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My Own Personal Experiences On The 2009 Bike To Work Day

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My Own Personal Experiences On The 2009 Bike To Work Day

Old 05-15-09, 10:25 PM
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My Own Personal Experiences On The 2009 Bike To Work Day

Hello Everyone,

I thought that you might like to hear about my own experiences on Bike To Work Day. Where I reside, it occurred last Thursday, May 14, 2009. I rose very early in the morning (around 4:30 am) and left out of the house at around 5:30 am. I was very surprised at the empty streets with no cars moving on them on my way to the train station. I passed only 1 car in use and no cyclists until I reached the station. Before the recession or whatever it is, there were always speeding cars in a hurry to get to work starting at 5 am or so except on Sunday or Holidays. The train was a complete opposite. It was packed with people and more than 2 full sized bikes (which is more than what Metro allows on one car). I was the only folding bike person onboard. My little compact parked (half folded) Brompton occupied the handicapped section (with the seats up) as the center of the train had all the cyclists being packed in there. The other odd thing is security was very tight-far more than I ever saw it since the train began operation on July, 2003. The Metro based sheriffs and the civilian security personnel stopped everyone to check for fares (we are on the “honor fare paying” system” here).

I first stopped at the Union Station pit stop. I was warmly greeted with cheering, applause and a camcorder light as I approached the table. A Spanish television reporter wanted to interview me. Unfortunately, I cannot speak Spanish and my mother was not there to translate for me.

I continued on to the El Monte Busway to return to my old University's campus. The transit center has been completely remodeled from that raggedy poorly half thought out one I remembered from my time there. It now is very modern with berths for all the buses that are stationed there. I was offered refreshments, prizes, and a cloth tote/shopping bags for my visit there.

My last stop was the actual El Monte Busway station itself. The center seems to improve every time I use the station. And the security guard made sure that I got a goody bag since I was with my bike. There were many people trying to get one with no bike with them.

I next decided to spend the day in Santa Monica (a seaside community), later going on to Malibu (close-by to Santa Monica). So I easily made the journey on the express buses all the way (around 30 or so miles). I had a nice lunch, but I soon became tired. So I caught a light nap on the saddle by resting my forehead on it as the bike was on the bus' seat and caught some needed shut-eye! The position reminded me of being similar to a massage chair. I seem to discovered a new use for the bike-a not too bad pillow.

For more video links on the 15th annual 2009 Bike To Work Day:

General Overview
http://www.streetfilms.org/archives/national-bike-to-work-day/


http://www.myfoxla.com/dpp/news/local/Phil_Shumans_Back_on_the_Road_20090514


http://www.presstelegram.com/news/ci_12339884


http://www.nbclosangeles.com/around_town/the_scene/5-Good-Reasons-to-Bike-to-Work.html

Last edited by folder fanatic; 05-15-09 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 05-16-09, 07:39 AM
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Since you posted some nice videos and stories from the left coast, I thought I'd post one from the right coast:
Bike to Work Story from WUSA Washington
My own story is in the thread marked "2009".
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Old 05-16-09, 09:51 AM
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Interesting that all are wearing helmets. Nobody does this here (Berlin, Gemany). To me this looks rather funny.
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Old 05-16-09, 10:52 AM
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i don't think helmets even reduce head injury statistically..
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Old 05-16-09, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by longlong14 View Post
i don't think helmets even reduce head injury statistically..
Folks wear them in the U.S. because they are socially acceptable.

Great stuff on Bike to Work Day.

I actually had one other person I work with commute in on his bike.
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Old 05-16-09, 11:45 AM
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Bet you'd wear one if, like me, you fractured your skull as a result of falling off your bike on to your head! I rode for nearly 30 years without, but then was 'converted'. Hasn't made me an helmet evangelist though and I sometimes relapse.
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Old 05-16-09, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Downhillwuss View Post
Bet you'd wear one if, like me, you fractured your skull as a result of falling off your bike on to your head! I rode for nearly 30 years without, but then was 'converted'. Hasn't made me an helmet evangelist though and I sometimes relapse.
my condolences...
i broke my left wrist snowboarding (without wearing wristguards) a year ago and after that i wear wrist guards, knee pads, elbow pads, ass guard, and a helmet everytime i hit the slopes. i know what it's like. but i also have friends fracturing their wrists with wrist guards on!
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Old 05-16-09, 12:22 PM
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Just some info from our travels and living in two separate worlds:

Spent last week end in Kelowna, BC. Saw a couple of signs advertising "Bike or Walk to Work Week" for 5/11 thru 5/15. They had a nice packed gravel Greenway path that we rode (did about 20KM on it). It is heavily used by walkers and bike riders.

Helmets are required on everyone here in Vancouver, WA.

In Ventura, CA it's only on those 16 yrs or younger. Sooooo, none of those many folks riding cruisers (including me) wear them. When we take rides other than down along the beach front, we do wear them. Most Commuters and all Roadies wear them.

Being "retired", we didn't get to participate in Bike to Work Week.
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Old 05-16-09, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by longlong14 View Post
i don't think helmets even reduce head injury statistically..
No. Actually its the other way round. There are various theories why.

Anyway, for me it shows more, how cycling is viewed socially (as Denny has pointed out). As something extreme, dangerous, and outrageous sportive.

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Old 05-16-09, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Foldable Two View Post
.....Being "retired", we didn't get to participate in Bike to Work Week.
Actually, your state of employment should not be a concern or a factor on Bike To Work Week's participation of you and yours. Rather, it is a show of force where people who use bikes encourage others to take up cycling in all aspects of their lives, not just commuting. I for one use each Bike To Work Day to directly experience the elements of my own city each year to see and gauge if things are improving in all areas of life, not just the cycling part. I take the day off from work and familial responsibilities and go out into the world and directly experience the sights and sounds for myself-similar to people who volunteer their time for higher pursuits.

This year I was sad to see not much has improve. If anything even in high class Malibu and other areas once though of as middle class seems to gone downhill with foreclosure signs and recent immigrants being exploited for cheap labor still rampant. And the number of cyclists seem to increase-but was it due to not having enough to operate a car or a real lifestyle choice for integrating cycling within their lives as a serious alternative to car ownership/driving one? Only time and more serious push toward bikes as a sole or one car choice will tell.

Last edited by folder fanatic; 05-17-09 at 10:55 AM.
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Old 05-16-09, 09:53 PM
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I didn't get any goodies this year on bike to work day because my work wasn't near any pitstops. I rode to work, as always, though!

I did go to CICLE's Ladies' Night in Pasadena--it was so fun! Alicestrong and her friend was there, and they modeled some cool bike stuff in the fashion show. There were so many bikes and so many lovely ladies riding them! There were also a couple of foldies there--my brommie, a citizen (the mango colored one), and that paperclip-like folder by giant.
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Old 05-18-09, 08:24 AM
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I took my boy with me to the pit stop at Freedom Plaza and then to work to introduce him to some colleagues. Instead of pretending to do work, I took the rest of the day off and spent it with him.

Oh ... I use the Bike Friday to tow the trailer.
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