Babes Bike Boston This Weekend!

babessquareBabes Bike Boston is this weekend, and I am beyond excited! Last night the organizing team went to go test out the ride and race routes, and I can now personally guarantee that this will be awesome. As if you didn’t already know that!

We’re also hosting a Pre-Babes Casual Ride on Friday night. Come check it out!

My heart is full when I think about what it will look like to see Copley full of rad FTW folks lined up to ride this awesome event. I CAN’T WAIT.

This is where I work

Yesterday we had a big event for work where my co-workers Derek and David produced this amazing video about our work. I’m really proud to work at Bikes Not Bombs, and of all the work we do locally and internationally. Check this video out to see more about BNB (and an appearance from yours truly).

Presenting Femmechanics!

I am SO EXCITED to present Femmechanics! Femmechanics is an open-shop time for FTW (femme/trans/women) cyclists to come learn and teach how to work on bikes. Please go check out the site, and if you’re a Boston based FTW cyclist please fill out the survey on the homepage.

Femmechanics will meet the second Monday of every month starting in October from 7-9 PM at the Bikes Not Bombs Bike Shop. Our first open shop time will be October 13th.

Femmechanics Manifesto

(adapted from Riot Grrrl Manifesto)

BECAUSE we crave bike spaces that are welcoming to US where WE feel included.

BECAUSE we want to make it easier for FTWs to see other FTWs working on bikes so that we can share knowledge and strategies.

BECAUSE we want and need to encourage and be encouraged in the face of cis-male bike culture that says we can’t work on our own bikes, we can’t ride fast, and can’t lead the bike revolution.

BECAUSE we don’t want to assimilate to cis-male bike culture, but want to revolutionize bike culture.

BECAUSE we are unwilling to falter under claims that we are reactionary ‘reverse sexist’ and not the true bike wrenching crusaders that we know we really are.

BECAUSE we are interested in creating non-hierarchical ways of being and forms of organizing in the bike scene.

BECAUSE we want to see more FTW cyclists out on the roads, working on their bikes, and being at the forefront of conversations about bike mobility.

BECAUSE we see fostering and supporting FTW spaces and FTW bike mechanics, riders and organizers as integral to wider cultural change.

BECAUSE we believe that by creating a supportive community for FTW cyclists we can create a space to talk and discuss the intersectionality of racism, able-bodieism, ageism, classism, body shaming, sexism, homophobia, transphobia and other forms of oppression within the bike movement and wider society.

BECAUSE we must take the wrenches into our own hands.

Boston Bikes Update

BNB Youth Employees receiving the 'Organization of the Year' Award
BNB Youth Employees receiving the ‘Organization of the Year’ Award

Last night at the Boston Bike Update Bikes Not Bombs received the ‘Organization of the Year’ Award. I’m proud to work at an organization that gets recognized as ‘working on issues of inclusion before equity was the buzzword of the bike movement.’ Bikes Not Bombs has been working on issues of equity and biking in Boston for 30 years, and is still going strong.

We got the only standing ovation of the night when we went on stage to accept the award.

It would have been even cooler if Boston Bikes, after spending much of the presentation focusing on how important equity is, had been able to really answer two well phrased questions about how Boston Bikes is concretely working to further issues of equity and biking in Boston. Instead they really side stepped the questions. That was disappointing.

But otherwise it was an interesting night – and my first experience seeing the bike advocacy scene in Boston.

Youth Bike Summit/World Bike Forum Skype Call

Around sometime in December we figured out that the Youth Bike Summit and the World Bicycle Forum were going to be the same weekend. And that Bikes Not Bombs staff would be attending BOTH events. We thought that was a pretty awesome coincidence.

This weekend, as I attend the World Bicycle Forum, five youth employees and the two co-directors of Youth Programs will be attending the Youth Bike Summit. We thought it was so cool that we needed to make a skype call happen between the two conferences. It’s not every day that BNB staff are simultaneously at two huge bicycle conferences in two hemispheres.

In preparation for the skype call I asked people I’ve met at the forum to record a question to the Youth Bike Summit. Here is a video of some of the questions that people are curious to hear about from the other hemisphere.

24 Hours and Counting

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The scenery may change, the country, continent, and time zone may differ, but when you ask bike activists, organizers, and advocates what first got them into biking, a familiar smile will spread across their faces. And then they will almost always say something along the lines of, ‘Biking has changed my life. I’ve met the best people in my life because of biking, and I can’t imagine my life without it.’

24 hours til the forum officially starts!

Bikes Not Bombs represent!
Bikes Not Bombs represent!
Volunteer organizing meeting.
Volunteer organizing meeting.

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From the overall organizing meeting on Monday night.
From the overall organizing meeting on Monday night.

Continue reading “24 Hours and Counting”

Building Excitement for the World Bicycle Forum

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I finally made it to Curitiba on Saturday afternoon, and spent Saturday and Sunday walking around Curitiba, enjoying some pre-carnaval singing and dancing in the street, and getting more, and more excited about the World Bicycle Forum which begins on Wednesday.

Part of my building excitement came from seeing posters for the forum EVERYWHERE in the city. It seemed like every corner I turned I saw the posters again and again. I’ve been blow away by the outreach effort in the city – there is no way you could live here and not know that this is happening.

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And after this building excitement on Saturday and Sunday (without even meeting anyone from the forum!), I was just about over the moon when I went and met some forum folks today. This morning I went down to the Bicicleteria Cultural, the central organizing space for the forum, and began talking to people about the history of the forum and how it’s being organized.

Continue reading “Building Excitement for the World Bicycle Forum”