Yes, you read that right. I was biking, and
some poor, misguided soul, correction, a major assclown in a car slowed down to throw a firecracker at my head. But that wasn’t all. The firecracker throwing happened after a guy in a truck sped through the turn at a red light without yielding in front me, which could have resulted in major pain or death were I not such a defensive rider and excellent bike handler. But shortly thereafter I came upon his shop where his loose barking dogs came at me. Usually my evening bike rides aren’t as eventful. This one saved all the excitement until the last 20 minutes. Let’s go to my Strava description.
There’s a poem I can’t find with a line I like that goes something like this: “The day makes promises but the night keeps secrets.” Hell, maybe I wrote that. For the last almost three years since I was liberated from a job through no fault of my own — “restructuring,” they called it — my open secret is that I’ve gravitated towards staying up late. Truth is, I’ve always been drawn toward the still, small hours. Ever since I was made to go to bed at 8 or 9 as a kid whilst the adults stayed up to play music or cards or just talk, I’ve felt like most of the cool shit in life happens after dark. Movies and television support this notion. And I’ve become something of a regular rider of bicycles at night to avoid the heat in Texas. So here are some of my thoughts on this subject.
Sitting at my keyboard
wondering what to type
college friend emails from India
she ain't got no Skype
Once did yoga on her lawn
sun-drenched shorts of orange
light dappled her auburn hair
nothing rhymes with orange
I've no right to write poetry
just a simple bike ridin' dude
but who says I can't rhyme
and speak of versimilitude?
Barely rode my bike this week
cuz of my damn temp job
gotta pay the man rent, man
or land on the street, a slob
Have you heard the news today?
oh boy, every day a new doozy
while the tyrant rants and sycophants blather
I'd really rather just take another snooze, see?
It's sunny out there but pitch dark inside
seconds, minutes, hours pass relentlessly
time's on no one's side but its own
never ever can shake this baby called ennui
Can't get no satisfaction, though I try sometimes
through time and space I move this body of girth
endless campaign, killer virus, stock market crash
Antartica's melting; not to worry, people of Earth!
Don't worry, be happy, this too shall pass
worst form of government, 'cept all the rest - democracy
real Americans do retail therapy, Netflix and chill
problem is telling truth from lies, what's real from hypocrisy
Honesty is hardly ever heard, word to your muthah
zone out to your jams, take your medicine and sleep
put on a happy face, fear not, and be of good cheer
might as well jump to conclusions and take a faithful leap
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Sure. Will it be any good? I don’t know. When I recently wrote about writer’s block because I wasn’t sure what to write about, I got some compliments. Most days these posts take a couple of hours, and that’s just too much. Why so long? Thinking of an idea, maybe doing some research, which can lead down some rabbit holes, then there’s the writing, proofreading and editing, adding photos and links. It adds up. As The Dude said, you can call him “El Duderino, if you’re not into that whole brevity thing.” But being brief is all the rage these days with our short attention spans. So, here goes. That’s 4 minutes and 115 words.
My first time at Malvern Books, a small independent store in Austin, Texas, was exactly what I expected and yet wholly surprising. The expected part was that people would come to hear the author and the poet, there’d be snacks before and Q & A plus schmoozing after. One Page Salon creator and host Owen Egerton had announced the reading of his good friend Walter Moore, who also read a page earlier in the week. When I bicycled over to the site formerly adjacent to Vulcan Video, I was greeted outside the door by Owen. He took a moment from his conversation with the smoking guest poet to smile at me. I thought he was opening the door but instead gave me a big hug. Sorpresa numero uno.
This blog is usually about my bicycling journey, including the people, places and things I see and thoughts I think while cycling. It’s also about writing my book and blog, creativity, and the occasional movie or book review or political observations. This post is about the Moontower Comedy Festival. I missed out last year and decided I could use a few more laughs plus I didn’t have enough t-shirts (just kidding on the latter). But after working for South by Southwest for two years, and seeing a good bit of the comedy which wasn’t many shows, I signed up for the much smaller, comedy-only festival. So far I’ve seen two headliners and it’s barely begun. Here are some thoughts about these shows.
I’ve mentioned bike products that I use and like before, but today you’re in luck: I’m starting a new feature here on A Dude Abikes: A Dude Abikes Likes. (Trademark pending.) Pretty catchy, right? Today I picked a lock… up, from the Bicycle Sport Shop Guadalupe location (formerly Ozone Bikes). It’s made by ABUS, Security Tech Germany, and if you have something you need to secure, this is a very good one. (NOTE: This is not a sponsored post. But hey, ABUS, if you like my post, email A Dude, and we’ll talk!) Please click on through to read my mini-review.
Like Steve Martin as Navin Johnson in the great 1979 movie The Jerk exclaimed gleefully, “The new phone books are here! The new phone books are here!” While not jumping up and down, I was similarly enthused. My membership to the League of American Bicyclists arrived in the mail. Who are they? What are they about? Are there any extraordinary gentlemen and copious amounts of Sean Connery’s beard involved? Why did I join? These are the burning questions I was yearning to be learning the answers to, as I’m sure you want to know as well. Well, A Dude Abikes is here to share them with you. It’s free of charge except for the time you spend reading, and you do have to pay some attention. I hope you’ll jump at the chance to go past the button for Continue Reading. Continue reading
Bicycling is a violent sport. I don’t mean falling off, crashing into trees or getting hit by cars. (That stuff also happens.) I mean in the sense that, depending on how you ride, you are punishing your body in some form or fashion. This is true of most physical activities and sports. But when you go that extra mile, and push yourself beyond your comfort level, you are into suffering, pain and yes, violence. The human body is quite resilient and can usually handle what an athlete (in my case, fathlete) throws at it, and it will eventually recover. Tonight was one of those times where I was challenged quite a lot, and on a bad road, I was eventually dropped. But the greater the challenge, the more one learns about oneself. Tonight’s unexpected group ride (my third in about as many weeks!) was a prime example. Come with me on this hairy, scary ride! Continue reading at: https://wp.me/p75hY4-1JT
Well, apparently the hordes have spoken, and there is support for me to ride this event, and then some! It will be my third Mamma Jamma Ride. n fact, two generous souls even put in for the whole minimum amount of $300. It’s all for a good cause, to help women in my area (Central Texas, USA), survive and thrive after a diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer. I’ve also raised $100 for my registration and bike(s) repair and had help from friends and two bike shops. I say bikes, because I don’t even know which one I’ll ride yet! So there’s lots to do and not much time, but below are a few more details of what it’s like doing a charity ride. And a way for you to donate if you can.