Thursday, August 23, 2007

PedalPub Trip in Minneapolis

I rode the PedalPub last night. It's a pedal-powered wagon with seating for 16. About 12 of those riders can pedal. Take a look at the website for better photos. I only had my cell phone camera. I lost the little Canon on my recent vacation. So these photos are kinda crappy.

I stood inside it to get this photo of the back of the driver.

These guys may not want their faces on the internets 'cause some of you are psychos.

Anyway, the city of Minneapolis doesn't allow drinking on this vehicle due to their interpretation of a state law. The PedalPub owner is trying to get that changed. However, the PedalPub is plumbed for a keg. Maybe in the future, they'll allow booze.

We stopped at three bars on our tour of Nicollet Avenue in downtown Minneapolis. Harvey's had the best looking staff by far. Wow!

Kieran's had the grumpiest waitress of the night. She kept giving us dirty looks. Good hire, Manager person!

The best stop was _____. You guess what it was based on this photo.

The PedalPub can be hard work, especially if some of the pedalers are drunk slackers. Because of this, I can now say that downtown Minneapolis is hilly. If you ride the PedalPub, you'll agree.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Nearly Instant Laxative

I bought a little coffee press and brought it to work. After making my first cup of pressed coffee, I sat with the warm mug in both hands inhaling the beautiful aroma of strong, fresh coffee. I looked into the mug and saw floating grounds.

It reminded me of my camping experiences using the little screw-pot espresso maker. Floating grounds mean strong coffee and that means whoever drinks the coffee will be in the restroom in less than 10 minutes or in the case of camping, searching for the toilet paper and a shovel.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Lord Whimsy

I enjoy reading Lord Whimsy's writing. I'm slowly reading his book loaned to me from This Verdant Country. It takes me a while to get in the groove of his writing style, but once I do, I find myself feeling less serious about everything. That's good.
Here's a bit from his latest newsletter:

"The angel's trumpet blooms are in full profusion of late, coming in at
last count at over thirty blooms. I sit under its boughs in the
evenings when the blooms fully open, and allow the bouquet of rose and
jasmine scents waft over my drooping eyelids.

And you should see the bog garden---venus flytraps large enough to
frighten livestock.

August--earth's siesta! The only time of year when a deeply lazy man
can pass for normal among the normals! Relish it, my darjeelings."

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Bike Repair on a Rainy Day

I haven't been riding this three-speed lately. It 's saddle was ripped, due to dry rot. It had a flat tire also. I fixed the flat yesterday and replaced the saddle. When I gave it a test ride down the alley, I noticed the new seat was too high. While adjusting the seat I also replaced the seat binder, because the old one needed two wrenches and it was so long, causing it to catch my pants.
During the second test ride down the alley, I heard the rattle of the broken rear fender mount. It broke during the Lake Pepin Three-Speed Tour. I used a bright green zip tie to fix it back then. This time, I found a mount from a set of Planet Bike fenders. The Planet Bike mount fit as if it were designed for the old Raleigh. You can see it in the photo below. It's the black thing between the brake caliper and the fender.

I took a few photos and played with the depth of field.

Lutsen Trail Review

My vacation was great. I enjoyed the trails at Lutsen. Before I went, I read the trail reviews at the MORC and websites.

The reviews didn't convince me that I'd like the trails. The reviews were mixed. I was worried that I wouldn't like it. My worries were unnecessary.

I have some suggestions for anyone who wants to ride the Lutsen trails.

  • Get the trail map from the lodge where they rent the bikes.
  • Don't use the chair lifts or tram to get to the top.
  • Pick one of the mountains and find a green trail that takes you to the top or close. Then ride down the mountain on whatever level of trail that suits your skills. Repeat that on each mountain and you'll have a great time.
One of the green trails I rode up was fantastic. It was very rocky. The rocks were the jagged kind that could puncture a tire, but I had no problems.

I saw this deer on the a road and remembered that I had my camera.

This is an underwhelming photo. I was having too much fun riding to stop and take any nice photos. Sorry.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


My family and I are heading to the north shore area of Minnesota for a vacation. We're staying at Lutsen and plan to hike and swim. Just in case they have some trails up there, I managed to fit a bike in the van. Who knows?

I intend to have lots of fun and will post some photos when I return.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Today's Ride to Work

Since the bridge collapse, part of my route to work has changed and it's given me a chance to see some different scenery. I like the larger version of this one. Click on it to see the larger version.

I really like to look at this building, but some people say really bad things about its looks.

This bridge has two layers. The bottom is for cars and the top is for bikes and pedestrians. The middle portion of the top layer is covered. This allows the graffiti artists to work in comfort during bad weather.

Some people work here, apparently keeping the lawn in good shape. I imagine Ray's lawn looks just like this one.

This is a hill I like to ride.

It was humid this morning and I think that caused the hazy conditions. I want a clear, sharp shot of this skyline. When that day arrives, I plan to have a better camera along to do the work.

No one on the bench this morning.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

An Unintended Night Ride

A friend from out of town (Mr. G), another friend (Mr. H), and I rode to the Longfellow Grill in Minneapolis to drink a beer.

But before we could leave, Mr. G had to fix a flat.

When we arrived, we just intended to have a beer and leave. Mr. H paid. Thanks, Mr. H!

But two of us ordered food and next thing you know it was dark.

I had front and rear blinky lights, but Mr. G and Mr. H didn't have lights. We stayed on the bike trails and had a fun ride home. I was blinded a few times by the car lights shining in my eyes from a parallel road. One of those times, I even rode off the trail. I need to start carrying a more powerful headlight.

I also want a dynamo front hub. Which one should I buy? It's worth the expense, because it's a safety item, right?

A Trail Near my House

I live near Minnehaha Creek in Minneapolis and sometimes I ride this little section of dirt trail next to the creek. It's between 12th Avenue and Cedar Avenue on the south side of the creek. It's not a secret, but I've never seen another cyclist on it.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

I Rode a Different Route Today

My usual route through Minneapolis to work was closed today. I normally take the 10th Avenue Bridge across the river, but it was closed. For those of you who don't know Minneapolis, it's the little white bridge next to the collapsed 35W bridge. You've probably seen in news photos.

On the way to work, I went east into St. Paul. This route avoided any contact with the area surrounding the collapsed bridge. I didn't want to contribute to crowding around the area.

On the way home, I plotted a very complicated route through the University of Minnesota using a map. When I arrived in the campus area, I got on the Washington Ave. bridge and just rode west following the painted bike path through the campus.

I ignored my planned route and used the Wiseman Art Museum as a landmark.

I popped out right near where my old route carried me. I realized I found a better route by just following the paint lines of the bike path.

So I ask myself, "What do you think of bike lanes now?"
I'm sorry for all those people killed and missing and I'm especially heavy hearted for their families. Waiting for news about a missing person would be one of the most difficult things ever. I know there are people sitting by their phones waiting right now. That's hell.

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