Critical Manners Bike Ride Vancouver


So tell me more about Critical Mass!
So sorry, you’ve dialed the wrong number. This is Critical Manners. Critical Mass has a very comprehensive wikipedia article here.

What is the Critical Manners ride?
May I direct you to the “About the Ride” page?

But why did you decide Vancouver needs one?
When I mention to people that I cycle to work I get one of two reactions:
1. GAH! I hate cyclists. They never obey the rules of the road and get in my way and hold up traffic and and and….
2. WOW you’re brave! Cars are awful and take over the road and never see me and I’m afraid of being run over and and and…
Obviously neither of these responses are optimal. The goal of this ride is to prove, in force, that bikes and cars and pedestrians can all share the roadways successfully.

How will I know it’s you (or not you), riding down the road?
We’ll be the ones following all the rules. It’s fair to say that if you see a cyclist not following the rules of the road, they’re not with us. As much as we’d like to make sure everyone is using the road responsibly, the best we can do is lead by example. We obviously aren’t the police, just the polite.

I ride in Critical Mass, can I still participate in Critical Manners?
Absolutely! The only requirement for participating in Critical Manners is that you ride according to the rules of the road. We would love to have you join us!

How can I follow what’s happening with Critical Manners?
You can find us on twitter @criticalmanners. You can also find us on Facebook.

Where the heck is my comment?
Comment moderation is turned on for this site – the first time you comment it will be put into a queue for approval. We don’t have any agenda, it’s just to protect against spam. Please allow up to 24 hours for your comment to be posted. Once your original comment is posted, you should be able to continue to comment without waiting. We reserve the right to delete comments that personally attack the organizers or other commenters, or don’t contribute to the discussions on this site.

More questions? Leave them in the comments and I’ll do my best to publish them ASAP.


5 Comments so far
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Where do you leave from? The Art Gallery?

Comment by Mary Sherlock

Here are my thoughts*: there are one of two possible outcomes for Critical Manners: the first, and more likely, is that nowhere near as many people will show up as Critical Mass, not too many people will be upset but nothing will come of it. Without a (forgive me) critical mass, so to speak, it will die out within a few months.

Second possibility: Enough people show up that it’s a worthwhile endeavour, but riding with the rules of the road will still piss off all the fat losers sitting in their cars. Media attention will be garnered but in a negative light – albeit with a ‘hey, they tried’ spin. Same outcome with more pissed off drivers than if there were only one ride.

I think the only way for Critical Manners to succeed is to directly compete against/splinter off from critical mass and to publish a route beforehand. 90% (total stab in the dark based on past experience) of critical mass riders seem like they would be more likely to follow a preplanned route rather than follow whomever decides to lead a ‘rebel’ group – simply because that’s the cricial mass style: no head, no way to kill it. I think the vast majority of people who attend critical mass wouldn’t waste their time being jerks if only they were given the option not to.

Another significant question is how to deal with traffic lights: corking is illegal, therefore the group would have to wait for traffic lights. Fine, but what about car-controlled lights? Are there any in Vancouver without pedestrian buttons? Is it illegal to ride up and push the button (seriously, just being technical). Assuming you have more than a blocks’ worth of cyclists, triggering a light like that might be impossible. On that note as well, given a group that gets broken up by traffic, what happens when cars get in between the two splinter groups? Does the ‘single group’ idea go out the window? I’m genuinely curious on this one.

One other thing too – what are the liability implications of ‘taking charge’ of something like this? I know for damn sure I’d never want to be spokesperson for a group of strangers whose only connection is that they all own bikes..

*Disclaimer: You may as well assume that I have no idea what I’m talking about – I’ve only been on 2 rides over the years and have only experienced it as a driver once (duh. because I don’t drive on the last friday of each month. I forgot once, found it just as enjoyable to watch from the sidelines though.). I do, however, harbour a pretty solid resentment of most drivers as I’ve nearly been run down several times (mostly in Victoria, actually) and have had several friends injured whilst obeying the rules of the road by drivers who just weren’t paying attention or didn’t understand the basic physics of car vs. bicycle.

Comment by Dan

A highly visible route will need to be taken; preferable a route that does not have bike lanes… this will further reinforce the fact that more bike lanes are needed.

Comment by Lee

if there isn’t one already, someone should make a facebook event for this.

Comment by jake

This is great. If Cyclists want to be respected helps to be respectful.

Comment by Bernadette Keenan

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