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LA's Bike Culture: Full of Annoying Punks, But...

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To that reader looking to learn the ins and outs of bicycling in the city, may we direct you to Matthew Segal's piece in Los Angeles magazine, a feature that looks at the area's recent explosion in bicycle culture. Even though LA was late to the game (SF had the first Critical Mass in 1992), we now boast a thriving bike scene, complete with "bike musicians, bike artists, bike outreach groups, bike party animals, even bike filmmakers." Like the hot rodders and lowriders of old, these kids (and adults) are increasingly getting their kicks with semi-illicit activities, such as freeway riding and impromptu parties in the streets.

While some activities of the bike scene are obviously political (defending the rights of riders harassed by LA's notoriously bike-hating cops, for example), others are downright jackassish. One group, calling themselves the "Crimanimalz" sticks it to the man by playing "Crosswalk Craps," shutting down roads by walking back and forth continuously across crosswalks. If this sounds more than a little annoying, there's some comfort in the idea that the romance and punkness of the bike scene will draw more people to consider biking as a real mobility option. And there's more--new rides and events are drawing the bike culture further west: "Until recently the cool kids east of La Brea wouldn't have dreamed of traveling west for a meal, let alone some big bike excursion; the Westside wasn't happening. But because of C.R.A.N.K. MOB and the Crimanimalz, they're making the schlep." What does this mean for Westside real estate? Who knows.--Dan Caroselli [Photo credit: Los Angeles magazine]
· Bike Culture: Spokes People [LA Mag]
· Ask Curbed: Learning to Ride a Bike in LA [Curbed LA]