Today we bring it back home to Brooklyn, NY.
Anita Singh is a bicycle enthusiast who writes the blog: www.brooklynbybike.com
She started the site to have fun group rides with her friends and meet new bikers.
Now she finds cool local events, fashion tips and most recently has a thing or two to say about bike companies who just don’t seem to get it when it comes to the ladies.
I wanted to get her viewpoints on the local biking scene from a woman’s perspective.
Name, Age, where you reside (bike)
Anita Singh, 25, Windsor Terrace Brooklyn
What bikes do you own?
An old Pegueot, a brand new Surly Cross-Check and a no name vintage from the 70s
(Anita’s new whip)
Name of your blog and how long have you been blogging?
Brooklyn by Bike! since Aug 2008
What inspired you to write this blog?
Saw some folks in the summer of 2007 on a pizza bike tour and thought “hey, I bet I could meet people organizing my own rides.”
Describe the bike scene in Brooklyn?
Hmm. I see all sorts of cyclists in Brooklyn. There are those who do it for the scene, those who bike for fun and commuting, those who do it for work and then there are the Prospect Park pelotons. Whatever the purpose, I love that bike culture is taking off in Brooklyn.
What types of bike culture do you most like to blog about?
I cover most anything culture related on Brooklyn by Bike but particularly enjoy posting about the latest bike trends and cycling advocacy in NYC.
What gets people talking the most?
Readers really enjoyed my post criticizing female specific design in the cycling industry. I know it’s a point of contention for a lot of women who want to be taken seriously. Slapping pink and floral prints all over women’s gear really disempowers us as cyclists.
Who reads your blog?
Everyone! Kidding. People who enjoy bikes, many who live in Brooklyn.
Is biking a political act for you? What about bike politics in NYC, any
observations you’d like to share?
Sure, but I’m going to be honest, I also share a car. If you asked the person I share it with, you’d find that I really dislike using said car and much rather bike or take public transport when possible. I feel like New Yorkers are privileged in that way. The fact that we have have the ability to go almost anywhere for 2 bucks is incredible. Ride your bike and you’ll get there for free.
What’s it like commuting in NYC? What gets you the most angered? Most happy?
I love commuting in NYC. Zipping past cars stuck in traffic is one of the best feelings in the world. What angers me? Oh, I can’t stand when cars park in bike lanes.
How about bike infrastructure issues in NYC, bike lanes, car free zones?
anything working for you? needing improvement?
I think NYC has made great progress implementing miles of new bike lanes. Summer streets are also one of my favorite things but I do think the DOT has left behind lower income communities. There are almost no bike lanes in Eastern Brooklyn and that is a real shame. People commute by bike there too!
You recently made an astute observation, in your posting: “Flowers-not-appreciated,” that the bicycle industry isn’t quite “getting it” with designs for women. Care to elaborate?
Well like I mentioned, gear that is designed for women is often feminized which really doesn’t appeal to the majority of female cyclists. It makes us look silly. Though there are road bikes now designed for a female frame, there are still NO touring and cross models for women. Women have been touring on bikes for what hundreds of years, yet there is nothing made to fit us? Unbelievable. The cycling industry needs to really listen to what female cyclists need and want and they haven’t been doing so yet. Makes me want to start my own bicycle manufacturing shop.
Why do you feel biking is gaining popularity both in ridership and in
I think the country as whole is becoming environmentally aware. Biking it a great way to reduce CO2 emission and it costs a fraction of the price to maintain as compared with a car. Fashion seems to pick up on these trends too. They found fixed gear culture and now market it to the masses. Bikes are now a fashion accessory as well as a practical tool.
What muppet do you most identify with and why?
Future goals for the blog?
Get more people out to our rides and make the blog more interactive!
Future cycling goals for you?
Maybe a century ride.
Also check out Anita’s twitter feed.