Bike commuters a lonely bunch

Most of the time I didn’t see other riders during my commute.

When I rode my bike to work, it felt like I was the only pedaler in the office. Not true.

The problem is that most of the workers who rode bikes were located in other buildings. It wasn’t until I moved to their area that I started noticing more bike riders.

The Mineta Transportation Institute’s recent transportation/bike survey confirmed the “lonely rider blues.”

The survey showed that by a 29 percentage point margin, respondents overall indicated that they did not know people like them who routinely rode a bike to travel. However, 88 percent of respondents said that they knew people who drove cars to get around.

The survey respondents also said that they don’t associate riding a bike to work with poverty. Only 10 percent agreed with that sentiment. I’m not so sure these results reflect deep-seated feelings. Car commercials hammer away at the human psyche — the car as a status symbol.

Yes the Tesla is a cool technology and “clean” energy, but I think it’s more than that. It screams out to everyone in Silicon Valley — “I made it big!”

Do you really think it’s “cool” to ride a bike? Around here it’s an acceptable activity and you’re not shunned. I’m not so sure that’s true in many other parts of the country.

Nobody ever looked up to me and started riding a bike to work because I inspired them. It was a lonely pursuit, but I loved it.

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