This is the introduction to my new book, "How America Can Bike and Grow Rich" (HBGR). The manuscript is complete. What remains is all the formatting work (appendices, pagination, front matter such as this, etc) of turning it into an attractive publication. Do stay tuned for a soon release!
"How America Can Bike and Grow Rich" Introduction
How America Can Bike and Grow Rich" (HBGR) is an in depth visualization of the ninth annual national Mayors' Ride that will run from San Jose and San Francisco to Washington DC during the spring and summer of 2012. When that ride is complete, it will have served as yet another milestone along the path I made for myself when I dedicated my rehabilitation from paralysis and death to the nonprofit organization I got people to help me form called the National Bicycle Greenway (NBG). After committing my publishing company, Cycle America, to the goal of connecting the coasts with a bicycle highway' when my autobiography "Awake Again" then came out in 1994, instead of letting a very interested Hollywood sweep it in a different direction, I used it to open even more doors for the NBG.
As the long awaited sequel to my true comeback story, then, HBGR is my love offering to the planet for a tool that has rebuilt my body, mind and spirit. It draws on my decades long career in the bike industry and as a bike activist, two and one-third bike rides across America and well over a thousand hours of research. In getting away from cars, I watched the people around me give their life force to those things which all too soon, simply ended up in the land fill With the objectivity my being Car Free has engendered, HBGR is allowing me to give voice to kids and the childhood we lost when we yielded the free feeling that cycling gave us for the rules, laws and government oversight that governs the time we think we save when we drive. This as along the way, my bike centric way of living, coupled with the deprivation/humility training I ultimately had to endure to get this book finalized have given me a working understanding of what true wealth really is.
As the bicycle helped me to overcome paralysis, spasticity, atrophy and a mind that did not have a structured way of thinking, it ultimately became apparent to me that without my full optimal health I have nothing. In developing this awareness, I found myself in close proximity to all the conversations those of us with a bike based lifestyle take for granted. As my car wreck forced me to detach, I have watched the car driving public's preoccupation with reaching their destinations in the fastest way possible destroy our collective well being. This as using a bike to get places has helped me keep faith with our real purpose for being here, to grow spiritually.
HBGR is a story that uses our decade of national Mayors' Ride campaigns to portray the real world visualization I have painted for my National Bicycle Greenway business plan viewers for years. Hopefully by reading my book, you will go away seeing the heaven our world could become if the bicycle were the preferred travel option. If you choose to think big thoughts with me you will realize that we have finally reached that day in age where the technology we now have at our disposal can finally make the dreams i present here real. We feel, for example, that once the powerful Google based mapping system I took a year off to devise gets funded, we will no longer be so dependent on thousands of pounds of steel and old dinosaur remains to move about.
HBGR also shows you how many of America's cities came about and how beautiful they can be when not roared through at freeway speeds As my book also shows you the old highway and transportation systems that once used to connect us to our brothers and sisters, hopefully it will be planting even more seeds for you that see an America that can rebuild itself as a wonderland around the National Bicycle Greenway.
Thanks in advance for your having an open mind as you read the words ahead I look forward to the day when how we move about in our lives stops taking from the planet and instead improves the world for our children and all those who follow in our footsteps with the National Bicycle Greenway.