I've been biking in and around my neighborhood - Park Slope - for the past 5 or so years. Usually, with a small child in the bike seat. Occasionally, I would loop across the Brooklyn Bridge, through (the nightmare of) Chinatown, then over the Manhattan Bridge back home.
This year, the bug bit and I decided I wanted to start commuting to work since getting the gym has been a hassle and biking New York City is awesome. Plus, it allows me to put to bed my obsession with Dutch bike culture. (In fact, when I'm cruising around the Slope with my 4-year old - nearly every day of the year - I'm like, Who needs Holland? Brooklyn rules!)
Anyway, I'm here to learn. I want to take the stock Peugeot U.S. Express I have and turn it into a commuting machine, learn how to maintain and just connect with other bikers. I do get a little jealous when I ride next to the guys and gals on their high-end road bikes in Prospect Park, but my goal is much simpler: learn and commute.