Saturday, November 19, 2011

Gnarlloween Critical Mass


It started in 1992 and now it's celebrated every last Friday of the month in over 300 cities around the world. Hundreds of cyclists gather together to take over the roads, and so do those with boards, skates, anything without a motor. New Yorker described it as 'monthly political-protest rides', but Critical Mass participants have insisted it to be a 'celebration' and social gathering, not an organized demonstration.

Either so, hearing how Critical Mass lasted from 6pm until midnight the previous month, I thought it to be more like taking part in Survivor. I was quite scared of how I'd manage, especially with my grippy wheels. But my goal was to make it til the end.

As it was during Halloween weekend, people had to dress up. Some did follow up the Star Wars theme suggested by someone.

Skating for 4 hours around London was amazing. It felt like being part of a huge family; cyclists were helping out the skaters, when there was bad pavement or if they just wanted to chat. And I'll always remember that moment at a crossing at King's Cross, where people just lifted their bikes and boards up in memory of a cyclist who died on that spot.

For us to have a safe ride, cars were stopped from driving on.

There were so many people filming us with their phones, especially on Oxford Street. At that point we were halfway through the route, and my legs were feeling quite tired already. Sometimes I could hardly stay up; one moment I had difficulties getting on my board that one guy laughed 'look she's so drunk'.

Well, let's have a look at my different moments during that day.

Pre- Critical Mass

Critical Mass

are we done already? no, only half. (shit)high five!

Post- Critical Mass

someone asked me what happened to my head. he was serious.

You can imagine how exhausted we were after kicking for so many hours. And how my left thigh and right calf hurt. Also, I was pretty scared to get out of bed the next morning, and when I finally got up, I noticed that my right ankle was in a pretty bad shape too. I was a zombie that whole day. Got to say that it wasn't like Survivor, it was more like Saw.

Nevertheless I had fun. Or 'fun fun fun fun' like Rebecca Black would say it. I also reached my goal, I didn't give up. Though my common sense was telling me to, but I hardly listen to it anyways. Even now it's telling me to rather take the bike for next week's Mass.

Naa, I got a board to kill.

pictures and video by l.lundberg

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