Friday is for Bicycle

Actually May is for bicycle. It’s National Bicycle Month.

The League of American Bicyclists has a great “50 ways to celebrate bike month” (pdf). My favorite is “wear spandex to your next board meeting”. I personally think board meetings should be like costume parties…but I guess the type As wouldn’t be so into that.

So with rising gas prices and a generally stagnating economy, bicycles have really been making it into the news lately and I thought I would share some of what I’ve been reading every once in a while.

The Chicago Sun Times has a great article about saving money with bicycles, highlighting one man that traded in the second car for a collection of old bikes that he’s fixed up — none of which were acquired for more than $10.

“My wife gets frustrated,” he said. “She’d rather have a second car. But the kids seamlessly just kind of bought into this lifestyle because that’s how we go to the park, to the Beverly Arts Center for classes like violin classes, to the local grocery store to pick up things. That’s how we go to the pool all summer, and so for them, it’s just a lifestyle that they kind of were just swept into.”

Raising your kids this way is possibly the best way to ensure we get that “lifestyle change” that is so essential to combat global warming. It may be hard to get to the baby boomers, but the new kids (including my own generation) are still malleable enough to convince of the responsibility and myriad benefits that come with a “low-carbon” lifestyle. Living without insane excess and prioritizing our health again — I hope this is the wave of the future.

Another comes from NECN.com, a New England news site, where the spotlight is also on those that are able to save money and reduce their carbon footprint by biking to work.

This one is rather interesting from Seattle, where a man actually was taken in for psychiatric evaluation after riding his bike down Interstate 5 in Seattle. I found this hilarious at first that we actually have started committing people for riding on highways, but it turns out he had other, more severe issues…

And a great one from the LA Times about the rising use of bicycles as a mode of transport in New York City, despite the often treacherous conditions (potholes, taxis, traffic). I actually never biked in New York except for fun because I felt like it was too stressful. But the article offers a lot of promise:

The number of bicyclists has grown by 75% during the last seven years, according to the city’s count. Soon an ambitious city plan will make it possible for riders to traverse Manhattan via dedicated bike lanes and circumnavigate the island along the waterfront. Sheltered bicycle parking and thousands of new public bike racks are already in place.

New York is, afterall, the greenest city in America. It’s great to see it getting better every day. I heard one city official once say that every new person that New York gains as a resident is a win for sustainability. I plan to be one of them again someday.

In my own news, I’ve decided it’s time to really connect green craft with bicycle. So there’s a project in the works that I’ll share soon…if it makes that transition from my brain to my hands. And doesn’t suck.

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