Thursday, November 18, 2010

What I can do

Coming up this Saturday I'll be taking my bike to Overland Park, Kansas to attend the annual KanBikeWalk meeting which you can read about when you click on these words. This will be my first foray into bicycle advocacy.I'm not really sure what to expect, but I hope to be helpful and provide a dedicated commuter's perspective and possibly network with some like minded people.

A pre-meeting 25 mile or so ride will take place to which I'm looking forward to riding in. I have some concerns about being able to keep up with the others, but I have absolutely nothing to base these concerns upon, as I've not met any of these people, nor do I know their riding strength or equipment. The concern stems from my own equipment. I "roll" with a heavy bike to begin with. But I also add on the weight with my rear baskets,
lock and Wee-ride mount, like the one pictured above. I won't have the Wee-ride seat, but will leave the gray cross bar connecting the seat post to head set in place. That's not my bike pictured, but it's a three speed not unlike the one pictured; and that's not my actual basket but it's an image of the exact make and model of the two baskets I have on my bike.

I won't try to compete. I'll pedal a consistent pace that is as comfortable and fast as I wish to go. If this group is like most groups, they'll have members who will choose to ride racing bikes and wear racing clothing. I'll be wearing regular jeans and leather shoes, probably a leather jacket and whatever layers I'll need to wear for mid-November weather. I'm not out for speed, I'm out for the enjoyment of the ride and to look around.

I shouldn't be so judgmental. Maybe I'm not being judgmental and I have nothing for which to apologize. I just want to do this ride on my own terms the way I like to bike. I just don't like the posture and inconvenience of the racing bike when I'm not competing for speed or place. I'll be prepared for any weather and I hope they don't cancel on account of the weather, but on the sight I noticed they would allow for that event.

Speaking of weather, I rode home from school yesterday in cold November rain. I wore my rain suit and as I was leaving another teacher said "You're brave; riding in this (the weather)". I told her just wait to see what she thinks of me in February!

I may have to get a new rear flashing light as the one I have has been jarred loose on two occasions. Both times I was able to safely recover it and the batteries from out of the street before it was ruined by being ran over by a vehicle. Riding my bike at full speed over the transitions in the street were what caused it to come loose. 

I'll give you the post ride run down next week. In the meantime,

keep on commuting by bike!


1 comment:

  1. Clayton,

    I would not worry too much about being the odd-man-out at the meeting. If the group is anything like the bike advocates here in MA, the group will include all types of riders. Most people here are quite envious of 3-speed riders - good old school bikes are hard to find.

    Have you thought about making or buying yourself pogies for your handlebars to keep your hands warm and dry? I'm hoping to make some for my son this winter. I ride drop bars, so they won't work for me.

    Take care,



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