Well, I was encouraged to post on introduction, so here it is . . .
My name is Andrew Turley. I was first introduced to the two wheeled world by a blue bike with a white bananna seat that I found sitting in front of the fireplace one christmas morning. I was on training wheels for quite a while, until a younger girl in the neighborhood got rid of her training wheels and I decided that it was passed time for me to do the same. That Christmas I received my next bike, a Huffy with a coaster break and white plastic spoke covers. That bike rocked. A few years later, in fifth grade, I got a Fuji "mountain" bike. The quotes are due to the fact that I looked at the thing for the first time in nearly a decade last month and realized that it had skinny tires and a small frame. More like a hybrid. I rode that for a few years, until I became conviced that skateboarding was much more cool and that bikes were for weenies.
And that was the end of biking for a while. I lived in Kansas City, where you didn't see many people biking as a way of getting around. I just gave up on bikes as kids toys.
I went away to Boston University for college. A bike might have been nice once in a while, but the streets were full of cars and I got around fine with the T.
I graduated from college with a degree in computer engineering and got a job in Monterey, California. My parents helped me move and as I was showing them the town (I had been there before for the job interview and then to find a place to live), my dad mentioned that I ought to just get a bike and explore the town. Never one to scoff at my dad's advice, I went to the local bike store and picked up a GT Nomad. I took it out and rode around a bit. In the days before I started work, I rode around town exploring. But I wrote off commuting to work because I thought the roads on the way were too dangerous. Besides, I had just bought a new Jetta, why would I not want to drive it around?
After a few weeks at work, I decided to give commuting a shot. I did it once and I was hooked. It was so much fun. I bought a rack to put my bag on, and I found a route that didn't involve the highway. 15 miles round trip. An hour a day on the bike. I felt great, I was in shape, and I was having a blast.
Then one day on the way to work I got hit by a car. It was my fault. There is one stretch of road on the way to work that I didn't feel comforatable on, so I rode on the dirt path on the side of the road. At the end of the dirt path I would get back on the road. To get on the road I had to cross in front of a right turn lane with a yeild sign. On this particular day I thought I had made eye contact with the driver of a white Ford Explorer, but I guess I didn't do enough to signal my intentions. As I was almost passed her, she started moving and as I turned to protest she hit the gas. My bike and my foot were crushed by her front and back right tires. I got up and tried to walk my bike off the road, but that didn't work very well. She pulled over and helped me get myself and my bike out of the road. She was freaked out.
I ended up with four broken metatarsols (sp?), a dislocated pinky toe, and a broken bone on the top of my foot. Oh yeah, and my three month old bike was totaled.
I was walking again in a month and playing basket ball within 6 weeks. I got some money for Christmas, so 14 weeks after the accident, I bought another GT Nomad from the same bike shop.
It's colder now, and the sun goes down a lot earlier. But I just picked up a bike light and I plan to start cyclocommuting again on Friday.
So yeah, that's my bike story.
I want to take a long bike ride in the spring/summer of 2003, but that's another story.