NBG and Bike To DC Demonstration Update (was Re: It's dry as a desert out here!)
- So excellent to see you in here Al!! I have not responded till now,
bcuz I had wanted to spend a little bit of time with this response.
The points you make are all most excellent indeed and as such, you
and everyone on NBG mail need to know why the relative quiet.
I learned a lot from our campaign that fully had me consumed for a
solid 30 months. I lived and breathed more the ride than the National
Bicycle Greenway itself. I also learned that by making my making my
every maneuver so very public that I spent an inordinate amount of
- managing mailing lists
- asking for help and not getting it
- and addressing the concerns of those looking for a way to pass time.
Nor am I angry just 2-1/2 year wiser! I learned, for example that we
can't find the 'common folk' to which you refer on the internet. To
reach more of America, I have got to work with the media. And their
deadlines are much closer to the actual day of the event. In terms of
the few magazines that have an audience for what we want to do, I am
working that here on the NBG home front.
In going more behind the scenes where I can better produce results, I
have also learned that I get the benefit of the meditative quiet one
finds on a long bike ride. I can also take more time with those
opportunities that come up. Over the last week, for example, I have
been working with Jerid of the Design Shop in Wooster, Ohio. Jerid
has volunteered to help us with decals we can use. Soon, classy
four-color, 4" round decals will showcase our anchor shops as NBG
2001 supporters with a link to our web site. And Jerid is also
working on bike stickers that are 1.5" x 5" that say the same thing
in a black and white color scheme!! Hot looking stuff!
The last 30 months drove home the awareness that people have short
attention spans. Out of the thousand or so people who signed up to
ride with us, it ended up being only you and Mauny and Bill Tucker
and Monty Clish who made it from one coast to the other. Why? I drove
it hard at the beginning and had so many other fires to fight as our
event neared that I couldn't keep the ride promotion pressure up.
It needs also to be known that in 1997 when I first announced our
ride, I had called for a coast to coast critical mass. And yet enough
town governments, afraid that we would overwhelm their
infrastructures, appeared in my mail box, that I had to forego that
notion. So I was forced to juggle between building a worthy
destination for our riders and keeping some semblance of the ride
fire itself alive.
I also learned that making requests to a group can easily be ignored.
I now use the lessened mind chatter time I have before me to really
think about who would be best for the job at hand. And I ask them
directly. And I am getting results!
I also learned a lot from last year's DC host, Mt. Rainier, MD, Mayor
Fred Sissine. He showed me the importance of building coalitions.
Toward that end, I just joined the Thunderhead Alliance
(http://www.thunderheadalliance.org), a national organization made up
of bike advocacy groups such as ours that is giving cyclists a louder
voice at the federal level. I will also be attending the LAB summit
that Thunderhead and Bikes Belong are putting on in DC 3/28-3/30. At
the Summit, I will be rubbing elbows with many of the nation's top
two wheel shakers and movers. Representatives from congress, industry
and advocacy, they are coming in from all over the nation to help put
bicycling in the foremost of political positions!! Wow!!
I know you're a winner Al! I know you what it takes to walk your
talk. So I know you know come 7-22, in DC, we'll be there. With Bells
on to Demonstrate for the National Bicycle Greenway:
btw: For those of you who don't recall, here is Al's ride web:
At 8:45 AM -0800 2/14/01, Ramos Albert A PHCA wrote:
>Martin,M A R T I N K R I E G
>Since I've returned from our NBG cross country ride last year, the amount of
>internet information about the next ride and rally is all too scarce.
>You've stated that you intend to concentrate on the rally and not the ride
>so much, and that is fine, but I feel that more PR work needs to be done in
>order to emphasize the cause. Somehow the message has to get out to the
>common folk, so that come rally time there'll be an audience for your
>dignitaries to talk to. Previously you produced a weekly newsletter, and
>that helped motivate us and keep us informed. We don't have that now.
>Perhaps if you put up a "Rally Status" on your website, and updated it on a
>weekly basis, you could increase the hits on your site and increase
>Unfortunatly, I wont be able to do the ride this year, but am thinking
>seriously about doing it in 02. Nor will I be able to attend the rally this
>year, but My thoughts will be with you. After riding from LA to DC this
>year, I heartly endorse your efforts to create a pathway across the country
>that will allow us to bike safely from coast to coast.
Bent Since '83, Car Free Since '89, Attacking with Love
Coma, Paralysis, Clinical Death Survivor
'79 & '86 TransAm Vet, "Awake Again" Author
Demonstrate in DC with us: http://www.BikeRoute.com
N A T I O N A L B I C Y C L E G R E E N W A Y