Tooker bike lane appears in the Annex, May 30, 2007

Tooker Appears in the Annex

So there I was, walking past the Bloor Cinema with bike in tow, when I noticed something out of the ordinary. There was a long meandering white line in the middle of the north lane.

My brain quickly processed the image as a familiar sight: a bike lane! As I continued walking along Bloor to run some errands, it was clear that this impromptu bike lane had been spray-painted somewhat permanently to the ground. It appears to run the whole length of the Annex proper, from Spadina to Bathurst--only on the north side.

Curious, I walked over to Curbside Cycle to see if they know who did this. The guy I talked to there hadn't seen it before, so it must have happened earlier in the afternoon, right before rush hour.

As I continued to scope out the scene, camera in hand, I saw a fellow biking past me with a white spray-paint gun. The other guys he was with had mischievous looks on their faces.

I followed them for a bit, thinking this would make for good conversation... but as I eased into the bike lane I started thinking about how great it would be to have a bike lane here, and slowed down to enjoy the ride while it lasted.

When I bike into the Annex, I stick to the residential side streets like Lowther, Barton, Albany, and Brunswick (the usual suspects). Riding along Bloor during rush hour is no picnic, and the few times I've had to do it (for an express trip to Victory Cafe, for instance) I remind myself that it's much more relaxing and enjoyable to ride the side streets here. That would change if there were a bike lane. But when are we ever going to see one on Bloor?

Later, I saw the same chaps with the spray paint colluding with some of the

A dirty SUV runs over the impromptu Tooker bike lane in the Annex, May 30, 2007

TakeTheTooker folks (I think) who I saw at the Critical Mass last week. Whether they were involved or not, I applaud this act of defiance on the streets of Toronto. The spray paint will wash away with time, and the cars will move in once more... but the spirit of Tooker lives on!


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