We rode with Critical Mass last night, representin’ the hugga, kitted up and on our race bikes. Critical Mass meandered through downtown, towards Fremont via HWY 99, Stone Way, and then onto Golden Gardens. It was a fun, festive event, and massive.
Is doping the ruination of professional cycling? Some people seem to think so, and are taking it to the streets like so many latter-day Nancy Reagans.
At least it’s not “Just Say No” or “Get Doped on Life.”
The parallels between doping prohibitions and other kinds of prohibitions are unmistakable. Doping bans certainly are just as effective as alcohol and drug prohibitions have been, and the primary beneficiaries are those who violate the bans. Doping is big business, and making it scarce through bans makes it more lucrative.
Athletes have a powerful, rational desire to improve their performance using all methods available, and one can’t help but wonder if lifting bans on “illicit” performance enhancement wouldn’t be a better way to deal with the problem. What, after all, is the problem with doping? That it can cause harm to the dopers? That it makes for an uneven playing field? That the resulting performances aren’t real?
Wouldn’t each of these problems be addressed, each in its own way, if athletes could dope openly?
As if there weren’t enough cars on the roads, the upcoming lane closures on I-5 for the better part of August will push hundreds of cars onto alternate surface streets and push already crowded roads over the curb. With the effects of the construction expected to cause extensive regional and downtown traffic nightmares, what’s a cyclist to do?
Preceded by this weekend’s traffic madness; including the SeaFair Torchlight Run & Parade, two home games at The Safe and the Capitol Hill Block Party, this town’s in for a world of standstill.
There’s a part of me that isn’t looking forward to weaving my bike through all the craziness during my daily routine. And yet, as I witnessed a cyclist fly by a twenty-car backup today from the driver’s seat of my overpriced SUV, I realized that I’d still rather be on my bike.