Ride your bike with SN&R for May is Bike Month

Midtown Sacramento wipes the sleep from its eyes and stumbles into the shower. The sun stretches upward. This morning, the city’s streets are so barren that, if you wanted, you could ride a bike the wrong way down a one-way street. Just like a suburbanite.

I might do this, but today's voyage is a straight shot through the heart of the neighborhood: down 20th Street for blocks, tree branches shooting overhead like film through a projector. Then a left, then a bump—that's the railroad track, which I need to cross before catching the American River bike trail.

I often ride to SN&R's north Sacramento office. Some days, odd bubble-gum smells leak from the Blue Diamond almond factory. Others, the wind shoves against my chest, or bugs try to sneak up my nose.

I enjoy stopping atop the C Street bridge and, looking west, watching the cars shoot down Highway 160. It's awesome when the wind sparks waves in the river—hard to see things like this while speeding by on four wheels.

I once had a car. Spent lifetimes on the busiest freeways in Los Angeles, played the I-80 to Biz 80 to downtown commute game. They say the average American spends 100 hours a year commuting to work. My car was stolen a few years back. Blessing in disguise, as the cliché goes.

So, why not try something different for May, which is Bike Month? Leave the car at home. Join me on two wheels. (Learn more at www.mayisbikemonth.com.) It's good for the environment, sure, but let me tell you, not even five cups of coffee compare to the buzz of a bike commute.

My favorite part is going down the hill just after the C Street bridge. Faster, faster. Then, glide through the parkway. Glazed eyes and tight thighs, a gentle sweat—it's the best morning show around.