Saturday, September 20, 2008

Nicole Gives Bikes, Party, Thumbs Up

Even as a kid I was excited to pass a bike locked up on the street. It said its owner was an adventurer, someone who pedaled from point to point with an aggressive fearlessness. As a pedaling speed demon myself, I could relate.

In my long on-going list of differences in Baltimore and DC's City Life I've noticed a significantly disparity in the way bikes are locked up. (Both cities have diehard cyclists; no city can outdo the other in aggression, persevereness, or strength. And judging either wouldn't be fair.)

In Baltimore, bikes are locked to any sturdy surface available. They are suspended carefully in the air. They are are secured to monuments and the former pillars of industry.

Yet in other cities (DC, Chicago, New York), they are secured to parking meters, bike racks, and the rails for stairways. Only conventional methods will do, and though they make the pedaling child inside a little giddy, it's only the suspended velocipedes that can make me giggle out loud. The bikes are locked in the more obscure places out of necessity, but it's the imagery I'm more concerned with here, and the like minded people who lock their devices with care before dashing off to the real fun.

The entryway (or exit, as was the case at the party) had bikes suspended from every available surface. They dangled at various areas like ornaments on Baltimore's industrial Christmas tree, a warm welcome and a fond farewell from the city's most exciting party. And, for me, it was, See you later! Don't forget how much charm you've found here.

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