I'm in downtown Montreal and it's very, very bikey here. I could bike-watch, mesmerized, for hours. The diversity seems to this visitor to be a continuum, as the range of styles and colors appears to have no beginning or end.
What is by far the most intriguing to me, though, is the monotony of the public bike system, BIXI, where every bike looks exactly the same. Sometimes the racks are full and sometimes they are empty. I won't be able to spend enough time here to make any sense of it, but there are tides of human movement that wash the waves of bikes in and out of the racks. Here's a station at high tide with all the bikes swept ashore:
I think they(?) end up hauling bikes from the lower elevation stations back up to the higher ones at the end of every day, which seems like yeah, no duh. And apparently some people check bikes out at night and take them home to the burbs and check em back in the next morning. Also apparently, you can't keep them for too long or they charge you for the price of the bike and you end up owning a heavy turd. I heard a yearly pass for unlimited use only costs 70 bucks. I heard they dimantle all the stations and pack all the bikes and kiosk-ey hardware away in the winter.
So there you have the ramblings of a bewildered, barely-informed visitor. Apparently, my employer sent me up here with the expectation that I would get some work done and not spend a bunch of time dinking around looking at bikes. I like having a job and totally agree with that viewpoint. As a result, I may never get to the bottom of this, but what a fun mystery.