Our inaugural Urban Cyclist of the Week, and other nonsense

Trying to determine whether you good people would be better served today by news or nonsense, I’ve decided to flip a coin. Heads it’s news. Tails it’s nonsense.

[Flipping coin now …]

Yay! Nonsense it is! That’s good because it’s getting to be election season, and the more nonsense the better.

Let’s start off with a new feature: Urban Cyclist of the Week.

This guy appeared to be drinking an actual tall-boy as he cruised through the intersection of Olive and Broadway on his low-rider. And his shirt matches his frame, which in most cases might be no big deal, but in this case … Then there is the hat, the boots, the pocketed iPhone. All around, a summer evening the way it was meant to be.

And as you can see he appropriately takes the lane behind the minivan as he cools his parched throat.

I know, I should not be encouraging such behavior, tacitly condoning dangerous and illegal activities by publishing photographs in lighthearted admiration.

But if you’re going to be that way, you belong at a City Council meeting, not here.

* * *

What else have we? Let’s rummage around in the photo archives. Ah, yes. Do you ever find yourself walking around like this guy?

Or maybe like this:

We think this is a good sign — for the sake of “the cause.” It is quite acceptable in Eugene to walk around freely with one pant leg partly rolled up or to stand examining the chocolate bars in Kiva while remaining securely helmeted. You will not be harassed or even looked at funny.

* * *

Yes, now for the Notable Bike of the Week, spotted — as usual — outside the Eugene Public Library (a long time ago, judging by the fact they are just laying the foundation for the new LCC building):

Let’s move in a little closer:

Do you know what that is?

Closer still:

Gracious, that’s a gearing chart! It shows the distance traveled per pedal revolution as well as gear-inches for 27 different chainring/cog combinations. And it is carefully arranged from easiest gear at the top to hardest gear at the bottom.

We think this is a “teachable moment” so let’s pause for today’s edifying lesson in bicycle technology. Actually, I think there are four main lessons we can take away from this:

  1. If you are finding it too hard to pedal, you may shift to an easier gear.
  2. If you are finding it too easy to pedal, or if your little legs are spinning so fast you think they may soon fly off your body entirely, shift to a harder gear.
  3. If you have one on these charts mounted on your handlebars, and refer to it regularly on a ride to the library, you may have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
  4. If you can explain the difference between “distance/pedal revolution” and “gear inches” off the top of your head and regularly use the mathematical concept known as π during your bicycling adventures, you should probably crack open a tall boy.


4 thoughts on “Our inaugural Urban Cyclist of the Week, and other nonsense

  1. You win; you’ve had your 1st sighting of Wayde. He’s the natty fellow drinking the tall boy. Wayde is a local institution and also founder of the Bike Brigade. Your best chance of spotting him is to hang in the Whitaker, but you probably caught him on the way to Perk Espresso. The beer is probably to take edge off before he gets his caffeine buzz on…

    If you ever want to do interviews on eugenebicyclist.com, Wayde should be on your list.

  2. HA, Awesome Post. Were you just following this guy around taking pictures of him without him knowing? Your pictures always seem like “peephole” CCTV pictures. I’m gonna be looking over my shoulder to make sure there isn’t a guy following me around the store taking pictures!! Great post!

  3. Oh, that printout makes me smile.

    When I was 13 and got my first bike with gears (2 chainrings in the front, 6 – six! – in the rear), I read in some old English cycling book of my dad’s how you could calculate the gear ratios. I was/am a big nerd, so I did it. I was a different breed of nerd from the owner of the bike above, however — I did not type up and print the gear ratios. I memorized them.

    26 years later, I still have the same bike and the same two front chain rings. And I still remember: 1, 2, 3, 7, 4, 8, 5, 9, 10, 6, 11, 12. I’m pretty sure. There’s no way to check, since those original rear cogs are long, long gone.

  4. If you had actually asked the fellow in the first photo, he rarely, if ever drinks beer. And not while riding a bike. I ride with him alot and he is very conscientious about following rules while bike riding. The drink in his hand is probably a juice, although I am sure that your story is more entertaining by saying it was a beer.

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