This month SJBP started for me with
the poorly advertised pre-ride from San Jose's City Hall. I
figured I better get as many of the photo ops the place had as I
could before they got rolling.
Unfortunately, that meant just these
three pictures. I was later than I should have been.
I took this right after they
announced that we would be rolling soon, before everybody was on
their bikes. Maybe about two thirds of the people getting ready to
roll are in it. It's the biggest pre-ride to a SJBP that I've ever
been part of. After I took this I just rolled until we got to the
start of the official ride.
There were so many food trucks lined
up around the parking lot that it blew my mind.
It wasn't just the half a dozen or
so here. More likely there were ten or twelve of them. There were
so many that they were blocking the driveway in one or two places
because there was nowhere else to park them. I think that's a new
problem for us, too many food trucks!
Sarah was selling yummy cookies and
cupcakes not far from the food truck zone. I got one of her brown
butter almond cookies. So delicious! See her if you want a nice
treat next time. That is to say, I hope she's willing to do that
I love the way a bicyclist blends
into the words SAN JOSE BIKE PARTY on those shirts! So apropos.
It was very easy to find people that
weren't wearing pants. The harder part was finding people that
were interesting visually as well.
This is only a small percentage of
the ride. Just what I could see ahead of me. We packed the road
like this for blocks and blocks. An amazing river of people having
a good time and sharing the public right of way.
Behind me the same story
I talked to the guy with the ape
hanger handlebars. He said if he inspires someone else to do
something interesting to see at another ride all the effort
involved with making his costume will have been worth it.
The guy with the green fat tire bike
was behind me in line to get something from the fruit lady. He
said that those fat tires roll well on beaches and snow and any
other place he's tried to go on it. The line moved slowly, so
after a while I found out that his name is so common in Scotland
that Monty Python did a skit about how famous his name is in
Not long after I got my fruit cup
the helicopter appeared above and started broadcasting this
message: "This is an illegal assembly. You are ordered to
disperse." The tinny voice repeated it over and over. Not only
that, but motorcycle cops started wandering through the crowd
sharing variations on the same message. Bike Party got back on the
road faster than I've ever seen them do so before.
This DJ was pumping out good tunes
and he wasn't wearing pants. I had to respect that!
I'm surprised that anybody could do
20 miles on a razor scooter. At this point we were far enough into
the ride that I'm sure the guy finished up no problem. Around us
there were a lot of riders for whom bike party was MUCH more than
they were used to riding. I heard lots of complaints about burning
leg muscles from first timers. About then we reached the end of
The guy in the sharks shirt was
roaming around telling everyone that would listen that the cops
gave him a ticket for being on the wrong side of the double yellow
line. He wasn't happy about that at all. Wish I'd not had a thumbs
up in the picture. But then Lia saw this on facebook and replied
"I think the thumbs up was appropriate in the traffic ticket
photo. The dude's supposed to obey traffic rules and deserved the
Actually, during the course of the evening I saw many cops writing
tickets. I don't know if they were worse than ever before, but for
sure the heavy hand of the law came down on lots of us.
I asked one of the food vendors that was there to the end if it
had been a good evening for them. He said yes.
Bit by bit the parking lot emptied
as people packed their vehicles. I got pictures of these vehicles
because they were particularly well laden with bikes and people.
Not sure how I got involved with
miming a snail with this woman but I enjoyed the experience. I'd
like to say her name, but I'm not finding it in my memory.
Hopefully I'll get to talk to her again...