Friday, October 24, 2008

Update on David Babcock

From the Toledo Blade:

Competency evaluation delays man's trial in bicyclist's slaying

The trial for a 19-year-old South Toledoan accused of killing a man as he bicycled to work was pushed back in Lucas County Common Pleas Court yesterday so that the defendant could be evaluated for competency.

Dounche Jones of 235 Western Ave. is charged with two counts of murder. If convicted, he faces up to life in prison.

Yesterday, Judge James Jensen granted defense attorney Paul Geller's request to continue the trial set for Monday and referred Jones to the Court Diagnostic and Treatment Center for an evaluation.

Judge Jensen set a Nov. 12 competency hearing.

Judge Jensen had denied an earlier request by assistant prosecutors to continue with the trial date because the names of witnesses that had been kept secret for fear of retaliation had been released earlier in the week. Judge Jensen warned that any intimidation of witnesses would not be tolerated.

Jones is accused of fatally shooting David Babcock, 46, in the 800 block of Western.

Mr. Babcock, a longtime employee of Fresh Products Inc., was riding his bike about 5:45 a.m. to save on gas and make sure he arrived at work on time.

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Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Words of encouragement

Today's commute was wet. Very wet. Total downpour type of wet. I was riding down Trabue and a truck pulled up next to me and said ...

"You're f---ing crazy!"

Then, through my rain soaked glasses, I saw a thumbs up coming from the window.

My day started of great because of this guy.

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Friday, October 3, 2008

Political ads

Things like this generally run through blogs like wildfire. For once, I want in on the ground floor.

I guess if your solution is not, "Drill baby, drill," you are a kook.

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Thursday, October 2, 2008

Training drivers

A while back, Yehuda Moon mentioned that drivers are trained to deal with a bicycle commuter. You know, the idea that the motorists are used to seeing a bike, so they give you a little more respect?

I generally take the same route at about the same time every day. I think I may have trained the drivers on my commute.

Exhibit One:
I ride past the Mars Pet Care plant each day. I am guessing that they start a shift at 7:00 because of the number of cars heading into the parking lot. Until recently, that was a frightening part of my trip. Cars would zoom past me just to hit the brakes and make a quick right into the parking lot. Now, they give me the space I need to be safe.

Exhibit Two:
There are two weird parts of my commute where I have to get into the left lane for a turn. For some reason, traffic is always heavy when I have to switch lanes. It used to be that I would wait for a tiny opening and force myself in it. Now, cars are starting to slow down and letting me in.

Exhibit Three:
This is my favorite example. There are three people I see on my commute every day. There is the older guy who is walking and smoking a cigarette. I love his, "Keep it up," everyday. The second guy is always at the bus stop drinking coffee. Everyday, he raises his cup of coffee to me. Finally, and probably my favorite, is the lady who is walking down Treemont everyday. She always smiles and says good morning. After the recent windstorm, I did not see her for more than a week. I was a bit worried about her. Then, when I saw her again this week, she told me that she missed me.

I do not know if they just respect me or if they are just used to seeing me. Either way, I like it.

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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Update - 300 miles in 30 days

Early last month, I wrote about the 300 miles in 30 days challenge. I planned on riding 300 miles during the month of September. Then, I thought about it. My commute to school is about 25 miles each day. If I commute four days a week, I have 100 miles under my belt. Three-hundred miles would be a piece of cake.

Not so fast...

The first two weeks started of just fine. In fact, by the end of the second week, I had about 185 miles under my belt. Then, Columbus got hit by a hurricane. I was off from school for three days. I did a little bit of riding around, but nothing near the ten miles a day required to hit 300 miles. I rode to school one day that week.

By the end of the third week, I had about 225 miles. Still, I wasn't worried. I had more than a week of riding to get to the magic 300 number. Then, I put a nasty gash in my foot while playing around in my garden. I rode one day that week. End of week three... 250 miles.

I rode to school the last two days of September and edged myself over the 300 mile mark. I think I ended up with 307 miles for the month.

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