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  • Writer's pictureAmelia Dellos

Girlie on a Bike -- “Don’t cultivate a bicycle face.”

Bike face and all sorts of other ailments were used to scare women off of cycling. For the complete story, go to VOX.COM.

"Bicycle face": a 19th-century health problem made up to scare women away from biking.


The Unique Cycling Club of Chicago had serious requirements (41 !!!) for their female members. This list was featured on WE LOVE CYCLING.

1. Don’t be a fright.

2. Don’t faint on the road.

3. Don’t wear a man’s cap.

4. Don’t wear tight garters.

5. Don’t forget your toolbag.

6. Don’t attempt a “century.”

7. Don’t coast. It is dangerous.

8. Don’t boast of your long rides.

9. Don’t criticize people’s “legs.”

10. Don’t wear loud-hued leggings.

11. Don’t cultivate a “bicycle face.”

12. Don’t refuse assistance up a hill.

13. Don’t wear clothes that don’t fit.

14. Don’t neglect a “light’s out” cry.

15. Don’t wear jewelry while on a tour.

16. Don’t race. Leave that to the scorchers.

17. Don’t wear laced boots. They are tiresome.

18. Don’t imagine everybody is looking at you.

19. Don’t go to church in your bicycle costume.

20. Don’t wear a garden party hat with bloomers.

21. Don’t contest the right of way with cable cars.

22. Don’t chew gum. Exercise your jaws in private.

23. Don’t wear white kid gloves. Silk is the thing.

24. Don’t ask, “What do you think of my bloomers?”

25. Don’t use bicycle slang. Leave that to the boys.

26. Don’t go out after dark without a male escort.

27. Don’t ride without a needle, thread, and thimble.

28. Don’t try to have every article of your attire “match.”

29. Don’t let your golden hair be hanging down your back.

30. Don’t allow dear little Fido to accompany you.

31. Don’t scratch a match on the seat of your bloomers.

32. Don’t discuss bloomers with every man you know.

33. Don’t appear in public until you have learned to ride well.

34. Don’t overdo things. Let cycling be a recreation, not a labor.

35. Don’t ignore the laws of the road because you are a woman.

36. Don’t try to ride in your brother’s clothes “to see how it feels.”

37. Don’t scream if you meet a cow. If she sees you first, she will run.

38. Don’t cultivate everything that is up to date because you ride a wheel.

39. Don’t emulate your brother’s attitude if he rides parallel with the ground.

40. Don’t undertake a long ride if you are not confident of performing it easily.

41. Don’t appear to be up on “records” and “record smashing.” That is sporty.


@chicagocollagecommunity weeklong challenge CHICAGOLLAGE.

They invite you to make a collage a day for the week of January 1st through the 7th.

Jan 1st: Chigagou, an Algonquian word meaning “onion field.”

Jan 2nd: Chicago Transit Authority

Jan 3rd: Bike Lane

Jan 4th: The Loop

Jan 5th: Lake Front

Jan 6th: The Great Chicago Fire

Jan 7th: “urbs in horto” (or “city in a garden,” Chicago’s Motto)

✂️ Chicagollage How To:

1. Make a collage based upon the daily prompt (analog or digital)

2. Post it on Instagram

3. Hashtag it with #chicagollage for a possible feature on the @chicagocollagecommunity page

✂️ Everyone is invited to join. Each participant can set their own goals. For example, you can choose your favorite prompt and just work on that one for the whole week. We started the Chicago Collage Community to be connected with those around us, and that is what Chicagollage is about: community, inspiration, creativity, and cut & pastes.

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