This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

My rides don't happen

The NYC Bike Snob has written another book, The Enlightened Cyclist .I was pleased to read it the other day, it's available from Amazon if you live in the wilderness outside major metro areas where he is not doing a signing tour.
The hard copy is available by snail mail or you can get it cheaper for $10 as a digital download like I did.
The cover looks like this when you get it off the shelf of the cloud.
But it turns itself around quite nicely when you pick up your reading device.
As I read and enjoyed what I can only describe as his  talent for exuberantly humorous  irrelevance,
 I began to wonder why, or to whom he wrote this.
He begins with a lengthy description of human movement over the course of history demarcated on the back of the "great Dachsund of Time."  From reading his blog I knew he was full of it, but couldn't help but pity his naivete.   This was pure bullshit since everybody in Michigan knows for a fact that humankind is being escorted over the cosmos on the back of a giant turtle.  Anybody who believes otherwise probably assumes the earth is round and pan galactic gargleblasters are imaginary.
I read on with my towel draped over my shoulder and had to agree that there are but two really significant periods of history: "back in the day" and "right about now."
"Back in the day" is probably best defined as what we used to know or heard our parents talk about.
"Right about now" is....well that touchy feely place we're sitting in, I like that place.
He carries on a very extensive discussion of commuting in all it's forms with his sarcastically anecdotal writing style which again strains the edges of reality.
Reading him is like playing chess on LSD,we know there's a point, don't we?
The experience left me wondering why he was preaching to the choir?  
Non cyclists are not going to read this, and surely we all understand the logic and culture of cycling.
But when I reached the chapter covering the reasons for not riding, I realized that I was the choir and nearly every cyclist I know should read this.
The reason for not riding is very simple, he is talking about using a bike for transportation.
Who would do that? That is the most foreign area of the sport that can exist for an American cyclist.
Using a bike for transportation is not even considered by those who believe the ride has to be downloadable with all vital statistics, or it just didn't happen.
Riding about for the fun of going somewhere, independent of steel cages and petrochemicals is inconceivable to Americans when talking about cycling.
Cycling is supposed to be a recreation where we show off our expensive equipment, dress up like superheroes and race around real fast a couple times a week with friends.
He is right on target when he talks of all the inane excuses cyclists have for not going anywhere on their bike.
If only there were bike lockers, showers, changing rooms and valets at all the malls, department stores, offices and restaurants it would seem reasonable to the American cyclist.
The Snob would change all that, and presents a pretty clear argument to move some people from the darkness into a realm of usefulness.
If some spandex hamsters read this book, a small ripple of  common sense will hit the cycling community.
Until then I will live on, deluding myself into thinking the 100-150  "junk miles" I ride each week
actually occurred. 


  1. I went on a "road ride" with a neighbor once. It was lame. Our destination was a distance... it didn't matter where it was so long as we went so far. We never once stopped... I was unwilling to run red lights and play frogger at a few major intersections so had to catch up... cause they don't wait. All the conversation was about cadence, speed, watts, etc. I was the only one interested in the occasional circling birds of prey or peek-a-boo views of Mt St Helens & Mt Hood. On top of that I got flack about my AHH being more a "toy" than a "machine" because it had/has fenders, racks, and bags. The ride was silliness disguised as a serious pursuit. And now I know that my "junk miles" are the gold.

  2. Amen to that. I just returned from Riv Rally East. Look for some posts the next couple of days. What a relief to ride with people who just like to ride.