The more time I spend immersed in cycling blog-o-land, the more I learn about how to ride better. Unfortunately, I also learn more about how cyclists are being treated unfairly in this or that place, which bums me out. I also find myself diving into the very complex world of cycling advocacy which, frankly, is a quagmire. Don't get me wrong; I think people working toward what they believe will make things better is important. If you take the time to look into such matters, you learn that there are many conflicting agendas among cycling advocates. In my opinion, the people who seem to be gaining the most ground right now are those interested in separating cyclists from other vehicular traffic. That bums me out too, because I have come to believe, through ongoing experience and careful reading of smart people's work, that I am better off (more safe) as part of the general traffic flow.
Some might say that if that is the case I should join the cause or fight or whatever and make my voice heard. Perhaps a better me would do so. However, I don't. I don't follow local developments and try to shape whatever our planners are cooking up. I don't affiliate myself with any cycling groups at all. This probably indicates that I am just selfish and lazy. All selfish and lazy people have highly developed rationalization skills. Here is my rationalization for not wanting to engage my community in these matters:
I love riding my bike. It brings me joy, soothes the spirit and feeds my soul, if you'll excuse the hippie-speak. Cycling is really Fun. It is fun even when I'm tangling with traffic. I don't want these things I value so highly to be diminished or watered-down by too many thoughts of how things should be. I'm having a great time just the way they are. I don't want every time I saddle up to represent a political act. In a life jam-packed with stuff to get done, I commute on my bike because it is a chance to have some fun, by myself, on the way to work and back.
So, this blog will remain a lightweight in terms of cycling advocacy. I'm finding that writing it and relating with the people who read it very fun too. Maybe someday I'll get burned by my own apathy, get ticketed for good riding practices or be forced to ride in lanes or paths by law. That would suck, for sure, but I guess it is a risk I'm willing to take, because right now, Cycling is Fun.