Tag: commuting

biking always terrified me.

Confession time.

Biking always terrified me. The fear was born at the beginning – I didn’t learn how to bike until I was seven years old, which to me was always horrifically embarrassing. I got my first nice bike when I was around ten from LL Bean, I loved it (dude, it was pink) but I didn’t really have anywhere to ride it. I lived out in the country surrounded by a combination of dirt roads perfect for my brothers’ BMX bikes and paved roads full of crazy traffic that I wasn’t allowed on. So I rarely rode. I quickly grew out of that bike and I never got a new one.


Where were these awesome balance bikes when I was a kid?!

My first week in college I realized that Dickinson had a bike rental program. Awesome! Especially since I didn’t have a car. My new roommate and I decided to take a ride to Walmart with a new friend to get some decorations for our room. I forgot that it had been nearly a decade since I’d pedaled anything. The second I swung on to the crappy rental I realized how awkward I felt. I completely wiped out on the way there. That’s probably on the list of my life’s most embarrassing moments.

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“carol of the imbeciles” – fishtailing my way to work.

On my way to work this morning I fishtailed on the highway for the third time this winter. That’s more times than I’ve ever fishtailed in one winter before, ever. I’m in Pennsylvania… I grew up in Maine. Since I brought my car down to PA I’ve only grown increasingly more frustrated with the PA road clearing process. That’s the first problem: the state needs to get on top of it’s sh**. But also, the further away from Maine I get, the worse the driver’s are.


Why are we always in a hurry? We’re so intent on getting where we need to go we even skimp on cleaning our cars off. Do people not understand that cars are deadly, that by driving like a maniac you’re endangering yourself and everyone else? I hate driving in the snow. Even though I’m good at it (did I mention I grew up in ME?). I take every precaution I can to avoid driving when there has been a storm – but often I’ve found myself in the “don’t have a choice” situation. I keep wondering why that situation exists – what is more important then the safety of you and those around you, not to mention the state of your vehicle?


Especially today. Sure, there are jobs that people need to go to – doctors, for instance, emergency responders, etc.; but for the rest of us, much of the work we do can be done from home, yet we still head out in dicey conditions. Many (most) people who drive in snow storms don’t need to, making it even more dangerous for those who have to. I’m lucky to have a wonderful work place relationship with my boss, so we talk realistically about conditions and she trusts me enough to work from home when it’s bad out. I know that’s not the case for a lot of people. I encourage people who are bosses to have that conversation with your employees, let them know their safety is more important, and when they do ask to stay home – realize it’s not about being lazy. And employees, don’t be afraid to speak up for yourselves – it’s your life, be careful with it.

Stay home. Or pull out your skis, snow shoes, or… snowmobiles…

0d07dbbf20363120048fc666247c51c3I’m lucky I’ve escaped this winter so far without a single scratch on me or my car. Unfortunately, every time I fishtail I instantly get ‘Jesus Take the Wheel” in my head, which is a recipe for instant tears…. but if that’s the worst that happens, I can settle with it.


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