I love bicycles. A lot. I lived in Davis for four years, which is in a town that has more bikes than people.


This is Epona, my faithful steed since 2009. We’ve been on a lot of adventures lately, including our first metric century (that’s 100 kilometers!) two weeks ago. Three other recent adventures in cycling (one negative, two positive) in the last 48 hours:


Yesterday, while having a friendly conversation about whatever, someone starting saying things like “cyclists are a hazard to themselves and everyone else on the road” and “there should be one day a year where it’s open season on cyclists, especially in San Francisco.” This person began describing picking off cyclists one by one, at which point I got a little upset and said “hey, those are my people!”

Another person in the conversation replied: “oh, we’re not talking about you. we’re talking about other cyclists,” then went on to say that I’m the kind of cyclist who obeys traffic laws and sticks to roads designed for cyclists and so on.

I mean, I do stop at the majority of stop signs and I usually use hand signals and generally only ride on paths and dedicated lanes. But these people have never seen me ride a bike, so how could they know that? I also don’t think they quite understood the kinship and sense of community I feel with all cyclists.

I know this can’t begin to compare with the hate that other groups get (#NotAllMen, #YesAllWomen, #BlackLivesMatter, etc.), but I’d really like to say #NotAllCyclists are a danger to themselves and others. Most of us are just trying to get into shape and reduce our carbon footprint.

“You’re a beast!”

Also yesterday: I was carrying my bike up the stairs at the light rail station. My bike is light, so it was no big deal. The guy behind me (also carrying a bike) said “You’re a beast!” and then we had a lovely little conversation about bikes and trains and Pokemon Go and then we got on our bikes and parted ways. It made me feel strong and like I made a positive, if brief, connection with a fellow human being.

Related: during my 100km ride a few weeks ago, a random passerby saw me struggling and shouted “It gets easier, right?” I said “Eventually!” That little bit of encouragement got me through a few more miles.

People should complement each other more. A little human interaction can go a long way.

The Silicon Valley Unicycle Group

I have a fond memory of my first day of college at UC Davis: a guy, wearing a backpack and riding a unicycle through between-class rush hour traffic, while eating cake.

Today I tried riding a unicycle for the first time. While I was out on my bike, I accidentally stumbled upon the Silicon Valley Unicycle Group. A whole group of people just learning to ride unicycles together! They were very friendly and even adjusted one of their unicycles to my height and gave me some pointers.

Important lesson: your sense of balance from bicycling does not carry over to unicycling. It’s a whole different beast.

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