The Chainlink

When you give a wave, you let your presence be known. A wave shows a state of well being. The nature in which it was given alone can signal excitement, distress or pomp. And for years it has been a simple gesture between bikers, though in this case, the gas-fueled variety.
Every summer, it is hard to miss the subtle gestures given between motorcyclists along the nations highways. The lowered wave in acknowledgment of a peer, the highway handshake. While they may never know each other personally, they share a common interest, bond, and threat. The interesting fact though, is how much I noticed this as child looking out the back window, and continue to till this day. Think of this: you are at the party and the hottie across the room just sent a wave in your direction. Whether it was for you or not, you noticed, right? Granted, while we bikers are all hot, we may not draw the attention like the hottie we've been staring at. But I would have to believe, the same way that the brotherhood of hogs gets noticed with a simple gesture, that we too could raise the awareness of bicyclists around the city.
We send waves to the cars at critical mass, but how about waves to each other as we pass by. We already do it to the people we know, but all of us that ride share a common interest, our own safety. Most of us are already aware of the bicyclists we pass going the other way, or get passed by. With some acknowledgment between us, it could make drivers more aware of our presence, after all, they will be wondering who you're waving at. At least then we will have gotten them to think about who else is on the road.
I don't know how this would ever catch on, but it seems like it would be a valuable tool in bicycle awareness. Drivers might catch on to the waves being thrown about. Maybe a kid in the backseat will grow up with a greater respect and understanding of the modern bicyclist after seeing the two wheeled man giving a happy hand. After all, it couldn't hurt the camaraderie within our community, and in the end, it even gives you an excuse when the hottie you're staring at just happens to be the biker passing you by.

Views: 220

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Nice.
I like this
Excellent. A wave or a good nod of the head can brighten any ride.
It appears to me the return wave is directly proportional to how closely the bikers are dressed and bike type. Very seldom get a return wave from a person on a road bike in his simulated Lance appearal when I am on my hybrid with $20 shorts and a shirt that is not painted on.
Getting kids to wave back or smile is always good...curt
M.A.R.K. said:
in SF(I believe)they have Waving Wednesday to promote camaraderie, idk how well it has worked.


I like this idea, Waving Wednesdays! Let's start tomorrow.
Yes...Waving Wednesdays is an idea fostered by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. And on Wednesdays, if you're in San Francisico and on a bike, the wave is MANDATORY!

"...What qualifies as a wave? A wave 'counts' when you move your hand back and forth at least 3 times. Nodding or saluting do not count - those salutations can find their own darn days...."
Clark said:
if you're in San Francisico and on a bike, the wave is MANDATORY!


That is awesome!
I tried this out on the way to work this morning. Mostly the wave was met with confusion or indifference, but it put me in a better mood. Some on the larger streets were too busy with the trying-not-to-die thing to notice. But mostly I'm a big fan of anything that reminds all of us that the streets are full of people, not obstacles on a race course. Then a driver on a cell phone rolled through a stop without looking and almost hit me, which made me an angry curmudgeon again. Oh well, It's a process. I'll wave at those I can see on the way home.
I've found that bicyclists in the winter, including myself, tend to give a wave or nod more than in the other seasons.

I also agree with Curt that bicyclists that are similar in appearance will wave to one another, but that is human nature. A "Lance Armstrong" will probably not wave at a hipster with a bright pink bike and tight jeans on a summer evening. Though the thought of it occurring makes me smile.

How about a new thread or group for Waving Wednesday?
I'm just going to continue to ring my bell.

You know, my bicycle bell...
Hey all, Active Trans flirted with Waving Wednesdays a couple years ago but we didn't do enough to get it off the ground.

I'm excited that we are talking about re-launching an official Waving Wednesdays campaign in Chicagoland this Spring.

We'll keep you all updated, and of course, we can all continue to wave (and ring bells) any time. Look and listen for me on Clark St.

Sincerely,
Ethan, with Active Trans.
My wave usually consists of a middle finger and a turret sounding word repeated several times in quick succession.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

© 2008-2013   The Chainlink Community, L.L.C. Julie Hochstadter, Director   Powered by

Disclaimer  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service