Bike Path: An In-Line Skater's Side of the Story

I'm one of the thousands of Angelenos who take pride and pleasure in our beautiful paved pathways along the glorious California coast. I'm also an in-line skater. Until your article, I was not aware that these paths are ostensibly the legal domain of bicyclists. I'm surprised and disappointed. In years of skating from Palisades to Venice to Marina del Rey to Torrance, I've never seen a "no skating" sign, nor has it ever occurred to me that "bikes only" on the pathways was meant to exclude anyone but pedestrians. Neither does my full-color bike path map, so graciously provided by the L.A. County Transportation Commission, make any mention in the listed rules and regulations that skating is prohibited. Even the company that originated in-line skating reinforces the idea that the path is not just for bikers by offering Saturday morning clinics at the Santa Monica Beach parking lot adjoining the bike path.

In-line skating and biking are simply different means to the same end. There are weekend warriors of both persuasions who make it unpleasant for those of us who enjoy the pathways' rich variety of recreation, sight and sound. I'm sorry if our French expatriate biker friend believes in-line skaters would be content rolling round and round in circles like horizontal hamsters. Perhaps she'd like to try putting bikers in rinks: Voila ! An infinite loop of frenzied cyclists in an endless chorus of "On your left!"

ED BRAND

Los Angeles

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