Ride Boldly!

Bikes, bicycling, and road safety.

Bike to Work Week 2007

Bike to Work week is scheduled for May 14-18 nationally. Many communities have a specific day in which they encourage or celebrate cycle commuting.

However, it’s easy to cycle commute in May. Here in Minnesota, we’ve received 10-14 inches of snow in the last two days. With that in mind, I’d like to salute both the well-equipped guy on a mountain bike with tire chains I saw this morning on the roads, and the guy on the rusty 10-speed tentatively navigating the sidewalks on East 7th Street, Saint Paul.

Those guys both get full credit for dedication and need. It’s easy for we the spandex-clad and well-equipped to forget the people who need to cycle commute based on finances or legal issues (lack of ID, DUI conviction, etc.). Work for cycling-friendly communities benefits these ‘hidden’ workers of our economy just as much as it does families out for ice cream on a sunny summer Sunday, or the die-hards who will ride in any weather by choice, not necessity.

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Author: julie

Julie Kosbab is an online marketing consultant and active transportation advocate living in Anoka County, Minnesota. She was one of Minnesota's only League of American Bicyclists Certified Instructors when certified in 2005. She is a past member of the National Bicycle Tour Directors Association. She has 2 children and 4 bicycles. Find her on Twitter as @betweenstations.


  1. While I applaud any and all bike advocates, I cringed at your notion that people who bike in the winter only do so because they are unable to drive. DUIs?!?! Is that a joke? There are people out there who feel passionately about biking because of political and environmental issues as well. I may add that I have a driver’s license, car, and the money to drive. I just choose not to. I hope your attitude is not unanimous within your “spandex clad” cult. You see it as a hobby while many in the Twin Cities see it as a bigger piece of a much needed cultural revolution.

  2. I did not mean in any way to suggest that only those with… ahem, issues… cycle-commute. I know many people who do for the pure joy of it, or for political/social reasons (belief). Many of these people are spandex-clad, although I wouldn’t say all are, or that it’s a need.

    I would count the guy with the tire-chains into the well-equipped category, although I can’t speak for his passion for it.

    The guy on the rusty 10-speed, though, on that given day? He may have any number of reasons for needing to cycle-commute. He certainly wasn’t equipped for it on a day that threw down a foot of snow.

    I don’t remember where I saw the stat that a major cause of bicycle accidents is DUI-on-bike, or the stat on how many people take to a bicycle after losing a license. That’s where the concept of DUI came in, though. It’s not a universal thing.

  3. Wait, found one source:


    “Twenty-four percent of bicyclists killed in 2003 had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above 0.08 percent.”

    It’s from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, so take that with a grain of something, but 24% would be a pretty decent percentage of fatality stats.

  4. If you’ll be doing a bike to work event this year, please stop by http://biketoworkweek.org and have your event (or blog) added to the map.