Weekend Wrap-Up

Dragon_31Aug09It was a working Friday for me, so the weekend was just Saturday and Sunday.  Our Friday night routine has changed a bit since I last wrote about it and after 12 years of spending our Friday nights at On The Border, we’ve found ourselves back at another old local favorite where we used to have dinner on Saturdays, Olde Towne Tavern & Grille.  It’s been a good change for us and our friends!

SATURDAY

We got to bed early on Friday and that allowed us to get up and going on a bunch of house work that had been queued up.  After a full morning we were able to muster enough energy to hit the road with the Calfee for a nice 30 mile loop from the house.  We’d only planned to go 14 miles, but when we got to the 7 mile turn for home, we went the other way… the weather was just about perfect for cycling!  Traffic was also unusually light for a Saturday afternoon: gotta love it when college football keeps folks off the road and glued to their TVs!!!!

Our cycling actually included a bit of a dialog on tandems, along the lines of… could we ever imagine having a tandem that suits us as well as our Calfee has?  Hmmmm.  If we had to replace it, what would we replace it with?  The Calfee has couplers, but we’ve never taken it on an airplane.  However, we have taken it with us on our motorcycle, packed neatly in the bottom of our motorcycle’s trailer and we’ve also had to send parts of the bike back to California for some rework, made much easier by having a bike that packs down into a very small box, relatively speaking.

How about the type of tandem?  I’d talked about adding a second road / enduro tandem to our fleet now that the Erickson is gone.  However, this would be a dual disc tandem that could sport either large volume 650b knobbies or slicks so that it could be used for trails, touring and other road duty where a high volume tire would be desirable.

Then again, it might be interesting to see how some of the the other performance tandems handle and feel compared to the Calfee: it’s always interesting to see how tandems stack up against each other.  I still go back and read my Santana Beyond review from time to time to remind myself what I discovered during our 3/4 day extended test at Santana’s Chattanooga Rally.

Santana Beyond

Always interesting to ponder.  Truthfully, we’re quite happy with the Calfee, but then again… we were also quite happy with the Erickson until the Calfee came along.  So many bikes, so little time and resources!

SUNDAY

As mtbtandem_sepyou can see from the previous entry, Sunday was a beautiful day here in Georgia, weather wise and otherwise.  For the first time in just under four years, Debbie and I swung a leg over an off-road tandem and hit the trail!  We only did about a 5-mile loop, but it was perhaps the most significant 5 miles we’ve ridden in a long, long time.  I truly believe adding off-road tandem rides to our riding routine will put some ‘fun’ back into the equation and also bring a whole different level of fitness to our weekly routines.  She doesn’t read these blog entries or Facebook so I’m relatively safe — assuming friends don’t rat me out — in saying that I’m hopeful we’ll be able to do one weekend day of road tandem riding each week with the other being used for off-road.  Well, at least for a short while: the local trails will shut down in mid-October through January 1st during hunting season: wouldn’t you know.

Getting back to my notional riding scenarios, a half-day spent cycling is about all we can  hope for as we have to balance out the need to spend time working around the house, time with the kids/grandkids and of course our other two-wheel past time — motorcycling — for a few more years. That’s been one of the problems with our Georgia Tandem Club rides as they have become all-day events where 2 to 3 hours are lost just getting to and from the increasingly remote ride locations.  Oh well, it’s all about priorities.

Speaking of motorcycling, it was an interesting couple of weeks as I’ve had two of our three motorcycles in for service at the same time.  All I can say is, I’m really glad I can do all of my own bicycle maintenance.  I wish I’d have kept my motorcycle engine overhaul and repair skills up to snuff, as getting a good wrench to work on your big bikes is hardly a no-brainer.  Even the very best miss a few things these days.

Tool Box

On the bright side, all of the motorcycles are back at home and I believe they’re all in good running order.  Our Road King, Blue, needs a module in the sound system changed-out before we head to Florida on the 1st and 3rd weekends for the fall editions of Bike Week in Panama City Beach and Daytona.  We were able to get in a nice 80-mile ride today after our tandem mountain bike ride at a trail just 5 miles from our house: how cool is that!

We actually took Blue to lunch at what is usually our Saturday night dinner spot — Loco Willy’s — as we tried a new place on Saturday.  We met our friends David & Deb along the way to lunch and they joined us at Loco’s: how appropriate!  After lunch, we headed over to Cartersville, Georgia on a nice 60-mile loop that included a stop at the Cartersville Harley-Davidson shop.  As sometimes happens, I found a really cute top and a really awesome leather vest for Debbie while we were there. What can I say, I like spoiling my sweetie and, well, I like outfitting her with things that we both like!

Sometimes I think that tandem cycling could benefit from an infusion of fashion, something that is tailored to suit the unique needs of mature couples who cycling together!  Lets face it, lycra isn’t always flattering: there’s got to be a better fashion solution for cycling!  After all, we ain’t out there racing!  I’m thinking a lined touring cargo short in a madras print with a Hawaiian styled, collared shirt!  Good grief, I’m getting delusional!  Time to wrap it up.

 

Posted in Bloggishnish | Leave a comment

Playing in the Dirt Again!

mtbtandem_sepRegular readers may recall that in October of last year I was less than optimistic as to whether or not Debbie would ever give off-road tandem cycling another shot.  The full details of my dilemma at the time were covered in a blog entry entitled, No More Mountain  Tandem, sniff, sniff.

I’m not sure why, but I continued to hold out hope she might at least give me one last chance to re-introduce her to off-road tandeming before selling-off our 2002 Ventana full-suspension tandem which had not been ridden since April 2010.  Our last off-road tandem ride was in November 2010, but on a newer Ventana (Casper) that Alex Nutt from MTBTandems.com had let us borrow.

Decisions, decisions....

Interestingly enough, about 1/2 way through that ride Debbie had told me she liked the white Ventana more than our 8-year old, under utilized Ventana. However, by the end of the ride and unbeknownst to me, she had pretty much lost her nerve and interest in riding off-road.  To this day she can’t pin point why, but that was the last time we put two tires in the dirt.

I never really got serious about selling either the triplet — which has only seen use at a few tandem rallies and gatherings of tandem friends for rides up in Tennessee — or the Ventana as even a remote chance to ride either bikes at some point in the future was all I needed to justify holding on to the bikes.

Even though Debbie had agreed she’d give it one more try last winter, whenever I followed-up on her offer she just didn’t feel like it or was more interested in riding the road tandem.  So, about every six weeks or so I’d bring it up, usually after riding the local loops on my single mountain bikes but with no success.  This weekend some friends shot me an Email asking if we might still be interested in selling the Ventana which gave me one last shot to see if Debbie would give it a try: this was definitely an either / or question. Either we give it a shot and confirm that the Ventana has a place in our future riding plans or sell it… to our friends (if it fit and suited their needs / budget) or someone else.

Her initial response was, let’s just sell it.  However, I persisted and asked her to give our very nice and not-all-that-technical trail a try on the Ventana, noting I would put about 270lbs of air pressure in the rear shock to minimize the frame bob that she has never liked on either of our Ventana full-suspension off-road tandems.  Moreover, the way the trail is laid out, the first mile was pretty much a dirt road with just a couple turns, a very small water crossing and a bridge leading to the actual trail.  Therefore, if that first 1/2 mile or so wasn’t enjoyable, we’d simply turn around, call it a day and sell the Ventana.

Much to my surprise, her next question was, “Do we still have the Camelbaks?”  I said yes and she agreed to give it a try!!!!  Talk about doing the happy dance on the inside; I was jubilant but tried not to show it.

Although there was a little trepidation when we woke up this morning, the weather was so nice that it made the idea of a nice tandem ride of any type a very inviting thing.  I got the Ventana ready, which really didn’t take a lot of effort: I do periodic maintenance on all of our bikes so they’re pretty much ready to go with just some air in the tires.  However, I needed to move some pedals over to the bike and wanted to double-check the rear shock to make sure it was still holding air from the last PM a couple of months back: it was.  I just needed to top it off to be certain that I’d minimized the pedaling-induced bobbing our Ventana tandems had always exhibited.  With the front wheel installed, air in tires and a successful solo test ride to the end of our street completed, I slid the tandem into the back of our Toyota Tundra on its side with the front wheel resting on the tailgate in the down position; we were good to go.

We made a couple of short test rides in the dirt parking lot of our local trail and after getting Debbie’s saddle raised up a bit we were off.  At the predetermined end of the access trail I asked Debbie; “So do you want to continue or should we head back?”  She said, so far so good.  I skipped the extra 1-mile loop that adds some higher technical climbs and descents to the ride which Debbie said she appreciated.  My sense that our local trails would be more to her liking was spot-on: she really enjoyed our short loop ride.  She said she got a good workout, felt like she was able to put power into the pedals without the tandem sucking her energy away with suspension bob, and really didn’t mind the tight corners, narrow tree gaps and other features of the trail.  She was very pleased that we were able to easily clear a couple features that I thought might have required a dismount and portage.

Riding the Ventana with Debbie aboard for the first time in 4.5 years was a bit of a re-learning experience for me.  The Ventana’s head tubes combined with 4.5″ travel forks like our Stratos model yield some fairly short steering trail dimensions if the triple trees are mounted high which make for a very twitchy front end at slow speeds, understeer in the corners and poor tracking over roots.  I definitely forgot just how much positive steering control was required to keep the Ventana headed where I wanted it to go.  Over the past 4.5 years I’ve also moved to a more upright position on my mountain bikes, so I was also dealing with being in a much more leaned-over, aggressive riding position than I’m used to.  One thing that hasn’t changed with our Ventana that I really wish would was disc brake squeal: I suspect it’s the four piston design.

ventana_websm

So, I think I have a green light for some return visits to the local trail over the winter which is goodness.  As to whether or not we’ll sell the Ventana, having had it in my hands again I’m pretty sure it’s too small for our friends who expressed an interest in the bike: the fork steerer would have needed to be at least another good 2″ – 3″ for the captain’s bar height to be correct and his wife would need a very long seat post as she’s quite a bit taller than Debbie is at just 5’2″.   There are definitely a few things I can do to it to make it “good enough” to take us until next spring, during which time we’ll really know if off-road riding will be something we do more often.

57806312_a8639cbff8_oI don’t see us heading off to any trails that are super technical or with advanced riders, as I suspect pushing past Debbie’s comfort zone — and some spills — is what took a toll on her confidence.  It’s also noteworthy that she has some bone density issues, which makes the risks associated with a fall in the woods higher for her than the average person who lands on a rock, root or clips a tree with a shoulder.

I can definitely see that a visit to MTBTandems with our bike is in the near future, as I do need to get my stem height and reach sorted out and will most likely move over to Avid BB7’s instead of screwing around with floating rotors for the Hope hydraulic disks that continue to squeak and shriek.

 

Posted in Bloggishnish, Off-Road Tandems, Technology & Equip. | Leave a comment

Great Ride Today and a Realization….

We had a great ride today. Nothing special in terms of the route: it was just our usual 25-mile loop from the house which nets us about 1,200′ of climbing with the high-point being about 1/2 way through the ride.  However, the weather was San Diego like when we left and we timed it such that a lot of the Sunday morning church-going folks were already engaged in their respective services when we passed through the areas with churches.

I’ve also made a point of going out a little easier which Debbie seems to prefer.  I should note that just getting out of our community entails a 1/8th of a mile, 8% climb on cold legs which, well…. can suck if you try to go out hard.

Mark (aka, the TandemGeek) and Debbie celebrate Mark's 50th Birthday at GTR

Mark (aka, the TandemGeek) and Debbie celebrate Mark’s 50th Birthday at GTR 2010… about the last time I did a lot of tweaking to our then 2-year old Calfee.

However, as we were riding it dawned on me that I haven’t really done much to our Calfee tandem in several years.  I think some of it has to do with having a tandem that has been nearly a perfect fit for us in terms of sizing, comfort, features and reliability and having other hobbies that consume my attention and discretionary resources.  I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, but it’s quite telling.

When tandems were the center of my universe I was clearly all about learning about the latest and greatest, even while being a late adopter / reluctant beta-tester.  This became pretty obvious as I moved from an active list participant at Tandem@Hobbes and the Bikeforums.net tandem subform to a lurker.  God love the folks that are still hot and heavy into pursing the latest and greatest technology, shaving grams and comparing performance on Strava.

Me, I’ve reached a point where I know that I’ve got pretty much more tandem than I’ll ever need: really, the Calfee’s are the nuts for the fast recreational rider.  I only wish I’d started on a Co-Motion many years ago as I suspect I would still be riding that tandem today, albeit with a variety of component upgrades and perhaps a repaint vs. having spent upwards of $26k on two custom Ericksons and the Calfee in our quest for the best.

'02 Erickson Custom S&S (left) and '98 Signature (right)

’02 Erickson Custom S&S (left) and ’98 Signature (right)

 

But, be that as it may, our Calfee continues to exceed our expectations which is what you’d expect of a tandem bicycle that costs more than your average Japanese sport touring bike.  It’s just that as it is now, it needs for nothing.  I have no need for go-fast wheels; our 36h conventional wheels are reliable and I don’t worry about dinging a rim. I have no need for upgraded shifting: really, now much better than 3rd Generation Campy Record can you get?  What else is there to do, aside from shaving grams at $100/per.  Been there, done that and quickly realized it fools errand after playing the game for while (sorry about that; but I’ve said this before and stand by it… noting that I also have a weakness vintage watches: an even more expensive pursuit of vanity than bicycles).

calfee2

In short, after thinking through all of this stuff on today’s ride — no kidding, I do a lot of thinking when we’re on the tandem as Debbie and I rarely talk on a 2 hour ride — I came to realize why I’ve not had as much to write about on my tandem cycling blog as I did when I was hot and heavy into testing go-fast wheels, different shifting systems, belt drives and the like.

Part of me we like to return to that passionate pursue of the next better thing in tandem cycling, but there’s another part of me that’s more interested in enjoying the ride than analyzing what next change I’ll make to my tandem to ensure it remains relevant.

Posted in Bloggishnish | 1 Comment

Recent Entries At Riding Two-Up

369252Recently posted at Riding Two-Up: Doing a bit of catch-up here; last RTU summary was in late June!  Yes, the large collection of blog entries would seem to suggest I’ve been spending a bit more time with the big-bike and blog. It’s not that we’re not riding our tandem; we are!  But most are just rides from the house or monthly club rides. Our next tandem rally isn’t until October and there just hasn’t been a need to do any maintenance or buy “new stuff” for the tandems and bikes: they all work well and provide us with everything we need.

Posted in Bloggishnish, Cross Post: Riding Two-Up, Motorcycle / Equipment | Leave a comment

Three for Three…. Tandem Club Rides in August that is.

Well, we went three-for-three on tandem club rides this month!  A huge thank you to Roger & Eve for hosting all of these rides. It brought back fond memories of our very early years together when “the usual suspects” would get together just about every Sunday morning for a tandem ride somewhere in the metro Atlanta area followed by lunch.  It just made for a great routine.  Of course, that was also when there weren’t nearly as many demands on everyone’s time.

The third PEACHES ride for August was a 48-mile loop out in Cumming, Georgia that put us on familiar roads from July’s ride out in Alpharetta, albeit with a few different twists.

alpha

Photo by Eve Kofsky

I think this just underscores how popular the riding is north of Atlanta in the Woodstock, Milton & Alpharetta areas.  The turn-out was on par with the previous rides. I sometimes suspect that we’d be able to get more folks to show up if we hosted a luncheon with an optional ride instead of the other way around: turn-out for the annual PEACHES planning party is always 3x – 4x as large as the average ride!!

Can you figure out who was photoshopped into the picture so that everyone was in the photo?

Can you figure out who was photo-shopped into the picture so that everyone was in the photo?

I should also note, it’s been great to be back on the tandem and bicycles. When the weather cooperates and there aren’t other pressing demands, such as birthdays (grand child #4) and the arrival of fifth grand child on Thursday morning, Debbie has been getting out for a 25-mile late afternoon ride when she gets home from work and we’ve been very good about getting in at least one tandem ride each weekend, if not two when time allows.  I’ve even started to get out after work for a short off-road ride in the trails near our home and that has been a welcome addition to my daily routine.

riding

Photo by Eve Kofsky

I should probably note that this was just the start of a rather ambitious day of ‘riding’ for us.  During the ride I’d posted out a photo of us taking a mid-ride break on Facebook and when we finished the ride I found a comment from a friend who said they were going to invite us to join them for a ‘ride’ (motorcycle) but could see that we were already tied up.

Knowing that they don’t typically head out until around noon, I shot back a message to let them know that we might be able to meet them at their destination, depending on when they left and where they were going.  The destination was Chattanooga and departure time was slipping to the right.

20140823_184220

Julie looks on as Chuck makes short work of a massive cupcake. That’s Don working on his in the background.

To make a long story short, we were able to get home, cleaned-up and meet-up with our friends for a big-bike ride to Chattanooga where we had a light meal at Sugar’s and desert before heading back home: about a 200-mile round trip.  We got caught in a little rain on the way up — of course there was zero chance of rain in the forecast — and had a humid-cool ride home.  We capped off the day with a late night pizza and beer at Olde Towne Tavern & Grille before calling it a night.

Just a great day!

Posted in Club & Org Notices, Tandem Folks | Leave a comment

A Good Week of Cycling…. For a Change!!!

It was a good week of cycling for Team TG…

After getting in two days on the tandem last weekend, Debbie was able to get out on her single bike for a 25-mile post work, early evening ride on Monday through Thursday… something she truly enjoys and that she’s not been able to do for quite some time.

garmin705Of course, with her return to regular weeknight riding came the reminder that her 10-year old Garmin Edge 305 (a hand-me-down from yours truly) was still having issues, e.g., cutting-out for no particular reason.  I picked up a previously owned Garmin Edge 705 and she’s now quite happy with it.  I even figured out why I couldn’t get my own Garmin Edge 705 to take .gpx file uploads (aka, GPS route maps) once I had the second one to compare it to: turns out, my Garmin is missing all kinds of system files and folders.  She was really thrilled with how the GPS route maps worked! So, I’ve got a very happy cyclist with a new-to-her toy.

As for this past weekend, we were able to get out for a very nice 25-mile tandem ride from the house on Saturday morning before it got too hot. It’s been great making time to get out on the tandem two times per weekend and something we hope to do up and until we hop on the big Harley and head to Thunder Beach at Panama City Beach in early October and then get a second helping of big bike fun at Biketoberfest in Daytona Beach later in the month.

Today we joined a few teams for the 2nd of three Tandem Club of Georgia rides being hosted by Roger Strauss & Eve Kofsky in August.  It was out in Covington, about an hour and 10-minute drive from our home.  The ride start was at 9:00am so we were out of the house by 7:20am, just to make sure we didn’t miss the start as we did last week.

cov_peaches

It was a very nice ride with a total of 7 teams on bikes and an 8th team that had to call an audible when they had a pretty serious bike issue on their way to the ride.  Uh, yeah… whilst moving a long at freeway speeds it somehow became detached from either the rack or the rack with bike somehow became detached from the car: not quite sure as we didn’t want to ask them to relive the episode.  Suffices to say, there was definitely some damage but, again, the extent is unknown to me.

The one thing that this ride had that no other tandem ride has had this year was searing heat!!!  I mean, it was HOT… The kind of HOT we haven’t had yet this summer: 95°F with very high humidity and poor air quality.  We were definitely “spent” by the end of the 48-mile ride and more than ready to sit down for a post-ride meal at Bullrito’s.  I was able to score a cold Bud Lite along with my soft drink and that really took the edge off after the hot ride.  Yeah, yeah… I know. Alcoholic beverages are not the correct thing to consume when  you need to re-hydrated but, what the heck: I earned it and I’m old enough to know what works for me!!!!

I will say that I may take my tool box to next week’s third of three August tandem club rides as there were a number of noisy tandems on today’s ride.  There was one tandem with FSA cranks where the rear crank clearly wasn’t installed with enough torque on the crank bolt; a common issue with FSA tandem cranks.  There was another tandem that has either a noisy from skewer, hub or eccentric: not quite sure about that one.  And, last but not least there was an older tandem with conventional bottom brackets where the rear bottom bracket seems to be a little light on torque as well.

I’d actually vanquished my own persistent front wheel noise before today’s ride — one of those pesky hub end caps on White Industry hubs that tend to loosen-up — so I was pretty pleased that we weren’t contributing to the symphony of mechanical noises.  However, I also realized how dirty our tandem had gotten so it got a quick wash down after today’s ride when I got back home.  I also cleaned and re-lubricated the chains and polished the cranks which had collected some nasty stains.  So, we should be in pretty good shape next weekend.

We also got in some ride time on our big Harley “Blue” Saturday afternoon, had a nice evening out with “dinner and a movie” on Saturday and of course the regular list of house hold chores thrown in to fill-in the gaps.

 

Posted in Bloggishnish, Club & Org Notices, Technology & Equip. | Leave a comment

Motorists Are Just Getting Worse…. A Rant.

Sorry, no cute photos or links to videos here: just a serious rant about the deteriorating situation that exists for cyclists who refuse to give up their right to share the road.

——————————————–

There’s been a lot of social media attention brought to bear on a few motorists who have taken to Social Media and YouTube to express their disdain for cyclists.  I featured one such case from Alabama in a recent blog entry and there have been at least two or three other “prominent” social media uprisings aimed at a ditzy chick from California who was also a reserve police officer who expressed her desire to “run down” cyclists, a city mayor from some small city out west who got in to an on-road dispute with a seasoned cyclist racer, a couple of kids in a big Dodge Ram diesel pick-up on PCH out in Orange County California and of course very close to home we had  a long-time friend who was truly assaulted with deadly intent by a motorist who used their SUV as a weapon to run down our friend after a verbal altercation.

As truly bad and un-defendable as these actions and statements are just on face value — really, you want to run-down another human being because they impeded your progress in a 4,000 lb vehicle for 20 seconds? — the larger issue is that motorist skills have simply eroded to the point where a large percentage of people behind the wheel of cars have no business being there.

Seriously, the poor judgement I see exhibited by motorists on a daily basis while driving, riding my motorcycles or cycling is mind-boggling.  I really don’t worry so much about being run-down by a motorist who simply hates cyclists — Good Lord, Why? Please, oh please share your insights on that with me so that I can understand… as it truly seems to be on par with why religious extremists hate people who subscribe to a different belief system — as I do about the people sitting behind the wheel of a car who have 90% of their attention focused on something other than driving.

On yesterday’s tandem ride, we were cycling side-by-side with Randy & Claudia Rowe on our way back into Taylorsville about 40 miles into our 44 mile ride on a slightly hilly and curvy section of road when a beat-up green Ford Crown Victoria following a late-model car far too closely crossed the center line and began to bear down on Randy & Claudia. Thankfully, the inattentive careless and reckless motorist behind the wheel who had his oh-so obvious Mac iPhone or iPod white ear phones plugged in and whose completion attention was focused down to some place near the bottom of the steering wheel were he was most likely holding his phone or iPod had his window down and it was only Randy’s outcry of ‘HEY’ that made him look up and quickly correct his steering to put himself back into his own lane that kept us from having a disaster on our hands.   Yes, time truly does slow down when disaster strikes: I can clearly recall that much detail.

On today’s ride I had a careless and reckless motorist driving a silver Toyota Landcruiser pass us within 50′ of a stop sign, clearly cutting us off so they could make her right turn while we were signaling a left turn: God help you if you were delayed by 10 seconds in your haste to get to….????

We also had at least a dozen vehicles “buzz us” on Due West Road  driven by careless and reckless motorists — remembering that Georgia has a stealth law called the Better Cycling Bill that includes a 3′ safe passing distance requirement that only serious road cyclists know about — putting our lives in danger without a thought other than “why hell are these idiots on the road slowing me down” as they were no doubt running late for Sunday services where they’d spend an hour listening to and agreeing with a sermon about the need to practice patience, tolerance and have love for thy fellow-man.

The number of careless and reckless motorists who I now see with a phone at their ear or beneath their gaze as they text while driving is mind-numbing.  Clearly, at least 60-70% of the careless and reckless motorists I see behind the wheel of cars have their attention focused on a phone conversation or reading an Email, Text, FaceBook post or “cat videos” while “guiding” their 4,000 lb lethal weapon down the road.  The number of distracted careless and reckless motorists I see on a daily basis suggests that a lot of pedestrians, motorcyclists and cyclists will be killed in the future, at far higher rates that we have seen in the past.  Moreover, read-end collisions will clearly be the norm rather than the exception.

Seriously, it’s not hard to pick out which careless and reckless motorist is texting and driving or watching cat videos while driving a car. They look and behave just like drunk or stoned motorists who drift towards the center of the lane into the on-coming lane or shoulder of the road and then make abrupt corrections to put themselves back in the lane before returning their attention to that all-important text or video.

Sadly, it’s not hard to find reports / videos / blog entries regarding the increasing number of motorist “kills” and “suicides” caused by “smart phone” technology, never mind screwing around with on-board infotainment systems, GPS and other things that take their attention off the road.

Now, bear in mind, most motorists these days seem to have generally poor driving skills to begin with, as well as poor judgement about driving situations.  Add to that 2nd or 3rd generation animosity towards cyclists — and I’m still clueless why motorists harbor anger towards cyclists as much as your average dog — that cause 16-year olds like the one in the passenger seat of a Nissan pickup last Saturday on lightly traveled Holland Road to flip-off the lovely Miss Debbie — a grandmother of 5 who was doing nothing more than riding placidly along a backroad — and me as they drove by easily exceeding the 35 mph posted speed limit by 15 mph: yeah, bicycles are the problem…

It’s just a sad and sorry situation that will get worse before it gets better: you mark my words.

Posted in Advice & Commentary | 12 Comments