Miami En Masse: Critical Culture

Every month, Miami’s drivers are witness to a piston less social machine, one pushed along by pedal/people power alone. Lookers-on usually cheer, some honk, and others just sit, eyes wide with confusion or awe. All in all, it’s always an event, where green and seasoned cyclists alike show solidarity for the future of Miami’s bikers, streets, and environmental culture.

Mass Effect

No matter how you feel about the snaking pulse of humanity and bicycles that is Critical Mass, it has already established itself as a veritable phenomena throughout Downtown Miami and its adjoining locales (Grove, Beach, Wynwood, etc).

Knowing Miami’s Laissez-faire approach to everything associated with “rules” (which is what makes this such a great city to begin with), it’s no wonder why events like Critical Mass can sometimes be a massive headache for those involved – witness, participant, volunteer, and coordinator alike. It’s a guarantee every ride that some will get lost, left behind, or separated due to mitigating circumstances. Some of this confusion, though, can be avoided by following three simple parameters:

Stay in your lane.

Riding side by side and talking your head off with the rest of your group may be fun, but sometimes, circumstances require you to have to learn how to talk over your shoulder. Trying to keep the Mass in one lane keeps traffic problems and situations under a reasonable measure of control/safety, and promotes an appearance of uniformity instead of absolute chaos.

Keep up.

This doesn’t mean go way way ahead. This doesn’t mean to only keep up with the obviously dragging tail end either. It means to keep together by keeping a steady pace. Detecting the cadence needed to maintain the bicycle blob-ular density of the Mass consistent should be a subliminal thing to most.


Though having a laugh, doing something socially/environmentally healthy, and staring at a plethora of hot girl/guy’s perfectly-jeaned rumps is what Critical Mass is all about, studies show that turning on your brain every once in a while during the ride helps the overall experience. LOOK where you’re going, and notify others. LISTEN to volunteers and organizers. Yeah, it’s that simple. I know, right?

Otherwise, do it up, and, enjoy going to Mass every last Friday of every month.

Photo/Video courtesy of @miamibikescene.