Saturday, March 01, 2008

OBC Meeting Sunday

The Oklahoma Bicycling Coalition will meet in Stillwater tomorrow at 1PM in the Parks and Recreation building at 315 9th Street. It looks to be a contentious meeting. I won't go into details regarding the conflict, but suffice it to say that this could be a make-or-break event for OBC. I've been entangled in it and it's eaten up far too much of my time. There's enormous temptation to simply walk away from it all, as OBC loses its focus and becomes something other than a bicycling education organization.

Like so many small groups, there's a core of people willing to devote their time to furthering their goals. The vast majority of members contribute dues, thereby giving essential support so the 'worker bees' can pursue common goals, yet those members do little else. Again, that's the nature of small groups. OBC is no different. But when that core group is divided, the whole coalition suffers.

As an aside, I once belonged to a club whose new president decided that every member would be handed a task to complete before each meeting. By the third meeting, no one showed up. The club promptly folded. The lesson is that members vote with their dues if they agree with the club's focus, and they vote with their feet if they do not.

Forgive me for being down-hearted. Some good people have put in a tremendous effort in trying to make OBC a success. I'm depressed that it may all come to an end and all that work will have been wasted. The factionalism, regionalism, and infighting may have created too much animosity for any of us to overcome. This is a disservice to Oklahoma cyclists who clearly deserve better.

I'll undoubtedly write more about this after the meeting tomorrow.



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