Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Roll Model: Malia Mask

IMG_7123 IMG_4342 Like many, my love for biking began in my youth. I have many fond memories of navigating the neighborhood on my red bike, beads on my spokes and the wind in my hair. All that joy came to an end when my little brother got old enough to take my bike apart... but lacked the skills (and intelligence!) to put it back together. It wasn't just my bike. My two sisters got the same treatment. What is it about little brothers!?

Fast forward quite a few years and I am in Paris for my honeymoon. We sign up for an urban bike tour and fall in love with navigating the city via bicycle. It is amazing what a different perspective a bicycle can give you. Not just touring a city but just running an errand. When was the last time a trip to the store made you happier, healthier and better looking?

Anyway, on my honeymoon, I fell back in love with biking and got a baby blue cruiser with a basket as soon as I got home. How cliche is that?! At the time I lived in Buckhead and could be seen cruising sidewalks on the regular. It was liberating and invigorating, but something didn't feel quite right. I wanted to be on the streets. I wanted to play by the rules. I wanted legitimacy, and I wasn't going to get there on my cruiser.

So, I moved to midtown and solved my own problems. I founded MBIKES, which designs fixed gear, single speed bikes that are light and fast... perfect for intown riding. Now, I ride almost every day. I lose my car keys on weeknights and weekends and I love it. With my fixie, my bike has become the ultimate fashion accessory. My bike, The Twain, was originally white on white but I switched out one of the rims to add a hit of the world’s most regal color, purple! That way, when I am on my bike killing it down 10th Street, I feel like the queen of the streets. Since we ride hard, my fashion accessories usually include my Vans and my favorite pair cut offs, but I am not scared to dress it up for a concert in the park or a date night with my hubby.

At MBIKES we say we want to rid the world of cars one bike at a time. We believe in biking as the solution for many of our intown transportation issues, and we want to be part of that solution. From a brick and mortar showroom to one day manufacturing our bike frames in Georgia, we have big plans for MBIKES. When Mayor Reed says he wants Atlanta to be a top ten biking city. We say what can we do to help?!

Oh, and remember that story about my little brother? Well, he was our first MBIKES customer. So, he turned out alright. Funny how things work out.

Malia Mask

Monday, June 30, 2014

Dunwoody Cycle Chic

IMG_6755 IMG_6757 alice + olivia by Stacey Bendet decorated this proper Dutch bike for Neiman Marcus and Target. Beyond the trails of Liane Levetan Park, she wears a helmet (and heart rate monitor!) to ride in Mount Vernon for Dunwoody Village shopping errands and reports the sort of courtesy from motorists called the Mary Poppins effect. Thursday evenings the food trucks migrate northward, beer flows and music plays to a lively scene. It was encouraging to see so many families biking to that park. Joe Seconder of Bike Walk Dunwoody invited me to meet some of them and lend a lens to the advocacy. Next on his agenda is a Human-Powered Independence Day Parade Entry. Beat the heat with an 8am start from All Saints Catholic Church, 2443 Mount Vernon.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Heels On Wheels: Go West!

IMG_7683 IMG_0318 IMG_0330 IMG_7692 What fun it was to look back on three years of Heels on Wheels. The ride returns to its Woodruff Park starting roots at 10am Saturday for an exploration of the West End. Susan Roe has planned a route that will pause at the Wren's Nest and Westview Cemetery before concluding with lunch at Smoke Ring in Castleberry Hill. If you haven't seen Mathilde Piard in a while, this might be good time to say thanks for all she has done and wish her well in Washington, DC. She will be missed, but we are getting a better National Public Radio with Mathilde as their new product manager for social and podcasts. RSVP via facebook.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

East Meets West: Atlanta BeltLine Annual Bicycle Tour

IMG_6275 IMG_6292 IMG_6279 IMG_6277 IMG_6300 IMG_6310 IMG_4942 What a Saturday! With the Atlanta 'Zine Fest and Tunes From The Tombs filling the afternoon, there was just enough of my morning to join the West End tour riders as far as The BeltLine Bike Shop.
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