Sunday, June 13, 2010

#cycling365

I've been quiet for a while.  Not quite a case of writer's block, but a conspiracy of available time, responsibilities and a slight inability to germinate a worthy blog entry has been the culprit.  But now, school is out for the summer and it is like a veil of grey has lifted to reveal sunshine once again.

Don't get me wrong, I like teaching, but there are things about the profession (and this time in the history of education) that grind you down, no matter who you are.  I am in my second semester of graduate school and that is reinvigorating my ideas for the classroom and making me feel like I can make a difference.

I was successful in my quest to commute by bike to school everyday this semester.  Through rain, snow and tremendous humidity, I've pedaled away much to the consternation of my students and the admiration of some of my colleagues.  I have ridden my bike to school everyday this year (2010), a total of about 100 hundred school days equaling 1000 miles of commuting to work.  My car literally lies dead in the driveway, unable to move even if I wanted to drive it.

I have enjoyed myself so immensely with this personal challenge that I have embarked on a new one: #Cycling365.  Beginning June 1st, I will attempt to ride my bike outdoors everyday for a year.  No mileage requirements, no minimum ride length, just on the bike riding outside every day.  Simple.  But often the simple things end up being the most difficult, so we'll see what happens...

Like many of you, I watched the Giro and enjoyed every moment of it.  I can't say the same for the Tour of California.  I guess I just have enough attention span for one major race at the time and in that particular little battle, il Giro will win for me every time.  Once Owen gets a little older, our Giro/Italy bike tour fantasy will become a reality.

I, like many of you, have also been fascinated by the revelations of Floyd Landis.  While I am very disappointed about his admission to doping and the weird "I still won the Tour clean(ish)" claim, he is a high enough level rider to potentially blow the lid off of the whole affair and spark real change in the system.  Unfortuantely, the UCI is so heavily invested in the Lance Armstrong brand that he may be a rider "too big to fail" like the onerous banking groups that had to be bailed out from failing by the federal government even though they created the problem to begin with.

I'm not naive.  Drugs are a part of cycling at the highest level.  They are take for survival by most, misguided shots at glory by some.  Floyd Landis (and Tyler Hamilton for that matter) has payed and enormous cost for what he did; effectively ending the life he had built over decades of hard work and unimaginable effort.  I hope this latest shot in the public spotlight will bring him peace.
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