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Meet My Bikes

The most important part of being a bicyclist is the tool by which she hurdles through time and space – the bike. You wouldn’t truly be getting to know me if you didn’t meet my bikes. Whenever a new person enters my home, I find myself giving introductions. So I’ll do the same for you virtually!
MEET BLONDIE

1980s Centurion, bought used and modified for comfort while commuting.

Best feature: drink holder, Brooks B17s saddle

Worst Feature: short head tube, rack is too heavy

 

MEET BB

2012 Bianchi Imola for fast road riding and club rides. Couple of changes since this picture but she’s only prettier now.
Best feature: screams Bianchi

Worst feature: screams Bianchi

 

MEET FRENCHY

1984 Peugeot Chambord recently restored (by moi!) for relaxed commuting. Lucky Craigslist buy. Secretly my favorite bike, but it will hurt some feelings if you blurt that aloud.

Best feature: original fenders, chain guard, original mustache handlebars

Worst feature: toe overlap, occasional rattling sounds that I can’t figure out

About This Website

I’m Spokes Gal. I’ll be your host and head writer of this blog and it’s my purpose to create an online space for women/trans/femme to learn to love biking (and themselves) at any level.

My velo love story began later than most when I learned to ride for the first time at the ripe old age of 30. I was never much of an active kid and my twenties were more focused on alcohol consumption than protein and iron intakes. I promised myself that I would learn – every year was the year I would make that resolution and really want to keep it. Really, I swear! But the fear of failure – in my eyes and in others’ eyes – made it too much for me to follow through on the goal. I let my 30th milestone pass and wondered if I would ever know the feeling of riding a bike.

Maybe it was the beginnings of feeling comfortable in my own skin that comes with age or maybe it was newly found bravado with the “fuck it” attitude that follows, but I signed up for an adult learn to ride class. I just…did it. And two weeks before the resolution buzzer! It was easier than I thought, even in the pouring rain of December (this is Los Angeles, after all). On the way home, I was grinning ear to ear. The experience filled me with such spirit and empowerment, more than I had ever experienced in my life. I felt more like the person/woman I wanted to be. More than any item of clothing, shade of lipstick, or height of a heel could ever make me feel.

My new resolution is that there simply isn’t ANYTHING I can’t do.

So where does this blog fit in? In my commuting and road riding, I see so few women/trans/femme sharing the streets with me. Why? Is it because of the same feelings that held me back from learning to ride? Is it because someone once told us it’s too dangerous for us? Too dirty? Too sweaty? Too hard?

There isn’t anything that any one of us can’t do. We don’t have to listen to the limits put upon us, by any outside voice or our own inner voice. Comfort, fear, inexperience, nerves – none of these have to limit our adventures in our lives. When we ride by each other, I want to see the same grin reflected back at me.

“In order to truly break down barriers to bicycling, it’s necessary to understand what those barriers are; which requires listening to people, rather than mocking them.” – Elly Blue, Taking the Lane Media

Email me at brakingthelimits //at\\ gmail(dot)com.