I Wish…

The bike lanes on my commute were buffered from motor vehicle traffic.
People would always check for bikes before opening car doors.
Drivers would take driving seriously.
I could feel comfortable riding in the streets without a helmet.
More bicyclists would stop for red lights.
The masses would realize how wonderful bicycling is.
America looked like this.
Or this.

What do you wish?

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31 thoughts on “I Wish…

  1. Steven Vance says:

    Can I wish for the same?

  2. Steven Vance says:

    I think your third wish (drivers taking driving seriously) is probably the most significant in terms of everyone’s (all street users) overall safety.

  3. dukiebiddle says:

    “Drivers would take driving seriously”

    Perfectly succinct. I would love to see billboards that read: “Please, take your driving seriously. What you are doing can be really dangerous to others.”

  4. Vee says:

    yup- my wishes too!

  5. neighbourtease says:

    I would only add that I wish my immediate cycling environment were not so polluted.

    I don’t worry about a helmet anymore, though, even in traffic. I don’t know what happened, I just don’t worry about it.

    • Steven Vance says:

      Don’t come to Pilsen, Bridgeport, or Little Village where we have two coal-fired power plants. Well, do come to eat well but you might not want to stay long.

      • neighbourtease says:

        Wow, coal-fired! That’s intense. I live in a very industrial part of Brooklyn [in an industrial park in fact]. The air is not great here and I’m sure what I am not smelling is also horrific, but it’s the truck and bus exhaust that I really notice when I’m out on my bike.

  6. …that Australia would repeal our draconian mandatory helmet laws, and realise that cycling is a health issue, not a criminal issue!!


  7. Lolly Walsh says:

    Same, but also:
    Idaho Stop Law so bike riders can treat stop signs as yield signs

    And free, attractive, safe, accessible, dependable public transportation so people who currently need to
    rely on their car have a reliable way to move out of it.

    10% (or more) of streets to be mandated for active transportation.

    Bicycle education in public schools.

    Make interaction with all other road users a major part of the drivers licensing exam.

    Bicycle programs for the elderly to provide more mobility like the one in Portland. (Great video from Streetfilms about this: Older Adults Bike Program

    Streets safe enough for kids, moms, non-daring, and older people to use.

  8. Liv says:

    I wish there was a bike lane or sidewalk in the five miles between my house and my best friends house. But no, just a super busy street of doom.

  9. The Tiny Homestead says:

    I wish people would stop saying “get off the road” or “bikes don’t belong on the road” or “I pay for the road and you’re in the way of my car”

    Instead I would like to hear more often “I share the road”, “all forms of transportation are viable options”, “we all pay for roads and we all get to use them”

  10. EdLark says:

    Treatment of bike thieves equal to that of horse thieves circa 1825.

    (Or even [almost] better …) Safe, secure, year-round bike parking available in abundance in downtown Chicago.

  11. sara says:

    I wish the same, but as a parent I also wish that my sons, who are great on their two-wheelers, could ride themselves to school.

    But no– we need me riding with them IN the cargo bike because we just don’t have the infrastructure nor the mindful motorists to make it safe for them to ride themselves even though they could handle the distance.

    Oh, I wish…

  12. Dave says:

    I think I could sum it up by just saying, I wish walking and cycling were really taken as seriously as driving in American cities.

    There are enough people doing both in Portland that they are beginning to really be taken seriously by the city, but still, if they were really taken as seriously as driving, you would have streets, laws and policies that reflect that reality, and we don’t yet. I know it takes time, but we’re moving pretty slowly. Here’s hoping our cities get with it before too many more people have to suffer for the convenience of those who are able to drive whenever and however they like, and see that as a God-given right.

    I think my biggest wish would be that “the masses would realize how wonderful bicycling is”. I wish that more people would realize they are perfectly capable of doing it, and enjoying it, and that they don’t need a giant mass of steel to move them around the city. I wish more people would get to experience the joy of the wind in their hair and the self-sufficiency of relying on their own legs to move them around, and the enjoyment of the world they move through, rather than simply wishing to get from A to B as quickly as possible at all expense. Enjoying the journey is most of the fun of life.

    I love that first picture with the field and the little bridge in the background. Well done!

    • Beany says:

      I wish for the same things you do. And I wish that people realized how incredibly happy they could be on a bicycle.

  13. danielle says:

    Your wishes are universal. I wish that every day as I ride my bike through the streets of Paris. Here even law enforcement officers don’t take bikes seriously and pedestrians think that stepping out in front of a bike is a national sport. The only biking they take seriously is the Tour de France.

  14. Eli says:

    I wish that more Americans (especially women) would realize that you don’t *have* to have padded shorts and Lycra jerseys to get around by bike: just hop on in whatever you’re wearing and go.

    • Lolly Walsh says:

      After four years of riding in dresses, I found some padded shorts for free, tried them under my skirt and felt so weird. Sporty and dressy, like I could do anything.

      Until I stood up and tried to walk like a normal person. Then it felt like I was wearing a country inside my shorts. Ew.

  15. Arielle says:

    Oh man. I wish the same thing too. I just started Biking to work in Chicago and it can be very scary. I will not give it up, but things and people’s actions need to change.

    I want bike paths on every street in the Loop.

    Good thing we have goddess brigades to keep our spirits up ;)

    • Scott says:

      Awesome Arielle! We will all be safer if there are more cyclists on the city streets. This blog has really everything you need to know about riding to work in Chicago all year.

  16. Melissa S. says:

    I get it, you’re blowing on pussy willows to make a wish! hehe!
    I wish that I lived closer to work so I could ride EVERY DAY or that there were bike lanes in Aurora for every major road. Heck, I’ll take any bike lane longer than 1/2 a mile.

  17. David says:

    I think there’s something wrong with your homepage http://www.letsgorideabike.com/

    No images.
    Please check it out.

  18. Beth says:

    Sigh. I wish those same things too! At least it’s nice that other Americans feel the same way…. maybe one day it will change…

  19. donna says:

    That people would stop texting whilst behind the wheel of a car.

  20. Doohickie says:

    Your wishes are all good.

    My wish is just that people who are as smart as the next guy would stop acting so stupid. At some point in the last ten or fifteen years it became perfectly acceptable to be a grown-up and an imbecile at the same time. While keeping a healthy dose of childlike wonder is a good thing, I wish the movers and shakers in the world would grow up, do the right thing, and stop being so darned greedy.

  21. Dottie says:

    Wow, these are all amazing comments! I love knowing that I am not alone out there. Keep them coming and I’ll put it all together as a major Bicyclist’s Wish List soon.

  22. Michelle B. says:

    I would love for a bike lane with a barrier between me and the cars as well. Most people I have met would love to bike to work and everywhere but they just don’t feel safe, I think a separate lane with a protective barrier would do wonders for getting more folks on bikes and we could lose the helmets!

  23. Karen says:

    I wish the movers and shakers in my community were active bike commuters themselves. If they did the needs of people who use bikes to get from here to there(and buses and feet) were actually taken seriously. Bike commuting still seems to be viewed as a form of recreation and an option that one can take or leave rather than an option that serves a legitimate purpose and solves a problem. The fact that is often is enjoyable (but sometimes is a hassle during bad weather or when the rider is sick) seems to justify putting bike commuting way back on the list of priorities.

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