Musings on Bicycling and Buddhism

Monday, August 16, 2010

Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live. ~Mark Twain, "Taming the Bicycle"

Charlie's Diagnosis

After the continual problem of the mystery flat tire progressed beyond any reasonable length of time (this also seems to be a metaphor* for all the things in my life that I need to deal with...) I finally gave in and brought him to the wonderful people at Cambridge Bicycle.

The diagnosis: Charlie's back wheel is falling apart.

The specifics: Guy taking the tire off comments, "You've been doing a lot of skid stops on this thing, haven't you?"- well yes I have, but not intentionally. Charlie has a coaster break on the back wheel, which I have become a very big fan of. However, I don't think I've actually had a bike with coaster breaks since I was 13, so.... when I have to stop quickly the old habits turn on, bypass conscious thought, which is still required to correctly utilize the coaster brakes at this point, and I pull the break lever on the handle bar, which is only on the front wheel- sometimes I do this without remembering to use the coasters at all, sometimes both... well here is a testament to my learning curve...I apparently stop with enough passion to break my wheel.

...Continuing- what does all this skid stopping mean? basically an unhappy wheel, it wasn't designed for this and so my spokes go all loosey-goosey and once the rim liner came off, literally just started falling out of the wheel. And in case you didn't get my drift earlier- that's bad. So basically my loose spokes were poking out my tube, and that was why my wheel felt wobbly...

All this means Charlie is in the shop for a week, and I'm another week behind on my miles. This also means I still haven't quite learned to use coaster breaks correctly and doesn't seem to give much hope to my skills of observation ... my excuse could be I'm usually so tired I don't even notice when potholes try to throw me off my bicycle, but that would be wimpy:)

So much more to learn!

The mileage remains:
Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 683
Miles left to goal: 1,517
Days left: 37

*(although because I used "seems" I think that more properly makes it a simile...)

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Tour de What You Will by Jessie Calkins is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License