Wednesday

Bike Friday, I Mean It!


I tell ya, more and moe it seems like all good things come from, or at least originate in, Canada. The brillient and tallented Joe over at Bike Toronto , one of my personal cycling blog heros, has started a wonderful pedal-powered event: Bike Friday, which brings people together on the last Friday of every month to commute to work together! What a great way to encourage folks to make the shift to bikes! Now, just imagine if people all over the contenent --or all around the world-- where to join this people's movement and commit to cycling to work that one Friday a month (if not more)!! Can you imagine the possitive impact on health, community, envoronment, and reduced congestion?!

I think that, too often, we leave it to governments to create legal and policy changes; we look to officals and organizations to be the catalysts, to impose and legislate reform. We fool ourselves into believing that our individual choices and actions will not make enough of a difference, we trick ourselves into believing that we are not empowere to get the ball rolling

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?"

The choices we make change the world, choosing to commute to work by bike, even once a month, is huge.
If you live in Portland Oregon: SHIFT provides a Breakfast on the Bridges for cycle commuters heading into the City THE LAST FRIDAY OF EVERY MONTH! It's like a great cosmic convergance! So, hop on your bike the last Friday of each month, and stop off for breakfast. If you need a commute buddy, SEUL's has just such a program : For more information, contact Steve Hoyt: 503-232-0010 x321 or bikebuddy@southeastuplift.org"

What do you do if you dont live in Portland or Toronto? What if there isnt an organized Bike Friday event already organized in your area? What if there isnt a Bike Buddie program in your area? START SOMETHING! Your playing small does not serve the world, invite some co-workers or friends to join you on the commute, organize a bike commuter breakfast (the one in Portland is nothing elaborate, just coffee and pastries) or simply reward yourselves with a stop at a top notch cafe along the way. Perhaps folks could load their bike baskets with a pic-nic breakfast that you could all share when you arrive, or at a park near the office.
You can do this, and this is the very stuff of magic and social change!

3 comments:

Joe (BikingToronto) said...

Wow! Thanks for the very flattering post! Thanks for encouraging people to get out on their bikes on the last friday of the month (and every day, actually!).

While I am trying to get politicians here in Toronto involved in BikeFriday (partly because there's an election in November, so they may be more willing), my main goal is to have this be a very decentralized thing... many many events and commutes organized by many many people. Grassroots is good. :)

I hope it gains speed in Portland and other cities too. :)

griffin said...

I am just so thrilled that this idea has taken hold anywhere. Last year on Car Free Day it occured to me that there ought to a way to organize something monthly, but I wasnt even sure where to start, seeing your post gave me a jumping off point, and faith it could work
I have this crazy dream of working twords a point where we would see no single passenge cars at all, anywhere, on the last Friday of the month. Wouldnt that be something? A great start to a car free future :)

thanks for all you do

Joe (BkingToronto) said...

Feel free to email me for any info about starting it up in Portland. It's dependent on people, not politicians, so no worries about getting it "officially" sanctioned. You've got a good start in PDX anyways... with Critical Mass and the Breakfast on the Bridges going that day anyways... similar to Toronto... I just added them on, because anything bike-related on that friday is fair game. :)