This is the second Critical Mass I have been to. I hopped on the train bound for Union station in the late afternoon right after work. It was interesting to see bikers getting on at many stops as we continued from station to station. At one point there were eight bikes lashed to the benches on my train car. When I got to Daley Plaza, the plaza was completely packed with people and bikes! The ride got started about 6:30 PM after a short tour around the block once. This time I decided I would find one of those music bikes and follow the tunes for the whole ride. Having the tunes bike nearby made the ride even more fun than last time. As seems to be the case with every CCM, there were some interesting things that happened. After stopping to change the battery in my camera, I had fallen behind somewhat in the parade of bikes. As I and the throngs of bikes around me reached a large intersection, a lady could be seen running up and down the line of bikes with her arms open in a "stop the madness" fashion while yelling how she had been waiting for five light changes and it wasn't fair. At another point a female cyclist had stopped and was pole dancing on the median of the road. Later, I heard from some of the same cyclists that had been on the train TO Union and were now on the same train back home that there had been some person wearing only tights running around in the street cradling a large fish! Haha! As the light gave way to night, the air cooled a bit and the flashes of all the bike lights was interesting. The ride ended at Buckingham Fountain with all the cyclists making laps around the fountain. That was a great ending to a great CCM ride! I followed the recumbent bike with the disc jockey booth-trailer out of the park and headed for home soon thereafter.
Today I saw the bike forums for the Chicago area busy with complaints about CCM and arguments about many things purportedly wrong with the ride and/or the riders. It's a shame we can't make the ride a bit more agreeable for the people waiting for us to pass.