Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Stylish Cycling

I was watching a bit of The War last night. It had to do with the breakout from Anzio Beach and the advance into Rome. The background was the letters home from a soldier who was killed right about then and the grief that greeted this news back home in the U.S. But on one of the shots of tanks and trucks draped with laconic American troops entering the city there passed in the foreground an Italian guy on a bicycle smoking a cigarette, smartly turned out in suit and tie.

Apparently this still goes on. In today's New York Times there's an article called Forget the Vespa: Making Your 2 Wheels a Bike in Rome.
“Bike riding has gotten more popular due to the city’s antipollution politics,” said Alessandro Piccione, a Roman engineer pedaling along the Tiber immaculately dressed (of course) in a blazer on his way to work. “I don’t just bike working days, but weekends, too. It saves a lot of time and trouble parking.”
I sometimes feel bad about wearing cycling-specific clothes to ride to work, then changing, when the cyclists in Amsterdam and Copenhagen manage to get along looking normal and even downright fashionable. Days like today I could wear my office clothes, but soon it'll be too cold and not long ago it was too hot. In the meantime, Rome sounds a treat off a bike.

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