It's Just Like Riding A Bike

You hear that expression when someone is referring to how easy something should be because at one time or another in your life you mastered that activity. Even if you haven’t sat on a bicycle since childhood you should be able to hop back on a bike and ride it again as if no time had passed at all—something to do with muscle memory marrying cognitive skills or some such science-y explanation.

As it happens, I am actually getting back on a bike...quite literally. But I’m also getting back on that proverbial bike by getting in touch with something that has always been important to me: making a difference in the lives of others.

When I first took my position here at Instinct in August 2005, I envisioned myself serving the gay community by stepping outside of my comfort zone and broadening my horizons by putting my heart and soul into this gay magazine, which means I had to put myself out there as an openly gay man in a way I never had before.

Things were different in 2005. I was different in 2005. I had only come out of the closet a few years prior, but I knew I wanted to make up for the time I lost when I was not 100 percent true to myself—for not living entirely honestly— and it was time to do that, and do that with real purpose. That’s what brought me to Instinct and what’s kept me here for more than six years.

So this June, with real purpose and as a proud gay man, I am getting on that bike again—outside my comfort zone for sure—and riding 545 miles to help those living with HIV/AIDS. And, yes, it’s probably the first time in many years I’ve been on an actual bike for anything more than a leisurely ride along the California coast.

The good folks over at Cannondale Bicycles (cannondale.com) have hooked me up with an amazing bike that is far more sophisticated than I’ll ever be, and I’m getting this state-of-the-art two-wheeler to do my part for a great cause. Many of you may be familiar with AIDS/LifeCycle—a seven-day biking adventure from San Francisco to Los Angeles to raise money to end AIDS. If you can’t join us on the road, you can help us with a donation—and no amount is too small. 

We’re heading toward our 15-year anniversary at Instinct and to commemorate this milestone we have 15 participants who have each pledged to raise at least $3,000 for the cause. But we also need your help. If everyone reading this magazine could give just $1 to the cause, we’d raise over $300,000 to help those living with HIV/AIDS. Skip the latte tomorrow or brown bag your lunch for a week, and think about giving that money you’ve saved to save lives.

We’ve made it very easy for you over at InstinctMagazine.com with a dedicated LifeCycle page (instinctmagazine.com/lifecycle) to stay abreast of all things ride related, and there are banner and tower ads galore on every page of our website that are clickable to a donation page (tofighthiv.org/goto/teaminstinctdonation). You can write a check, too, or call us in the office (818- 843-1536, ext. 100) and we’ll direct your donation right over the phone with your credit card—and every penny goes to AIDS/LifeCycle.

Won’t you help end AIDS by donating today?

Helping others and doing the right thing will feel amazing. And it will probably feel just like riding a bike.