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My NYC Biking Story: Sarinya Srisakul

Today we launch a new series in honor of Bike Month. "My NYC Biking Stories," comprises up to ten short vignettes on people who ride in New York City. Our first profile is on Sarinya Srisakul, the city’s first female Asian-American firefighter. She is also vegan, and one of the 31 female firefighters in the nation's largest fire department of almost 11,000 members. She loves commuting on her bike from Elmhurst, Queens to work at Engine 5 in the East Village. Take 90 seconds and check out our first bike month profile.


Sarinya Srisakul:  [00.11] My commute is about ten miles from Elmhurst Queens to the East Village to my firehouse, Engine 5.  I love riding a bike, it’s a great way to stay in shape and it’s a great way to see the world.  It’s faster than taking the subway, it’s faster than driving.  It’s just the best way to get around.  Not that long ago, in 2000, I was living in Brooklyn and all my friends rode bikes, and I didn’t.  My friends who rode bikes just got there a lot faster.  And it was the first time I rode a bike as an adult and I rode it from there to the Lower East Side, but that was like a really big thing for me, which is ride my bike to another borough.  I love that nowadays that people are getting out there more, like green is in now and so a lot of people are biking more.  My best advice to people is if you want respect out there on the road, you have to give respect, give respect to pedestrians, give respect to other cyclists, give respect to cars.  I ride my bike to details, when I get detailed out to other fire houses, I carry all my gear with me and people think it’s absolutely nuts.  It’s a good thing I really don’t care what people think, otherwise I wouldn’t be a fire-fighter either.   


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  • http://inspiredcyclist.wordpress.com/ maureen

    She's an inspiration!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hart-Noecker/100001623066825 Hart Noecker

    "I'm at the fire, where are you guys?!"

  • Markymark

    Favorite movie of all time, "I Heart Huckabees". She's great and proof you don't need a car.

  • Clarence Eckerson Jr.

    Geeez, there is so much love for this video on Facebook and Twitter, but all those comments are on those sites. Wish I could make them instantly appear here. But here are a few:

    "Beautifully done, Elizabeth! Some of the shots were stunning. I like Sarinya and I've only known her for 90 seconds! Give respect. Amen. :-)"

    "That is awesome. Just thinking yesterday how nice it is to have a bike month instead of the bike week we had when I first started at DCP in 2000."

    "A great tribute to riding in NYC"

  • Anonymous

    I love this video!

  • Ying Sirima

    Cool! That's far.. But bikable :) go Sarinya go!!

  • Jami

    Nice interview.

  • Val K


  • http://profiles.google.com/andy.sfbike Andy Thornley

    Really beautiful -- thank you, Elizabeth and Streetfilms! Pleased to meet you, Sarinya! Happy Bike Month everybody!

  • Edpino

    "You want respect give respect" Great message for Bike Month!

  • Kelly Marybeth

    Loved her! I'm passing this along to my cousin firefighter in Greenpoint!

  • Cullen

    I'm glad that her biking is infectious!

  • Sarinya Srisakul

    Thanks for all the love, people! I really am grateful!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Poom-Siraprapasiri/587382175 Poom Siraprapasiri

    We'll share this video in our upcoming bike movie event in Bangkok Thailand. Hopefully one day Bangkok will become more bike-friendly!

  • max whetstine

    Sarinya, you are so wonderful! This makes me want to bike in nyc right now!

  • Anonymous

    That's wonderful!

  • Luwandia

    this is awesome!!! I heart bikes and bikers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jeff.putterman Jeff Putterman

    I am just back from Copenhagen, and Sarinya is absolutely right: give respect and get respect.  There, unlike in this country, bikes, cars, and pedestrians all have their own dedicated lanes, with traffic lights.  Everyone respects everyone else, and while the pace is slower than in this city, there is nothing wrong with smelling the roses along your way.

  • Ishani Mehta

    Dear Elizabeth Press
    Thanks for making such lovely videos
    I am on the verge of making a video for biking in Portland
    Is there some way to get in touch with you to discuss some ideas and processes
    Ishani Mehta
    Metro, Portland, OR

  • http://buysteroidsuk.blog.co.uk/ buy steroids uk

    biking on nyc's roads is pretty dangerous.

  • Z Player

    Sarinya your an inspiration! Thanks for sharing your bicycle story. Keep calm and ride on!