Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I'm guilty?

It is truly amazing to me how riding a bike seems to have become such a political statement of late. Don't get me wrong. I think that it is a good thing that our public leaders have taken notice and care about the issue. I believe that it will be a good thing for Fort Wayne in the long run. I mean everytime I turn around there is someone on one of the many local blogs talking biking. I think it is terrific that so many people are talking about it and trying to bring things to light.

As I have stated earlier, I rode a bike through High School and through most of college. Back then it was not any sort of political statement. It was biking in it's truest form, for transportation. As it was originally intended. To get from one place to another.

I talk to a lot of people and a lot of people do bike but they do it for fun or for exercise. I cannot blame them. It is fun and it is good exercise. Many of them ask me if I do bike other than for transportation. Now there is an occasion when my five year old and I will go around the block a few times so that she can get some time in, but for the most part I only bike when I need to go somewhere. I know that it might be strange to some. Biking is fun but I don't bike for fun. Biking is good exercise but I don't bike for exercise. Those are just bonus.

I would love to sit here and tell you that I have no statement to make by biking. No politics. But I can't. When we decided almost four years ago, to go to one car, we did it for economical reasons. Having only one car saves quite a bit of money each month.

Then when my wife was pregnant with our son (who is 2 now) I felt bad dragging her out of bed to give me a ride to work. I suggested that we invest in a nice bike so that I could commute the 1.8 miles to work each day (we lived in South Bend at the time). It was at that time that we started to pay a lot more attention the the ecological reasons for biking and although we weren't doing much, I was putting my money where my mouth was. I consider myself to be an environmentalist and this just made me feel, and look, more the part.

So, I guess the verdict is, I'm guilty. I am political just because I am riding a bike and I am coming to grips with that. As much as I say that I ride for transportation, just by riding, I am making a statement and you are too. So thank you for saying it and keep it up out there.

I know that the weather will keep many of the bike commuters in their cars until March or so but my goal is to see how long I can make it until I give up and start riding the bus to work. My goal is to see if I can make it until the first of the year (or further). We'll see.

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