Like many New Yorkers, Patrick Clayton has things to do. You don’t end up in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood after 16 years by twiddling your thumbs.
As luck would have it, cycling has long been one of those priorities – this despite living in the most densely populated borough in the United States. “I love the access to all parts of the city,” he tells me when I ask what he enjoys most about cycling here.
Hey, 67,000 people per square mile has its upsides.
So when an opportunity arose to share both his city and his bikes with out-of-towners, it didn’t take Patrick long to get on board. “I had bought a second bike when I was participating in a 300-mile ride,” he says. “So I ended up with two and didn’t really want to get rid of either.” Which is where the concept of bike sharing comes in.
Experience the Personal Side of Manhattan Bike Sharing:
In the three years since he’s listed his rides on Spinlister, Patrick has helped out dozens of cyclists from all over the world. He points to New York’s easily-navigable bike lanes as a reason the city is so approachable, saying that “as long as you’re alert and aware, and have a plan, you’ll be fine.” When I ask him what piece of advice he most often gives to newcomers, there’s both a note of levity and honesty in his response:
“Don’t leave your bike unattended.” This is New York, after all.
But it’s not all seriousness and practicality. There’s a human element to the platform that allows people to connect around a shared interest and, as Patrick tells me, it’s one that’s played a very real role in his Spinlister experience.
“Everyone on the app seems to be responsible, nice people,” he says. “I’ve gotten to be great friends with a guy from Paris who rented my bike two years ago. I’m actually going to visit him this summer.”
There’s that crazy schedule again. What else would you expect from a cyclist in the City That Never Sleeps? As if to drive the rhetorical question home, Patrick says before signing off “I’m a busy person – Spinlister makes lending my bike super easy.”
It’s the kind of honest, straight-to-the-point review New Yorkers are known for – and we’ll take that any day.