Sometimes I have these vivid dreams filled with random and surrealistic sensations, colors, sounds, and people. In the best dreams I get swept up in infinite possibilities and float like a twig in a gently flowing stream, one thing leading to another, and when I awake, I feel a unique oneness with the universe, and I feel like everything is going to be alright. I feel deeply happy.
It's 5pm Saturday and I still haven't come down all the way from last night's Bike Party. It's like I've awakened from my vivid dream and am still lying there in bed thinking about it. This is the magic of Bike Party. It's one of my dreams come to life, or maybe, life is transformed into the dream and what I am having is a very lucid experience, more real---but at the same time---thankfully less real than the ennui of daily existence.
Bike Party takes time to percolate down. It's a lot to take in, something of sensory overload really, and the mind needs time to filter it and extract the ecstatic bits from the blur the dark night memory becomes. And there were ecstatic bits, these are intangible and happen quite suddenly. At these moments the merely fun shifts gears and Awesomeness breaks out, flows like a wave through the pedaling masses, and magic happens as onlookers feel the rush of rocking music, tinkling bells and horns, shouting riders, and a light show to rival Disneyland, their metaphorical hair blown back as if a bracing, refreshing wind had just blown up their block.
I get a feeling of ecstacy when it happens, and I suspect we all do, and this is why we do it. We're on a mission to find that dormant part within each of us that responds to beauty, to helping others, to working towards the Greater Good. It's ecstatic to share this with all the other Bike Partiers. It works on so many levels.
Something happens when you find yourself in this moving amoeba of positive energy, this multi-celled intelligent party organism---you lose your sense of self, you lose your ego, and willingly submit to the collective consciousness of the Many, because part of you, on some deep level, understands that this is the path to understanding that can only come from letting go of the Ego and submitting to the Hive Mind. The synapses start firing on dormant instinctual hard wires that in turn stimulate glands that secrete the feel good juices. There is strength in numbers, there is power in numbers, there is hope in numbers; and when we have hope, strength and power we can change the world.
My Dutch Bike fitted out with BikeGlow optics and colored lights, I got several great comments on it, and it was VERY easy to find in a dark park, so it became the regroup point for my friends.
(I remounted the Bikeglow optic cable by wrapping it around the frame like they show on their website, it is brighter this way and the coils are very cool looking)
This blog's author competing to fix a flat, I lost by 5 seconds as I attempted to "MacGyver" it using only my hands
Alameda's own bike royalty, Gene Oh, was there to officiate the festivities. Indeed, it was his bike parking stations at Ashby and Shattuck that launched and landed this Bike Party. Gene Oh---making the world a safer place for your bike---since, well, a long time.
My partner in Biking and Partying....the Dean of stopping to smell the Infrared Roses, McSweeps McNulty on his one of a kind one speed Swiss Kronen bike which got much sycophantic admiration from Those In The Know... or maybe it's Those Who Want To Know and Ask Too Many Questions. We also befriended Mary Elizabeth, a cycling cap maker from our own Alameda.
This is what the throng looked like just before the grand roll out. The theme for this party was "Skirts!"
Rolling along either Adeline or West streets in Oakland. We traveled through parts of Oakland known as Ghost Town and Lower Bottom. I've never been on these streets before, not even in my car! The reputation of this part of town is daunting, but it is slowly improving for the folks that live there.
Whoa! Now that's a road bike!
Party stop in Defremury Park, ground zero of the dance action. The "official" word was stops limited to 15 minutes...Yeah, right! Nice, long layover here. The second rest stop was pretty near the first one, in a grassy, dark open space. It was here, feeling the beat and watching the dancers, that I felt the bike as religion pagan ritual worship thing happening. So much positive energy!
Then we rode some more, here, there, up, down, all around.
We ended up in Berkeley at the Bike Station on Shattuck. The inside space was way too small for everyone and the in-the-wide-open-view-of-The-Man outside loitering limited the consumption of party refreshments considerably. Bikes and riders were everywhere and regular folks out for the evening must have been amused and bewildered at the same time.
One of my favorite Bikeboomers. I mentioned this guy last time and he was just as good this night
I leave you as I did last Bike Party! report: with a happy dancing girl.
I'd like to thank the Bike Partiers who posted pics on the BP Facebook site, I lifted a few of those to fill in what I missed, as I often forgot I even had a camera with me! Totally distracted? You Betcha!
That's it for now, check back as I might add to this as I remember things. Also, you might be interested to know the hot rumor about July's Bike Party... coming very close to Flashblog world headquarters?
AWESOME!!!!! BIKE PARTY!!!!!
Ride On and Ride Safe