02

Blog

Kalamazoo, a hopeful lament.

In light of the Kalamazoo, Michigan tragedy, it’s so easy to focus on what’s wrong with the world. Several similar incidents this year have hit too close to home. Some friends in North Carolina were also run down in group.  As were clients in in North Augusta, SC.  As our community grows, we experience more and more loss, both personally and professionally.  

People seem more selfish, anxious and angrier. You learn of a terrible tragedy and your heart aches for the family who lost a loved one; only to then read the cold-hearted hateful comments people write about the victim. It’s almost too much; sometimes I want to close my personal bubble in a little tighter.

But giving up would be giving in. This morning I was reminded there are still so many good people out there. People who not only care but who go out of their way to do the right thing. Social media is the local news of 10 or 20 years ago, only magnified by the hundreds of thousands. It emphasizes the negative because it’s dramatic; it fans the flames.

Like many who are reading this, much of my life revolves around all kinds of bicycles. Bicycles are my work, my transportation and most of my friends are bicyclists. So when I think about what’s right and wrong with the world, it’s often in the context of riding a bike. A beautiful afternoon ride with a close friend, followed immediately by learning of the Kalamazoo tragedy; the daily bonding ride to school with my little boy, only to be buzzed on a neighborhood road on the way to work. It’s the rollercoaster on which many of us live.

But today I see a lot of positive. Like this story about two young men (on bicycles) who went out of their way to help the woman being sexually assaulted by now the now infamous Stanford student. 

There was also this recent story in Charlotte. An awful tragedy and another unnecessary death where a drunk driver killed a motorcyclist. But two witnesses saw what happened and cared enough to chase down the driver. Thinking of many of the cases I’ve handled, there are so many good Samaritans, both bicyclists and random bystanders, who not only stopped to help but completely forgot about themselves and went out of their ways to do the right thing.

In my personal life I have found that focusing on the positive often drowns out the negative and sometimes even makes it disappear. Why would this not also work as a community? These heroes are the people we should be talking about. There are many to be found in our communities. We have repeatedly seen our cycling community rally around someone who is down, whether because of a crash or other life challenges.

Deep down, most people want to do the right thing. We have to keep celebrating those who do. We have to enjoy life and continue to ride bikes and do what we love; focus on what’s good in the world. I’ll now going to go back to fighting bad drivers and insurance companies but I am going to stop to think periodically about the great people I get to work with, the wonderful clients we get to represent and all the people out there who help.

Comments

Peter Wilborn Aug 20, 2019

A camera is necessary kit for every ride. But finding the right camera has been a challenge, until now. My rebuttable presumption: the Ricoh GR III is the best cycling camera of all time. Read on, and if you can prove there’s a better one, let me know. The Ideal Cycling Camera To find the […]

Read More
Human Shield Bike Lane
Bruce Hagen Jul 29, 2019

If you ride bikes around Atlanta, chances are that you know Niklas Vollmer and Andreas Wolfe.  They’re some of the many people in town who seem to live on their bikes and can be seen riding everywhere.  While they both have their “day jobs,” folks in the cycling world know them for their place in […]

Read More
Bruce Hagen Jul 19, 2019

This is a time when advocacy efforts are crucial to making our streets safer for everyone. Within 24 hours from the Two Wheel Tuesday gathering we suffered two more casualties.  On Wednesday morning, Marten Bijvank was on his way to work on his bicycle when he was struck and killed by an unlicensed DUI driver […]

Read More
AJ's Bicycle Shop in Iowa
Jim Freeman Jul 15, 2019

Bicycling Magazine recently published an article titled, “Hey, Bike Shops; Stop Treating Customers Like Garbage.”  The story follows a heavy-set 59 year old’s sad tale of how he was treated poorly from a number of local bike shops.   First and foremost, I would be clear that bikes are for almost everyone.  If you are big, […]

Read More
Bike accident scene
Rick Bernardi Jul 12, 2019

The big bike news out of the Oregon legislature this year was the passage of a Stop as Yield law. This was an enormous legislative victory for Oregon cyclists, the culmination of over a decade of advocacy. But it wasn’t the only legislative victory for Oregon cyclists this legislative session. A less glamorous but equally […]

Read More
Uber Biking Escort
Charlie Thomas Jul 11, 2019

I often find myself wanting to ride on a roadway corridor that doesn’t want me there. At best, I could make it across alive with some close calls and a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. At worst, I wouldn’t be around to write this blog post.  Of course, a safer, alternate route […]

Read More
Cycling Without Age Bike Law
Brian Weiss Jul 11, 2019

The founder of the Lakewood Bicycle Advisory Team loves his life on two wheels. Gary Harty was born in Bellows Falls, Vermont, and raised in Colorado – Denver Metro area, and now makes bicycling in Lakewood, Colorado safe and fun.  Gary is part of the baby boomer generation. He attended Colorado State University (CSU) and […]

Read More
Rachael Maney Bike Law
Rachael Maney Jul 10, 2019

Outrage.  It is what drives action and engagement on the interwebs these days. If it’s not outrageous, it’s boring. The Election of 2018 proved that outrage increases TOS (“time on site”) more than friendship, sympathy, desire, or anything else.  Judgment. By definition it is necessary to reach any conclusion about anything. But passing it on […]

Read More
Stop as Yield for Cyclists
Rick Bernardi Jul 09, 2019

The Oregon Legislature made national news this past week, for all the wrong reasons. The State Senate, with a super-majority of Democrats in control, had been working on climate legislation which would have Oregon join a cap-and-trade market with California and Quebec. Unable to stop the legislation, Republican Senators fled the state en masse, preventing […]

Read More
Bike Law Alps
Charlie Thomas Jul 07, 2019

It’s Tour de France time. I follow the racing daily through the footage on TV feed and still photos. But I hadn’t ever considered what’s happening on the other side of the camera lens. Like, what actually goes into snapping these pictures that we see documenting the Tour’s happenings? I started to care more about […]

Read More
E Bike and insurance
Lauri Boxer-Macomber Jul 01, 2019

Prologue  Last month, I rode across the Casco Bay Bridge to talk e-bikes and insurance with Bob O’Brien, the Vice President of Noyes, Hall and Allen Insurance in South Portland, Maine.  Although I have yet to invest in an e-bike for myself, I have been captivated by e-bikes and their potential to get and keep […]

Read More
Brooke Nelson
Danny Feldman Jul 01, 2019

Brooke Nelson has been the ride director of the Cheaha Challenge (www.cheahachallange.com) since shortly after the 2014 ride and in the past 5 years, ride participation has increased 188%.  Since 2017 when it became the only UCI Qualifier, Alabama’s biggest ride has become known nationally and internationally.  The 2019 ride had participants from 31 states […]

Read More
Load More