38 tagged with #pedaling

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Street Symphonic

My front rim sings a close E from the vibrations of the new brake pads scrubbing friction into them. As I pull my weight off the frame, the more slides up to a flat F. I listen to songs in my head that make use of these two notes, and the clacking of my brake levers offers a percussion line.

The beeping of the walk sign clashes with the quiet melody line, and the symphony becomes one of discord. Car suspensions rattle over sinkholes formed through a rough winter, but still I hold on to that single high E as I scrub my speed so I can wiggle through the traffic. I'm humming a song that weaves together noises no one else understands, and the group waiting for the bus (a staccato C chirping from its pumping brakes) gives me a set of strange looks.

I once dreamt I sat at a piano and composed an entire opera at once, going on to bring instruments out of the earth to play it for me, and when I awoke, I tried desperately to scribble down the lines. Dreams are never sensible enough for such a thing to work.

28 March 2014 16:08


I could not figure out what they were for a long time. During dusk, little specks that struck me softly in the face, cool but not wet, stinging my eyes when I was unlucky. After nightfall, preceded by tiny flashes of light, a small twinkle that looked as trivial as the impact hit.

It wasn't until I inhaled one and remembered that bitter, crinkling feeling in the back of my throat that I remembered biking through clouds of insects. They're just as anxious for the warm weather as I am.

11 March 2014 21:15

Errandonnee 7-12

Today's Errandonnee trip brought to you by: fuck, I didn't think it was going to start snowing again; why ride a mile to the grocery store when I can ride twelve miles to an identical grocery store; and, bike shop bro don't make fun of my beater.

7. Lunch

For lunch, I brought a jar of rice and beans to my office to use the staff microwave, then biked it over to the park to eat it. Winter bike gloves make wonderful ad-hoc oven mitts.

8. Library

I tried valiantly to finish reading Wolf Totem so I could return it. I did not, so I had to drag that book through the rest of my errands.

9. Bike Shop

Due to a failed bike shop run yesterday, I had to do another one today. I should mount a spare saddle to my rack as my passenger seat.

10. Grocery Store

There are no sane bike lockup places at the Waterfront, and I cannot bike faster than a train.

11. Coffee

While having a cup of hot chocolate, I popped off my boots because my feet were super sweaty. Hiking boots are really not the best for long bike rides.

12. Non-Grocery Store

It started snowing and I still had about three miles of mileage-padding. Errandonneeuring is funny like that.

Total trip mileage: 17.2

Time elapsed (from start of first task): 29 hours

This was an interesting endeavor; usually, I am so opposed to taking inefficient routes that I'll suffer biking through incredibly unfriendly road segments just to avoid adding an extra quarter mile to my day.

08 March 2014 21:20

Errandonnee 1-6

I'm participating in Errandonnee 2014, with the additional self-imposed restraint of completing it in 48 hours. Here's the report for yesterday:

1: Health

Went bouldering. As it turns out, bouldering with a sinus headache blows.

2: Bike Shop

Went to get a new chain. The shop is apparently closed for inventory all week.

3: Dinner

Got spontaneously brought home for dinner by a friend. Said friend makes delicious meatballs.

4: Wildcard

Checked my PO box. I have not gotten mail addressed to me since the last time I checked my PO box.

5: Coffee

Grabbed a cappuccino and drew the furniture in the coffee shop. Reconnected with a pen I haven't used for drawing in years.

6: Health

Went to the bar for a pint. Nitro IPAs are delicious.

Total trip mileage: 13.2

08 March 2014 13:03

A Compilation

"You bikepacking or something?" shouted the runner as we crossed paths.

"No, dude, just running a shit ton of errands." I had climbing shoes sticking out of the side of my pack, and my jacket was rolled up and strapped on top. Maybe he could smell the fruit getting crushed under the books that I hadn't yet gotten around to reading.

"You can do it!" cheered the girl blasting down the hill in the opposite lane. I'd shouted the same thing at cyclists muscling their way uphill, too, and always wondered if it was ever appreciated.

"Yeah, working on it," I returned, and I could hear her shouting encouraging noises even as I crested the top.

It's one beautiful day after another long string of rough late-winter days, and how can anyone turn down friendly hollers across the street? We're all humans together.

07 March 2014 21:58

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