This is my fifth annual post about being car-free since 1/25/2005. Technically I’m car-light, since I drove borrowed cars for a job for part of last summer also visited relatives over the holidays. On the other hand, I managed my best year ever combined and walking and biking – 5,633 miles.
I did that while on a bike that has 67% fewer gears and is 25% heavier steel (Sophie) than my old aluminum steed (Sookie). I’m no Greta Thunberg, but I do think reducing car use is a good thing. Not everyone can do it, but some people might be able to try it. That’s all I’m saying. Well, in this paragraph at least.
Tonight as I was out dutifully putting in some miles to finish up my yearly goal, I encountered a man stopped in East Austin, near downtown. He was working on his bicycle, and observing the unwritten code of bike riders, I stopped to ask if I might help. He had a screw driver and was adjusting his rear reflector while enjoying an adult beverage. He was also worried about his front light, which was red (illegal). There wasn’t much I could do, but we chatted a bit. He was friendly, perhaps due to the aforementioned drink. He introduced himself as Tommy, I replied with my name, and he proferred an ungloved hand for me to shake in the cool temperatures. He also said that he is homeless. It got me thinking about the large number of people who ride bikes as transportation, but are not connected with bicycle advocacy organizations. So here are a few thoughts. Continue reading →
It was a bit humid but not too hot for an August evening in Austin. With warm temperatures and lightning illuminating the night sky and holding the possibility of much-desired rain, I went to a nearby house for a long-standing Friday night gathering. The Green Man Coffee House is a rotating, rag-tag collection of friends, co-workers and neighbors. They bring snacks and drinks, sit around and talk around the back porch, with music playing in the background, and the occasional mosquito or firefly. A dozen or so mostly grey-haired folks were there, some came, others went. I had watermelon and cantaloupe, grapefruit mineral water and popcorn. Jethro Tull tooted away. Cue the crickets, lemonade and mellow vibes, and you can imagine yourself there with us. Continue reading →
Awesome news! After two years and 10,000 miles of bicycle-riding documented on Strava (and before that, many thousands more), your friendly neighborhood A Dude Abikes has been featured in a story mentioned on the front page and then appearing on D1 of the Lifestyles section. It is titled “Can a Regular Guy Pedal 10,000 Miles in Two Years? This Dude Did.” Read the full story in the Austin American-Statesman.
The article is alot longer than I expected, with photos too. Cool!