Saturday, October 30, 2010

Critical Mass.

Today I am grateful for choice, opportunity and freedom of expression. Today I am sitting here thinking about how lucky we are to be living in this time, in this place with endless opportunities and only our own imaginations to limit us.

Late yesterday afternoon about 60 cyclists from the Daylesford area met outside the primary school and proceeded to ride their bikes up and down the main street of our town. Exactly the same thing was happening in over 300 cities all around the world.

These bike rides are called critical mass. While they do hold up and block the car traffic, they claim not to be protests against cars but celebrations of bikes. We aren't blocking the traffic. We are the traffic is a popular critical mass catch phrase and the name of a documentary about the phenomena.

This was the second Daylesford critical mass and the first one with an angry swear word yelled from an irate car driver with a hand gesture. It seemed so strange considering the happy, peaceful feeling amongst the riders claiming the streets of their own town for ten minutes once a month.

It is such fun and such a great feeling to reclaim the streets of your own town, to blow whistles, ring bells and to laugh and chat with your fellow cyclists. It is such fun for me to be the event photographer and to run up and down the street snapping away and watching my family riding/scootering.

gif animators

If you are in the Daylesford area on the 26th of November (the last Friday of the month) at 5pm you should come along. If you would like to ride along but live somewhere else why don't you google critical mass and the town that you live in, grab your bike/scooter/pusher and cycle on.

Like I said, today I am feeling grateful for where and how I live and for my right to be involved in events like the critical mass without fear of any retribution.

Sometimes I do take my freedoms and rights for granted but today I am feeling grateful.

Oh and if you are reading this as an email, why don't you click on the Foxs Lane link here or at the bottom to view the blog and the animation the way they should be seen..

See ya!


  1. Unfortunately there are too many angry drivers out there. Looks like it was a real family event. Good thing they did it on Friday and not today - the rain is non-stop.

  2. I really should learn to ride a bike!

  3. I've heard about these, but never seen one...

    today I am grateful it is Friday and I am going to Stitches East tomorrow and next week is only a 4 day work week!!!!

  4. Yep, lots to be grateful for! Loved this post & seeing some familiar faces on wheels. How strange to get road rage in Daylesford, what a shock! We are so lucky to live in such an ace town, in a warm & vibrant community where we can be ourselves. And yay for bikes! Might have to get my rusty one out of the shed...xo

  5. What a brilliant thing to be involved in! If only I knew how to ride a bike....

  6. I've seen Critical Mass in Sydney, but didn't realise it happened elsewhere at the same time. I think it's important for car drivers to remember they're not the only ones on the road - more and more people are taking to pedal power and I think it's great!

  7. you know I use to do the monthly ride across the harbour bridge for critical mass in Sydney!

    ... and don't forget Reclaim the Streets! they were great too! i started joining them in London and use to join the sydney ones to - a very memorable one in newtown one have reminded those wild days of protests... I don't get so angry anymore. I just do my own thing.

    I am as always and I think I say this every week, am grateful for my families health. x

  8. What fabulous event.
    Might have to ride along.
    Such a wonderful post Kate, sometimes we do take the simplest for granted.
    I'm grateful to kind friends making too much of fuss,
    having a roof over my head and shelter from the rain, and to Pip who without I wouldn't have come so far. hope you have an ace night xo

  9. I always find it interesting that car drivers forget cyclists have as much right to the road as they do.
    Freedom is something we should all be grateful for.

  10. Fantastic Kate! It is a great thing to do...what date is the December Critical Mass - we will be there for my brother's wedding - we would love to join you! Michele x

  11. Glad they all had helmets on! Today I was walking towards the railway station, a young bloke in a car yelled at an older Asian man as he crossed the road. He had a young male passenger in the car as well. I thought "I bet he thinks he is a big shot. A__hole." Today, I'm grateful for a darling daughter who came shopping with me!

  12. I agree - it is great to live in a country where you can do such things without fear of punishment or otherwise.

    I must admit though, I don't agree with the execution of critical mass in large cities such as Sydney - however do agree that cyclists are entitled to travel on the roads safely - just like motorists.

  13. We have taken part in Critical Mass here as well!
    Portland is a very bike centric city, which is great. During our summer, neighborhoods block off a bunch of streets during certain weekends and the whole community comes out on bikes, roller skates or just walks the route. Everyone is smiling and having a great time, I love it!
    Check out this great video

  14. i love riding my bicycle. it's an old style one with no gears - so i can tell you right now, i'm not going anywhere fast! but, there is nothing nicer than a slow leisurely ride around the suburbs on a beautiful spring day.
    the person who swore and gesticulated should really get themselves a bike and hop on - it's rather therapeutic and heck, if you take life that seriously, you really need all the therapy you can get :)
    today i am grateful to bi-carb soda because it's keeping my boys of the computer and into science - they are trying to launch rocket corks :)

  15. What a great idea, and good for you for joining in! Sorry some old grouch tried to spoil it for you all, but remember...there's one in every bunch!

  16. Geez - some people get their knickers in a knot over the craziest things.

    Looks like so much fun.

  17. I'm grateful for your support and photos. Great post!

    PS. There is going to be a clothes swapmeet at Brekky & Beer after the next CM. I don't know which event I am more excited for. xx

  18. What a fantastic way to promote biking and all the great things that go along with it!

    Love your animation too xx

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