Monday, February 22, 2010

Year of the Bicycle

Some local bicycle advocates have wistfully named 2010 the "Year of the Bicycle" in Atlanta. They may be right. I have been astounded at the amount of bicycle traffic on the streets, now that the weather is warming up. There are smart, everyday cyclists everywhere. A few people are running lights or riding on sidewalks (not good), but most are just riding like they've always been a part of Atlanta traffic. I'm thrilled!


  1. "most are just riding like they've always been a part of Atlanta traffic"

    Wow, great news. Cycle Chic traffic? :)

  2. After spring cleaning, I ventured to Piedmont Park to heckle my friend's softball team, then to Outback to buy brake shoes. Twice (TWICE!) I got stuck in bicycle traffic. And I was so happy about it!

    So I slowed down and kept rank as we filtered up along side motorists, smiling when they turned around, surprised to see another bicycle behind. After all, what's the rush?

    If not 2010, then the next. Next year in Atlanta!

  3. Awesome. I've noticed that I am transitioning this blog to feature more pictures of other people. They are out there, more every day, riding nice bicycles and wearing ordinary fashions and, sometimes, exhibiting the most inspiring grace and confidence. And I am capturing them in action when I can.

  4. I feel like I need to stay on the side-walk when there's traffic to avoid pissing ppl off...

  5. @Alaina - that brings up a few interesting points. Traffic can be intimidating, and no one wants to be involved in a road rage incident. But on the other hand, driving in the city is always an aggravating experience.

    Any driving trip will usually stimulate anger - at other cars that are driving to fast or too slow, that cut them off or won't let them in, that wait to turn or don't wait or just happen to be on the road at the same time. However, we rarely think of this as a reason not to drive. Often, a motorist isn't really aware of other drivers' reactions, since they can't really communicate. A bicyclist does not have a loud radio and the windows rolled up, so we hear more of the motorists thoughts. But they feel that way toward everyone.

    If they are particularly angry toward bicycle riders, it is misdirected. They should be angry toward traffic engineers who designed streets that perform poorly when bicycle traffic is present. This is a result of decades of marginalization of bicycling.

    Ultimately, I would say, "who cares if drivers are pissed off?" That's the nature of city streets - conflict. But as long as everyone follows the rules, we can coexist safely and legally. And bicycles were here first.