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Old 06-11-05, 04:22 PM   #26
enormouslock
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I'm wondering if anyone besides me likes semi trucks. In my experience, they're more predictable than cars. You can expect they know where you are all the time so if you ride conservatively you shouldn't have any problem with them.
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Old 06-11-05, 04:47 PM   #27
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enormouslock, if you were not in Chi town I would swear you are a friend of mine I ride with. You write/speak just like him.

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Old 06-11-05, 04:54 PM   #28
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I'll drink to that too.
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Old 06-11-05, 05:13 PM   #29
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meow.

Interesting thread.
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Old 06-11-05, 05:40 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by forum*rider
Interesting thread.
Indeed. Certainly a refreshing change from "I just shaved my legs!" or "Is steel really better than CF?", and no more painful to read. Actually it is a lot less painful. At least it makes you think.
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Old 06-16-05, 01:55 PM   #31
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Here's an idea I came up with when struggling to learn the ins and outs of sew-ups. Put oil on your fingers before manipulating the adhesive tape so you don't get all sticky with the adhesive.
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Old 06-16-05, 02:27 PM   #32
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I had learned to leave legends as a homeless person in New Haven, CT.

Why does this fact not surprise me.
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Old 06-16-05, 04:16 PM   #33
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Would you like to add anything?
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Old 06-16-05, 07:43 PM   #34
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Okay, I guess you have nothing to add. Here is what I have to say about your comment: I survived homelessness and am here to tell you about it. You obviously have no respect for those who are unfortunate enough to land in that condition, for whatever reason. Believe me, there are all types of homeless people, just as there are all types of people. A lot of people have learned a great deal from wandering. I am giving you an opportunity to expound on your opinion of homelessness. Please, fill me in on the niceties of your motive for making such a comment. I really don't want to be upset if there is no reason to be upset. Maybe you have a jovial view of me, and are simply making light of the whole idea of someone being homeless. That's harmless enough. Or maybe you have nothing at stake in this thread and just had a thought you felt would add to the discussion. I don't mind that. In fact, I don't mind anything that anyone says about anything. I'm really trying to understand your comment in a positive vein. Should I consider homelessness some sort of second-class citizenship? Please, enlighten me. Make your assumptions audible. Be a good communicator. I'm willing to listen. But while you're getting around to posting here again, I'm not going to sit around with baited breath. There's a lot of positive things to be said. We're all cyclists, whether we were homeless at one time or not. Let's live for the moment, enjoy life, and engage in some sensible debate. Ughh... I'm getting slap-happy...
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Old 06-16-05, 08:33 PM   #35
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Man that's gotta be the best anti-trolling post i've ever seen without comign across as anti-troll.

You're my hero enrmouslock.
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Old 06-16-05, 09:42 PM   #36
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Thanks, Operator. I didn't know these things had a name. "Trolling," you say? Seems apt, and there does seem to be a lot of things like that said.
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Old 06-16-05, 09:53 PM   #37
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Wow this was an intresting post made me check to make sure of what I put in my pipe .. But it was VERY well written and abit enlightening
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Old 06-17-05, 07:25 AM   #38
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Man, this whole thread is way too deep for my little peabrain. But if I ever see some fella standing on the side of the road posed like a starfish, I'll know to keep my mouth shut and watch out for swerving automobiles.
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Old 06-17-05, 10:44 AM   #39
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I was homeless for a while, purely by choice. It was very nice. I lived for a while in a van (yes, down by a river!) with a friend. We rode our bikes whenever we wanted, we made a few bucks fixing bikes and things, and ate lavishly with donations from the farmer's market. After a while, we started getting other opportunities, and our time of freedom ended when we went back to the default world. But I still remember it with fondness, not always easy, but our situation meant we were able to be happy.

Nice stories. If I ever see a fully-faired cyclist on an empty road, I'll splay myself out like a starfish as well.

peace,
sam
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Old 06-18-05, 08:53 AM   #40
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Warm thanks to both phidauex and PurpleK for their remarks.
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Old 06-18-05, 10:25 AM   #41
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And here I thought this post was about his Acura.
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Old 06-18-05, 01:52 PM   #42
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Today I went to a cast-call for 5000 extras for the Jenifer Aniston movie, "The Break-Up" being shot here in Chicago and in Hollywood. On the questionaire they asked if you have a bicycle. Unfortunately, I sold mine a few weeks ago. But I was booked for at least one day's work without the bike. (I thought about borrowing a bike, but I have phiilosophical issues with that.) I've done extra work on Home Alone 2 and The Chamber. It's a blast and the catered lunch is always great.
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Old 06-18-05, 04:50 PM   #43
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I saw your post in the 'alt bike' section and came here to read your thread. Thank you, sir, for being here and openly sharing your stories and responding to the replys without animosity. I don't pretend to know what all of your stories mean, but they are a refreshing breath of fresh air on a forum where many have strong opinions and politeness is sometimes in short supply.

I am glad that you have passed through your phase of homelessness. The homeless recieve precious little support from those fortunate enough to be considered successful, despite the vast material wealth of our country, and they are often vilified through no fault of their own. That makes me very sad. I try to help the homeless as much as I personally can, sometimes with 50 cents, sometimes with a $20 bill, sometimes by providing them with recyclables they can turn into cash, and sometimes with a meal. It lightens my heart to do so.
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Old 06-18-05, 09:42 PM   #44
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Dear Randya,

I am most gratified by your post and I hope I continue to be worthy of it in the future. Your conduct toward the homeless marks you as not a pushover for the downtrodden, but someone who thinks about this issue a great deal and knows what lies beneath the surface in life.

Sincerely,

enormouslock
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Old 06-18-05, 11:33 PM   #45
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I know this may sound a little strange, but instead of being sad for the homeless, I admire their strength. These wonderful people have to deal with the judgement of others, the strategies of survival, they have a strong support system amongst themselves, and they become stronger every day. Of course, I too try to help them with clothing and such necessary items such as sleeping bags but there are actually a few people who turn down offers of a free meal. They instead wanted to earn it. In case you were wondering how I have become acquainted with these wanderers, they live next to the building that I work at. They keep the area clean, are welcome to use our facilities to clean up and are not drunks or druggies. Occaisionally a friend of theirs who is inebriated will visit, but will not stay. It is a matter of respect. And sometimes on our lunch hour we will visit and hear some neat stories! My only concern is their health, for we did have one man die on Thanksgiving where he camps out.
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Old 06-18-05, 11:53 PM   #46
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I'm not sad for the homeless, but for the way our society often treats people in this situation.
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Old 06-19-05, 12:00 AM   #47
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Randya, I wholeheartedly agree with you. I had a co-worker ask me why I was out there talking to "that bum". Boy, I was the wrong person to say that to. Angrily but tactfully I simply replied that I was having a conversation not with a bum but with a person who was quite knowlegdeable of the world around him and that I was learning something from him. Then I suggested he might like to learn someday, too.
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Old 06-19-05, 12:13 AM   #48
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Wow, this has got to be the most surreal, yet comforting, thread in a while. It's actually made me feel calm and relaxed. Thanks a lot, all of you.
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Old 06-25-05, 01:01 AM   #49
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Having decided during my sophomore year at Yale to try distance cycling solo, I set my immediate goal to commute during the summer between home in Glen Ellyn, IL and Batavia, IL, where I was going to be in my second summer working at Fermilab as an electronics technician. The trip is about 10 miles one-way. To start it off I wanted to taste a small two day ride to Wisconsin and back. I purchased a Raleigh Record for about $60. (This was in 1971.) Then I worked on assembling everything I felt necessary for the trip and was up until about 3 am. I felt that a 6 am departure would be prudent considering I had no idea how long it would take me as a total neophyte to reach WI. Then I realized I didn't have an alarm clock and didn't know when my mother would be getting up and so couldn't see my way to interupting her sleep to ask her to wake me up in three hours. I knew from school what toll staying up all night takes, and the value of every minute in slumber when you must perform the next day. I decided I simply would wake up in three hours by creating some sort of subconscious imperitive and surrendering my fate to it. It was not complicated. It was simply the net consequence of a host of prior decisions.

I woke up at 6 and took off.

I chose to travel by the only north-south state highway passing through our area. I didn't know how long it remained north-going. I just knew it went north from town. I don't remember if I had a map. In any case, I decided just for the experience of learning to reckon with my senses rather than with the more intellectual faculty of map-reading. If I did have a map, I didn't use it.

The route was not scenic. Traffic was fast. I tried to keep up a good pace, estimating my mileage against my estimate of the distance to WI. I don't recall seeing any mileage signs.

About an hour into my trip I suddenly got the feeling I was off-course, traveling more north-westerly than north. Again, if I had a map, I didn't use it. I just decided to make a 180 degree turn and find a place where I might have had an alternative route heading due north.

I found a route I believed would take me north again and turned onto it.

A little later, I started to have trouble with my rear derailleur, brand of Simplex. I had no choice but to disassemble it and learn how it worked. It soon became obvious I had unleashed a monster. The spring in the thing had one end that was manufactured bent out so that it could fit in a little hole in the body and load with force when you assembled it. Getting the right tension on the screw inside the spring turned out to be touchy, and it slipped out of allignment time and time again as my fledgling bike-mechanical impatience became a burden. At least I had made the right decision to take allen wrenches with me. I applied a little sweet-talking both to the bike and myself and somehow it came out all right and stayed that way for the rest of the trip, and the summer too for that matter.

I realized I would eventually have to separate from the bike for appreciable lengths of time and found a motorcycle shop where I was able to buy a motorcycle chain and lock. I had never seen a lock and chain that big. Thus my username, enormouslock. The security I got kept the bike with me through two summers of commuting to Fermilab and two 1800 mile trips. I let my guard down when I lost my apartment to fire and left the bike unlocked and unattended on the porch of the girl whose love I was sick over causing me to be negligent and cause the fire to begin with. Then my advisor dropped his objections to my major coursework plan, just before graduation, because I appealed to his sympathy with the story about the fire and the bike. Had I not had that excuse I might have had to spend another semester to get my degree. What is fortune; what is misfortune?

When I got to Wisconsin my bottom began to hurt badly. I figured it would go away so I learned to live with it. It was a Brooks leather saddle.

I had always been a stickler for language propriety but when I got to a point where there didn't seem to be anyone around for miles I decided there was something, what I didn't know, demanding me to swear at the top of my voice, which I did with some sheepishness, if that is possible. It was a transition. Later, a station wagon was traveling ahead of me with some fellows on the tailgate and they shouted out some fraternal idioms at me. I had never used idioms, as weird as that sounds. But on this occasion I was sufficiently beyond any world I had previously thought I would travel that I felt I needed to return in kind, so I shouted out, "right on!" It was my first descent into counter-culture and opened up new avenues of social give-and-take for me. It doesn't sound like much, but for someone who would refrain from saying, "heck", it was a clear departure. I had been the managing editor of my high school newspaper and I always considered my audience.

I got to Lake Geneva and somehow discovered I had traveled 60 miles, by map or other means I don't recall. I found out there was a big name band playing nearby that night and went there and joined the crowd, I remember walking around feeling very Illinoisan among Wisconsiners, but not unwelcome. There were about a thousand kids there. That night I camped out on some road in the bushes and the next day started out feeling more confident of making the 60-mile trip in one day. I don't remember details of the trip back, which I suppose is strange, considering how much of the trip up I remember. Maybe I went up on the strength of uncertainty, if there is such a thing, and came back in the arms of certainty missing anything that might have marred the trip, or worse.

I don't remember the moment I arrived back at my house. When I cycled between Seattle and Chicago at a later date, and came bombing into town on a wave of ebullience full of the swell of places and atmospheres, especially the rocky mountains, I will always remember the way my mother had no greeting for me of any consequence, and the way I accepted that token of passage into an uncharted region of experience, beyond the ability of old habits of speech to communicate, even to your own mother.

But as for my Wisconsin trip, it was formative. What perhaps amazed me most was the sensation, somewhere along the way, that my body had grown more muscled, despite the knowledge that that was quite improbable. I also started to appreciate food, but not water, yet.

My commute to Fermilab was pleasurable all summer long and I repeated it the next summer, but not before going to Europe to cycle from Stockholm to Nice, and not before going to Seattle to cycle most of the way back to Chicago, just as long a distance as in Europe. (I got tendenitis because my crankarm got bent. I hitched for a while. One ride I got was in the back of a pick-up truck where I found an old pipe six feet long and with the owner's permission I used it to bend my crankarm back. When my tendenitis healed in a few days my bike was back in good shape, like me.)

But that's another story.
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Old 06-25-05, 01:07 AM   #50
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Clarifying, it was the chain and lock that lasted through all those rides. I gave my Raleigh after that first summer's commute to a friend from high school, named Jane Hulseberg by the way, and bought a Swedish bike in Stockholm that lasted through the European and American Western trips until it got stolen as I described above.
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