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Thursday, February 16, 2023

A Cricket in the Kitchen

Wait. What’s that sound?

Man, this old house—creaks and clicks, thumps and bumps…

But this sound is new. Well, I haven’t heard it in a long while anyway.

Is it the florescent under-cabinet lighting heating up and shifting?

Or wait! Ah! It’s a cricket! 

It gets quiet as I get closer to the sound as I search for it—so like Cricket!

I think it’s right here… 

It’s lucky, I’ve heard—a cricket in the house…

I think I’ve got it cornered now… slowly moving forward…


It’s just my water bottle equalizing pressure out its squeeze-top…

Funny. Fun. 

Life of a cyclist…

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Walking With Jack

There’s this great Mexican restaurant in town that I’ve been visiting for about a decade now. Daughter was practically raised there. We’ve probably over done it (Daughter now rolls her eyes when we mention the place) but we’ve also had a lot of good times and brought a lot of friends into the place and made new ones there, too. It’s a little bit of a trek to get there from home but we’ve got various activities to attend to in that part of town so it’s easy enough to drop by before or after or during… 

I’ll often bike there. There’s one bike rack in front. They could use a couple more. 

It’s also pretty close to the commuter train. So that’s easy, too. 

As I’ve made some new friends in there (did I mention there’s a bar?) I’m reminded that not as many people bike, train, walk places… So, for example, when I was in there the other day I was mentioning that I had just hopped off the train and walked over and that I’d be doing the same on the way out… John (we’ll call him), an older jazz saxophone player looked at me with amazed eyes—“you mean you’re just going to walk all over town and hop trains all afternoon—like Jack Kerouac?!” 

Fast forward a few visits and John was in there again. As I was heading out I said, “I’m gonna go walking with Jack…” He must have forgotten about the Kerouac comment because he conjured up a very different image this time, saying, “you mean your 8-foot tall jackrabbit?!” 

“Haha, that’s right!” Sometimes it’s best to just nod and smile and go with the flow. As I was walking off into that blissful sunset, though, I did enjoy the image of me and my invisible giant rabbit Kerouac-ing around together… a couple of amigos on the road…

Thursday, February 3, 2022


I suppose this fits in the category of Trail Shoe Test Lab although microspikes are more of a shoe accessory—just try wearing them without you shoes!

There's a snowy mountain on the horizon. It’s been watching over me for all these years. Of course, snow melts, but at its high altitude more or less at treeline it always looks bald.

And there’s a trail to the top! Let’s take it! Let’s take it a lot! Over and over again! 

But with big mountains comes big responsibility. And big preparedness. I tried visiting the mountain with burley hiking boots and the mountain said No. Its snow and ice turned me around halfway to the peak—right about that moment when I saw a group of hikers coming down wearing crampons and helmets and carrying ice axes, oh my!

So I prepared so more. I guess I need crampons, I thought. But that seemed so serious—I’m no mountaineer! Or am I? Maybe there’s a middle ground. A mountain hearer? Perhaps. After all, “the mountains are calling,” as He said. And the middle gear for answering that call for me turned out to be microspikes—not the cute little ones with Track&Field spikes but those with a dozen one centimeter-long daggers! So practically crampons. (And they do come with a cute little carrying bag!) 

Well, they stretched right on over my boots just as they should and amazing they were! Right up the mountain I went… Because, “I must go…”

Naked Without My Bike

Trying to leave the house these days seems to be getting more and more challenging. Let’s see… Do I have everything? Pockets check: wallet, phone, mask, another mask… Sweater, hat, gloves? BYOBags… Pants?! Check.

But sometimes it still feels like something is missing as I walk along the sidewalk… I find this sensation to be particularly strong the day after a long day of riding. My legs longing for that sensation of smooth circular motion. There’s an endless soothing in that pedal stroke that doesn’t translate to walking. 

After a few blocks I’ve more or less recalibrated my expectations to the footfalls of walking—especially once I start dreaming up my next ride!

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Why Is a Raven Like a Writing Desk?

Well anyone who’s been late for a very important date knows about this riddle… But here’s another perspective that also leads us in various directions… 

I was just sitting down at my writing desk (the one with the computer…) with another half cup of tea, when, gazing through the window (the looking glass, nearly), I chanced to see Raven alight on Deodar Cedar across the way… An inspiring moment!

That moment reminded me that I often rehearse thoughts about writing while out on long rides on my bicycle named, would you believe… Raven! 

So, why is a Raven like a writing desk? Well, both Raven (the bike) and the writing desk provide a space and/or opportunity that, while may not be totally free from distraction and/or interruption, at least, helps to guide or focus our thinking toward a certain end… (the end of blogging, as it is still dead...)

Perhaps they allow us to wonder… about a bird… a bike… the land… 

Thursday, October 7, 2021

The Squeaky Bird

We’ve had a lot of good birdwatching around these parts lately. Mostly all the old familiar favorites as they migrate through again. One day I’ll learn their names. For now I’m just happy to see them again—it’s been several months! 

I was listening to a particularly sweet sounding trio of little birdies recently on a long stretch of a bike ride. So lovely to hear them again… But, they sound so regular… And are they following me? Oh, it’s my shoe rubbing on my crankarm…

Days later I heard a squeaking rattle coming up from behind. Clearly, this was some sort of ill tuned vehicle (MM would never sound like that!) So, as I was approaching a winding blind curve that I wanted to take at my own pace, I slowed to let this chortle mobile pass me by… But when I looked back there was no vehicle behind me at all… It was a gaggle of crazy nonsense birds fluttering around through the branches…