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2011: Year of the Rabbit 3


Photo “Who (Bicycle) Framed Roger Rabbit?” courtesy of John Henderson 

Welcome to 2011 – the year of the rabbit (officially beginning on Chinese New Year – February 3rd). Rabbits are born in the years 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999 and 2011, and possess the following personality:

People born in the year of the rabbit are the luckiest among “the twelve animals.” The rabbit is a symbol for mercy, elegance, amiability and worship of beauty. People born in this year are kind, speak gently, peaceful, quiet and loving persons. They like to live easy lives.

They are reserved persons, love arts and have a strong sense of justice. Whatever they do, they will start well and end well. This feature can make them learned scholars. They are also well adapted to work in government departments, and to be active on the political stage.

The year of the rabbit outlook:

The year of the Rabbit is traditionally associated with home and family, artistic pursuits, diplomacy, and keeping the peace. Therefore, 2011 is very likely to be a relatively calmer one than 2010 both on the world scene, as well as on a personal level.

Conversely, nations will also become more insular and increasingly lock down their borders to protect against the “other”. However, 2011 will also see new art movements projecting a distinct national identity taking the world by storm. Shrewd and creative new business partnerships will also form to the benefit of all.


Photo “Hiding behind bicycle” courtesy of Yuankuei Cheng 

If we can use Chinese Zodiac to predict what is forthcoming with respect to urban bicycling, the year of the rabbit should result in people riding at a more relaxed, slower pace, with improved diplomacy between road users, and an artful taste with more people riding with style.

With increasing tensions regarding bike lanes in New York City, an anti-bike mayor leading Toronto, a sports commentator calling bicyclists “pinkos”, and another sports commentator calling for motorists to “run down” bicyclists, it’s hard to believe that diplomacy will prevail in 2011. But we are optimistic.

Here are 10 things we would love to see happen in our cities in 2011:

Here’s to another new year!

James D. Schwartz is the editor of The Urban Country. You can contact James at

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3 thoughts on “2011: Year of the Rabbit

  1. Jody Levine Jan 2,2011 1:32 pm

    You wish for more people on sit up bikes? Why would it matter even slightly to you that I prefer to commute on a CX bike with low drops? Different styles of bikes exist so that people can get what they like.

    We need more people on bicycles, more of the time – any type of bicycle.

    Thanks for being a voice for bikes, even if it’s only certain types of bikes…

  2. James D. Schwartz Jan 2,2011 3:12 pm

    I would love to see more people using sit-up style bicycles because this style can reach the masses – people who hadn’t considered using a bicycle. It makes it convenient to ride in your regular clothes.

    But does that mean that I’m against other styles of bikes? Of course not!

    I’m also hoping that more bike sharing programs will be implemented. But that doesn’t mean I’m against anyone who chooses not to use bike sharing.

    I’m also for on-street segregated bike infrastructure, but that doesn’t mean I’m against off-road bike infrastructure or non-segregated infrastructure.

    One doesn’t exclude the other.

  3. Sizz Feb 4,2011 12:26 am

    I’m all for the sexy road bikes, fun fixies, and the vintage road bikes. I have found that sit up bikes are also awesome!

    I recently got a citizen bike that is not particularly fast by any means, but it rides like a Cadillac. I don’t feel those nasty bumps on the road that would definitely hurt if I was on a road bike.

    As of recent, the health of my spine has deteriorated, and it is no longer pleasant to ride in a slouched position for a long period of time. A sit up bike is ergonomically better for your back.

    So it would be nice to see people on sit up bikes. 1. So I can ride with them 2. allowing a diversity of bikes

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