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Likely the most embarrassing bike crash ever



"The following is a recreation of the real world events of a late October day in two thousand eleven, anno dominae."

T-10sec: Timothy is riding along on his bicycle, and comes across a group of walkers blocking the roadway. Being the amiable gentleman he is, he decides to go around them, swerving onto the sidewalk.

T-1sec: Disaster seems ready to strike our hero, for as he prepares to dive back into the street he strikes a pedal on the driveway, lifting his rear wheel up and reducing its frictional force from relatively high to null in a matter of milliseconds.

T-0sec: Our hero hits the deck! Due to a sudden and catastrophic loss of the rear wheel's frictional force, the bike's forces are no longer balanced (centripetal force is no longer opposed by the static/rolling friction of the rear wheel) and the bicycle/cyclist system rotates about the z and y axes, throwing our hero to the ground.

T+.5sec: Our hero hit the pavement with a momentum in the z-plane roughly equal to 422 Newton seconds, and is now sliding along the asphalt.

T+1sec: After sliding on the asphalt for ~1 second, Timothy comes to rest. This decrease of speed was (pun alert!) forced by a force imbalance. Kinetic friction was retarding forward motion and no force was causing forward motion, so our hero slowed to a stop.

T+5sec: Timothy says a small prayer that no one he knows saw any of the previous six seconds, pulls himself to his feet, and rides off. He swears to never again strike a pedal (that promise lasted a depressingly short amount of time).

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