Transportation Alternatives’ Paul Steely White Shares His Personal Bike Style

Paul Steely White talks about his personal BikeStyle in New York.

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Paul Steely White

City: New York, New York

Occupation: Executive director, Transportation Alternatives

What is your BikeStyle?

Professional with a touch of rumple. I am suspicious of people who are perfectly put together on the bike. How do they do that? To me, being a city cyclist means having an intimate relationship with the elements, which often entails a bit of tousle.

What are your favorite clothes to bike in?

Stretchy pants that move with my legs. Outliers are kind of pricey, but nothing beats them for feel and look. In the summer, I love biking in cotton short sleeves with the top few buttons undone. Feeling the wind move through a slightly damp shirt as you zip around the city is one of my favorite summer biking sensations.

Where are we most likely to spot your bike?

When moving, on the Prospect Park West bike lane. When at rest, locked outside the Transportation Alternatives office on West 26th Street.

What do you like most about riding?

It used to be the freedom and speed, but more and more it’s about a sense of belonging. You can really mesh with your city and your fellow citizens when you are out there negotiating around, seeing the familiar and also the new, making eye contact, trading a fleeting smile or knowing look.

What is your dream bike for everyday cycling?

I love my WorkCycles Opafiets. It has big tires for taking on NYC potholes, a worn-in Brooks saddle and an upright geometry that gives me a great front-row seat to the ever-unfolding drama of the street.

What did you eat for breakfast?

I’ve been skipping it lately – just going with a glass of water with a shot of Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar. Morning fasting, I’ve found, keeps my head clear and there is some research to support that a little morning cardio on an empty stomach is a great way to teach your body to burn fat more efficiently.

What song is most played on your iPod?

“Pressure Drop” by Toots and the Maytals. The Clash’s version is great too.

Basket or panniers?

Neither. I usually ride with a musette bag, or, if I have lots of stuff, I’ll stick a box on the front rack of my Opa.

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