It's officially the height of biking season in Toronto. Hordes of cyclists are on the roads and the city has launched an attempt to get some data on who they are (and where they're going).
While those who traverse the city on two wheels know better than to hope for any major improvements (like, say, the Wellesley bike lanes), there's plenty to love — and hate — about getting around Toronto on a bike.
Left turns should be avoided ... because streetcar tracks
Throwing caution to the wind, turning left anyways and not getting caught makes you feel like a champion
The one-way sign on Richmond west of Bathurst doesn't exist for you
You wear sunglasses all year round because of construction dust
And where there's construction, you're specifically picked on to "dismount" because cars can't drive behind you without passing for 200m
Potholes — bad for cars, disastrous for bikes
Beverley is the nicest street (if you pretend Robarts isn't there)
You will drop your lock 20 times trying to get it through the city's bike locks when another bike is already locked up
Merging left into traffic when going east on the Bloor Viaduct at night means you're pretty sure you're going to die
Cars parking in bike lanes are your nemesis — especially when they're police cars
And those police horses love to take dumps in the bike lane
Occasionally the city gets it right, like with those beautiful green lanes on Sherbourne and the east section of Bloor
But you also have to learn your commute route's garbage schedule so as to avoid getting stuck behind the truck in the summer
People getting out of King St. cabs have never heard of such a thing as "riding your bike"
While finding a ravine path is a cyclist's utopia
People who ride their electronic carts in the bike lanes don't belong. Seriously, go away. YOU DON'T BELONG HERE
You never need to deal with this
And your 45-minute TTC commute magically becomes 15 minutes on a bike
Other cyclists make you look bad. Get off your bike on the sidewalk, stop at red lights, DON'T weave in and out of cars!
The graffiti in downtown alleyways must have been created just for you (and Rick Mercer)
You've always been tempted to do the annual naked bike ride, but worry you couldn't handle it
Riding at night when no one is around and everything's quiet makes it feel like you own the city
Forming a critical mass at a stoplight during rush hour makes you feel like part of a really gentle bike gang
And you laugh in the face of those who have to go to the gym for exercise
Buying your first nice bike, despite being told by everyone that you should have bought a beater because you can't have nice things in Toronto, is a rite of passage
As is buying a beater after it gets stolen
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