- Trading Post
Friday, November 21, 2014
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Oftentimes when I post pictures of places I cycle through, people will comment on how beautiful the landscape is and how inspiring it must be to ride there. I got these reactions when I wrote the blog from New England, as well as (for those who remember the earlier years) from Austria. And I get them even more so now that I live in Ireland.
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Some of the novelty had to do with the left-handed traffic flow here. I did not expect for this to be problematic, as I have no trouble at all switching into left-hand mode when riding my bicycle. What I didn't anticipate was the difference in the visuo-spatial experience of operating a right-hand drive car. It seems that over the years I drove in the past, my brain must have grown accustomed to relying on certain markers on the road in relation to the contours of the car's front end in determining my road position.
Saturday, October 25, 2014
Imagine for a moment that, after drooling over images of beautiful bikes of an evening, as is your custom, you fall into a deep slumber and begin to dream. And in this dream, you are walking though a lush, beautiful forest. Exotic in its flora, this is not any forest you are familiar with. All manner of palms and giant ferns thrive in its humid depths, as flowering vines curl and twist overhead, their blossoms releasing bittersweet musks.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
appreciate early two-wheeled machines. But oftentimes they are just too far removed from the bicycle as we know it today, for them to register in my brain as bikes and excite me on the same tactile, visceral level.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Last year I was away from Northern Ireland for most of October. And as far as Autumn scenery, I'd assumed I wasn't missing much. From having lived in England in my 20s, I remember this time of the year being rather bland. As summer came to an end, at some point the leaves would start to change from green to a sad yellowish brown, promptly shriveling in the process and disappearing altogether soon after. I assumed it'd be more or less the same over here and did not harbour expectations of remarkable foliage. But oh how wrong I was!
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
When I ride a pannier-laden commuter bike, it is not uncommon for one side to be bulging while the other sits nearly empty. This is not because I can't be bothered to distribute the weight evenly, but because one of the panniers houses my enormous photo/laptop bag and I don't always have anything to put on the other side to compensate. I've cycled with this type of uneven rear load pretty much the entire time I've owned bicycles with rear racks. In the past, I've usually had a briefcase-type pannier clipped to one side of the rack, with nothing on the other, which is really no different from having unevenly loaded double panniers. But it's when I switched to the latter system that observers really began to notice. Over the past month in particular, I've received quite a few questions and concerned comments about the issue! These tend to fall into one of two categories: (1) Does the weight not pull to the side and cause handling issues? and (2) Isn't the uneven load bad for the bicycle frame?
Sunday, October 12, 2014
Oh where to begin. Well, let me try it this way. During my last stay in Boston, my friend Chris Kostman came over to visit from LA and we rode 100 miles together on a tandem bicycle. Though I know Chris through the bicycle industry (he is a race organiser, ultra cyclist, and owner of AdventureCORPS), prior to this visit we had never actually cycled together, spending our time instead walking the stuffy hallways of bike show venues.