When a Job Gets in the Way of the Work of Writing

“I have one of two choices – stay in the post office and go crazy … or stay out here and play at writer and starve. I have decided to starve.

-Chatles Bukowski, from Jay Dougherty, Introduction to Charles Bukowski

The other day I wrote about my take on the perennial struggle that many writers and other creators of art face: how to pay the bills while making their stuff. Well, today, that arm wrestling came into stark relief as I reported for duty at my new, albeit temporary, job. As a result, I’m getting to this blog quite late, later than usual even. Aside from throwing a wrench into my schedule, and reducing my bicycling time, I still did my walking and yoga. But the job had some positive things about it, too. Maybe you’ll relate.

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Biking to Work and Working to Bike: A Broke Blogger’s Struggle with Art v. Commerce

Today I had the pleasure to make the virtual acquaintance of former Austinite, now Denver-area, soon to be Pittsburghian writer Lauren Modery. Her blog is Hipstercrite, and her latest post To Geoffrey Owens —Thank You on Behalf of Working Class Artists. It draws on the experience of former Cosby Show actor Geoffrey Owens, who was shamed, then praised, for having a “day job.”

Geoffrey Owens
Geoffrey Owens

What does any of that have to do with bicycles? Well, everything and nothing. Readers of this blog know that I can and have linked a bicycle to Mohandas Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and actor/director Tate Donovan, to chocolate, and to racism. (I’m still not sure but I’m really, REALLY hoping that it’s not racist to use the words chocolate and racism in the same sentence.)

The fact is, that work is for most people not in the 1% (like future ex-US President Tinyhands Orangehead), an inevitable part of life. A Dude is no exception. For almost a year, his work has been this blog and a book in progress, biking his ass off (though it’s still there), daily walking and yoga-ing, volunteering, among other things. But today, he rinally had to join the working class again and get the dreaded J-O-B. He rode there on his bike, of course.

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What’s Going On: My Life is Biking, and Biking is My Life

Today I took an intentional rest day off the bike, the first in 21 days. It rained alot, so I got a ride, took the bus, and got another ride. There was a doctor’s visit that was important to figure out an issue that has been affecting my quality of life. There’s my birthday on Thursday; for the last three years I have ridden my bike around one mile per year of life to get free stuff, so I’ll probably do that again. (Gmail me if you live in Austin and are interested in joining for all or part.) I’m spending time on Strava, giving kudos, making comments, letting people on flybys know that I write this blog. I spend a lot of time fundraising for the Mamma Jamma breast cancer ride, which led to another $150 in donations today. I did my yoga and walking as usual, to keep me limber for my riding. I’ve been thinking about the blog advice I got this weekend from a fellow cyclist. There were conversations with people about what’s going on with Bike Austin. (Short answer: transition. Again.) Writing this blog. And book. Etc.

So yeah, there’s a whole lotta biking stuff going on.

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3,000 Miles Biked in 3 Quarters of 2018: Pain & Rain, But I Did Not Train in Vain

October is the time when my birthday arrives, and I got myself an early present:  I met my (original) bicycling mileage goal for the year!  Actually, it was 2,600, for 50 miles per week, so I could cut my riding time in half and devote those hours to writing this blog and the book that is in progress.  As for the rather long and unwieldy title, it got longer when the Clash song came to mind (Annie Lennox version).  Alliteration appeals, apparently.  Despite a decent bit of discomfort and alot of precipitation, the work paid off.  I did the Mamma Jamma breast cancer ride, which was rewarding, and that might not have been possible without doing putting in more time.  So it’s been a good month, and year so far.  I delve a little into the statistics for those into such things. That’s you!

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I Raised $1,364 in Two Days for the Mamma Jamma, and I Haven’t Even Biked 65 Miles in the Rain and Wind Yet!

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.

Give here:  https://Fundraisers.MammaJammaRide.org/ADude-Abikes

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Eight Days a Week… Off the Bicycle: Viewing Setbacks Through a Buddhist Lens

It’s been eight days since I’ve ridden a bicycle.  Why?  Heat.  Illness.  Lastimas. Life.  (Lastimas is wounds or injuries in Spanish. So that spells H.I.L.L, doesn’t it?  I meant to.)  When thought of in this way, it’s another set of obstacles, another rise in the road to climb, something that tests you but also makes you stronger.  Part of me is relieved, and lucky to have use of a car.  Another part of me is pissed off that I’m losing whatever fitness and form I had.  Another is panicking that I may not get it back, or get back to it, or even be able bike at all without more injury or at least pain.  Breathing in deeply, I notice I am not riding my bicycle.  Breathing out, I notice that I am writing a blog post about not riding my bicycle. Continue reading

How It’s Going So Far in 2018 with the Biking, Blogging, Walking and Eating

So Far, So Good, But a Long Way to Go

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A Buddha statues at Aveda. But is that a chocolate glazed donut in front of him?

After a number of posts heavy with images, information and links, I think I’ll just write about how I’m doing with everything.  But first, a picture of a Buddha from Aveda Institute.  I got my second ever face treatment for only $21 for an hour.  Self-care is allowed whether you’re a cyclist like me or unable to do much if any physical exercise at all due to a chronic situation.  The massage and various products did make it feel better.  Whether it looks better is a matter of opinion. Continue reading