Monday, February 16, 2009

Meet Kate the Bike

I finally joined my fellow urban green youth and bought a bike. She's a cruiser, which I think means she has no gears, pedal brakes, and wide old-lady handle bars. I can ride slowly with a crazed look like in a horror movie set in the suburbs. Or I can speed away until my leg muscles ache, because my bike is set at just the right resistance.

This will be my first Mardi Gras with a bike, which means I will be flying through the city, dodging piles of fallen beads and snaking around people on the verge of tipping backwards from the weight of exclamation, arms outstretched. At night I will catch a chill as I ride through trash to the sound of sirens post-parade, on the way to somebody's house or Balcony Bar or Howlin' Wolf for a free show. (Mardi Gras nights!)

I will not become one of those bike-militants who preach to the non-bike-riding about the true way to get around; I will simply love my bike, and tell others that riding is fun. Already, she feels like an extension of me, the lower half of my centaur-self. When I ride in the streets, the cars are personified into hulking monsters. I can't help it, that's just the way they look to me.

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