Ride of Silence
I caught wind of The Ride of Silence event just a week after the ride in Atlanta in 2007 and kicked myself.
The intent of the ride is to bring awareness to cyclists on roadways in a different manner than the quiet yellow “Share the Road” and “Slow Down” signs. It’s a short group ride, friendly to all levels of cyclists where no words are spoken. The rides usually travel high profile roads, with the participants donning black armbands to remember those cyclists who have been injured or killed in a bike v auto incident.
Publicity was virtually nonexistent, which perplexed me since I like to think of Atlanta as a cycling kind of town – what with the boys in their lycra kits up and down Highland and the fixies without helmets a plenty. Admittedly the issue hit close to home for a number of reasons – not the least of which are my brother who was nearly killed after being hit by a drunk driver in broad daylight, or the man I saw hit by a teen on the phone near the CVS on Highland a few years back.
So I jumped in. I offered to organize the ride last year and we had a better turn out than years previous. Before the ride, those gathered share their stories, and we have a few moments of silence. The stories are touching and compelling and gut wrenching, and because of them – on top of my existing reasons – I’m doing it again this year. I’m hoping to see our numbers double, and awareness rise.
If you live in Atlanta and have a bike – beach comber or fixie, mountain bike or road, with a kiddie wagon behind you or not – I hope you’ll come out.
DATE: May 20, 2009
TIME: 7:00 pm
WHERE: Hundreds of locations world wide – In Atlanta meet at Piedmont Park – corner of 10th and Charles Allen.