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Some Things You Might See While In Amsterdam

I'm currently on a European junket, and ahead of the more serious Streetfilms that will come out of it, I thought it would be prudent to put up some everyday street scenes of bicycling in Amsterdam.

Enjoy! Make sure to check back for more extensive coverage in coming weeks.

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  • Typical American

    But no helmets? Everyone is going to die!?!? AAAAAARRRRRGHHHH!

  • Louis Capet

    OMG!! Bike salmoning and without a helmet--how insanely "stupidly" dangerous.
    How come no footage of the fietsdepot? And you should have included footage of the portal under/through the Rijksmusuem.

  • mfs

    That city is completely be-grimed.

  • Mark

    Clarence is now in Groningen. I had to pass on this comment he sent me, "You should see me the past hour. I have never had this feeling before. This place feels fake it is no nice. It's wonderful and pedestrian and bike paradise. I am at a loss for words. I want to hug all the people I see. I feel like I could break off pieces of the trees and road and eat them like candy."

  • pandechion

    I thought I'd seen everything when I saw a Dutch mother teaching her kid to ride in Amsterdam by palming the top of the kid's head while they rode side by side.

    And then I saw the mother breastfeeding a newborn on a bike.

  • http://karenlynnallen.blogspot.com/ Karen Lynn Allen

    Love the cats.

  • anon

    the horror....the horror

  • moocow

    I got off Deutche Bahn rode into town and this was my welcome. Bike heaven for sure:
    Sorry I can't get the image to post...


  • Daphna

    You need one more caption saying "Bicyclists and pedestrians sharing space". That is another issue that Americans freak out about unnecessarily.

  • Clarence

    I still feel that way. It is like Candyland the game but replace all the treats with bicycles. And then on top of all that all the women are tall and strong like ox! I can't do half the shit on a bicycle they can.

  • Clarence

    Oh don't worry, plenty more Amsterdam films to come.

  • Joe R.

    I can imagine Americans freaking out at half the things in this video, like the all the kids on bikes without helmets, or the intersections with no traffic signals. I hate to say this, but I watch this video and I can't help but think how stupid most people in the US are. We've moved so far away from building our environment for people instead of 2-ton machines that I think we've lost a lot of our humanity. These people all look like they're having a ball, even the cats! And despite the congestion, it seems like things work just fine thanks to common courtesy and remaining aware of the space around you. The part starting at 1:24 is an example of how intersections should work. Screw the traffic lights we've littered places like NYC with. Just get rid of most of the cars, drop the speeds for those that remain, and it all works fine.

    Seriously, we could make all of Manhattan like this, and even a good part of the outer boroughs. Start passing this video around. Oh, and the woman moving a stove right at the start was priceless. It's also refreshing to see people who are either slim, or at worst a little overweight. Much better than the fatties in a typical Walmart.

  • Jabir

    This video is amazing. I can't count the number of times I've watched it today. It just makes me so happy to know that somewhere in the world, some folks have figured it out... and it gives me hope that someday, we can do it here in NYC.

    You can talk and argue about streets all you want, but the great virtue of a film like this is that you can SEE it, and FEEL it, and you don't have to travel to Amsterdam. Thanks, Clarence... can't wait to see more!

  • KeNYC2030

    My only quarrel with Groningen was that a lot of the fast food was delivered by motorbike -- at all hours. Still true?

  • KeNYC2030

    Anyone who knows what it takes to get even one of these great shots, much less more than two dozen of them, knows how good Clarence is.

  • Clarence

    Okay, now you have me blushing!

  • Clarence

    Too many motorbikes. Not as many as Amsterdam. But since it is so quiet in Groningen, you do notice them quite a bit.

  • Matt

    Love this video!

    I'm going to be in Amsterdam this month and I'm really looking forward to it. Where do I go to hire a pink bike? :)

  • Clarence

    That baby's name is "Pinky Tuscadero" from Henry Culter's Work Bikes shop. Not sure how many rentals they do, but sure is a purdy bike!

  • fanxin


  • Sam the man

    I been there seen that and must add that the gas price is so high and the number of motorized vehicles so small that to compare San Francisco with Amsterdam will be like comparing an elephant with a mouse. Over there is MASSIVE bicycling with a share the bike arrangement and very low bicycle theft rate.

  • John Harshbarger

    Very low theft? It's generally acknowledged that bike theft is rampant in Amsterdam. Leave a bicycle unlocked or locked poorly and it's gone in hours.

  • Robert

    I can also point out that such differences are a direct result of government policy- fuel is subsidized here, and there it is properly taxed; here, all our bike infrastructure is awful, whereas there it is quite good. Bike theft is quite rampant, and Dutchmen deal with this by designing good parking facilities, proper locks, and bikes without quick release mechanisms. Simple changes in the Netherlands could just as easily take hold here, but the government is to invested in its policies as of right now.