Biking in the City


First bike ride in a month 2 days ago- a quick jog to the gym- and wow, was I skittish. There’s this (lack of) personal space that you build up over time. When you take a vacation, you’re back to zero again. On Bay Street, a car whizzed by me and I almost drove into a parked car, it was so close. Today, second time out, I was a little better, but still got almost-swiped by a car on Bay Street again.

Chatting with a friend at the gym – he bikes from the Mission to downtown every day- we were commenting on how it seems that bikers are 100X more observant than anyone else on the street. Pedestrians, we agreed, are the worst. I don’t know how many times I see someone walk up to a crosswalk and keep looking ahead of them, with their earphones/cell phone plastered to their ear, without looking at approaching traffic. Just one step, and we’re both down on the ground, probably in traffic.

But it’s worth the little dramas- heart racing, adrenalin shooting out- just to get somewhere in under 10 minutes, and feel that pleasant little buzz in your legs or the wind in your face (cheesy happy exercise metaphors here). Really. And yes, I’m that dork with the hat/reflector tapes/reflector bag. No side-saddle on a fixie in a miniskirt for me.