Cycling Along The Way...

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Silver City, NM, United States
Riders of the wheel. Racers, Roadies, Mountain bikers, Touring cyclists, Commuters, and others. Diamond frames, recumbents, trikes, and more. Sharing a web of connections often misunderstood or unappreciated by those who don't ride. Herewith, my attempt to share some of the more rational thoughts that flit around inside my head while bicycling, knocking back a brew or three, or just thinking about life. Reviews of bicycles, gear, touring, and more, plus some unsolicited posts about people, politics, and philosophy. Other things, too. Me: retired, gave up my TV in 1988, avid cyclist, several cross country tours completed with more to come. Your thoughts?

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Theory Of Relativity

"I thought of that while riding my bicycle." ~ Albert Einstein on the Theory of Relativity

No, I'm not an expert on the theory of relativity. Just "relativity" as it relates to the bicycle. In looking over the entries I've made on this website over the past weeks, I have realized that what I've written has minimal merit to anyone but me, thus, got me thinking of "relativity". When I think of all the articles on bicycling or touring that I've skimmed over, taking only pieces of info that I considered "relevant" to me, and then look at all that I wrote...well, my belief is that most readers, whomever they may be, will do the same....take what seems worthwhile to them and totally disregard the rest. Rightfully so.

Bicycling or touring or whatever is just personal. Like a website, I guess. No one else can tell you how to ride, what to ride, what touring gear to use, etc., etc., blah, blah, blah...after all, it's just you on the bike not them.  Y'know?  When I look at what motivated me to buy, and use, what I have for touring, backpacking was the real source of almost all of my gear. Carrying that stuff on my back made me realize that if I was going to haul some piece of gear miles through the woods, it better be fekkin' worth it. Stuffing that same gear into panniers and attaching said panniers to my bicycle became bicycle touring.

My introduction to touring really came about, after backpacking, by going on weekend or week long bike rides with other cyclists and the SAG wagons carried all the gear. If we camped somewhere, others had carried the food/cooking gear and mostly did the cooking/cleaning up. We just ate like pigs, drank beer, went to sleep, to wake up the next day and repeat it all over again. Yes, it was lots of fun. Then I took the quantum leap and decided to ride my loaded touring bicycle from Alaska to Maine. For those who know me, this was probably not a shock. I do tend to do all or nothing. Still do. That trip was a real eye opener. 5000+ miles. All or nothing. I didn't really start out doing short rides or weekend touring rides self-contained. I bit off all that I could chew.

Getting started in bicycle touring doesn't have to be that dramatic. It was just me being me. No phones, no electronics, no high tech gear back then...just a credit card, traveler's checks, a phone card, me, my bike, my panniers filled with 1988, one of the top ten hottest summers on record in America. Nowadays, it's much different. Riders can be in contact or be followed every minute out on the road. Electronics will tell you where to turn, where's the food, where are the campgrounds, the motels, everything you need. Doesn't necessarily take the adventure out of the ride, but it has changed it up quite a bit. Try whatever gets you on the bike.

Ok, enough...or those same readers, if there are any, will skim over this shit just like they probably did the with the other shit I wrote. A tune to get out of here with...The Milk Carton Kids, reminiscent of early Simon & Garfunkel, doing an original tune, "Undress The World". Saw them perform live at the Opera House in Pinos Altos ( Penis Altos, as we fondly refer to it around these parts...). If you get the chance to see them live, don't miss'em.