Bike Your Drive!

Bike To Work Week is on the OC Register

Annual event is meant to get people out of cars and on to bicycles.
The Orange County Register

Orange County’s Bike to Work Week begins today – a celebration to get people out of cars and on to bicycle seats.

For 7 years, Dave Hertwig, 47, of Diamond Bar has biked to his ride designer job at Disneyland. Frequently, he can make the 46-mile, one hour-plus trip in roughly the same time as driving his Honda Accord.

“I maybe drive my car three times per month. It’s great. I wish more people would do it.”

His advice: Stay defensive and watch drivers’ eyes.

As of 2005, there were more than 900 miles of bike paths, lanes and routes in the county, with an additional 650 miles planned for the future. County buses have bike racks, and bike lockers are available at Metrolink stations in Anaheim, Fullerton, Irvine and Orange.

Bush orders rules meant to curb greenhouse gases

Story Highlights• President Bush orders new regulations to reduce vehicle emissions
• Rules meant to lower greenhouse gas emissions due by 2008, Bush says
• Supreme Court rules that greenhouse gases should be considered pollutants
• Democrats in Congress working on own plan to curb carbon dioxide emissions

In a Rose Garden announcement, Bush said he wanted to move ahead, pending any separate legislative approaches. The new rules will “cut gasoline consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles,” he said.

But the Bush executive order telling several agencies to finish the work by 2008 also said they must take into account the views of the general public, the impact the new rules would have on safety, scientific knowledge, available technology and the cost. Bush’s term ends January 20, 2009.

“This is a complex legal and technical matter and it’s going to take time to fully resolve,” he said.

This isn’t that complex….just ride a bike. Make it easier to get to and from work on bicycle Mr. Bush….

Read the article.

Commuter Profile: Jack Sweeney

Ghost Rider
Jack Sweeney, aka Ghost Rider is a frequent reader and commenter of our site. Jack is an electronic reference librarian from Central Tampa, Florida. We are always curious to learn from other fellow commuters about themselves, their bikes and their commute. We asked Jack a few questions and he submitted a few pictures to share with our growing Bike Commuter Community.

Why do you bike commute?

I commute because I love to ride my bikes, because I live close enough to where I work to make it feasible, and I don’t have to pay for parking, gas and all that other stuff that goes with being a car driver (although I do own and drive a car, on occasion).

How long have you been bike commuting ?

I started bike commuting in high school and did it all the way through college. When I moved to Florida in 1992, I commuted by bike to my first couple of jobs. Then I took a break from it…Now, I’ve gotten back into it because I am paying penance for driving 100+ miles round trip EVERY DAY to a job I worked at for almost 8 years. That sucked, and getting back on my bike is resetting my karma /realigning my chi!!!

Ghost Rider

What kind of bikes do you have?

I own and ride all kinds of bikes. I have a dedicated commuter bike (MTB frame, 26″ wheels with rear rack, fenders and panniers — in your gallery), a vintage-y (I bought it new in 1983) steel Bianchi road bike, an even older French steel Astra road bike (converted to singlespeed/fixed gear) from 1971/72, a 24″ GT BMX bike for late-night excursions around my neighborhood, a funky pirate-themed 5-speed beach cruiser with an 8-foot flagpole flying a 4’x5′ Jolly Roger flag, a singlespeed Schwinn Frontier MTB (not yet completed) and a 16″ wheeled mini-BMX “Zoobomber”-styled bike. Many of my bikes have photos on ( I strongly believe in the “N+1” theory of bike ownership, and am always looking to increase my collection…although my wife will probably flip if I bring yet another bike home.

Ghost Rider

How long is your commute?

My current commute is 4.5 miles each way, for an easy 9 mile round trip. Sometimes if I have a little extra time, I will do some neighborhood exploring on my way to work, adding a couple or three miles to the mix.

Any funny or interesting story that you may want to share.

More sad than funny, but here goes: here in Tampa, bike commuters are a rare breed. Most motorists don’t know how to react to seeing a bicycle on the road and they are likely to buzz me or honk at me. I’ve gotten so used to flipping these motorists “the bird” that I have inadvertently flipped off a couple of my friends and coworkers, who were honking to say “Hi”. That’s a tough position to talk myself out of!!!

Ghost Rider

What do people say when you tell them that you are a bike commuter?

Most people react like I’m some drug-crazed fiend — “you RIDE to work? Holy cow, that’s crazy!” The more they think about it, the better it sounds, though, especially when I tell them the benefits (“I don’t have to pay for gas or parking and I ALWAYS find a parking space!!!”).

Do you have an ‘advance commuter tip’

“Find the path less traveled” — even if it adds a couple miles to your ride, there is ALWAYS a better, more scenic, less hectic route than the major surface streets you would use if you were in a car.

I’ve got a couple more –light yourself up like a Christmas tree at night; you can never have too many blinkies, reflectors and headlights. Be assertive — take as much of the lane as you need, signal your intentions with direct pointing (not the old-fashioned hand signals; no one knows what those mean anymore). Don’t be afraid to shout if you need to, and try to
maintain a pleasant demeanor even if faced with motorists doing idiotic things. Also, be prepared for breakdowns — carry a spare tube and some tools/spare batteries for your lights. Finally, have fun while you’re out there — smile wide and wave when you’re passing all those poor car-bound souls trapped in daily traffic jams!!

Ghost Rider

Anything that you may want to add.

I love what you are doing with your site — a perfect blend of bike geekiness, practical advice and human-interest stories, plus great product reviews…keep it up, and thank you for honoring me in this way!

We want to thank Jack for his time and for sharing his thoughts with us. Keep on ridin’!

Mothers Day Ride

For Mothers Day I wanted to go on a family ride. I also wanted to put in a few miles on my new ride. 🙂 So we headed up to the local park for some family fun. Aren’t we cute?

RL loaded up one of the kids on the Champion Chariot trailer and the rest of us rode solo. Here is little Aleah riding as fast as her little feet can take her.

There is actually some moderate hill climbing to get to this park so we were really proud of the girls for giving it their all.

The older girls took turns on the trailer. I think kids just love the idea of sharing something so fun with their parents.

Here’s me and my beautiful bike. I know we should have taken it in color. We were testing out the black and white options on the camera. Isn’t she so pretty!

We arrived at the park safely and enjoyed the beautiful afternoon.

We love riding with our kids. If you’re a parent you understand the joy that is shared with the little ones on the road. It’s a great way to bond and enjoy each others company. They were in such a good mood we managed to get a couple of family pictures which is usually very difficult. There is usually always one that doesn’t want to cooperate but not today. I think we took a nice picture today. Happy Mothers Day from our family.

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