Wednesday 20 June 2012: Flattened...
Karma restores... Good day today at the start, middle and end.
Rode to City Chambers first thing for the regular 'Bike Breakfast' - the first I'd been to which was not accompanied by rain. Met up with a load of cycling forum folk I know, and had a chat with Sarge Quentin of L&B's finest, who told me there was another event at lunchtime being run by the polis as phase 2 of their 'make the roads safer' drive (if you'll pardon the pun).
It's a twin attack, with half aimed at drivers, and half aimed at cyclists. Laudable in the extreme, this stage is focussing on trying to stop drivers from left-hooking (driving past a cyclist then immediately turning into a side street, or pulling in to park - a sadly regular and dangerous occurrence, we're supposed to disappear as soon as the driver eyeline is beyond us); and warning cyclists of the dangers of riding up the inside of lorries and the like.
It's something I only do if abolsutely sure of the road; of the traffic movements; of the lorry driver intentions; if there's no side street ahead he might be turning into; etc etc etc. Even if there's a bike lane to the left, sometimes (most times) passing on the right is safer. The event today had a truck and a bus on the Square, and we got to sit in and see what could be seen from the cab.
The mirrors on this particular cab were superb. Not quite eliminating all blindspots, but going far enough that you really have to wonder why their use hasn't been mandated on all large vehicles. Basically we're admitting that in our towns and cities we are happy with vehicles operating around which the driver can have no idea of his surroundings. The mirrors are such a simple fix. Such a simple fix.
The chap on the ground in the mirror above was being photographed by a proper photographer, but given it was a council lorry being used a council bod took exception to the possibility of a 'cyclistbeing run over by a council truck' shot appearing in the local press and stomped on the idea.
Anyway, met with a load of cycling forum folk again, and Just Sitting of this Parish, who in turn knew one of my cycling forum folk. Edinburgh is a village; Edinburgh cyclists are a small subset of the villagers - there are usually only 2 or 3 degrees of separation, no need for a big number like 6.
And then come 5pm I was out and off to the Filmhouse to meet friends Iain and Mary to go and see Jaws on the big screen. Well, Iain and I did. Mary was studying for an exam tomorrow and so made do with the change of scene of the Filmhouse bar. Now I love Jaws anyway, it's apiece of cinematic genius, but on the big screen, which I'd never seen it on before, it was simply superb. It holds up today (and a modern remake would start with Chief Brody in New York and some dark reason for him having to relocate to Amity and there being something from his childhood past that created his dislike of the water and so on - nice to see a film that just gets on with it).
Polis flanking council cycling bod