Saturday, October 21, 2006

Metropolitan travels

Lately, I haven’t had much exciting to write about. Is it because of my changing definition of “exciting”?

I doubt it.

I’ve barely pushed my bike around at all; only once to work, plus a few short trips. Instead, I’ve needed to be pulled around by my car for 3 work days out of five. I say “needed” because I’m covering huge distances around the metropolitan area, and I like my job. I don’t expect it to last long.

The traffic jams on the major highways are unbelievable sometimes. I'm glad it's a rare occurence for me to see them. I can't understand how people choose to spend hours there every day.

At least on the weekends, I’m getting outside. Last weekend I rode down to meet up with the fine people from Human Powered Vehicles Toronto (we’re working on a new name, albeit slowly). It’s always a fun time, and anyone who likes to eat, drink and/or talk about anything bike related is welcome to join us.

On the way there, I passed one cyclist towing around a trailer with a huge laundry sink. The sink obviously wasn’t enough of a challenge for him because he had stacked all kinds of other stuff on top and in front.

Then I pulled up to a red light where a guy collecting money from passers-by asked me if I wanted to buy his bike. He said it was a birthday gift from his friend. “It’s a really nice bike, but it’s too small for me.” It was a mid sized hybrid bike and he was a mid sized guy. I guess I could have explained to him how to adjust his seat height, but I wasn’t sure my time would have been well spent.

After I reached a bike lane on College Street, I got distracted watching the way a guy on a fixie was pedaling. He was approaching a red light and was sort of hopping his rear wheel up and down. I was dazzled trying to figure out how this affected his pedaling and if it was for any particular purpose. I snapped out of it when I realized that I had just passed a car that was stopped in the rightmost-car-lane with its right turn signal on. Not so smart, I thought to myself.

Tomorrow, I’m riding downtown with a friend of mine. We’re meeting up with one more person to go watch a radio show be recorded. The show is Go. I'm sure it'll be exciting since those people on Oprah always look like they're having a good time. Although I think they're a little drunk from the anticipation of being given a new car or house.

I was talking to my cousin recently about language. He mentioned the roots of the word “Metropolis” and the modern words connected. Here’s my summary -->

Darren J 10/21/2006 12:50:00 a.m.


I do the back wheel jumping for 2 reasons:

1) if you aren't stopped yet it is easier to stop pedaling the back wheel while it is in the air.
2) it is easier to do a track stand with the pedals level with the ground, so if you want to inch forward, you can skip, rotate the pedals backwards a bit, and then inch forward until the pedals are approximately level again.

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