RJ, first day of 5th grade (2010), accidentally matching her hair to her clothes to her bike.
Today was the national Bike to School Day! I celebrated by driving my daughter to school in our car and then returning home to sleep til 12:30. An unconventional approach, sure, but we all have to observe Bike to School Day in our own way. I didn’t sleep last night (maybe because of the giant iced coffee I had at noon?)(and also last night’s thunderstorm) and I was feeling crappy anyway, so sick day until about 1:30. Then I pulled myself together and began editing a paper on choice modeling, which a terrible thing to be editing or even thinking about, and then picked up my daughter in the car.
I actually bought her a bike specifically for her use in getting herself to and from high school. She rode it on the first day of 9th grade, and then utterly abandoned the very idea, as she discovered that 1) she arrived at school drenched in sweat, because it was August in Texas, and 2) coming home is actually a gradual uphill slope and the single-speed she’d picked out was not ideal. Also, 3) she is SUPER lazy, so. Back in elementary school, when we lived in a ridiculously hilly neighborhood, she’d psyche herself up to tackle the biggest hill on the way home by imagining there were breakfast tacos at the top. So I thought she was going to be a real badass in life, if she had already figured out self-incentivization by 5th grade. She probably will turn out to be a badass, but adolescence is taking a lot out of her right now, as it does out of everyone, so to the car it is. One day she will be cured of adolescence and will reclaim her former badassery.
Yeah, yeah, I know it’s Cinco de Mayo today, and not Day of the Dead. But Day of the Dead iconography is much more interesting, and also November 1 is so far away. More importantly, Day 5 marks the first day of National Bike Month I haven’t been able to ride my bike. I was looking forward to a nice night ride, like I took last night (tooling around the neighborhood around 9, feeling the evening breeze in the nearly empty streets), but a massive thunderstorm with flash flooding presented discouraging conditions. So just as the Day of the Dead celebrates the departed, I am celebrating my broken 4-day streak with the knowledge that I will ride again someday. Like tomorrow. Tomorrow’s probably that day. So, Cinco de Biko. Let’s do this:
In honor of the threeness of today, here are three songs referencing tricycles. We have Braid (emo band from back when emo bands had a hardcore undertone), Psapp (charming British indie experimental pop), and Napoleon XIV (CREEPY AS FUCK WHAT EVEN THE HELL IS THIS?).
Braid’s “Under the Influence of Tricycle Mechanics”
Napoleon XIV’s “I’m in Love with My Little Red Tricycle”—you maybe should skip this one, actually. YIKES.
Today’s biking foray was only a short transpo spin to my new sister’s new apartment nearby, to sit on the couch all afternoon visiting with the fam. So I cleaned house when I got home just to get some activity in. In honor of this second day, here’s a piece of flawless heartbreak pop from Two Wheels Good, the 1985 Prefab Sprout album. “It’s perfect as it stands, so why then crush it in your perfect hands?” Gorgeous! “I’ve got six things on my mind; you’re no longer one of them.” Are you kidding me? So good. This is one of their Thomas-Dolby-produced albums, and you can really hear Dolby’s craft and complexity, coupled with singer Paddy McAloon’s poetic lyrics. The entirety of Two Wheels Good is perfection and Prefab Sprout is ridiculously underrated in the US, and I’m sure this blog post is going to change all that, so I can go to bed feeling like I’ve done something today. Here’s the song “Desire As”:
Oh wait, you HAVE to hear “Bonny” off of Two Wheels Good as well. Another heartbreaker that demands all-day listening. HOW DID THEY MAKE A SONG THIS GOOD?
Hey, it’s National Bike Month! I haven’t been riding much in months, because I’m not training this year (in a semi-voluntary vacation from triathlon) and my dog & daughter are both rather demanding in terms of transportation this year. (I once let my dog drive herself to the vet, but that didn’t end well.) So, to celebrate along with the rest of the bike world, I’ve decided to ride every single day in May. Today’s ride was an ultra-relaxing wheeled strolling around my neighborhood. Took out the mountain bike in just street clothes and sneakers, no lycra or clips (not even a helmet), and just wandered around with zero exertion, feeling the wind on my skin. I’m supremely chill right now; it’s been years and years since I just went out and goofed off on a bike. Usually its training or transportation, and I got somewhere I gotta be. Well, this month is gonna be fun. Like as much fun as the guy in this video is having.
Haven’t been able to run or strength-train this week and, man, am I getting crunchy and cranky. Nothing finer than getting sweaty and then stretching out.