There was an excellent article about the dangers faced by Los Angeles cyclo-commuters in yesterday's Wall Street Journal. Rhonda Rundle, the author, describes cyclists dodging potholes and car doors. More intimidating are the "caffeine-infused psychotics" who yell at cyclists to get off the road. Even in my peaceful L.A. exurb, Santa Clarita, I have experienced this. It seems that many drivers throughout L.A. County have no patience for slowing down their SUVs, even momentarily, to accommodate cyclists.
The car culture in Los Angeles is so pervasive that almost everyone views bicycles as toys or exercise equipment. Cyclo-commuters are often looked at as silly and strange. These are cultural barriers which will be hard to break, but rising gas prices may be the catalyst we need to make the change happen.
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