12 September 2008

Japanese Bike Culture - Mamachari

Following up on a few posts about the Power of Japanese Cycling Mothers and a review of the classic bicycle used for kid transport in Japan, here's a little youtube video showing the Japanese mothers in action on their 'mamachari' bicycles.

The tourist who appears at the beginning disappears at 1:18 in the video, so just scoot past him since he doesn't really say anything interesting. The images of the cyclists speak louder than words.

Here's an article about how Japan needs more segregated bike lanes like in Europe. It's worth mentioning that while cyclists in Japan use the sidewalks and interpret the traffic laws rather liberally, it is Japanese chaos, which is still 1000 times more civilised and orderly than in Europe or North America.

I saw a funny comment somewhere... can't remember where... about how a foreigner living in Japan heard the receptionist say, while pointing at a cyclist riding past with a helmet, "Look! A Jehovas Witness!". The reason being that in that town the only people who ride with helmets are American JayDub (JWs) missionaries.