Critical Mass in SF

latimes-criticalmass.jpgThe LATimes had a large article online at dated tomorrow. It’s about some sort of large program of cyclists who have been riding once a month in large numbers through San Francisco for 15 years.

Wow … I wonder if anyone has ever seen something like that happen here in Los Angeles? (Read the 112 posts tagged biking in la here at

(Thumbnail image swiped from LATimes by Robert Durell – July 27, 2007)

13 thoughts on “Critical Mass in SF”

  1. For the record, Critical Mass predates any of the collective biking events that are happening in LA nowadays, and I bet many of them get their inspiration from this one event.

  2. You could not be bothered to read the actual article or spend .015 seconds on a Google search of “critical mass?”

  3. Ginger – Thanks, I’m aware of Critical Mass … the point wasn’t really about that. The article states that chapters exist in other cities, but makes no mention of any events as they’ve occurred in Los Angeles … you know, the “local” section that the article is supposed to be covering. No about the spinoff culture that this has created. I think the coverage of Critical Mass is cool … I just thought they might have brought in some of how the movement has manifested itself in Los Angeles (or other cities).

    It was sarcasm.

  4. They do call out Los Angeles in the article, but I agree with the larger point: the local section of the Los Angeles Times is all too often not local, and the Times itself seems to have less and less local content over all.

    The article points out that Critical Mass started the trend in SF, but if they wanted to make it a local story they should have tied in much more about the numerous L.A. groups it inspired.

  5. I think they neglected to mention the contributions of the bike messenger scene and Chris Carlsson’s politics. Additionally, it presented itself as a counterpoint to competitive, elitist, athletic bicycling, by advocating that people ride slowly. It was, and always has been, a political demonstration and a cultural celebration.

  6. You also forgot to mention that these people are a bunch of self-righteous critical massholes.

  7. “…some sort of large program of cyclists…” Are you fucking serious? You’ve never heard of critical mass? You Angelenos are fucking retarded. No wonder you are the butt of jokes everywhere. Get off your asses and out of your fucking SUV’s and go experience life for Christ’s sake!

  8. Bolder – if you read my explanation comment above, I obviously wasn’t clear in the post that it’s sarcastic … because I assumed that EVERYONE knew that readers knew about Critical Mass.

    And if you’d clicked through to see the other 112 posts about biking in LA you’d see that 40 of them mention Critical Mass (either the SF version or the LA chapters or both). I’m not sure who you think you’re preaching to in the comments, but it helps if you pay closer attention to any dialogue that might be going on.

    Thanks, but I don’t have an SUV and I do bike to work once a week now.

  9. clearly your “sarcasm” is quite bland and patently ineffective in this post. i apologize for the mistake, but you could try a little harder to be “sarcastic” next time. thanks. btw, my frustration lies in that fact that the grand majority of my fellow socal-lers are more interested in american idol than in something as awesome as critical mass.

  10. Getting caught in the middle of a CM demonstration was a total pain in the ass when I worked in SF. But I guess that’s the point, right? Although I seem to recall that it was always on a set day of the month (e.g. The first Monday of the month, etc) so at least people knew ahead of time.

  11. Critical Mass makes me like cyclists LESS. If they banded together and rode the streets OBEYING basic traffic laws – you know, the sorts they accuse car drivers of ignoring at the peril of cyclists – perhaps their message would ring a little truer.

    I’m hoping LA’s big rides DON’T mimic Critical Mass – it would be far better for gaining support of cyclists’ issues if they didn’t.

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