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DinoRIDE, Third Friday of the Month, 5/18/12 6:00pm

Remember the old days of meeting up at Dippy The Dino and then going on a merrily ride across the city? We didn't know where we were going or who we would be riding with, but we knew we were going to enjoy ourselves and have a good time.

It was a time when the monotony of our normal lives would fade away as we ticked off the miles under the sunset and city lights.

Join me in continuing that tradition on the third Friday of each month at Dippy the Dino. (5/18 this month) Meet at 6:00pm, leave 6:30. Lights and helmets encouraged. Cheerful spirit mandatory. (Exceptions made on site)

Exercise not just your mind and body, but also your freedom of assembly. Don't let out our tradition become extinct. (... like the Dinosaur?)

2012-05-01 04:28:26


2012-05-01 05:36:55

Can we have a ride like this every Friday?

2012-05-01 11:07:26

I'll be there if I can...

2012-05-01 14:20:35

I will personally be out of town this friday, but I do think people should show up and have a good time.

2012-05-01 17:54:50

I think if there is one every week, the turnout will be less. I also don't want to commit to showing every week, especially since I just found out I'll already be cycling 25 miles on Friday in the heat of the day.

2012-05-05 13:22:50

So does anyone wanna do a ride this Friday? Weather looks nice. There uses to be rides every Friday and attendance was still high.

2012-05-10 20:50:04

Stefb, can you recruit for both a ride tomorrow and next week's ride on Facebook?

2012-05-10 21:41:18

I could try

2012-05-10 22:34:27

still meeting at 6? i'm interested, and might be able to recruit some others as well.

2012-05-10 22:47:07

To leave at 6:30, yes

2012-05-10 22:47:41

send me a facebook link, and I can invite a bunch of people.

2012-05-11 00:35:29

I'm in.

2012-05-11 01:21:58

I didn't create an event. I am just passing along info in posts that there are going to be people meeting for a ride.

2012-05-11 01:24:36

I'll be passing this week, but I hope to see some people next week

2012-05-11 20:54:59

This ride kind of kicked my butt but it was super cool. Great idea Pierce and thanks for running with it for this week Stef!

2012-05-12 01:40:23

Thank you guys for coming out. That was a bit faster than I would have liked to have gone, but sometimes I need to go faster. I hope I can make it next week.

2012-05-12 01:44:08

Great ride, good company, logging miles, what more could one ask for? Oh yea, finally got that beer I desiring!!

2012-05-12 03:04:23

Thanks to all, especially stef and pierce for logistics and marko for dealing with my tube. (I owe you a beer.)

I wouldn't have asked for a ride that long or fast--that was probably my longest ride in years--but I'm glad to have done it...

Now, about that beer...

2012-05-12 03:31:17

It's nice getting credit for just posting some nostalgic drivel :P

2012-05-12 12:29:07

Marko told me that he received an email from nick (I was either not on the mailing list or I deleted it) that flock of cycles is no more. Nick, I hope you can comment on this and let us know what we can say and not say about flock style rides. I would be happy to continue to meet with people on Fridays. I worry about the legal stuff, though there were no waivers for a year or so.

2012-05-12 16:01:26

My understanding is that we cannot use the name "Flock of Cycles" in association with a ride unless we sign waivers...which I have a stack of.

2012-05-12 16:19:51

What's in a name?

I appreciate what Flock is trying to do, but over legalizing and organizing for essentially riding around the city is a cumbersome process.

I'd rather ride with friends than not in fear of law suits. Hundreds of rides happen across the country and I'm not aware of law suits that result from injuries sustained during them.

I'm willing to say "Hey, why don't we ride bikes today?" If somebody wants to sue me for that, so be it

2012-05-12 16:52:43

Yes, Stef, the rumor is true. There will be an official statement made once the details are sorted out.

Basically, the "Flock of Cycles" name cannot be used without board approval. All that is required for approval is that annual waivers are signed. This was decided because it not only helps build the brand of Flock as well as expanding it's portfolio of events, but it also would cover ride organizers legally. In my mind, I though this was a great opportunity for people of the community to be able to do things without the worry of liability.

Since there has only been five people to date (three events--Try a Bike, Bakery Tour, and Tour Pittsburgh by Bicycle) who have taken advantage of this, the decision has been made to no longer offer this.

The resistance to Flock of Cycles (purely because it is a legal entity) also was a factor in this decision.

Personally, it's upsetting to have to do this but after weighing the options, it seems to make the most sense. However, if the community rallies to support the org, I would happily do what I can to help and pass it along to who ever is up for the challenge.

Peirce, if you do some research, you will find that these type of lawsuits have happened. They may not be common, but the chance of them happening is enough for my to be unwilling to put my name on anything that may cause me to lose everything I've worked for in life.

2012-05-12 17:16:55

Well that sucks. I'm still planning on being at dippy next Friday evening anyways, still

2012-05-12 17:35:49

Nick, I understand your concern about financial security. Because I have so few assets, I'm willing to take the risk.

That being said, even if I did have assets, I still doubt I would be willing to change how I live or what I do because of the risk of being sued. I tend to be headstrong that kind of way.

On an unrelated note, do the people who are attending this feel confident enough in themselves to do it again without my presence? I in inadvertently schedule a movie night at 7pm the same Friday, so even if we left at 6:30 I'd probably try and steer us towards my next destination and then I'd peel off.

2012-05-14 20:49:25

Peirce, at the time it was about more than just my financial security, but I also had to consider that of a handful of employees who could lose their jobs if some freak accident/frivolous lawsuit were to take place.

Honestly, I don't see how signing a paper/getting a paper signed is considered a change in how you live. Pretty much every service/product/event has some type of terms/conditions/waiver or liability.

2012-05-14 21:32:50

I'll try, but I'm going out of town on Sunday, so it'll depend on how many loose ends I still have dangling.

2012-05-14 21:43:44

It's more than the piece of paper though. It's giving credence to the idea that if I want to ride bikes with some people I just randomly met up with, I need to have them sign a piece of paper to legally protect me.

It starts the conversation off as "Hey, I want to trust you, but I cannot. I cannot trust your estate either. I need to protect other things." The whole thing just puts a bad taste in everyone's mouth.

It's what the piece of paper represents, which is a society that increasingly takes absolutely no responsibility for their own actions or legitimate accidents.

It's a society that's increasingly concerned with mitigating that lack of responsibility with over designed legal protections and infrastructure. Instead of responsible drivers, we have impenetrable cages with a complete blanket of air bags. Instead of healthy diets, we have lipator. Instead of condoms, we have trillions of dollars in AIDS research. Risk is part of life. Nothing is fail proof. Why do we need waivers to point out the obvious?

For an organization, I can understand, but for a group of people getting together to ride bikes, it sucks. I mean heck, what if everybody showed up with a waiver requiring everybody else to sign it? They signed a waiver agreeing not to sue the org, but did they sign a waiver agreeing not to sue a person in the ride? Imagine everybody bringing a waiver for everybody else to sign.

Signing the paper or having to have one signed is an acceptance of this way of life

When Flock was around, I willingly signed the paper. But now that it's not, I'm willing to take the risk and not have to go through that hassle, record keeping, and paying for insurance

2012-05-14 22:09:57

Additionally, if one was to consult a lawyer and say "Should I get liability protection to protect me and my org from lawsuits?" wouldn't it always be in the interest for the lawyer to say yes?

I imagine he'd be liable if he gave advice to somebody else saying they weren't liable. See what I mean?

Kind of like hospitals always say to call 911/go to the emergency room. It doesn't serve them at all to say "Ah, you'll probably be alright."

2012-05-14 22:34:25

I think you are missing my point. If you are interested, I'd happily talk about it over a lunch at a vegan-friendly venue.

Additionally, if the attorney isn't getting paid, he/she gains nothing from recommending insurance.

2012-05-14 23:25:43

I don't think I can attend this week, as I am seeing the suicide machines that evening!

2012-05-15 01:21:59

Pierce, you may be overstating it a bit. I think if individuals simply put out a statement saying "I'm going to be at such and such place at x time and go for a ride, anyone is welcome", they wouldn't be any more exposed to liability than anyone is at any given time.

Flock was an attempt to provide a little greater degree of organization than that for organized rides, better support for newbies, kind of a ride oriented adjunct to Bike Pgh! itself. In the process of organizing those folks exposed themselves to a greater than normal degree of liability and you can't blame them for trying to protect themselves to a small degree. Also if the attendance and volunteer assistance at things was as stated, I can't blame them for just bagging the whole thing. It's not a party if people don't come.

I would be interested in knowing how other similar groups approach such things. I am thinking in particular about a thing I've heard about in S.F., the S.F. Bike Party. They have some crazy a** rides, don't seem to insist on helmets or blinkies, and I don't know if they have a waiver policy. If I get time maybe I'll try and make a contact.

2012-05-15 13:00:27

For what it's worth, my father and law's Miata car club has insurance and the members pay $30 a year in club dues. No waivers.

2012-05-15 13:45:40

The waiver is probably part of the club dues. Pretty sure it was when I was involved in the PGH Triathlon Club (in its first year), though I'm not anymore.

2012-05-15 14:30:21

I know a lot of cycling 'clubs' also collect a small amount of dues, have a group insurance plan, and a waiver.

2012-05-15 16:07:28

I think original appeal of Flock was the lack of fees, waivers etc. A ride with people who aren't going to behave like critical massholes. Casual, yet safe.

Once it got all codified most people seemed to lose interest.

I personally have no interest in signing waivers to ride my bike on public roads in the city. If money was spent on permits, closing roads, signing a route, and providing aid stations and tech support I would feel differently. Group rides happen all over the US, all the time without waivers, I completely understand why they make folks wary.

2012-05-15 22:22:51

will the pace/route be about the same difficulty level as the flock party rides?

2012-05-16 01:56:35

RF, we went a little faster last week because there were only six of us, and we were all fairly strong riders. I think the pace will by adjusted week-to-week to the level of the riders that show up - just like we did last year. In practice, the more people that show up, the slower the ride.

2012-05-16 02:05:09

I've noticed that my new bike is geared a little differently than my old one, so starting from a complete stop and going up hills is extra slow going (and I'm already pretty slow)

2012-05-16 02:06:57

RubberFactory - To me, it sounds like you mgiht really want to get a smaller small chain ring - you shouldn't want a lower gear and not have it.

2012-05-16 02:56:03

yeah, I was on my old bike going up penn, and I was doing fine on the middle ring up front, and the 3rd one in back.

In my lowest gear on my new bike, I don't struggle, but it does take a considerable amount of effort.

Maybe something to look into when I head into the shop this weekend for some accessories.

2012-05-16 03:00:24

I got a lovely response from San Francisco Bike Party. In posting this I am no way criticizing decisions made by the Flock, Flock was awesome. I just wanted to hear another point of view;

"Great to hear from you! Thanks for reaching out.

The simple answers to your questions are "No" "No" and "No." We don't require people to wear helmets. The law in California states that cyclists under 18 are required to wear helmets and riders over 18 are not. We hope that our riders will abide by those laws (and yes, we sometimes have kids on our rides!) but we do not police our membership. Your brain, your bucket, your business. As for lights, the California law states that you must have a front light and reflectors. We encourage our riders to put safety first and have proper front and rear lights, but we don't require it, nor could we effectively enforce such a rule with an average turn out of about 250 riders. We also don't ask our membership to sign a waiver. It would be impossible to keep track of who had or had not signed our waiver, and since we are a travelling group (we start and end at different locations every time we ride) it would be extremely difficult to manage waiver forms, identification and liability. Our focus is to put on a great, safe, fun event, and we expect that our membership rides at its own risk, the same way that they would with any group of friends. There are several social group rides in the bay area, ranging for a few people getting together for an easy ride through Golden Gate Park, to organized single speed sprints up Mount Diablo, to Critical Mass, and (of course!) to Bike Party! None of them require a waiver, and so far, so good. We trust our membership to be safe, courteous and radically self reliant. In turn, they trust SFBP to lead a great ride every month. It definitely takes some work, but it's all worth it when over 200 people show up to a Star Wars themed bike ride (in costume, no less!) on a Friday night.

Best of luck to you! We always love to hear about bike party-like events in other cities! And if you're ever in the Bay Area, come check us out! We ride on the first Friday of every month.

Ding Ding!

SF Bike Party!"

2012-05-16 10:21:13

@edmonds that sounds awesome. i want that.

in general, i am realizing i really like group rides. but i am just not competitive or athletic or fast enough for the majority of the ones that exist. i would gladly pay a membership or sign waivers or whatever i had to do to get to participate in regular "fun" group rides.

i can come to this this week. fair warning: i'm not fast.

2012-05-17 04:06:34

It sounds like it's shaping up for a leisurely ride. I'm usually rushing off to work, so a causal, 10 mph-ish ride shall be a relaxing change of pace

2012-05-17 04:16:18

An irony of the SF response just occurred to me. For rightWingrrs, SF is kind of the epicenter of this imagined liberal nanny state mind control. But wait, these San Franciscans, SF bike party is saying, we're not going to tell you what to do, you are responsible and accountable for your own actions. AAAh, brain, hurt!

Sorry to go political. No I'm not.

2012-05-17 10:48:59

OMG!! Bicyclists are really closet libertarians?? :)

2012-05-17 13:38:54

Well, if everyone has already become a robot for the nanny state, I guess there's no need to tell them what to do. It's already programmed in there.

2012-05-17 13:40:45

Well there's no debate that tonight should be a pleasant evening for cycling around town.

I'm planning on showing up and promptly dropping out, but it should be enjoyable none the less

2012-05-18 19:28:53

Wow! I am seriously bummed about Flock.

Thanks, Nick (and others), for the fine effort in getting it going, and keeping it going for as long as you did.

2012-05-18 20:01:20

not going tonight. after the day/week/months I've been having, I'm not up to being around anyone for a good while. No offense, I think I just need to be at home and be mopey and self pitying for a while.

2012-05-18 21:02:12

Ugh, in my experience, that's the worst time to be by oneself. At the same time, I can see the value of sitting in the dark and listening to oh say... Division Bells or something. Hopefully we'll see you later in the season

2012-05-18 21:09:49

Also I work really early, and didn't get out early enough today to take a nap.

2012-05-18 21:19:39

Bahhh I was planning on coming but I rode a bunch this morning, didn't drink enough water, and now seem to be getting one of my classic dehydration-induced migraines. I should really know better by now.

Based on this thread it didn't seem like there would be a big turnout this week anyway, but maybe this isn't a good indicator. Anyway, if this happens again sometime soon, I will definitely try to be there!

2012-05-18 21:23:28

I'm going to be so lonely, surrounded by little kids eating pizza (It's also the children's festival tonight, tomorrow, Sun)

I'll be there, perhaps alone

2012-05-18 21:30:14

6:24pm, I'm still at my desk, but I have the bike shoes on and will be out of here shortly. I'll mosey around aimlessly for a while, see if a group of any sort comes by & if so will join them, but I really just need to get my butt home. I've been up since 3:40a.

2012-05-18 22:25:42

Ride with your mouths closed, the micrognats are out.

2012-05-18 23:32:49

It's not just the gnats, either--I had something larger, maybe a fly or bee, bounce off my face in Junction Hollow tonight...

2012-05-19 00:47:57

Bleh. I got some not-so-micro bug stuck in my eye a couple weeks ago in Junction Hollow and actually had to stop for a few minutes to scrape bug bits out of my eye. It was gross. And painful.

That was the day I decided that summer riding would be done with some sort of eyewear at all times. I actually bought a pair of fake glasses so that I would have something to wear at night when I couldn't wear sunglasses. I almost wished I had bad vision so I would have a legitimate excuse for it since it seems a little too faux-hipstery to wear fake glasses while riding a bike, but I guess the fact that my bike has gears evens it out if we're trafficking in hipster stereotypes, yeah?

2012-05-19 00:59:54

Huge turnout tonight (not). Had a good time at OTB though. We thought that since there were only a few of us and it IS a holiday…

2012-05-19 01:32:42

I had a fun experience! Left my desk 6:46 & rode down the elevator with a co-worker who was running to catch a 6:50 bus, the 2 Mt Royal. I walked over to get my bike, then rode Grant, 11th, Penn, 16th St Bridge, and the river trail, and beat the 2 to Millvale, where I rejoined a very surprised co-worker. The 2 then took me to Northway Mall, only a mile and a half from home.

I knew the bike travel time from town to Millvale was comparable to the bus, but I didn't realize I could beat the bus there!

2012-05-19 03:09:16

I think the turnout wasn't too bad; we had five or six right? Not to mention, a bunch of calloffs (heh) at at the last minute. I think it would have been a good ride if we weren't all tired/had to go somewhere

2012-05-19 16:11:43

Just a thought -- -- starting June 1st on Friday's nights we can watch some racing. Registration starts at 6:00 pm (probably we are not interested) and races start at 6:30 pm. We can get together, ride to oval, watch, ride back. Or use oval after races to practice.

2012-05-23 19:36:18

We thought they started already and went down a few weeks ago. I like that idea. Is this the road bike race or track bike race? I want to watch a race then decide if I want to try. I welcome humiliation.

2012-05-23 19:55:44

I think oval is not a real track -- no wooden cover and as a result special tubular tires like -- way to soft and thin. And tear&wear would too much. But could be wrong.

Big ring riding -- -- this is world champion on a track. Real fixed bikes with huge chain ring and small cog.

They listed all possible types of racing for the oval

In regards of try -- WPW has TT on the oval.

2012-05-23 21:09:44

@ Nick D. Basically, the "Flock of Cycles" name cannot be used without board approval. All that is required for approval is that annual waivers are signed. This was decided because it not only helps build the brand of Flock as well as expanding it's portfolio of events, but it also would cover ride organizers legally. In my mind, I though this was a great opportunity for people of the community to be able to do things without the worry of liability.


I read this last week, but the import really didn't hit me until I re-read it today. This is epic.

I think I would have made some things I've done Flock events, had I thought it through.

Nick, please let us know what individuals can do to help Flock.

2012-05-24 18:44:55

From the other thread: does anyone wanna meet at dippy at 6, head down to explore the new trail together, then head up to bakery square?

2012-05-24 18:51:37

^I'd be into that, stefb.

Also, what Mick said. I'm sad I never got to experience a Flock ride last year, and I'm glad to help in some way to keep the idea going, because it seems awesome. It was one of the things that I somehow ended up seeing information about when I was trying to decide whether bike commuting was going to be plausible when I moved here, and knowing Pittsburgh had something like Flock gave me a really good feeling for some reason.

2012-05-24 19:05:24

I'd better get my butt home so I can fix at least one bicycle so I can meet y'uns tomorrow.

"If you have four bicycles in your carport, and none of them work, you might be a redneck." [channelling Jeff Foxworthy]

2012-05-24 21:37:39

^Anybody still planning to meet at dippy, even of the trail exploration may not be possible according to the other thread? If so I'd still be interested although I can't be there right at 6

2012-05-25 21:37:42

I think we are meeting at bakery square tonight instead.

2012-05-25 22:13:22

1000 people at Bakery Square. Four at Dippy: Tricia, Mitch & a new guy named Bill who found me on Facebook. Then Tricia got a flat even before we started riding. (Weird. She wasn't even on the bike!)

Bill and I rode together as far as Wilkins and Shady. It was good to have a new face and name, even if I wasn't with a massive swarm of bikes!

2012-05-26 02:59:02

Oh, cool. I wasn't sure if anyone was going to be there, but it was probably for the best that I didn't go since I had some stuff to do at home that had been put off for too long... but next time people are planning to meet at Dippy I really will be there (despite bailing this week and last week).

The first flat I ever had was the not-even-on-the-bike kind. Everything seemed fine when I locked my bike up that morning, and I came back to my bike at the end of the day to find a totally flat front tire. The rim tape had slipped, and I guess the spoke well had been eating through the tube for a while and it just finally gave in that day. It was weird.

2012-05-26 03:08:42

I know that a lot of people are riding MS150 tomorrow. So does anyone want to get together at Dino and get to the Oval and watch races for a while and then get back or home? in this case you would get a warm up and no significant load.

2012-06-08 20:05:13

I'm leaving shortly from the Museum area headed toward the Arts Festival (Boca Chica and Carolina Chocolate Drops tonight!)

2012-06-08 21:59:28

Sorry guys, there were no replies by 17:50 and I've went directly to the Oval. Lots of people, officials did not have enough chips. I've watched 10 laps TT and went home. One guy finished in 10:4x but he was not able to beat the record of 10:16.

2012-06-09 00:38:43

Third Friday of the Month is tomorrow...

Anybody up for cycling tomorrow evening? Thinking maybe 8pm would be better, cooler out

2012-06-14 21:54:52

I'm game, but I can do earlier easier than later. By 8p I will have been up for over 15 hours, plus an hour trip home for me after whatever ride happens.

They're predicting 78 degrees at 6p, 72 at 8p, not that big a difference. It's not like it's going to be scorching hot tomorrow.

2012-06-14 22:00:59

Heh, I didn't actually check that before I came up with the idea

I'm amiable to 6pm then, I'll also be having a long day and will have already cycled like 28 miles before the ride

2012-06-14 22:07:01

The hazelwood trail is opening tomorrow. There is a celebration until 6pm I think.

2012-06-14 22:09:50

Working the Mattress Factory Garden Party tomorrow, so I'm out.

2012-06-15 01:01:34

I'll be there at 6pm

2012-06-15 16:58:10

Maybe we can check out this trail.

Kind of sucks that it looks like you have to go back to the HMB to get on it, I wish I could jump on it from Greenfield Ave

2012-06-15 17:09:06

I actually have not seen it. I guess I have to get to it from some place other than the jail trail

2012-06-15 17:10:41

I haven't seen it, but I'll be heading over there a little after 4 if I can get all my work done. weeee Friday!

2012-06-15 17:19:03

Where's the thread with the link to the new trail route? It seems to have slid off the visible list.

2012-06-15 17:53:06

I'm confused. Should we meet at Dippy, meet as a group somewhere else, or just individually figure out how to get there at whenever?

My bike is tied up in the 9th/Lib/Smf'd garage & I plan to head out of here 5:30, if anyone wants to ride over with me. Sorry, can't get out any sooner (& I'll be lucky to close up shop by then, to be honest).

2012-06-15 18:39:26

How about meeting at Dippy at 6pm, leaving at 6:15. We can then ride down through Panther Hollow to HMB and get onto the new trail. Activities in Hazelwood are listed to go until 8pm for those who want to stay, or I'm sure others will opt to continue riding (duck hollow to Frick, back to town, other?)

See you at Dippy, or somewhere along the route.

2012-06-15 19:19:07


I think per the OP, we meet at Dippy at 6pm, roll out at 6:30pm (We're pretty good at BSing)

2012-06-15 20:31:10

It's 530 and I am checking it out. Probably gonna head home shortly. Had a long day.

2012-06-15 21:34:56

I'm out

Had a slow leak, filled it, but when I started rolling I realized I have a bump on the tire and I'd rather it not blow out while running around the city

Realized having a pile of partially defective tires isn't particularly useful, and not having extras lying around is a little silly

Also, hurt my knee somehow on the ride home, probably good to let it rest a bit


2012-06-15 21:58:35

We had a nice little turnout, six at one point but one left before we got underway. We checked out the new Hazelwood trail, culminating in a little festival they were having at the far end of it.

2012-06-16 03:50:02

Lovely ride, lovely evening. That was a nice little festival, there is some neighborhood there.

It was cool to see the bikes being raffled off. I didn't see any locks being given with the bikes, though. That seemed a little like someone hadn't fully thought that through. I mean, go another 30 bucks to protect the "investment", to impart to those kids that it's something of value, it's not just a throw-away. Anybody know the organizers? I'd have no problem sending a follow up message (it would be totally positive, kind, and supportive, promise).

I seriously need to get some of that Josza Corner food though. I'm going to call later today and find out his hours

2012-06-16 13:08:57

Someone with a reeeally nice camera was on the trail just outside the festival taking pics of us as we biked towards the crowd. I wonder if we'll be in the paper, or on someone's blog post.

2012-06-16 13:34:52

Damn I hope not, I told my wife I was at the Furry convention.

2012-06-16 13:49:54

Anyone tonight?

2012-06-29 21:49:38

I'm out with a family obligation. Take plenty of water though, it's prety hot out there - had 108 on my bike computer earlier today.

2012-06-29 22:29:18

Sorry. Had a date!

2012-06-30 02:05:15

Ooooh, i'm telling Colin!

2012-07-02 06:57:25