Posted on 24/10/2012
The bicycle is a very efficient and flexible way to travel. Furthermore, it’s the most energy efficient vehicle yet to be invented. Especially in the Netherlands, the bike is employed for the majority of short to medium long journeys.
In Veloderive (unaware) participants will be enticed, invited, lured, attracted and misled to traverse onto different routes than they would usually do. An experiential way to explore a city.
The sudden change of ambiance in a street within the space of a few meters; the evident division of a city into zones of distinct psychic atmospheres; the path of least resistance that is automatically followed in aimless strolls (and which has no relation to the physical contour of the terrain); the appealing or repelling character of certain places — these phenomena all seem to be neglected. In any case they are never envisaged as depending on causes that can be uncovered by careful analysis and turned to account.
—Guy Debord, Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography
Right, so far for the philosophical mumbo-jumbo; How do we play?
In my first playtest I set these rules for myself:
Tune In, Drop out, Get Lost
- Alleways: small, narrow, dangerous and dodgy little streets, normally avoided, should now be cherished and explored
- Hills: steep hill or long downhill road? don’t hesitate to take a detour to climb the hill- just to immediately drive off it afterwards
- Launch: ‘Let’s launch over it’, a somewhat more extreme maneuver, anything that will work as a ramp can set you flying!
- Slalom: the city is filled with regular and irregular forms. Try to slalom through them for as long as possible without missing one.
- Curb: balance your wheels on a curbstone or other straight lined element. How long can you hold?
- Sidewalk: Illegal in most countries, it can be fun to cycle on the sidewalk,
- Cross-country: take the rough road!
- Short-cut: Efficiency is key, take notice of side-streets and street crossings where you can cut-a-corner or skip a dodgy crossroad
- Last but not least: Play! Wherever you can
So get out there and VeloDérive!