired a lawyer who argued that there was no “wrong” side, that the law merely stated that you had to pull to the right when you met an oncoming car. That man had his day in court and won. It seems that proto-advisory shoulders were the law of the land in early 20th-century Iowa.[Read more…]

Today: Live interview with author and mobility justice advocate Adonia Lugo

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on May 28th, 2020 at 10:03 am

A Reed College graduate who has gone on to be a leading voice on the intersection of racism and transportation reform advocacy will join Portland-based Microcosm Publishing for a live event on YouTube later today (5/28).

Adonia Lugo earned a degree from Reed in 2005 then went on to earn a Masters Degree and PhD in anthropology from UC Irvine. She spent two years as manager of the equity initiative at the League of American Bicyclists. Her book, Bicycle/Race: Transportation, Culture, & Resistance was published by Microcosm in 2018.

Lugo is also one of the organizers behind Untokening, a group that has risen to prominence in transportation reform circles for work that, “Centers the lived experiences of marginalized communities to address mobility justice and equity.”[Read more…]

Family Biking: Author and illustrator Alison Farrell comes to Storytime March 10th

Madi Carlson (Family Biking Columnist) by on March 5th, 2019 at 9:14 am

Portland author and illustrator Alison Farrell will join us at Bike Shop Storytime this coming Sunday, March 10th.

Our Family Biking column is sponsored by Clever Cycles.

➤ Read past entries here.

And please note: We’ve moved the remaining Storytime events from Mondays to Sundays to attract more little listeners. We’re also shifting from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. We’ll probably keep it going beyond March, but check the calendar or Kidical Mass PDX website for the latest event info.

Alison will read read and offer signed copies of her amazing book, Cycle City. You might recall we profiled Alison last year.
[Read more…]

Family Biking: Join us for a new ‘Storytime’ event series

Madi Carlson (Family Biking Columnist) by on January 8th, 2019 at 11:57 am

Storytime! 2nd and 4th Mondays of the month January-March.
(*Thank you to Liz Holladay from Clever Cycles for the bike-riding book illustration and to Leslie Hickey of Hoarfrost Press for the graphic lettering.)

I’m still chugging away at trying to pedal more throughout the winter in an attempt to keep my winter blahs at bay, but I’ve decided to supplement things with some indoor bike-related fun for the off-season. Enter Bike Shop Storytime.
[Read more…]

Chill reads for new urbanist needs

Avatar by on July 25th, 2018 at 9:13 am

Our co-editor Emily Guise models proper reading form.
(Photo: Catie Gould)

This summer reading list was created by Catie Gould and Emily Guise, BikeLoud PDX volunteers and co-editors of our Adventures in Activism column.

Summer is a great time to relax by the pool (fountain, river, lake, sprinkler, or whatever) and still get nerdy about transportation and land-use. What could be better?

Here’s our list of favorite urbanist classics and a few newer ones for good measure…
[Read more…]

Six questions for Portland illustrator and ‘Cycle City’ author Alison Farrell

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on April 5th, 2018 at 12:23 pm

Alison and a few of her many inspirations.
(Photo: Zoey Abbott)

As often happens as I peruse the web for story ideas, I come across something wonderful and then forget how I ended up there.

That’s how I came across the work of Alison Farrell. [Read more…]

Niner Bikes founder, now a Portlander, hopes to crowdfund children’s book

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on October 24th, 2017 at 10:43 am

Cover of Domahidy’s book.

Go to any bike race or adventure ride these days and you’re almost sure to see “Niner” on the downtube of at least one of the bikes. Niner Bikes, as their name suggests, is respected in the bike industry as a pioneer of the 29-inch wheel size, having launched their first model in 2004.

Steve Domahidy co-founded Niner and was head of its R & D department until 2011. He recently moved to Portland where he’s put his design and engineering prowess behind a new brand (Viral Bikes) and a new project that’s a departure from anything he’s worked on in his 30-year career in the bike industry: a children’s book.

Domahidy is currently in the final stretch of a Kickstarter campaign for A Bike For You, a book he wrote in tandem with illustrator Rob Snow. The book is a fun tale that uses animals to explore many different types of bikes and styles of riding. Here’s an excerpt:[Read more…]

20 years later, John Forester’s ‘Effective Cycling’ to be re-published

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on April 25th, 2012 at 12:34 pm

New cover of Effective Cycling
(MIT Press)

A book by the man who coined the termed “vehicular cycling” is set to be re-published by MIT Press on May 18th (which is Bike to Work Day). In 1993, John Forester’s Effective Cycling aimed to explain his perspective on how people should operate bicycles. That book, and Forester himself, had a profound impact on cycling in the 1990s and the new edition of the book will hit shelves as cities across America clamor to install the type of separated, protected bike infrastructure Forester abhors.

On his personal website, Forester urges visitors to, “Fight for Your Right to Cycle Properly!” telling them, “The right of cyclists to cycle properly and safely is disappearing. If you don’t fight to preserve it, it will disappear.” [Read more…]

Sneak peek at “Where to Bike: Portland” guide book and app

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on April 6th, 2012 at 11:08 am

Draft cover of new Where to Bike: Portland guide book. (Final cover will have different image).

Yesterday I got a visit from Phil Latz, Director of Bicycling Australia and publisher of (among other things) an exciting new series of guide books titled, Where to Bike. [Read more…]

First look at new Oregon bike touring guide book, ‘Cycling Sojourner’

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) by on March 30th, 2012 at 9:56 am


With all the rain we’re having, I’m sure some of you are scheming how to make the most of the sun once it returns. On that note, I want to share an update on an exciting new bike touring guide book that is set for release on May 8th. Cycling Sojourner is the work of Portland travel writer Ellee Thalheimer and it’s poised to usher in a wave of bike touring, just as rural communities throughout Oregon are beginning to recognize its economic potential.

Like we shared back in July, Thalheimer’s book is one of four bike guide books coming out this year covering rides in Portland and throughout the state. While each one of them will help plan bike adventures, Cycling Sojourner is the only one that focuses on self-supported, multi-day rides.[Read more…]