In a city where some drivers seem to prefer a dead cyclist to a live one, and some police officers don't seem to be on the side of the two-wheeled traveler, Bike Girl is taking to the streets to do her part .
The streets are tough, and so is Bike Girl. But even a Strong Female Protagonist like Bike Girl can get discouraged. Stories like this appear almost daily on the Los Angeles bicycle blogs. Bike Girl has had her own run-ins with drivers too. She's been hit not once, but three times by cars.
Bike Girl has a special technique she likes to use to overcome the Fear. The technique is a very scientific combination, arrived at through the use of Math and semi-illegal fireworks. The technique is called F.U.N.
Whenever Bike Girl finds she's acquired some amount of fear about commutes she's made many times on her trusty cycle, she calls on the help of her community. There are plenty of places Bike Girl can go to find sympathetic ears, encouragement, and a great time that renews her enthusiasm for biking. In no particular order, they are:
1. C.R.A.N.K. Mob
The mother of all social rides and the birthplace of F.U.N. When in the presence of C.R.A.N.K. Mob, Bike Girl is literally unable to imagine any situation in which she would hesitate to ride a bike.
2. Midnight Ridazz
If C.R.A.N.K. Mob is the birthplace of F.U.N., then Midnight Ridazz is the grandfather of F.U.N. Midnight Ridazz was the original place Bike Girl discovered the joys of taking the lane and the safety benefits thereof.
3. The Beach Bike Path
When Bike Girl wants to unwind with her Significant Other, she dons a dress and some heels and gingerly steps through the frame of her ladies single-speed from the 70's, places a picnic in the basket, and heads to the beach where she happily rides 10 miles an hour around stroller-pushing roller-bladers and drunk teenagers with the wind threatening her hemline. Pure bliss.
4. Santa Monica Blvd through Studio City in the early evening
One of the biggest fears Bike Girl has is riding alone at night in unpopulated areas. But at the same time, there's almost no greater joy than rolling on this stretch of bike path next to an empty street. The buildings are lit up but no one's there. It makes Bike Girl feel like the road is hers.
Even though frustration can be a part of urban riding in Los Angeles, Bike Girl will continue to ride.