Posted by marilynch
We’re All Heroes on This Bus
The League of American Bicyclists (AKA Bike League) highlighted Bicycling Monterey’s “We’re All Heroes…” on May 11, 2015 in their Bike Month 2015 blog series. Refer to “#WhyIRide: Seeing the World Anew.”
The essay was first published June 5, 2009 on Bicycling Monterey. Written and recorded by Mari Lynch and produced by Guy Lasnier, the essay was broadcast on KUSP – Central Coast Public Radio on September 6, 2009 and rebroadcast September 9, 2009 as a “Best of First Person Singular.”
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We’re All Heroes on This Bus
Listen to the two-minute audio version.
Or read the essay in its entirety:
Monterey County Weekly readers said cloth grocery bags were 2009’s “best green/eco trend.” I was surprised. I’ve used them for thirty years. But I was surprised at myself, too….
When I lived in Santa Cruz, I biked a hundred miles weekly—to work, for errands, for fun. In ’81 I moved to rural Monterey County. I was happy to see that the City of Monterey had a biking mayor, Clyde Roberson.* But living in rural MoCo, I was frustrated by lack of bike lanes and soon abandoned my bike for everyday transportation.
Now, thanks to Clark Sleeth,** a 20-year-old who inspired me by using just a half tank of gas in five months, I’m back to biking regularly for transportation. Think it takes more time? Often not. You no longer need time for cardio at the gym!
I’d almost forgotten about the joy factor. The thrill of speeding downhill …the refreshing feel of fog misting my face…hearing bird songs …pausing to chat with folks…and knowing the power of my own legs.
Maybe best is seeing the world anew. Each blade of grass seems more vivid. It’s an awesome world, and staying closer to it inspires safeguarding it.
On Sundays, I carry my helmet into church and get a special smile from usher Clyde Roberson, our former biking mayor. Clyde tells me, “You’re my hero.”
I know what he means. We’re all heroes to one another. I’m reminded of “We’re all bozos on this bus,” and I think, “We’re all heroes on this bus!” Our actions encourage fellow passengers, and their actions encourage us.
And we can redirect this “bus,” our culture, in a whole new, sustainable direction…
*Scroll down for an update on Clyde Roberson–elected again as City of Monterey mayor in 2014.
**Curious about Clark Sleeth? See “For the Beauty of Our Own Backyards,” then scroll down to “Green Teens.” Clark’s father, Dr. Matthew Sleeth, visited Monterey County in 2007; see “Former ER Doc Attending to the Health of the Planet.”
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Effective bicycling advocacy takes a wide community effort. We appreciate all who are supporting this grassroots community collaboration, including by getting the word out about the Bicycling Monterey resources and projects.
During Bike Month, we especially thank those who are introducing others to Bicycling Monterey by sharing the League’s blog post. For names of those helping in this way, go to Acknowledgements, then scroll down to # 424 forward.
Mayor Clyde Roberson of the City of Monterey really gets what it takes to have a healthy city–in terms of the environment, economics, health, community relationships, and so much more. What a positive thing for Monterey that Clyde is again serving as mayor.
One reason that Clyde knows Monterey so well is that he is out there in the community in an up-close-and-personal way. You see, Clyde isn’t a person who limits his transportation to a motor vehicle only.
You’ll find Clyde out walking all the time, and you’ll see him biking often too. He knows firsthand that there are many benefits of bicycling. For years, Clyde and his wife, Dottie, were spotted on a tandem regularly. Later he tried a recumbent as well. These days, Clyde can be spotted on his standard road bike–including biking from one local city to another, often using the Monterey Bay Coastal Trail.
Congratulations, Mayor Roberson, and congrats to the residents of the City of Monterey on having a bicycling mayor who serves his constituents so well.
Clyde is the (then) former bicycling mayor mentioned in the 2009 broadcast “We’re All Heroes on This Bus,” and now again mayor. Thanks to Clyde for his many years of service benefiting the City of Monterey, and beyond.