Interview with Michael Farrah
Big Wheels: See Who's Riding Now
Senior Advisor to Mayor Gavin Newsom
Tube Times: Why do you ride?
Michael Farrah: My cholesterol's too high — riding a bike keeps it down. The health reason.
TT: What's your commute? How long does your commute take you? How long would it take if you drove or took the bus?
MF: I live at 24th and Valencia, so my commute is down Valencia, left on Franklin, to City Hall. It's about 15 minutes — a piece of cake. Compared to driving, it's about the same amount of time as parking and walking for the garage. The difference is that it costs $15 to park the car. BART is quicker. Living in a transport corridor gives me some options.
TT: How did you start bike commuting?
MF: I started when my parents asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I said a bike. That happened a few times, and the last time was five years ago.
TT: What motivates you to ride?
MF: The other thing that's great is that we've got showers and lockers. I've got to wear a suit every day.
TT: What's the best part of your commute? What's the worst part?
MF: The worst part is the potholes on Valencia. That makes for a rough commute. The best part is that you see things about your neighborhood — little tiny things — that you never saw before. You're much more present when you're biking.
TT: Do you encourage others in your life to bike?
MF: I don't evengelize about biking, but I do about City CarShare. I think I did about City CarShare because it was telling people about an option that they didn't know about.
TT: What kind of reaction do you get when others find out you bike to work?
MF: There are two things that people are surprised to learn about me, that I've been to Burning Man and that I ride a bike.
Interviewed by Dale Danley