Just another ride … with 13,000 friends

(CAUTION: large article, will take some time to load)

Excellence is good — it makes you feel better about everything. The “Bike MS” movement is one of excellence.

If you are having difficulty visualizing 13,000 cyclists, so was I. I am not certain that I have fully absorbed the full import of that flowing sea of colorful jerseys wrapping bodies of people willing to impale themselves upon skinny bicycle saddles and crank pedals for what sometimes feels like an eternity. It was the 2011 BP MS 150 and I was there for my first attempt at riding 100 miles in one day, followed by 78 miles the second day. Many photo thumbnails follow. Click to enlarge.  Continue reading “Just another ride … with 13,000 friends”

The BP MS 150 is coming . . . SOON!

(Post-ride blog here) This weekend, April 16-17. My first ride in the event, and my first genuine “Century Ride” (100 miles) followed by the remaining 78 miles from LaGrange into Austin for the finish on Sunday. I will be riding for Liesl, Susan and Bill. If you have a friend or family with MS and would like to add their name, just post a comment and that person will be added to my list. Continue reading “The BP MS 150 is coming . . . SOON!”

Never let a good crisis go to waste

And if you have run low on crises, then create one. Let’s see how that might happen. Summer of 2010 and into the fall, fail to pass a budget bill for the fiscal year beginning 10/1/2010. In spite of being in control of Congress and the Executive. Even after November 2010 elections, when still in control until the new Congress convenes, let the matter continue to languish. Still no budget.

Fast-forward slowly to spring 2011. Need a crisis (for a host of reasons). Continue reading “Never let a good crisis go to waste”

Catch me if you can

Cover of
Cover via Amazon

Frank W. Abagnale is one of the world’s most respected authorities on the subjects of forgery, embezzlement and secure documents.  For over thirty years he has lectured to and consulted with hundreds of financial institutions, corporations and government agencies around the world.

Mr. Abagnale has been associated with the FBI for over 35 years.  He lectures extensively at the FBI Academy and for the field offices of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

via Abagnale & Associates.

Of course, you will recall that Abagnale is the subject of the movie, and now play, “Catch Me if You Can” which is a story of is earlier life. A brief summary from his bio page recounts that ignominious beginning. Continue reading “Catch me if you can”

P.J. O’Rourke on the Scourge of Bike Lanes – WSJ.com

Bicycle lane sign in New York City
Image via Wikipedia

The bicycle is a parody of a wheeled vehicle—a donkey cart without the cart, where you do the work of the donkey. Although the technology necessary to build a bicycle has been around since ancient Egypt, bikes didn’t appear until the 19th century. The reason it took mankind 5,000 years to get the idea for the bicycle is that it was a bad idea. The bicycle is the only method of conveyance worse than feet. You can walk up three flights of stairs carrying one end of a sofa. Try that on a bicycle.

via P.J. O’Rourke on the Scourge of Bike Lanes – WSJ.com.

The whole article is worth a read. Of course, I strongly disagree with his position in its entirety but especially for his lack of attention to the health benefits of bicycling, including cycling to work. On that score he offers the following:

A good, hard-played game of Mother-May-I will make us all more physically fit. Fitness being another reason given for cluttering our cities with bike lanes. But why is it so important that the public be fit? Fit for what? Are they planning to draft us into forced labor battalions?

A clever, if misguided, piece.

A most excellent adventure in the wildflowers

Well, sort of. The wildflowers in the Hill County of Texas are quite disappointing this year — at least so far. But the 2011 edition of the Hill Country Child Advocacy Center Pedal Power Wildflower Ride — that would be on bicycles — was most excellent. The number of riders was down for a variety of reasons, but as my first ride in the event it was great.

This was not exactly my first ride, as for many years I had organized the motorcycle escort group who would try to slow the vehicle traffic and look for stranded riders. The day would prove that those hills are easier done on the R1100RT BMW motorcycle with 90 horsepower! Mike Atkinson did a great job of getting riders and getting them organized — thanks Mike, and all of your motorcycle gang. Continue reading “A most excellent adventure in the wildflowers”