Wimpy “Winter” Commute

Ok, so I didn't take this pic, but I'm not exaggerating, it was like this on Saturday.

Aloha from the downpour in Honolulu, my Bikey Commuters… Of course it is I, Mir.I.Am, with Diary of a Wimpy “Winter” Commuter hailing from my desk at work!  Today’s commute was an ill-prepared twist of fate for yours truly, as the sunny “winter” weekend kept everyone in bikinis and barbeques during the day, and under covers and blanket during the breezy eves.  All of those lunchtime ocean dips from yesterweek disappeared like the last Taco Bell Baja Chalupa at 2:56am on a Friday night.  Sneak-attack rainstorm hit me from all directions signaling the official end of the weekend on my morning commute today.  However, optimistic rainbow ponies had me convinced that a tank top, cardigan, and Vanya Chrome pants was all I needed for my commute AND my office attire for the day.  “Come along, pretty princess, rainbows and magic pony power will keep you dry on your way to work!”

The worst of Winter Woes in Honolulu - Pony Attack!

YOU’RE NOT MADE OF SUGAR – WHAT’S A LITTLE RAIN?  Since moving to Chinatown, my commute has been shortened from 25 miles RT down to 3 miles RT (don’t judge, peeps) keeping most rainy winter commutes to a short fifteen minute ride on my fenderless Bumblebee bike.  So, one can imagine my shrugging shoulders when I exited my apartment building stairwell in a tank top despite the light drizzle underway.  Nothing more than a Mr. Mister, so I grabbed my booq “Mamba” backpack (review in near future!) and clipped in… Two blocks later, I was caught in puddles and soggy socks!  What’s the rush? I thought, as I pulled over to clip on some front and rear lights and fully embraced the cyclist-in-a-wet-cardigan look and decided that the more drenched I arrived at work, the better!  And, to no one’s surprise, I arrived with everything drenched except for the spot on my back protected by my backpack… great way to start the week, boss.

BIKE COMMUTE OFFICE STASH:  Luckily for me, I keep a stock of clean (ish) and dry work clothes stashed at my desk at the offizle.  A quick dry towel usually reserved for aforementioned lunch time swims was helpful in toweling off my hair and wrapping my shoes and socks for a (fingers crossed) drier commute on the way home.  My Vanya pants  + no fender = Bikini change-O to solve our soggy bottom issues before throwing on a work dress.  A comb, a pair of heels, and some Witch Hazel for good measure made my wimpy winter commute nothing more than a pony’s daydream…  Tonight I’ll make sure to pack my reliable pink rain jacket for good measure!  Time to restock the office clothes pile to save me on some other day when I leave the apartment decaffeinated and less-than-prepared.  My wardrobe change and Cycle Lady bathroom arsenal debunks the myths that cycling to work is unprofessional.

Stay Dry, Bike Commuters, and enjoy your winter however warm, cold, wet, or windy it may be!  Take it slow, enjoy the ride, and ride on, my little ponies.  For some really BAMF articles on real, non-wimpy winter commutes, check out this snowy article by Elizabeth!

Last Chalupa Standing - Here's to you, all-weather Bike Commuters!


  1. Ghost Rider

    Been there…getting soaked by surprise on the way to work is no picnic, but was part of the whole “Florida experience” in summertime. Getting soaked on the way home, on the other hand, was a blast!

    Mir, do you really get to swim in the ocean on your lunchbreaks? Is your company hiring? 😉

  2. Emika_B

    I don’t know if I can call it the worst part, but definitely a huge one for me with the surprise rain is that I wear glasses. Seeing through spots and rivers is not fun! And they’re not just for reading, either – I’m blind as a bat without them. I wonder if something like Rain-X would work on glasses? Hmm, something to investigate.

    Oh, and yes, keeping a spare set of clothes at work is a must! Even when I wasn’t commuting by bike one never knows when a downpour will occur, a car will splash a puddle all over you or you spill your coffee all over your lap. Yeah, I’ve had all three happen.

  3. Rick

    I have to wear glassed all of the time too. Rain-X doesn’t work because you are not going fast enough. Someone once suggested Cat Crap to me. (It’s a name brand, not the real thing.) I never tried it.

    Crizal coating on my glasses helped, but it wasn’t perfect. It also seemed to wear out after about 18 months.

  4. Mir.I.Am (Post author)

    @Jack – lunch time swims is just a part of the location, I know a couple of folks downtown who cruise over to Ala Moana once a week or so for some speedo time.

    @Emika and Rick – Hmm, feel your pain, my glasses are always on my face of blindness, which results in me windshield wiping them with my fingers quite often. Even on my one-hour commutes, I just had to deal, because I preferred the water on the lenses than contacts in my eyes so early in the a.m. Another thing I noticed about glasses during a commute, is that I cannot choose glasses with wide “arms” or else it limits my peripherals… I think I see a ficus.

  5. Laura K

    It was raining when I woke up today and my immediate thoughts were, “I’ll just drive today.” Then I was like, quit being a poon! So I put my work clothes inside a plastic bag…and then put that inside my backpack! My stylish helmet kept my hair (mostly) dry.

    The glasses debacle! One of my least favorite. What we need are the Windshield Wiper Glasses that AC Slater and Screech invented. Anyone remember that one?


  6. Danielle

    Biking in the rain always makes me recall reading the book Manual of Detection; the MC bikes all around his rainy city throughout the novel, holding an umbrella in one hand. He also used the bell quite a bit, as I remember.

    Ah, if only life were like a novel!

  7. BluesCat

    Lemme see now, what the heck is that stuff called?

    Pre … pre … Ah! … PRECIPITATION!

    Sorry folks, we get so little of that in Phoenix, it’s hard to remember what ya call it: “Phoenix averages 85% of possible sunshine and receives scant rainfall, the average annual total at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport being 8.3 inches (210 mm).” – Wikipedia – Phoenix, Arizona. Now, when we have a Haboob blowing through, I do get some dust on my glasses.

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