“Why do you think I planned it for April Fool’s Day?”
The question hung in the air like a dirigible during yesterday’s press conference in front of Stephen Patrickson’s Elk River apartment building, as the press and bicycling fans, many of whom were not wearing helmets, listened with dismay.
According to Patrickson, the so-called “30 days of bicycling“, an increasingly popular internet-fueled pro-bicycling movement which has spread around the world, began as a way to “mess with” what he referred to as “those Minneapolis hipsters.” The confession came as the month-long commitment was set to begin, with a kick-off ride planned in Minneapolis this evening.
“I’d been reading about all this bicycle stuff in the newspaper, and when I saw a picture of the mayor of Minneapolis riding some sort of weird neon green kids bike and grinning, I figured I’d try and troll those people,” Patrickson said
With the help of a friend, Patrickson, who is 31 years old and currently working as a sandwich artist at a nearby restaurant, started a website to try and spoof trends in hipster culture, using stock photos, catch phrases, and images taken from The Onion. To his surprise, people took him at face value, despite the call to action on April Fool’s day 2009. Since then, thousands of people have used the site to share their pledge and commitment to bicycling, despite its obvious impossibility during April, a winter month in places like Minnesota and New York.
“I never thought people would take me seriously. Who would ride a bike in April, anyway?” Patrickson asked the assembled crowd, many of whom were fidgeting. “I hate biking. I don’t even own one. In fact, I just bought a used Silverado,” he later admitted, before encouraging people to “get a life and get real.”
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