24 January 2014

An Argument That Doesn't Hold In Watertown

I have been called "crazy" and worse for riding in cold, rain, snow, sleet and conditions not mentioned in the "postmen's pledge."

I've cycled in colder and other wintrier conditions than the ones we've been experiencing here in New York over the past few days.  Once I even pedaled to work when the temperature was -8F (-22C).

But, I'll concede that I've never cycled in Watertown, NY. I've passed through it once or twice, though not in winter.  Knowing where it is, and having been in (and cycled) some of the surrounding area, I know they get a lot more snow and ice--and colder temperatures--than we get here in the Big Apple.

However, if I were to ride in there today, the mayor would not call me "crazy."  According to Jeffrey Graham, I am worse:  I am insane, criminally so.  He says that those of us who pedal the streets of his fair city in winter are a "clear and present danger."  (Wow!  We must be really powerful if he's comparing us to an erstwhile superpower!) He likens us people who ride in winter to those who text while driving to assert that we should be arrested.

Yes, you read that right.  Even though cyclists don't need anyone to dig or tow them out of snowbanks.  Even if we skid, we don't crash into buildings and cause thousands of dollars worth of damage or kill schoolchildren.  If anything, we're probably at less risk than most drivers because we are--have to be--more attentive to, and prepared for, any conditions we may meet.  

I guess haters have to latch onto something else when they don't have a Bike Share program where they live.

Watertown Mayor Jeffrey Graham:  "They should be arrested."


  1. Well, IMO, public officials that make willfully ignorant bigoted comments repeatedly should be recalled. Unfortunately I don't believe New York has recall.

  2. Steve--I agree with you. The only problem is that if we actually removed public officials for repeatedly making bigoted and otherwise ignorant comments, we'd have to hold a lot more special elections--or we'd simply have more vacancies--than we have now!

  3. Steve--Probably not. If there are vacancies, a lot of people wouldn't notice the difference.

  4. Just proves that if you are in office you are probably certifiable! Where do thy find so many cretins?

    How many times have you. cycled to an event in winter only to find that it was cancelled because of the weather? Cyclists are a superior strain of human beings...