Tonight: Ride of Silence

Five years ago, I was out riding at the Jersey Shore when I was struck by a car. I came out mostly intact—though my patella wasn't so lucky. It was a harrowing experience, and one that took me a long time to get over. Only recently have I become completely comfortable on two wheels again, though I'm still a bit of a nervous nelly.

That's just one reason why I'll take part in tonight's Ride of Silence, a global event honoring cyclists who have been killed or injured while riding on public road ways. In 2003, Chris Phelan organized the first Ride of Silence in Dallas after endurance cyclist Larry Schwartz was hit and killed by the mirror of a passing bus.

Participants are asked to ride no faster than 12 mph and to remain silent throughout. There are no sponsors and no registration fees. The ride is held in conjunction with National Bike Month.

Philadelphia's Ride of Silence starts at the Art Museum steps at 6:45 p.m. and runs for seven miles, with a police-escort through Center City. For more information, visit the Bicycle Coalition's website.