Today is Bike to Work Day. Which means just another trip to work for me and a lot of my friends. I don’t say this to be braggart, but just a simple statement of fact. It has moved from something that sets us apart to just something we do. Something that has weaved its self into the fibers of our muscles and the neropath ways of our brain.
My own bike to work days started at the end of summer in 2003. I started riding my heavy, department store Mongoose mountain bike down Detroit Ave from my parents house to my classes at Cleveland State. It was born out of vanity, and an attempt to hold on to a girl who was clearly bad for me. She told me I was fat, which was true, and that I needed to start doing something for myself. So I bought a bike and started the 6.5 mile trek to school/work everyday. After a two week trial run in August I was hooked. That enthusiasm, the lost weight, and a break up with said girl carried me through that first Cleveland winter.
Now I’ve ridden through every kind of weather imaginable. Through six inches of snow, I’ve delivered sushi in summer downpours and spent long twelve hour days breathing in the exhaust of a thousand cars, buses, semi-trucks. I built friendships on those commutes, learn about what I will and won’t put up with from angry motorist, and uncountable lessons about life. All things that I probably wouldn’t have learned without a bike and those friends.
At first I used it to set myself apart, now its just become something I do, and I like it better that way.