Best sentences I read this week: Vol. 12

“Is this an unacceptable price to pay? Well, cyclist fatalities in America were estimated at somewhere in the range of 58 to 109 deaths per 1 billion kilometres cycled in the early 2000s. (It may have declined somewhat since, but probably not by too much, since the total number of deaths has remained roughly constant.) In the Netherlands, statistics on this subject are more precise: there were 12 deaths per billion kilometres cycled in 2010, down by a third since 2000. So I guess it depends on how much one values human life, as against the inconvenience of having to look in the rearview mirror more often.”

The American right-of-way

“‘If you are a young writer,’ she added, ‘you’re going to have to share an apartment with a number of people, you’re not going to have any privacy, you’re barely going to be able to make a living in whatever job you’re going to get. It’s just not conducive to a creative life.’

In a more innocent era, it seems, writers chose the moment in life that they were ready to serve the city its ‘Dear John’ letter. These days, New York is likely to dump them first.”

The Long Goodbye by ALEX WILLIAMS

“The word “free” is used facetiously. The full cost of parking is always paid, but usually not directly by the motorist. When parking does carry a direct cost it’s often under-priced. The real cost of driving is hidden, encouraging more car use. Ironically, non-motorists who don’t want or can’t afford cars end up subsidizing car owners in places like grocery stores because parking costs are hidden in purchase prices.”

The High Cost of Free Parking

“The U.S. Congress is debating new economic sanctions on Iran this week. Should you switch over to C-SPAN, you would hear members of the world’s most powerful legislative body offering perhaps a half-dozen different pronunciations of the name of the country they argue cannot be trusted.”

A guide to 26 foreign countries and names that Americans mispronounce