Sometimes I think my mom was consulted on the laws passed here in Utah. I think she looked at me and my brothers and thought, “If they won’t obey me, maybe they will if it is a misdemeanor.” Maybe she had visions of being deputized and cuffing my hands behind my back rather than yanking me by the ear. 

This law in Utah feels like one my mom got passed. It is UT Code § 41-6a-1112 and it makes clear that when riding a bicycle or a moped, at least one hand needs to be on the handlebar at all times. 

I don’t know what the penalty is, probably a felony for that kind of mischief. Just be glad they don’t prosecute you on the federal level mister “look, mom”.

I had two things I wanted to accomplish with my bicycle, riding a wheelie, and cruising around with no hands. Depending on the bike, I could do a decent wheelie, but I became an expert at the free handlebar mode. 

I had a paper route growing up and it was drudgery. For those of you who are younger, the news used to be printed on paper and was delivered to your doorstep or dropped in a shrub or maybe the window well.  

Photo by Markus Spiske:
Photo by Markus Spiske:

I would slowly ride along the two-way highway where we lived. I had a red ten speed and I had to lean forward to reach the handlebar while the bag full of newspapers fell forward and pulled me down. This is why I became an expert at sitting straight with no hands. Crossing streets, on and off sidewalks, I would steer using gravity. 

I had no idea I was breaking the law. In fact, I may be the reason it was brought before the legislature in the first place. I did suffer my own penalty, though. Every once in a while, I would hit the sidewalk wrong and the front wheel would twist, sending me sprawling. So, that should make you feel better mom. 

Best places to retitre in Utah ranked the best places to retire in Utah, and the southern part of the state did very well.

More From Star 98