I believe in biking. As a mode of transportation, as an environmentaly friendly alternative to driving, as a form of exercise, and as a relaxing, freeing experience. I believe in the bond between bike and biker. That’s why all three of my bikes have names -Gerald, Duhwayne and Melville. When I’m riding around late at night, with the relatively empty streets surrounding me, I realize how large the world is. I’m all alone and free and it’s just me and my bike.
My lack of focus or determination in getting a driver’s license has left me with more money to spend. With the rising costs of gasoline, it will soon become completely impractical to drive cars, especially for teenagers, most of whom don’t have a steady income. As more and more people around me get their licenses, it’s hard not to feel left in the dust. Even my fastest track bike can’t keep up with a car for more than a few blocks. But I stand strong behind my bikes. More and more people are turning to bikes as a logical alternative for short and medium distance travel. Soon, I believe almost everyone will be forced to look for alternatives and when that happens the people who have been doing it the longest will reign supreme. Our time is coming.
I am a proud biker. Biking gives me something that no motorist can appreciate. When I’m on my bike, racing down a hill and I stand up and let go of my handlebars and grip my seat tightly with my knees, I’m practically flying. The air rushes past me and I feel my problems slip away just for a little while.Not only do I appreciate the emotional outlet that biking provides, but also the level of craftsmanship that goes into some of the more elegant frames.
I believe a beautiful bike is like a beautiful woman. Sometimes I can’t keep my eyes from following one as it is goes by. I brake for beautiful bikes and I dream of the day i will be able to rake together enough cash to build a custom that suits me just right.
I believe biking is a wonderful way to meet people. Every month, I participate in a bike ride called Santa Monica Critical Mass. On this night, the streets are filled with a sea of bikes. A kinetic wave of constantly shifting relationships, new ones forming, old ones dissolving. Unlike the uptight, unfriendly Santa Monican’s I am so accustomed to, it’s quite easy to interact with each and everyone participating. A whole city on wheels. A communal expression of the freedom I feel when riding alone. Converting to a bicycle-riding society could mean a decrease in serious accidents, stress, road rage, and average weight of the American citizen. All undeniably beneficial side-effects. But I’m just one kid. Lets try it out. Go for a bike ride and see if you agree with me.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.