Monthly Archives: April 2013

Is cycling the new golf?


I never cared much for golf, and I was never any good at it. The last time I played — in high school — I shot a 90-something, and that was for nine holes on a municipal course.
In later life, I never had a job in which a good golf game was a prerequisite for success.

A good way to network in London is the annual Tweed Run. Photo by Mike Goldwater/Alamy

A good way to network in London is the annual Tweed Run. Photo by Mike Goldwater/Alamy

So now the British magazine The Economist tells us that “road cycling is fast catching up as the preferred way of networking for the modern professional.”
Alas, it’s too late for me to use one of my favorite pastimes to get ahead in the world.
“A growing number of corporate-sponsored charity bike rides and city cycle clubs are providing an ideal opportunity to talk shop with like-minded colleagues and clients while discussing different bike frames and tricky headwinds,” The Economist blog Prospero reported last week.
“Many believe cycling is better than golf for building lasting working relationships, of landing a new job, because it is less competitive.”
As an example, the Economist blog cited the case of Peter Murray, a former architect, journalist and long-distance cyclist.
“Group cycling, and especially long-distance riding, is a shared experience,” the blog quoted Murray as saying. “Riders often collaborate and help each other out, taking turns to be at the front so that the riders in their slipstream can save almost a third of the effort needed to travel at the same speed. Some riders selflessly volunteer to stay in the front earning them the awe and gratitude of the entire group.”
A way to combine biking and golf: the Golf Bike

A way to combine biking and golf: the Golf Bike

Added Jean-Jacques Lorraine, founding director of Morrow+Lorraine, an architecture practice in London: “The adrenaline rushes, the serotonin pulses and the surges of endorphin create a kind of high, a sense of euphoria. I feel open, honest and generous to others. I often find I’m saying things on a bike which I wouldn’t normally say, and equally I’ve been confided in when I wasn’t expecting it.”
But perhaps the most compelling reason why cycling is a good way to network is because, for many professionals, it’s a passion and a way of life, The Economist said.
“Getting out on the bike is what we’re all dreaming of doing whilst we’re sitting at our computers,” Simon Mottram, chief executive of Rapha, a premium cycling clothes brand, told the journal. And a shared passion is a fantastic way to start any relationship.

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Filed under Cool stuff, Urban cycling

Open Streets and lots of bikes


Fort Worth’s new bike-share bikes got a lot of use on Sunday at the Open Streets event on Fort Worth’s near south side.

Juan Pablo's Surly at Zio Carlo's

Juan Pablo’s Surly at Zio Carlo’s

Hundreds of people turned out to stroll along Magnolia Avenue, closed to traffic from Eighth Avenue on the west and Hemphill Street on the east.
Sponsored by Fort Worth South Inc., the event featured street musicians, glass-blowing demonstrations, roller derby skaters, skateboarders, food trucks, vintage clothing vendors, yoga classes, face-painting and, of course, lots of bicycles.
I took a couple of cameras but shot only a few photos, including some snapshots of three of the “elders” in Fort Worth’s emerging bicycle scene — Larry Kemp, Dave Hickey and Jon Devine — and a shot of a friend’s Surly bike at Zio Carlo’s brew pub.

From left, Larry Kemp, Dave Hickey and Jon Devine

From left, Larry Kemp, Dave Hickey and Jon Devine

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Myths about biking


Now that Fort Worth and other cities around the country have implemented bike-sharing systems, many potential cyclists may be on the fence about whether to use the rental bikes or whether to buy a bike of their own.
Fort Worth Bike Sharing bikeThey probably have a raft of questions: Is this an expensive pastime or way to commute? What gear do I need? Do I have to be in really good shape? If I commute, what about getting all sweaty and my clothes getting wrinkled? How much stuff can a bike carry? How dangerous is it to ride on city streets?
I came across a very nice graphic that answers some of those questions. Also, I’ve added a photo of an information display at one of the Fort Worth bike-share docking stations, explaining how the system works.

Myths about biking

Fort Worth B Cycle info board

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Filed under Environment, Urban cycling

Shameless self-promotion


If you’ve read the past several posts on this blog, you know by now that Fort Worth has launched the first bike-sharing system in North Texas.
Urban biking imageIt was an effort fueled largely by hundreds of volunteers, a city with the good sense to realize that bicycles can play a big role in its transportation plans, a bike-riding mayor who holds “rolling town halls” from the saddle of her bike, some very good local bike shops and an ever-increasing number of clubs for bike riders of all levels of skill and experience.
And now for a shameless bit of self-promotion.
At the launch ceremony on Monday, Earth Day, the master of ceremonies, Mike Brennan, paid tribute to all of those above. And then Mike, who is board chairman for Fort Worth Bike Sharing Inc., gave a nice shout-out to Jim’s Bike Blog and another blog, Fort Worthology, by friend Kevin Buchanan.
Below is a video of the launch ceremony. The nice words about Jim’s Bike Blog and Fort Worthology begin at about 7:05 minutes into the video.

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Fort Worth’s bike-share launch chronicled in photographs


Steve Reisman, a cyclist and excellent photographer who has been chronicling Fort Worth’s emerging bicycling scene, was on hand with his cameras on Monday, Earth Day, to photograph the launch of the city’s bike-sharing system, the first in North Texas.
Three hundred volunteers delivered the 300 bike-share bicycles to 28 docking stations throughout the city.
Steve emailed to me 23 of his photos for use in Jim’s Bike Blog. Here is a gallery of the photos.

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Fort Worth’s bike-share launch chronicled in photos


Steve Reisman, a cyclist and excellent photographer who has been chronicling Fort Worth’s emerging bicycling scene, was on hand with his cameras on Monday, Earth Day, to photograph the launch of the city’s bike-sharing system, the first in North Texas.
Three hundred volunteers delivered the 300 bike-share bicycles to 28 docking stations throughout the city.
Steve emailed to me 23 of his photos for use in Jim’s Bike Blog. Here is a gallery of the photos.

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Filed under Americana, Cool stuff, Environment, Texana, Urban cycling

Fort Worth launches bike-share system


Fort Worth Bike Sharing logoWhat a splendid way to celebrate Earth Day: helping to launch a bike-sharing system in Fort Worth!
As the sun crept over the eastern horizon, 300 volunteers began converging on a warehouse on the city’s near south side where 300 Trek bikes were lined up for delivery to 28 docking stations throughout the city.

Fort Worth Bike Sharing bikes awaiting delivery by volunteers

Fort Worth Bike Sharing bikes awaiting delivery by volunteers

I and a handful of hardy souls walked from our south side homes to the Chat Room, a pub that is the rendezvous point for the nocturnal excursions of the Fort Worth Night Riders.
Fueled up with coffee provided by a bicycling neighbor who roasts and grinds his own beans, we hiked to the warehouse where the bikes had been assembled and stored.
Once we had checked in and been assigned a bike, Mark Troxler, a founder of the Night Riders, was on hand with a crew of veteran urban cyclists to coordinate the delivery of the bikes.
Mark Troxler coordinating the delivery of the bike-share bikes

Mark Troxler coordinating the delivery of the bike-share bikes

We rolled out in small groups at regular intervals and rode downtown to Burnett Park for the official launch ceremony.
“All of you resonate the message that there is an acceptance of bicycles as an alternative,” Mike Brennan, a south side neighbor, bicyclist and chairman of the Fort Worth Bike Sharing board, told the assembled volunteers.
Added Fort Worth’s bicycling mayor, Betsy Price: “This is a great day for Fort Worth … And what a great day for a ride!”
Fort Worth's bicycling mayor, Betsy Price, addresses the assembled volunteers

Fort Worth’s bicycling mayor, Betsy Price, addresses the assembled volunteers

I and some south side friends were part of the group delivering bikes to docking stations on the near south side. Our ride was short — only to the south side of the T&P railway station on the southern edge of downtown.
But, as the mayor said, it was a great day for a ride. Balmy spring weather, camaraderie with 300 like-minded people and a couple of post-ride beers. I can’t think of a better way to have celebrated Earth Day.

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Filed under Americana, Cool stuff, Environment, Texana, Urban cycling