Chicago Tribune Journalist
Mike Conklin is a career journalist who has been with the Chicago Tribune for over 35 years. During that time he has worked as a beat reporter, was a daily columnist for 11 years covering sports then writing the former INC column, served as co-editor for sports, and is currently a general assignment feature writer in the Tempo section. He has a B.A. in political science from Cornell College in Iowa and an M.A. in urban studies from Chicago’s Loyola University.
Mr. Conklin is currently an adjunct professor in DePaul University's Communications Department. He has also taught at the University of Illinois-Chicago. He is a Fellow in Loyola's Chicago Studies Program. He’s appeared as a part-time correspondent for FOX-TV, WGN-TV, CLTV and is a frequent WTTW-TV "Week in Review" panelist.
A serious bike enthusiast and co-founder of the Chicago Urban Bicycling Society Mr. Conklin recently completed a 500 mile trip across Iowa after riding 900 miles during training from May-July. In the Sunday Aug. 14 Q Section of the Tribune he wrote:
I've become a helmet nag. After two bike accidents when wearing one prevented more serious injuries, it's hard not to be a believer.
So I've developed this little routine: When I'm on one of my routes and see some biker coming at me without one, I tap mine with my knuckles and smile a second or two.
This summer I've seen more and more families on their bicycles, but I've also seen a lot of this: the kids wearing helmets and Mom or Dad without one. What's that?
The other day when a helmet-less father leading his helmeted string of kids approached me on the trail, I blurted out to the last child in the procession: "Ask your dad where's his helmet."
None of my business? Of course, but I'd love to have been there to hear Dad's explanation if the question was put to him.
If you want to read other columns they are available in various online locations. For a take on some of the laws in the city’s 1899 Municipal Code see “There Oughta Be a Law ... And If you Look at the City Code, There Probably Is” Chicago Tribune, Dec.7, 1999, Sports Section, page 1.