Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Monday, May 23, 2011
Saturday, May 21, 2011
Invite a motorist for a bike ride through your city and you’ll be cycling with an urbanist by the end of the day. Even the most eloquent of lectures about livable cities and sustainable design can’t compete with the experience from atop a bicycle saddle.
“These cars are going way too fast,” they may mutter beneath their breath.
“How are we supposed to get across the highway?”
“Wow, look at that cathedral! I didn’t know that was there.”
“I didn’t realize there were so many vacant lots in this part of town.”
“Hey, let’s stop at this cafe for a drink.”
Suddenly livability isn’t an abstract concept, it’s an experience. Human scale, connectivity, land use efficiency, urban fabric, complete streets… all the codewords, catchphrases, and academic jargon can be tossed out the window because now they are one synthesized moment of appreciation. Bicycles matter because they are a catalyst of understanding - become hooked on the thrill of cycling, and everything else follows. Now a new freeway isn’t a convenience but an impediment. Mixed-use development isn’t a threat to privacy but an opportunity for community. And maybe, just maybe, car-free living will eventually be seen not as restrictive, but as a door to newfound freedom.Of course there is this flip side as so eloquently stated by our own George McGrath:
Thursday, May 19, 2011
In the parking lot where we started was a guy driving a car multiply placarded with warnings of the End of the World. Like there isn't anyone who doesn't know that's the day after tomorrow. Duh. Wanted to get a picture, but he drove his sedan/mobile billboard through the crowd in a fashion reminiscent of the wraith-like angels which figured prominently in the resolution of Raiders of the Lost Ark. I averted my eyes.
After a great dinner, Sarah and I visited the falls before our ride up the hill. Incredible. Couldn't help but think about the prophecy in the Book of Revelation "Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates."
Yes, standing on the bridge, I was a little afraidy. Prophecy fulfilled. Again.
My nephew and others have RSVPd to a Post-Rapture Looting Face Book Event, in case any of you Left Behinders are interested, you may want to do the same. You can find this here.
See you on the other side!!
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Monday, May 16, 2011
My last assignment found me at a station only a couple of blocks from home. So, biking to work was out. But that was then...
I kicked off Bike to Work Week traveling to my new interim station, which is about nine miles (I think) away from home. I am embarrassed to say this is my longest bike ride of the year, at least with the Xtracycle. Still a very nice ride.
The artwork at Station 17, off of Indian Trails, is interesting. The public entrance/exit of the station empties out into a park festooned with wacky hydrants.
Hope you get to bike to a new place this week!
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Monday, May 09, 2011
Thursday, May 05, 2011
My daughter-in-law Sarah works at Diva's next to Spoke N Sport in the Globe Building (Division and Main). She does all the hair stuff. And she's really good at what she does.
Yes, she cuts my hair, God love her. My pate is really not resume fodder material, yet she soldiers on.
I digress. During the month of May, Sarah is taking ten percent off what she usually charges if you ride your bike in. You can park it at the bike rack in back or bring it right in to the shop. Your choice. Oh, and if you mention you read about this on my blog, she's taking another five percent off - 15% all together.
Sarah has a spoke card for your bike too. Plus, you can use it as a beer coaster. I've seen it done. Here's what they look like:
I love Sarah. Not just because she is married to my son, but she is also one of the coolest, smartest, nicest people you will ever meet. More important for those of you who still have hair, Sarah does great work.
If you're interested, her number is 869-9775. If you're reading this from out of town and you are on a cross-country cycling tour, preface the aforementioned number with the much coveted 509.
Sarah has a coworker who will make the same deal with nails (finger, toe).
Tuesday, May 03, 2011
Sarah did really well too, so did Ike who kinda jogged it this year. Aidan slept in like a champ.
The end of the race was a big party - a blast. For all the Bloomsday haters (you know you are out there), it's worth coming to the finish line and the park just for the party.
Sarah and I cleaned up and had brunch and beer which was quite delicious, I must say (channeling Ed Grimley).
I have to admit I am still feeling really wiped out, sore and that my brain is not firing on all cylinders yet.
The really cool thing is I can start riding my bicycle in earnest again. I haven't been on any fun rides, other than commuting, this year. And I haven't even been doing that since moving to my neighborhood station for a month. It is only about 4 blocks away and I can walk there in seven minutes.
Swimming is full-speed ahead and I hope to dip my toe in the open water scene this year.