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At the ride start of the Critical Mass on June 25th, there will be a faction of people, including myself, who will be encouraging something we are currently calling, "Project Civil Obedience", in which all cyclists will demonstrate what it means for 1000+ riders to obey all road rules. That includes stopping at every red light. We will also be encouraging mass riders to cooperate in choosing a destination to ride to so that they can reunite if they get separated by red lights from the main group. The plan will be to get to the destination within 45 minutes (a reasonable riding time frame).
If everyone participates in this idea by consensus, the result will be that all participants will be free to travel in any direction they need to reach the destination. Some groups may get broken up by red lights. However, we will all be demonstrating that WE ARE TRAFFIC by following all road rules to the LAPD and the rest of the public.
There may be some old school traditionalist Critical Mass veterans that may be opposed to this idea. However, CM was designed to be improved cooperatively. There are no leaders here, just a mass of riders who are working together to improve the image and effect that CM can have in our city.
Please pass this cooperative idea along, join in encouraging others at the ride, or contribute to the discussion here and on other forums.
I attend CM to demonstrate my right to ride the streets on a bicycle and as traffic by riding as traffic should. I do not attend CM to promote any other political agenda. You are welcome to do as you will, but CM is not defined as a protest to me. In fact, I think the fact that we admit it acts as a protest hurts the future of the ride.
I'm sure you might also be joking because i have posted this on the Midnight Ridazz forum which embraces themes for rides. But, I need to point out to the public that MR and CM are not the same event. Thanks.
I love you Boforsaurus.
AND I thinks this is an excellent Idea.
Right now I'm about 90% sure 'll be able to make it.
And 100% sure that if you need any help this week preparing I'll do what ever I can to help.
I do welcome constructive criticism on this concept too...
I'd like to also share a supportive quote from another thread:
"i think you're on to something there. odds are, if we stop for all the lights, it will create a greater spectacle than if we were running the lights. if the police decide to start corking intersections for us, drivers will get the message that LAPD supports bikes. either way, we win." - poodles
I'll have my iphone fully charged and my card in my camera reformatted and ready to go. Manny has inspired me to be the next rider to embarrass the cops. Getting a little change in the process wouldn't hurt either.
I am glad someone is stepping up to the plate to take a leadership role to try to create a more organized Critical Mass. I remember a while back, maybe a year or more ago, there was someone who tried to do this but was attacked and viciously excoriated for attempting to do the same thing. I guess those idiots who said an organized Critical Mass was"against the rules" are all eating crow right now.
Quite the contrary. I am not a leader at all. I am just part of this ride encouraging a new idea for the direction of CM. I could not make this happen alone. This can only work collectively. If you want to help support my idea, please tell your friends and discuss it together. I am in no way a leader. I am not going to be enforcing anything. That's what the police will be doing this Friday.
Do you ever see people ride on the wrong side of the street into traffic?
Do you ever see people ride in the door zone?
Do you ever see people dangerously ride though busy red lit intersections?
Does it make you want to do something or wish you could change it?
This idea might slowly help change that if we try do it all together...
"Project Civil Obedience" = will allow CM to give the police what they want from us, help educate new riders riding safety and road rules they might not have known, and it will create a spectacle that will demonstrate what the city would look like if many people were commuting regularly and acting as vehicles should to get some place.
" Let them see that we are traffic by acting like traffic. This means following ALL ROAD RULES. (e.g. stopping at all red lights, not corking, staying in the right hand lane, using hand signals, etc.) See - BICYCLE SAFETY
The ride WILL get broken up by the red lights. If we have an agreed destination, (CM usually does anyway), then we can all meet there within 45 minutes.
This is the SUGGESTED idea. Not something the ride will be required to do. If you want to learn more about critical mass history - watch the documentaries on google video - We Are Traffic and also - Still We Ride to better understand what we are current facing with critical mass in LA with the police.
If you believe this idea is a good idea - that it will help improve our relationship with the public while still demonstrating our rights to ride on the streets - then follow your will and do it, and hopefully others will follow too.
Critical Mass has always been a leaderless demonstration of cyclists rights on the streets. It can continue being leaderless as long as the people continue to work together towards keeping the ride safe. Changes have happened and can continue happening to make the ride better COLLECTIVELY.
- all bikes are welcome at ANY critical mass
- there is typically no determined route
as for pace & topography it can be unpredictable. I recommend finding friends or people on similar style bikes. On a heavy bike do your best to stay up front so you can spend more time waiting at lights and less time trying to catch up. Have some contact numbers incase you get lost.
Is flyer in the works?
Lets do this!
It does not have to be telling anybody what to do
but to offer a possibility, and letting people know our reasons and intentions.
We can offer "leadership" without having a hierarchy or "leader".
Also I think a facebook invite would be great.
If we have multiple hosts for the event then it will make clear that this is an idea that alot of people share. Its what we intend to do. Not what we are telling people to do.
Thanks for those questions. Some can be answered, some are a bit more difficult, but I'll chime in here based on what I've seen on rides.
Pace: LACM is not a race or a hustle. Based on past experience, It's what some on this site refer to as a "chill" pace. Sure, some mashers up at the front sometimes like to open up a bit which may either spread out the group or speed it up a bit (but this is generally discouraged from what I've noticed), and sometimes the pace is very slow (i.e., approaching lights or on very narrow streets). I've seen all types of riders--small, large, young, and old, and everything in between--all traveling at various comfortable speeds.
What kind of bikes can come: Any bike that is properly equipped to ride safely on the street--geared, fixed, mountain, cruiser, tall, foldie, bmx, you name it. Motorized transportation (motorcycles, scooters, etc.) does not fit with the theme of the ride.
Length (by time): Starts at approx 7:30 and typically ends where the start of another later ride is set to begin--the People's Ride at about 9:30. Thus the ride is about 2 hrs, but that is not all ride time, as there is usually a stop or maybe two.
Length (by distance): A bit more difficult to predict since there is no pre-set route, but anywhere from, say, 12, up to perhaps 15-20 miles is a safe bet. The route is to be determined by you--and the group by consensus.
Flat? Since there is no pre-set route, nobody knows, technically speaking. But since this ride is about inclusion and brings out a large and varied contingent of riders, large/steep hills are not something usually seen on LACM. What you generally find in the LA basin between the coast and East LA is what you will encounter.
In honor of our men and women in blue that will be accompanying us on this historic ride, there's been talk on these threads and otherwise about a stop being a donut shop.
I still dig the idea, but of course a destination will be up to a consensus of group.
Randy's, the So. Cal. iconic donut shop in Inglewood may fit the bill on many fronts (large parking lot, lotsa donuts, good for photo ops with LAPD to spread the good cheer)--but distance/timing may be a concern to some. It's about 10 miles from Wilshire/Western.
I think it is an awesome idea. Both a peace offering (breaking bread!?) and a gentle ribbing.
Imagine the hilariousness if it were actually a surprise to some of the Po.
It would be great to treat them to donuts.
We could just plop down $20 on the counter and tell the donuteer that any cop in uniform gets a free donut!
If there is a closer shop to K-Town with such Iconic architecture it would be awesome!
But I don't know of any.
I like the donut shop idea, but 10 miles one way might be a bit much for some of the new people who are coming, including some families and the beach cruiser girls.
There are donut shops in K-town, on Highland and Melrose, Santa Monica and Highland, Melrose and Vine, Tasty Donuts on Santa Monica and Crescent Heights and of course Tangs on Sunset and Fountain. We should definitely give the donut shop a " heads up" so they can have enough donuts in stock.
Agree the 10 miles o/w might be a stretch for some--and I'm sure we'd would really like to avoid that for the less regular riders (or those on heavy-ass bikes).
Also, since this will be a new-style LACM where many small(er) groups will likely be riding around--rather than one very large group--a somewhat more familiar and/or widely known local destination where riders can take any one of several routes to get there (whether they be direct or more circuitous) might be more appropriate for this one.
The "head-up" is a good idea, but the destination won't be decided upon until about 7:30-ish that night by a general consensus. Not sure how much good it will do giving a donut shop 45 minutes notice, but it would be great if someone takes the responsibility of calling whatever shop is chosen to let them know.
I'll try to make that call, but redundancy won't hurt--so others should also do the same.
Sgt. David Krumer, who is charged with cyclist relations, is pleased with the efforts behind "Project Civil Obedience," but said he has one slight concern if riders decide to split off into smaller groups. "Fragmenting the ride into many smaller groups of 30-50 riders traveling in different directions complicates our oversite and facilitation," he said. "The LAPD is responding to many calls from Critical Mass riders to be more involved. Now that the LAPD announces its intention to be present the rules are being changed somewhat, and can be interpreted as an attempt to thwart our outreach efforts. Again, I applaud the message of Civil Obedience but the timing creates additional challenges."
Now that the LAPD announces its intention to be present the rules are being changed somewhat, and can be interpreted as an attempt to thwart our outreach efforts. Again, I applaud the message of Civil Obedience but the timing creates additional challenges."
See Borfo, I told you so, now all because you wanted to be the leader of critical mass we're all going to get beat and pepper sprayed.
J/k... I'm still with ya... but more than ever, the donut stop is a must
md2 responding to a comment by trickmilla
06.22.10 - 10:28 am
"Fragmenting the ride into many smaller groups of 30-50 riders traveling in different directions complicates our oversite and facilitation,"1>
If CM stops at every red light, then ride will be fragmented anyway! They must not understand this. They will learn. Having a known destination enables the ride to regroup if they do get separated. CM often has an agreed destination.
If the LAPD decide to "cork" the ride for us, then this changes everything! However, they made no mention that they will be doing this for us.
"Now that the LAPD announces its intention to be present the rules are being changed somewhat, and can be interpreted as an attempt to thwart our outreach efforts"
The plan is to encourage everyone to OBSERVE ROAD RULES, not to change them.
The flyer states they will be handing out tickets if we run red lights. Project Civil Obedience is our idea to encourage all riders to follow the rules. This hopefully prevents anyone from getting in trouble with the LAPD and creates a positive example of what the future of CM can be achieved without feeling fenced in by an oppressive authority.
What Officer Krumpke doesn't seem to see that this is part of the solution. Not everyone likes to be told what to do - They like to decide it for themselves.
People are going to do what they want of course. All of this is just a SUGGESTION.
That's a QUOTE from one of the officers. I don't know about you but I interpret that as meaning "civil obedience" will make it harder for them to CONTROL the ride, and perform their duties (i.e. issue tickets.)
When the Dodgers have a game, and when the general public CONVERGES on Dodger Stadium, does the LAPD exercise oversite and facilitation to the thousands of motorists that come from all over the city and crowd the city streets and freeways surrounding the stadium? Just wondering.
I think what Officer Krumer is referring to is that if the ride splits and goes different directions it will create staffing challenges.
It is easier to control 1 big group than it is to control several small ones.
Their point in doing this, from my perspective, is that they can be present at a big ride.
That they can be organized enough and disciplined enough that they can exert control over us without having any bad press moments. LAPD has a reputation for heavy-handedness and obviously Chief Beck would like to dial that back a little.
This isn't an unannounced operation. This is a press event. All eyes will be on LACM and LAPD to see how we act. To see how we play together.
This is a game. They know it. We know it. We dont have a choice but play, so lets play.
We just need to know what the rules are so we can have fun and play nice.
"When the Dodgers have a game, and when the general public CONVERGES on Dodger Stadium, does the LAPD exercise oversite and facilitation to the thousands of motorists that come from all over the city and crowd the city streets and freeways surrounding the stadium? Just wondering"
Lets all ride LEGAL (because if we don't the cops will give us tickets) but even more important is how FUN breaking the mass into 20 groups of 50 or 60 people will be! since there is no route, each group can make it's own route and we'll just meet up at a destination that everyone agrees on at the beginning of the ride! VERY FUNS! I hope my boy Jack Barry comes out for this!!
a faction of stronger riders MUST head to randy s in inglewood. I will plob the 20 usd to feed our fellow human beings in blue uniforms. A +10000000000 if inglewood p.d. Shows up. This must be lead by the kids that invented a brief passsage. Come on nathan and royalacadamy manthefuck up and leadthe stronger riders to randys in inglewood. You guys can due it!!!!!
My sources tell me there hardly ever any routes planned in any critical mass. Our partners in the LAPD don't have a route planned either. So, It looks like you may get your wish unless there is a change in our game plan. Looking forward to meeting you. I'm a big fan!
FBI responding to a comment by Wink Martindale
06.22.10 - 4:02 pm
Even though Hollywood and Highland is cool, I think we would need a place for all the riders to stop at the destination.
LAPD's new building downtown could be an ironic destination. They have a big open area next to their building between spring and main on 2nd st. All the grass there is dead, so you can't really complain about people walking on the grass. 2nd st. tunnel or one of the bridges could really easily be worked into a route to and from there.
Yeah. the LAPD building would be great. It's kinda a perfect place for a photo op with Sgt. Krumer and other LAPD.
The ultimate goal of LACM isn't to be anti-car or anti-bp. It's to have fun and enjoy the social space created by a mass of cyclists. I don't see why the police can't be part of that.
In WE ARE TRAFFIC, even the cyclist who are corking are having civil conversations with drivers stuck at the intersections. It's good for us to partner with LAPD and find the best way for us to do rides in LA.
this ride is going to be chaos! part of the reason why the last ride spiraled out of control is because of the doubling back and the seeming lack of good direction and leadership. I just see a recuipe for disaster!
Spiraled out of control? Huh? Is that code for "circle of death"? If not, don't really know what you mean by that.
But all that is of little concern now, really--we're going forward, man, charting new territory--with or without chaos. Anyway, a certain amount of chaos is perfectly acceptable and easily dealt with. Ride how you see fit--and make us all proud.
Its funny to see you are actually going. Ive been to all the Critical Masses for over a year and I never see you out there. Just because the police are escorting the ride you suddenly want to go? Please you arent bullshitting anyone but yourself.
Somebody has got Borfo's number.
Let see if Borfo actually makes it out? Judging from past claims of Borfo stating he is attending a ride and then doesn't places my money on the ........... "NO" spot.
Its funny to see you are actually going. Ive been to all the Critical Masses for over a year and I never see you out there. Just because the police are escorting the ride you suddenly want to go? Please you arent bullshitting anyone but yourself.
responding to a comment by Joe Borfo
sexy responding to a comment by palucha66
06.23.10 - 11:25 pm
Believe it or not a decent number of people that are in the MR community make it out to this ride. Its mostly the new batch of MR like goosegoose, osnapson, me and others that actually attend. Everyone elses just bitches on the forums how much critical mass sucks. But suddenly EVERYONE wants to go just because the LAPD is joining us for this one time.
I've been going since 2005. I've stopped my frequency of attending when it filled with kids over a year ago who seem to only be there to get off on being disrespectful and aggressive dicks on their brakeless single speeds while doing their stupid circle of death. I realized it was going to be a matter of time until it got to this point with the cops. It's not until now that I feel inspired to suggest a new direction.
This shit isn't new. It's happened in other cities. Some took it in positive directions and some took it to violence and hate. NYCM has become a fail with the relationship with the LAPD. Chicago CM have the police in their hands - totally in support with the event.
I'm all about trying to show how we can move away from a hipster free-for-all and bring LACM back into a demonstration of how bikes can positively transform our city towards embracing our alternative transportation.
They got this all figured out in Europe. It's not impossible.
You can be a pissed off cynical kid who is disappointed in the world, or you can try to be an example of change to your peers. You might even get laid too.
Keep on trolling me, that's cool. But you have yet to prove to me any points about how trying a new approach will not work...
"I'm all about trying to show how we can move away from a hipster free-for-all and bring LACM back into a demonstration of how bikes can positively transform our city towards embracing our alternative transportation"
Youre going to try that by attending 1 ride. Do you even believe in what you are saying?
when are going to change MR rides? that should be changed before CM. theres no stabing or people being shot at LACM. isnt that a bigger problem? also theres single speed brakeless on MR rides. will the LAPD be on those rides to?
No. You are right, I'm not going to do it. Not alone.
If I feel there is a potential for progress then I will keep going to CM.
I ride my bike every week. I'm trying to commute to work daily. I want to effect others to want to. I don't want to see LA's bicycle future get squashed because some retards want steal, get drunk, poorly tag shit, and to get in fights?
Don't you understand that the cops could potentially shut down social group rides in LA?
You think the solution is to chant "Fuck the Police" in their faces? You are way smarter than that. Stop trying to show off to your friends. There are other ways to be subversive. Much more effective ways. You'll figure it out. I hope.
start at the top barfo. the shotings and stabings are the real problem. ur just a control freak like everyone else. look out behind you user1 is creeping up! thats the problem with control freaks they think every one is out to get them.
Palucha you should learn from those who have more experience than you or you will end up in prison thinking you should have made different choices when you were younger as your cell mate is pounding you in the ass.
We can go all the way south on Crenshaw then go west on Manchester. Then, after we all partake in some tasty donuts, we can go west on Manchester, up on Sepulveda/Sawtelle and then take Venice all the way back to the Wilshire area!
I also haven't been to CM in a good while because every time I've gone in the last year has been such a bad experience, I just decided it wasn't worth it. This time, I hope it will be worth it. I'm looking forward to a good ride.
The last ride actually had really good leadership. I remember ride "leaders" walking around at Pan Pacific and telling everyone the route for the last stop, and I've never seen that happen. And at H&H, after the cop car told us to clear the intersection, dudeonabike stopped and chatted with the officer in good faith...it was after that, when things had calmed down that everything went to hell.
In the past few months, I noticed huge gaps in the ride, and it getting broken up because of fast kids racing at the front. In May, this was not the case. The ride pretty much stayed together except for after Pan Pacific when it broke into two groups. The chaos you refer to was caused by LAPD, not a result of the ride leadership.
After reading through this thread I would like to make a suggestion (especially what trickmilia wrote about the lapd seeing if we can work together)
Let the LAPD lead the ride. Just sit back and let them lead it. Everybody look to them and say when are we leaving? Where are we going? Call them on any (in a polite passive aggressive way) "bonehead move" that they make.
When they get bored and leaved, then you can continue on and have a critical mass.
Mind you, I haven't been to critical mass in some time. Mainly because I don't enjoy it as I once did, due to various reason.
There appears to be some concern that the LAPD is attempting to take over the ride, plan a route, or otherwise "control" the event. The Department is not plannning a route for you...this is your event. If there is a destination or some interim stops along the way...or if you plan on practicing xerocracy....it would be helpful if you could advise LAPD. If not than that is fine too.
I was shocked that anyone really into the bicycling community and into Critical Mass would actually invite the LAPD to police the ride, but since they're here, and seem willing to, or will attempt to, take a low profile, policing only, presence, then let them do their job, but don't hand the ride over to them. Invite them to ride along as citizen participants to see whats up but inviting them to ride along as LAPD, in their official capacity, is not, in my opinion, what Critical Massers should be doing. The LAPD provides their services for rides hosted by members of the city government, including corking intersections, I expect that they'll act in a similar way for Critical Mass.
This is a true peoples ride and it should stay that way.
dave responding to a comment by sexy
06.24.10 - 11:23 am
Good post. I'm slowly starting to piece together what is actually going on. Ultimately, LA Critical Mass has the opportunity to improve and remain strong. Police are showing that they support what we are doing as long as we are obeying the laws. Let's show them we can do it.
They will be corking when necessary at the front of the ride.
They expect riders to still stop at reds and not cork themselves.
They are willing to let the ride run as it always has.
They support Project Civil Obedience and hope people adopt it on Friday
All of these answers will be reconfirmed after tonights meeting.
Many of the police do know that this is a monthly celebration of cyclists rights. Some higher ups may still be in the dark on it. Continually showing a good face and spreading a positive message is the only way to change their minds about us. This can be potential good press for everyone. Keep it positive. Keep it safe.
"They will be corking when necessary at the front of the ride.
They expect riders to still stop at reds and not cork themselves.
They are willing to let the ride run as it always has."
I hope they understand that by forcing us to stop at reds they could be making things less safe. It could be dangerous if cars end up driving in between two packs of cyclists. Cars need a lot more space and time to brake than a bicycle does. I'm not sure I trust drivers and cyclists to give each other the kind of space necessary for everyone to ride safely in stop-and go traffic. I also foresee people running reds because they: think they can be the last one to make it/ they're afraid of getting left behind by the main group/ they're afraid of stopping too suddenly and causing a pile-up.
I was reading about the San Jose Party Ride, which regularly has 2,000+ riders and which stops at all reds. Their ride is quite different in that it ends up being really geographically spread out (I'm talking miles). It's not that big of a deal, usually, because San Jose is semi-suburban and they usually have a set route (so no one ends up going the wrong way or wandering around). In the Wilshire area of LA, I imagine that would snarl traffic quite badly, probably worse than the current Mass does (which takes, what? 5 minutes to pass max?).
In the Wilshire area of LA, I imagine that would snarl traffic quite badly, probably worse than the current Mass does (which takes, what? 5 minutes to pass max?).
I think that's the point... people have been talking for years about how if group rides FOLLOWED every rule of the road it would probably create more delays for automobiles than BREAKING the rules of the road. So this is really an experiment. Its the same thing for cars too, imagine if every car followed every law? It would take a city that probably has some of the worst traffic in the world and make it even worse. The city is already to overpopulated to accommodate everyone following every law.
they are going to end up corking for us. They cant do it at all intersections of the ride.
They do not want us to cork intersections for ourselves.
JUST GIVE THEM WHAT THEY WANT. They will learn that there is a reason for the way we do things. This is a good education for them. Just stop at the reds unless they cork for you.
This is not going to be a big deal. Really. It's going to work out.
Remember, the cops aren't going to be doing this forever. Probably not again if things go smoothly and we show them that were not going to break any rules. Stay on the righ lane... all the things you will expect. It's going to be very interesting ride. Historic perhaps?
Read the CM/PD thread where I posted a brief recap of the meeting.
this should go without saying, but be extra mindful of what you do at the start. Even if you have a card, maybe don't excersize your ability to smoke in public. Pick up trash, ext. What am I doing? The people I am talking to don't read this anyway. Oh well.
The LAPD is requesting that participants follow the rules of the road. Which means stopping at red lights and stop signs UNLESS otherwise directed by law enforcement. Borfo is correct...if there is any corking to be done it should be done by the police and not the riders. If it is determined that this approach does not work, we will evaluate, assess, and adapt as necessary. Our default position is that we must at least make the attempt to follow the vehicle code.
You must live a great distance away--if so, glad you're coming out. The tip about taking Metro to Wilshire/Western is a great suggestion.
Alternatively, if you have to drive, you might consider parking where LACM wraps up--at the the start of the People's Ride (Sunset/Western) and then just ride down to the start of LACM. (Parking ain't so hot at Wilshire/Western anyway.)
Metro Blue Line 7th/Metro > Long Beach
Metro Gold Line Union Station > Sierra Madre Villa
Union Station > Atlantic
Metro Green Line Marine > Norwalk
Metro Red Line Union Station <> Wilshire/Vermont (both directions)
Metro informed that they WILL BE lifting the restricted ban on bikes on Metro (see above for details) come summertime, so technically, I believe it's still on the books.
Word on the street (er, train) is, however, that it's rarely enforced. From my limited personal survey--I don't know anyone that's received a citation. And I've been chided by fellow ridazz for actually complying with the stupid rule.
So, lessee, I can get on between 4pm and 4:30pm and still be within the law. It takes about a half hour to 45 minutes to get to union station from NoHo station, so I should get to Wilshire and Vermont by around 5pm and either bike it or ride the purple line if I'm feeling like a civil dis-obedience limit pusher.
Anyway, I'll be in the neighborhood sometime before the ride.
The main thing I wanted my friends and people of my community to get out of this was that we can all lead through example. LACM will never be perfect. In fact, it is far from it. We all have a lot of influence in the cycling community. If you wan't to see something change, don't complain about it - Do something that affects others to want to make a change for the better.
Project Civil Obedience didn't really happen. It didn't need to because everyone was already being positive and doing their best to represent a good attitude to the cops and the public. I knew the cops would realize that they were going to need to cork for us. I'm hoping we influenced them to be as cool as they were with us. I'm sure many riders could have followed the rules better, but overall it felt like almost everyone was looking out for each other.
There are always going to be new riders who need to be coached on how to behave in a group ride. There will always be a percentage of riders who are looking to antagonize and cause trouble. We should start to recognize that in order for large group rides to continue to survive we need to be constantly be encouraging riders to represent a positive attitude for the reflection we make on the eyes of the police and the public. Yes, It takes effort to encourage others to do the right thing.
It is in our best interest for us to continue to promote reflecting a positive attitude towards each other and the public. Continue to demonstrate the importance of riding safely and by the rules, not reacting towards those angry or unsympathetic drivers, interact with the public in a playful and inviting way. We can do all this as a collective whole. Positive attitude gets better results than through aggression and conflict.
Long Live Midnight Ridazz, and Long Live Critical Mass!