Photo & Words by Chief Cyclery
Let's just all agree on one thing: The bicycle is a brilliant machine. Maybe one of the best inventions in Human History. A machine that allows you to cover ground 2 - 4 times the rate of walking (depending on your pace) with similar effort. Some might argue that the car far out passes the bicycle; but In comparison: a car is probably the largest financial liability in the american household, eats into your wealth, depletes the earth's rescources at an incredible rate and with annual maintenance and depreciation costs that are more than most bikes.
So why is it that in most of the US there is such a negative connotation associated with cycling? Ok, you are allowed to ride your beach cruisers on the beach, joy ride in your neighborhood with your family but once you try to use your bike as transportation to your job or go grocery shopping you are treated as an outcast in society, an abuser of roads paid for by "real" tax paying Americans, and a pariah that is endangering our communities ; well for most of us anyways.
People that know me well know that I am a strong proponent of bicycle commuting, but my line of thinking wasn't always so. I came from the same close minded background of balking at bicycle commuting. As my mindset changed I realized that even people as stubborn as myself can be converted to the benefits and life freeing change of accepting bicycle commuting as a beneficial idea even if you do not partake yourself.
As Arizona Bike month comes to a close here in Arizona, the rest of the country is ramping up for their bike month in May. Although bike month is a great time to start our series on bicycling commuting we won't end after May, because as Mr Money Mustache says Commuting is a year round opportunity!