Spring has taken it's dear sweet time coming around,
the rain and cold temps have even held off the foliage this year. But the trees are starting to bud and soon we will have leaves on the bushes and trees to help divert the wind for us.
May is a busy month, besides the Kentucky Derby, Hallmark established Mother's day a long time ago, National Nurses week is in May, most graduations and don't forget it's Disability Income Awareness Month (that's a party you can't miss). But locally we are gearing up for a big and well publicized Bike Week. In case you didn't know, this is American Bike Month and National Bike Week is right in the middle. There is a public conference, a fundraiser for a local trail system, Ride Of Silence, Bike Camp starts, a city to city ride sponsored by two mayors, a film showing at a local pub and two official bike to work days.
The bike to work days promise to be the most controversial. After all this is the United States we are talking about. Despite the fact that this municipal complex has a couple of hundred miles of bike lanes, designated routes and exclusive trails, pitifully few people use their bikes for transportation. Just recently the Copenhaganize organization (or movement, or whatever they are) released their list of the most bike friendly cities. Not one United States city made the list. People here still cling to the idea that using bicycles for transportation is an act of desperation, not common sense. Michael Coleville-Anderson made the observation that America has to give up the concept of bikes as recreational toys before any serious growth can be seen here.
I've seen the same thing, in trying to promote the local Bike Camp to train new and returning cyclists to the fold I had a phone call from one. She called to ask if the Camp was for new cyclists and was concerned about signing up.
Apparently she had bought a new bike last year and wanted to relearn how to ride on a regular basis. She missed the Bike Camp last year, went to a club ride and was totally put off and intimidated by all the spandex hamsters running around with their crotch rockets. After that she saw a local senior center organizing some rides and went to a meeting where she found the same thing; a bunch of experienced riders all geared up for adventure together and having no time for a neophyte. We'll just have to keep chipping away at the image until going to the grocery store or the movies on two wheels becomes socially acceptable.