In the Summer of 2011, the Ovarian Psycos Bicycle Brigade had their very first meeting in the parking lot behind Corazon del Pueblo in Boyle Heights to brainstorm what an all-womyn bicycle brigade could mean for the LA Eastside, and the world. For this episode of MsRepresent: Behind the Face, a Fierce Woman, Ovas member, Alejandra Ocasio shares the collective’s history, challenges, sisterhood vision, Clitoral Mass, and all about their monthly Luna bike rides in and around Los Angeles, California.
Founded in the Summer of 2011 by Xela de La X AKA Cihuatl Ce and a group of a dozen other cihuatls, the Ovarian Psycles had their very first meeting in the parking lot behind Corazon del Pueblo in Boyle Heights to brainstorm what an all-womyn bicycle brigade could mean for the Eastside, and the world.
On their first ever Luna (full-moon) ride that same summer, the Ovarians experienced an accident that almost ended their short-lived life. Xela had an accident on the ride that landed her in the hospital with a cracked skull.
But the collective perservered, tending to Xela’s woulds and continuing to organize rides like the monthly all-womyn Luna ride and “Huevo Wednesdays” a ride that was open to non-womyn-ID’d people who wanted to ride with the Ovas. They soon found that these HW rides ended up being largely outnumbered by men, which some felt was counterproductive to their mission of not being like every other ride/cycling crew in LA.
“LA is characterized by car culture, and bike culture in LA is characterized by white dudes in Spandex. And that’s why the Ovarian Psycles exist.” -OPC mantra
For the past 3 years, the Ovarians, whose membership has changed various times, have been in a constant process or reinventing themselves to keep up with the needs of the times. This has included adopting a radical internal process, and set of ground rules inspired by groups like INCITE!, the Black Panther Party and many others. In addition, their rides continue to divulge into topics and spaces that may be considered by many as taboo or unimportant but that the mujeres know is vital to the survival of wombyn of color like the Sexual Health and Healing Ride or the recent Male Ally Ride.
For this work which some have called a revival of 3rd wave/3rd world feminism, the Ovarian Psycles have gained international recognition. They are proud to be part of a long line of womyn warriors fighting for the next 7 generations.