Friday, May 13, 2011

Something exciting happens when you bike to work...

Other people start biking to work too!

 Yes, it's true. Now that it's spring, nobody can blame their sloth on the snow. They've had months of me inflicting bike shorts and dayglow jerseys on them at too-early hours of the morning, and talking about how "this morning I biked so hard that when got to the guard booth at the top of the hill and felt like I was going to hurl! It was awesome." People started off with asking simple questions about routes, safety, how to not be a disgusting mess all day after riding up the gigantic hill (~1,000 ft of elevation) leading up to the building. The answers are:
1. Stop at the lights. Don't rush your ride until your comfortable with your route. Rushing means careless mistakes.
2. Look up basic bicycle safety tips with as much or little detail as you need. If you are reading this, I know you have the internet.Wear visible clothing, a helmet, and get lights!
3. Baby wipes are the answer. Put extra deoderant and a big box of baby wipes in your office cabinet and clean up in the bathroom when you get to work.
4. Pack your work clothes in a bag and wear something else to bike in. You'll never make it up that sort of a climb without needing to change clothes.
5. I prefer to bike in bike shorts because I think they are comfortable. Wear whatever is comfortable for you. It doesn't have to be neon or spandex, although I do have a certain fondness for dayglow.
6. It is ok to walk the rest of the way up the hill. Nobody will fault you, and walking up that hill is good exercise too.

Over the past couple of months I've also organized a couple of recreational, after-work, glacial (D) paced rides and billed them as a social event for research people from the department.  After the first one, people started pulling their neglected bikes out of the garage and fixing them, or asking for advice on what kind of bike to look at if they wanted to get one. On the 26th, the next research bike ride takes place and I am glad to say that we will have four new riders with newly fixed or acquired bicycles!

Rad, huh?

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