rkt: (unicorn nph)
next stop(s): #Timee's Up's Bike Recycling Program with a not-so-special guest appearance by #landmark bicycles (ignore the address at the website.)

I'd gone to brunch with (the aforementioned) Mike and, since dining at http://www.clementinebakery.com/ I was mostly half way there, decided to continue my journey on to Time's Up and their deep-discount used bikes.  

So many bikes! All used and under $200. Bikes like this no-namer timesup-indigo.

pros/cons. let met tell you them.
On the one hand, it's a bit utilitarian. On the other, it's a bit tricked out. It has a kinetic-powered headlight (you pedal- it lights up. the inner elementary-gradeschool-science-geek/Homer Simpson is thrilled by this: "light goes on. light goes off").  an extra lock to the bike to keep the gears from moving if the key is removed. full chain guard (great for snowy-rainy days!). but single gear. which is meh when it comes to longer rides and hills. then again, check out that kickstand! 

the seat leaves a bit to be desired. the guy wasn't able to tell me if it was replaceable or not. (i have a spare seat at my house.) 

The ride up and down the block was smooth enough, through potholes and all. the location doesn't get the greatest amount of traffic. it's not super heavy. but not ultra-light, either. the kickstand/backrack make it a little lopsided in weight, but not terribly so. 

in case it wasn't clear: the guy running it didn't seem interested in answering questions. he's "not a sales guy, just a volunteer".  what makes this better than a new bike? i asked. his response, essentially, was that it avoided planned obsolescence and promptly started explaining what that meant. (lol - like apple stuff, you mean?, i asked but didn't get an answer) ... not quite douchey. but not exactly the listening sort.  tried to convince me i didn't have to worry about the bike being at risk of being stolen.

but under $200... so tempting!  and they have tons more like this. but the colour is kinda' cute.

I wanted to see more, and Landmark was only a few blocks away, so I said I wanted to ponder and would be back. 
I made my way to the other store. And here, I received no attention, not even a greeting. Not dressed to bike or lugging a helmet/chain with me, I didn't seem to matter. I tried making eye contact, but had my attempts avoided. (It was quiet enough, staff could be seen talking amongst themselves.) While I could have asked for help, I didn't see anything out in the open that I found particularly tempting in my price range to knock either the globes or the no-name out of contention. Yes, they had used, but it was "vitage", i.e. hipstery prices. So i left.

Back at Times Up, the guy appeared to have taken a break. I couldn't find him. So I hopped the bus to go home.  

August 26th
rkt: (purplecrayon)

for folks who missed the fb post, i'm looking to get myself a bike. it's the most convenient way to get around some parts of brooklyn. biking makes me happier than the idea of running. and chicks dig folks with bikes. So.

but it's hard work, yo! my friend Mike is helping me out with inspiration and while i started out thinking I'd yelp the process, he's convinced me to blog the ordeal. (My original plan was to yelp away the results. I'm sure I'll still do that. I've been neglectful of sharing my opinions there.)

only i'm too lazy to get a Real Blog just yet.

so el-jay. for now, it stays you and me and those making their way here.

First Stop: bicycle roots

It was sort-of on the way home from work because i took the long route and had to get off the subway, anyway, and it;s 2 blocks up from that stop. I'd been told by (other, mutual) friends that it was women owned and very friendly. And, indeed, it was friendly. Staff was able to make sense of what it was I was looking for. With a budget of around $500 (hello, credit card!) he suggested a globe

and  was able to show me this   globe silver side

silver frontand this one globe blue front

globe blue side. All the while not making me feel like an idiot and listening to me without pandering or over-selling. Despite the previously-given accolades, I was still braced for stuck-up gear-heads. If any were there, I didn't interact with them. The gears needed a little adjusting on the silver one, which they did easy-peasy.

Most days I lean toward the Silver One. The Blue One is nice, and more visually pleasing in some respects, and the handlebars offer more stability. (This may not be important to most, but the sidewalk/street and I have a rather special relationship of extra-curricular gravitational pulling.) But the Silver One, apparently, will be gentler on my body as i tackle hills and carry weight. Yet, the Blue One, comes with the rack already installed, but that also affects the weight. I need something that i can carry up a (steep) flight of steps after a ride.....so..... I rode them both around the store and they are smooth. I wasn't up for taking an out-side ride with traffic (sidwalking riding is illegal for 13+). So i definitely need to do that before making a final decision.

I put a deposit on the Silver One. Because even if I don't take it home, I still need a Good Lock and a Great Helmet, which, together, will be the cost of my deposit.

P.S. I am only screening comments from non-LJ friends to keep out the spambots. sorry in advance for the fake-in-text-links which are ads. globe and bicycle roots are the only ones that are real link-throughs.

rkt: (2 cents)
Have I ever mentioned that I so don't like binaries?

the recent murder of Kansas City (USA) Dr. Tiller has me re-pondering.

How binaried is choice?

I was thinking about this for awhile, and recent discussions in that one community have restarted the musings.

I'm very much in the Choice=Choicen camp. Abortion on request,without apology for any who requests it and without financial barriers.

I get annoyed by the "I'm pro choice BUT____" because, to me, you either believe in a person's right to make choices about their bodies according to their beliefs or you believe in a person's right to make choices about their bodies according to your beliefs. so while it may not make you "pro life", it establishes a limited definition of choice.

But, then, for the longest,I was in that "I'd never have an abortion/abortion is wrong BUT i think women should be able to have a safe abortion" camp.
and, really, isn't that still pro-choice in a way?

and, how many people who ID as "pro-life" fit into in this quasi-pro-choice camp? which would then actually make the significant majority of USians "prochoice" - sort of?

oh, frames and semantics. how funny you are.

as long as we're on the topic - it's been awhile since i've plugged for donations, so:
in the meantime:

national network of abortion funds
medical students for choice
Abortion care network which is linked with men and abortion.

or volunteer

rkt: (izzard.flags.unknown)
someone i put on my flist posted this independent article about somali pirates. and how not all pirate are bad. the article doesn't dispute that some, in fact, in the article's words :"gangters", it simply adds to the picture that other 'pirates' are in it to protect their country.

In 1991, the government of Somalia collapsed. Its nine million people have been teetering on starvation ever since – and the ugliest forces in the Western world have seen this as a great opportunity to steal the country's food supply and dump our nuclear waste in their seas.

Yes: nuclear waste. As soon as the government was gone, mysterious European ships started appearing off the coast of Somalia, dumping vast barrels into the ocean. The coastal population began to sicken. At first they suffered strange rashes, nausea and malformed babies. Then, after the 2005 tsunami, hundreds of the dumped and leaking barrels washed up on shore. People began to suffer from radiation sickness, and more than 300 died.


At the same time, other European ships have been looting Somalia's seas of their greatest resource: seafood. We have destroyed our own fish stocks by overexploitation – and now we have moved on to theirs. More than $300m-worth of tuna, shrimp, and lobster are being stolen every year by illegal trawlers. The local fishermen are now starving. Mohammed Hussein, a fisherman in the town of Marka 100km south of Mogadishu, told Reuters: "If nothing is done, there soon won't be much fish left in our coastal waters."

i'm inclined to believe the contents of the pirate article/post because, well, the whole bits about those from "civilized" nations being the ones plundering is more than believable.

but i must admit my own ignorance here.

p.s. i had this post writ and queued for review when this article from the unapologetic mexican came along on the f-list via feed and seems to confirm.
rkt: (bannedbooks)
(as seen on fb)

when the internet savvy get pissed, the internet savvy google bomb

so, according to smart bitches/trashy books it seems that amazon's folks at amazon rank have decided to stop including books that are a threat to puritanical society in their amazon rank.
scandalous and smutty books, you know, like foucault's history of sexuality*.
not that i approve of them removing the amazon rank listing from playboy's century of sex** or the amazon rank for basic women's erotica .

*and to illustrate the arbitraryness of it all volume 2 retains its amazon rank.

**don't worry, the amazon rank for playboy:the complete centerfolds is still safe.

amazon explains why sales' ranks matter here.

does a business have the *right* to run itself however it sees fit? for the most part, sure.
marshall, a so-called employee at amazon, says that amazon can't be homophobic because they employ a lot of gay people. which... i'm not going to touch their hiring practices right now .... but that sounds a lot like the "some of my best friends are gay" corporate equivalent. his comment at smart bitches/trashy books only makes amazon sound incompetent.

but, more to the point, if customers and potential customers are disgruntled by said company's policies, they also have the right to show their feelings and share their frustration.
sending a live-action threat to amazon is very much illegal.
google-bombing amazon and their amazon rank ~ not at all.
rkt: (intersection)
so, christian pharmacists don't have to supply medication to women who need it, but a muslim businesses owner can lose his franchise for not wanting to supply bacon? really?
ok. that really is really a rhetorical question.
and i must say, the timing is....well...a little obvious.

Dunkin' Donuts operator gives up franchise in pork battle

An Arab-American owner of a Chicago-area Dunkin' Donuts store has to give up his franchise after he lost his long-running legal battle with the restaurant chain over his religious objections to selling pork products.

A lawyer for Walid Elkhatib said Tuesday that his client is in the process of removing Dunkin' Donuts signs from his Westchester outlet, but apparently not fast enough for the company.

Dunkin' Donuts went to federal court in Chicago on March 27 to stop Elkhatib, 59, from using the company's trademarks and other proprietary materials.

The company's lawsuit came two weeks after a federal jury found that the chain did not discriminate against Elkhatib for refusing to renew his franchise agreement because he declined to sell breakfast sandwiches with bacon, ham or sausage.

The dietary restrictions of Elkhatib's Muslim faith forbid him from eating or handling pork. When he decided to go into the restaurant business, his faith was one of the reasons why he invested in Dunkin' Donuts in 1979. The chain did not introduce breakfast sandwiches until 1984.

For nearly 20 years, Dunkin' Donuts accommodated his religious beliefs, even providing him signs for his store that said, "No meat products available," Elkhatib asserted in court documents. But in 2002, the company reversed course and told him it would not renew his franchise agreement if he did not sell its full line of products.

oh, dunkin' donuts..... )
rkt: (cooties.unknown)
check it from [livejournal.com profile] pedentic_cat:

and, while i'm happy to see hpv awareness (i hesitate to use the term "visibility", cuz, well, i'm not so sure that that *is* a good thing), i am not happy to note the continued lesbian invisibility. while, yes, dykes are low-risk, those who have sex are still "at risk". AND because so many lesbians, and even some GYNs seem to think that there is ZERO chance for virii, including hpv, to be shared from woman to woman, MORE lesbians are at risk for the virus progressing.

i'm also not happy with the way woman's body's are segmented. and for the most part, rather pale skinned.

which means i need to tell Merck something/s. and they don't make it easy.

also, while the site says it is for residents of "the United States, its territories, and Puerto Rico only", i can pretty firmly assure you, NONE of the strains of HPV are US-Centric. (I am not sure what they're getting at by singling PR out.)


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