Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Green Revolution

Cycling per se is not a dangerous pastime, and provides benefits that tick so many boxes - health, road safety, strategies for urban congestion, reduction in carbon footprints. The bicycle is truly a wonderful machine and it offers a level of freedom that some governments find unnerving, to the extent that governments here in Australia have been prepared to listen to ill-informed commercially driven advice in the name of safety but in reality to control cycling numbers.

But no longer - the Green Revolution is here!

Our heavy reliance on cars is starting to erode and current urban behaviour points to the fact that we are seriosuly considering the options of pedal power. As a community we are now refusing to be influenced by the demonising of cycling, and are making our own rational decisions concerning the benefits of cycling to work, to school, to do our errands, to pay our bills, to do our shopping etc etc. We too 'went' to Copenhagen, albeit via our televisions and radios, and whilst our politicians and bureaucrats disgraced themselves with their pathetic political gymnastics, we came away armed with what we can do and ought to do.

Having witnessed Copenhagen in all weathers (cycling in the snow!!!!! - amazing!) we know we can cycle like that here in Australia too. Unquestionably all of their road habits can be implemented in our cities, and if our leaders start to object we need only remind them that they have consulted Jan Gehl endlessly over the years, funded by our taxes, and now we insist that they listen to him and implement some of his urban plans. Copenhagen too was once heavily reliant on cars yet today almost 40% of the city's population cycles daily for 'stuff' we would automatically get the car out for.

Yes the Green Revolution is here - so dust off your cycles, pump up your tyres, and experience 'freedom'!

...and here's some illustrative inspiration. With only her 30 year old cycle in the garage, a girlfriend of mine headed into town with helmet for a scheduled Xmas hair-do. However upon completion of the date-with-stylist, further thought was required before embarking upon the journey home with 'stunning-new-hairstyle':

"Hmmmmmmn", she pondered, "$100+ for fab hair or $54 fine for no helmet - what to do? Jeez - a no-brainer - NO HELMET!!"

...and as we drank champagne to her, she told me that the cycle ride home was the most liberating cycle ride she's had in years - go, girl!!!!!

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