An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Seventh Seal: The wicked shall tamper with ghost bikes

Here's another sign of the End Times: The thieving of ghost bikes. In  Albuquerque, New Mexico, cyclists are scratching their heads at the theft of a ghost bike marking the intersection where Matt Trujillo was killed in 2011.

This ghost bike commemorating cyclist Matt Trujillo was stolen from Indian School and Washington NE, where Trujillo was hit by a car and killed four years ago. (Marla Brose/Albuquerque Journal)Here's the silver lining of the story, though. Ghost bikes in many other parts of the country are routinely removed by city workers or police for various reasons -- often because they become another distraction in what are often dangerous intersections to begin with (duh! chicken, meet egg!) and at other times simply because they can be an ever-expanding eyesore.

But the encouraging thing about the ABQ story is that it's a reminder to all New Mexicans that it's actually illegal to tamper with or move a ghost bike in their state. They fall under the category of descansos (ad hoc memorials similar to, say, a shrine by the side of the road marking the place of a violent death) and are protected. We'd like to see similar laws passed in other parts of the country.

Finally, as more than one person has pointed out, ghost bikes are rarely rideable -- at least by the living. So pinching a ghost bike seems like an especially mean-spirited thing to do, along the lines of desecrating a grave, which is sorta lowest of the low IMHO.

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