Musings on Bicycling and Buddhism

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Charlie started sounding like he was popping popcorn in his rear hub... time for a rear hub overhaul! So when you think your bicycle has turned into a Jiffy pop its time to think about maintenance....

Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 1,589
Miles left to goal: 611
Days left: +33 over

Friday, October 22, 2010

Charlie's Post

I will be attending a copywriting, as in ad-copy, workshop for my job. Prior to going I have an evaluation to fill out and some exercises to do, homework for my workshop. One of my assignments is to learn about perspective, so here was the first thing that came to mind:

Hello, My name is Charlie. I’m from Austria and I’m blue. We know at least that much because my sticker says so. I’m a bit of a lost boy you see. I was rescued from a dumpster by Bud, the manager of Cambridge Bicycle, and then re-outfitted. (The time between this and the next part of my adventure no one knows about and I’m not telling.) I was put out with the other used bicycles in front of the shop and a girl in a dress walked by me. Then she came back, she just couldn’t walk right by. First she thought I was too tall for her, but after a test ride we knew it was meant to be. I was sold to this weird girl, Jessie after that, who took me out of Cambridge, to some place called Waltham where there aren’t as many of my people. But we get to visit the shop every once and awhile, I always look forward to being reunited with my people.

I don’t talk much, so the best Jessie can figure is that I was manufactured in the late 1980’s, shortly before my parent company: Steyr-Daimler-Puch was broken up in an antitrust lawsuit. They also did some shady business back in WWII but that was before I was born and so I hope I’m mostly innocent?

I’m also a Bergmeister. Don’t tell but, I could be older than I look, they started making Bergmeisters in the 1960s as a step up from those pedantic Clubmen (Clubmans?). Bergmeisters are known for their signature copper plating, but like I mentioned before, I’m blue. I also have this snazzy seat tube art with commemorative Olympic rings, which is all well and good, but which Olympics? I don’t remember exactly and the sticker doesn’t remind me either, you spend time in dumpsters and let’s see what you remember…

When I’m not outside I tend to spend my time in scenic basements, in Waltham and in one particular brownstone in Boston. I don’t have to sit outside in the rain and the cold to wait all day. But my favorite place is outside, by the Charles River, for which I am named. Oh I almost forgot to mention, I’m a Buddhist bicycle, I didn’t know that I was but I carry Jessie to Buddhist meetings all over the place, so does that make me a Buddhist too?

Well this is the most talking I’ve done in awhile, I usually leave that to my human. Oh have you checked out my new tires? And boy oh boy I'm getting a tuneup next week!

Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 1,537
Miles left to goal: 663
Days left: +28 over

Monday, October 18, 2010

Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 1,473
Miles left to goal: 727
Days left: +24 over

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Getting held up by rain and a cold....again

Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 1,388
Miles left to goal: 812
Days left: +18 over

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Ouch: How I Fell in the Fall

Well it was a statistical inevitability... I was bound to fall off sometime- although fall over is the more accurate term. In trying to stop to avoid another biker I fell right over. Nothing dramatic and with no particular speed as the recipe, I have my embarrassment, a scraped knee, and a couple of worried and annoyed bikers who were behind me to show for myself. Am I proud? no... Am I happy the rain finally stopped? yes....

Monday, October 4, 2010

Bullet Proof

I am now in possession of a Kevlar lined tire, will be making that plural soon. Charlie's rolling on bulletproof contact patches. I certainly hope they are as badass as they sound....
Continental Ultra Gatorskins, here we go~

On another note: all this rain is cramping my style! (read as: Jessie would rather be biking than taking the bus.) In general rain doesn't bother me much, but when some of the following minor hindrances come in exciting, fun-filled combinations I hesitate. Rain coupled with winds higher than 20mph. Wearing glasses in said wind and rain and trying to see in the dark. Not yet having installed fenders... Basically some more extensive autumn-bike-commuter-outfitting is going to have to take place in the near future or Charlie will be spending more quality time in the basement than I'd like...

Goal: 2,200 miles by 9.24.10
Miles ridden to date: 1,312
Miles left to goal: 888
Days left: +10 over
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Tour de What You Will by Jessie Calkins is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License