You’ve Got a Friend

Another pro of the spring weather: Le Peug (or the Bat, depending on my mood) isn’t the only bike at the office. My co-worker K rides her Schwinn at least once a week—and since we’re more or less neighbors, sometimes we even ride together on the way home.

Le Peug and his buddy

Until I had fellow bike commuters at the office I didn’t realize how much less alone it makes you feel. It’s nice not to be the only one who recognizes that riding to work can be fun. Anyone else have a commuting buddy?

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23 thoughts on “You’ve Got a Friend

  1. I wish I did. We’re a rare breed here in Fort Worth, and a lot of the people who do it are headed in from out in the ‘burbs instead of the central city.

    However, in the last year as we’ve been promoting bicycling in our part of town (the Near Southside, which is sort of Fort Worth’s “little Portland” in terms of attitude and mindset), I do see a lot more people out (especially since we started doing bike lanes), and it is thrilling to be out & about in the neighborhood and spontaneously pick up a small fleet of fellow riders for a few blocks.

  2. Michelle B. says:

    I love during the summer months seeing our bike racks packed here at work, so I have lots of company. But during the less traveled days my co-worker rides as well and we share tools and pumps. Funny thing is, he rides a road bike in full spandex gear, I ride a lovely commuter bike and simply wear my work clothes. Even with such different riding styles we get along great and appreciate having some biking camaraderie in the work place. It’s fun to be able to share our morning commute stories.

  3. Everett says:

    In addition to easing loneliness, I prefer having a buddy to feel a bit safer through some of the sketchier areas of Detroit. It also helps a bit with traffic: two riders are more visible than just one.

  4. Johnny says:

    I get to ride with my best friend/wife (though we’ve been on hiatus as a cycling couple since Baby’s due soon!) to work, since we work at neighboring universities. It’s bliss. :)

  5. cycler says:

    There are two other commuters in our office- both have started I think, partly because I had been doing it, and made it seem, if not easy, at least very possible. Two of us went more or less year round, and the other does 3 seasons.
    It’s funny, one is a “chic cyclist” (much chic-er than I)but doesn’t really have much (any) interest in the bike itself as long as it gets from point A to B, while the other, while a little less interested in the chic, has become somewhat obsessed with a certain phyla of vintage bikes, and we chat about components and powdercoating. Pretty regularly we end up overlapping for the last 1/2 mile of our commute which is nice, although sometimes riding in a small group feels a bit tougher than riding alone in an urban setting.

  6. Sometimes one of my co-workers bike commutes. It is definitely nice to have someone to related to.

  7. E A says:

    Just organized a bike commuter meet-up where I work and it’s nice to meet all of the cyclists. Though we don’t work in the same departments, we’re trying to establish a network of cyclists here. :-)

  8. David says:

    It’s even nice to see another co-worker ride in inclimate weather. So I’m not the only one considered “hardcore” or “crazy”.

  9. sara says:

    As a family bike commuter, I have good company every day= two of my sons :). But the truth is that I like riding with my husband and other son on weekends even more, just like I like doing bike meet-ups with other friends. I did just notice a great local bike post that Yale’s library employees were starting a “Bike Buddy” program to encourage more of the employees to bike to work. Often folks are less intimidated to ride if they can ride with someone else. I love seeing organizations actively promoting bike to work and here the Yale library folks are pairing interested partners. Cool.

  10. Jennifer says:

    It’s interesting that you mention the feeling of being alone as a bike commuter. I would love it if someone in my office were to bike to work. I often have the feeling that I’m regarded as a bit of an eccentric for cycling. (Really I’m quite conventional.) The basket on the front is the source of much amusement / bemusement. I work in a male-dominated office where having a conversation about spending 600 pounds on new tyres for a Ferrari is typical (just one snippet from today’s office banter) but cycling seems to be regarded a bit like coming to work with pink hair.

  11. vicki says:

    I don’t have a commuting buddy but I used to have kid buddies to go on rides with when they were younger. lol. How do I get my older kids’ to think that riding bikes is cool again?

    I’m loving your web design! :)

  12. That is one of the best things about commuting by bike. Even if you don’t ride with someone to the office you can meet route regulars, or someone new stopped at the same traffic light. A simple hello, or good morning can turn the day, and that is something I certainly don’t get if I drive.

  13. darren says:

    i work in the heart if orchard road here in singapore so NO ONE will ever consider riding into work with me due to the fact that its probably deemed as crazy (because of the traffic)to do so…. so i doubt i’ll ever have cycling buddies. sigh.

  14. darren says:

    opps, that heart OF orchard road… my bad.

  15. Dottie says:

    Cool!

    No one at my old job or my new job rides a bike. Plenty of people say they would but…

  16. Oh, cute! And I like the clutch strapped to the rear rack.

    I actually enjoy riding my bike alone, so no commuting buddy. But I do cycle with the co-habitant a lot when we run errands.

  17. Eduardo says:

    My roommate work around the same area I do, and some times we ride back home together.

  18. Lorenza says:

    Unfortunately not : ( I’d love to though! It gets a bit lonely and even more when you get overtaken by fast lycra men who shakes their head at you because- you know? – your gently going from A to B : ( sometime it’s not even the drivers, it’s fellow cyclists who can be really narrow minded lol! Great to hear you have a cycle buddy!

    This is probably because I work out of the city, if I worked in the city it’d be different, lots of people cycle to work in the city centre and there are weekly events called “Bike Friday” in which people cycle together from set locations, meeting at 8am, to the city centre.

  19. Quite a lot! I work at a university 10 miles from the city. Where most people commute from the burbs to the city, quite a few of us intellectual types find ourselves commuting from our inner city abodes to our campus out in the burbs. Where town and the campus are lively, it can get quite lonely out in the heartlands all on one’s lonesome.

  20. Doohickie says:

    I have a commuting buddy of sorts. When my longer commute started earlier this year, a friend of mine that lives a mile or two from me (and along one of my possible commute routes) invited me to ride with him. We don’t work in the same spot, but we could ride more than half the route together. Before we would part, we often met up with a third commuter.

    My friend, Mike, has been doing the commute thing longer than I, and is a much stronger rider. He helped me get accustomed to my longer commute. I rarely ride with him anymore though because I’ve found that traffic around my office is much lighter if I leave about a half hour earlier which is what I usually do now.

  21. Johnny says:

    Just after this post, I had some company from my co-worker yesterday. Must have sent vibes to Baltimore! :)

  22. […] its own rewards. But spring cycling means more company. (Check out Let’s Go Ride a Bike, for a post about commuting company, and this old NBBB post.)  My co-worker and I went 1/2 way home together yesterday.  And I […]

  23. Trisha says:

    @lovelybicycle I actually love riding alone, too. But since I don’t have a cycling co-habitant, it’s nice to have the option of a communal ride occasionally!

    Before this my experience as a commuter was a lot like Jennifer’s, so someone else at my office who rides makes my decision feel more normal. Although I guess I have lost a little of my hardcore street cred, it’s worth it!

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