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May 09, 2009

Pittsburgh Bicycle Politics : Ravenstahl is a Poseur



Bike Pgh has a series of Q&A's posed to the leading contenders for the Democratic Party's Mayoral Primary - which is the de facto election for Mayor.

Bike-Pgh: How far do you live from the City County Building? If you have ridden a bike to work please describe the ride. If you haven’t ridden to work, what steps would need to be taken in order for you to give it a try?

Robinson: I live less than a mile. I live in Crawford square, The Hill District. I love walking to work. It is a wonderful way to clear my mind. I also decompress on the way home. I can interact with my family right at the door. Walking is great for me. Cycling would speed up the process. I need the time.

Ravenstahl: I have not ever ridden a bike from my home to the City County Building. I would have to make sure I was in shape for the 5 mile ride! It would be tricky because there are highways and overpasses on the way from Summer Hill to the City County Building.

Dowd: According to Google maps, my home is 5.3 miles from the City County Building. During the summer, I ride to work on Fridays. In fact, my first trip to work by bike was with Scott Bricker as my bike escort.



Here's some photos of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, June 2007, riding a bike in Pittsburgh. I think it's noteworthy that he borrowed a POLICE HELMET and a POLICE BIKE to make the photo op, but if the guy takes his Homeland Security vehicle out to Starlake, what is a reasonable expectation? Also, I think he's got a rainbow reflective trouser clip on one photo - guys like that give Freds a bad name.
 
Photo Credit: Mary Shaw


Here's a photo of a Pittsburgh Mayor riding his own bike with his own helmet:


Here's what I know about the news media and politicians -- you don't usually get enough info to know what's really going on. Sometimes you'll see a news story about a situation that you have direct knowledge of. When that happens, you form opinions about the people, positions, and presentation - and I believe those are extendable to the larger world where you don't have complete context.

When I look at Ravenstahl on his Police bike with his Police helmet, and compare him to Tom Murphy, I think to myself: Bike-wise, Ravenstahl is a poseur. I believe that may be extendable to the larger context.


Another excellent Burgh Blog, Pgh Is A City, also has an entry about BikePgh's article.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ugh. Make the bad manboy go away!

Pittsburgh Guy said...

This is a great post. Former mayor Tom Murphy was a legit cyclist. I would see him on the trails and roads often. He rode to Philly and off into the sunset. He actually looks very much like Brian O'Neil, but Brian would never ride a mountain bike - he rides Mr. Chips old bike.

Vannevar said...

Thanks for the comments. Mr. PittsburghGuy, I saw your blog about the Pgh-DC ride, I think I'm the source of that avg-11-mph trip report you referred to.

It's a small world after all.
Cheers,
Vannevar

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