Tuesday, May 10, 2005


A short time ago, I was what you might call a bike bum. Having just graduated from college, I was searching (rather unsuccessfully) for a job in my field of study. My on-again-off-again job search took me to Phoenix, where my sister lived, back to my home state of Illinois, and eventually to New Jersey where I now call home. During that time, I always travelled with my mountain bike in tow. It was always a great means of escape from the realities of substitute teaching, rejection letters and unanswered resumes. I had no money, I ate rice in some form almost daily, and almost always had time to go out and ride at least 3 or 4 times per week. Biking was more than a recreational activity, it was a lifestyle and an identity. In spite of all the downers of life, I was happy.

Well, times change. It's a good thing too, since the lifestyle I had wasn't really a long term one. I'm still happy. I have a modest career that pays the bills, I enjoy playing in a band regularly, I have a house and a wife I love very much. Among all the other things, though, it seems like the only bike I ever get to ride is a spinning bike at the gym. It's good for my body, and I enjoy talking to my fellow spinners between sprints, but the total feeling of well being I feel after a good ride is missing. You can say it's endorphines, but I swear it's more. Riding out in nature does something to me that's hard to describe. I still feel it on the rare occasion that life's responsibilities let me out for a ride. I went out to ride with a few friends on Saturday and came to the conclusion that I need to ride more. My soul needs it.


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