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6th Grader's Letter Re: ZooBombers Part II

Check out Mercury's "Letter of the Week" this Thursday
I was just informed that my 6th grade Social Studies class' letter about the ZooBomber bike theft incident will be this week's "Letter of the Week" winner in the "Portland Mercury." Also, based on their "news tip," the paper will run a story about the jackboot we're living under. And in addition to this, the "Mercury's" Managing Editor, Mayoral candidate and sympathetic to "The Cause" ace writer Phil Busse has offered to come to my class to talk about local government and city issues.

Will the WWeek follow suit? Of course, it's an "alternative" paper only in the same sense that Wild Oats is an "alternative" food store. In fact, every city in the country has a paper exactly like it; in fact, most are owned by a small group of corporate conglomerates that put out nearly identical products all over the country... (gee, doesn't that sound familiar?).

I shouldn't even bother checking for the letter in the "bOregonian." In any case, every positive act and small victory makes a humane future that much more likely. If we don't give today's kids a reason to fight the good fight, than all hope will indeed be lost.

My thanks as well to all those who wrote encouraging words to the kids after their letter was first posted.

WW article 16.Sep.2003 22:47

99th Monkey

I happen to know that there will likely be a short article in tomorrows Willamette Week. Also, there is planned coverage by Alliance too! I have been forwarded most of the Mayor's responses to letters and she is taking a hard line on the ZooBombers, naturally siding with her police. She accepts their report, is obvious disregard for the facts and photograhic evidence that has been presented regarding their actions. She has no plans to suggest any change in Police policies or behaviors but by her actions condones an increasingly militaristic, repressive, "discourage unwanted activity by intimidation tactics" type of PPB and TriMet Police, as she IS Police Commisioner! Notice, I did not say "illegal activity"; she and the Portland Business Alliance want to mold those who frequent downtown Portland into "good citizens" who conform to their demographics. By whatever means available to us, it is apparent that there is a very large group of citizens that are OUTRAGED every time something like this happens and we stand together, toe-to-toe with her and her "thought-police" who do not like the way we think! It gladdens my heart to see children also involved in the struggle to regain lost freedoms.

I thought this was America 16.Sep.2003 23:32

Bomb watcher

The mayor and her policies are rebelizing PDX.

what ever happened to all that impeach vera stuff? 16.Sep.2003 23:56



Maybe everyone should re-evaluate "Zoo-Bombing" 18.Sep.2003 02:53

Voice of Reason

You know, I've been aware of "Zoo-Bombing" for quite some time now, and I find it funny that teachers are teaching kids about the practice. I wonder if the teachers tell the kids that 75% of those that "Zoo-Bomb" are legally intoxicated on tall boys of PBR. I also wonder if the children are aware that most of those that "Zoo-Bomb" cheat the metro sytem by taking a free ride, then ride down a steep hill in the dark without helmes. I have personally seen gangs of "Zoo-Bombers" coming down the hill drunk, without helmets and in the dark. I don't think this is a healthy activity for anyone, especially children. So please all you dirty hipster "Zoo-Bombers", re-evalute your past times, and try not to cry too much when the men in blue make targets out of you. And another thing, when there's a car behind you, and they want to pass, let them. The roads are for cars, if your on a bike, stay as far to the side as you can. I'm sick and tired of seeing all of you hogging up the streets. The streets are ours, the drivers of automobiles, and you'll never take them over, ever...

Voice of Reason? 18.Sep.2003 03:40

Bomb watcher

How can you be the voice of reason when you are so biased? Don't like to share the road?

Are you spreading rumors about the Zoo bombers? None of them have been arrested for driving while intoxicated, have they? If the cops saw that, they would surely have a legitimate reason for arrest. But it hasn't happened, has it? Instead they have to make up some "obstructing the sidewalk" excuse.

How would you know they were drinking PBR? Were you there with them? Did you see the cans in their hands?

How do you know most of them cheat the MAX? Are you there when they do it? It sounds like you're there on the road in your car, when they are taking up "your" space. Somehow I doubt you have the time to monitor who pays their max fare and who doesn't. It sounds like you are just making assumptions about people you don't know.

Maybe the only time YOU look as happy as the Zoo bombers is when you are soused on PBR, and that's why you can't comprehend that the Zoo Bombers are just having a good time, while sober.

fyi mr voice 18.Sep.2003 04:12


I would advise you to read your driver's handbook. You will find therein that bicyclists have all the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle operators. They are not "your" roads. As cyclists, we too pay for those roads out of general tax revenues. We also pay disproportionately for public emergency services which are funded entirely out of general revenues and around 3/4 of which are in response to motor vehicle caused mayhem, a big subsidy to your motor vehicle habit. You will not succeed in using threats and bullying to intimidate me and other cyclists from lawfully and properly using our roads.

I will take up as much of the lane as I need to for my own safety. The law requires that slower moving vehicles proceed as close to the right as "practicable," meaning with due regard for safety and practicality (eg, bearing in mind substandard lane widths, obstructions, hazards such as opening of parked car doors, debris in the road, etc.) You're welcome to pass me in the adjacent lane if possible. Furthermore, the operative word is "slower," and this does not apply when going down hills where the posted speed limit is, say, 35 mph, nor when the prevailing traffic on the road is itself composed entirely or largely of bicycles, in which case the average speed of traffic is also defined by the prevailing type of traffic.

What a load of SHIT 18.Sep.2003 15:01


I wouldn't drink PBR even if I were dying of thirst! I personally get a 6 hr Quiktik which allows me to bomb twice. If you've ever seen our flyer then you know we tell people to buy a max ticket and have a headlight and a rear reflector as the law requires. People can't be that drunk cuz they get to the bottom of the hill in one piece at a speed greater than the average cyclist can handle on a machine cheaply built for kids that's been modified in someones backyard. As far as a helmet goes there is no law saying you have to wear a helmet. I believe it is a choice left up to the individual. Quit talking SHIT and show up and bomb the hill!

voice of reason 19.Sep.2003 10:14


I just think you should wear helmets, why are you playing with your lives like that? And I know that most of you are drunk, I've seen and heard stories so I know its true. but I'll quit talking shit. Im just jealouse probably.

voice of reason? 19.Sep.2003 13:50


You have "seen and heard stories " so you "know its true"? I don't think that's a very good argument. It makes you sound foolish. A more convincing statement would be "I have heard lots of accounts and suspect they are true", or some such thing.
At least you admitted you were "just jealouse probably". But being jealous, while often a motivation for dangerous, foolish stunts and other "errors", is not really a healthy pass time or habit to get into.

pro-choices 23.Sep.2003 14:18


zoobomb is a "celebration" of individual freedoms. one of those freedoms is whether to ride a big bike or mini. another is to wear a helmet. another is whether or not to drink. we encourage bombers to pay their fare, the rest is up to them. all of these choices can lead to circumstances that the individual may have to deal with. people must realize that zoobomb is an activity and has been going on since the beginning of hills and bikes. we just named it. it is not an organization that is here to police the hill or take away peoples right to do what they want to have fun. i think there is alot to be learned from this. 6th graders are having babies but they can't discuss zoobomb?

Are you kidding me? 05.Jul.2006 15:09


Watching these bombers ride down W Burnside almost every Sunday night I can tell you that it's very rare to see a headlight of any kind and even rarer to see a helmet. However, as one poster mentioned, there is no bicycle helmet law. Those who speak of drunk riders wasted on PBR need to go to the hill and see for themselves and not listen to idle rumor and speculation. I've not seen any beer but I've not looked.
Just like in a car, riders should be responsible and share the road. From my personal experiences, this is not always the case. You want to ride down the hill at break neck speed in the night on a miniature bicycle? Go for it. All I ask is that you do it legally, safely and call it what is really is. Come on, "a "celebration" of individual freedoms", another article quoted a so called bomber saying "It's just a really organic experience. It's really fun."? I'm not sure what possible organics that rider is talking about but it's a rush. You're not making a political statement about your freedoms of the road or right to cycle at night. It's about having a blast bombing down the road. I'm cool with that just please use common sense and obey the laws. See you Sunday night as you wiz by.
You want to bitch about people being stupid and getting hurt all in the name of good ol American fun? Come to the Adult Soapbox Derby. Now that's a rush!