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September 05, 2007

San Diegan Wins Bike With Essay, Takes up BikeBlogging!

Now here's an original way to begin taking up bicycling ( or, as in this case, re-discovering the pasttime. ). ;-D

I get an e-mail last week:

Hello there Cycling Dude.
Well, based on the gazillion links to other biking blogs on your'e blog (and the boatload of posts on your site, I now know that my idea to create a blog about a bike wasn't quite as original as I originally proudly led myself to believe.
Nevertheless, It's already "out-there", so I guess there is no going back now. After finding your site I though just maybe you would like to take a look at mine.
And yes, as the web address implies, this all started when, after decades of being "bikeless", I won a Trek Lime from Bicycling magaizines' Biketown Project. As you will see if you visit, I am not even close to a biking enthusiast yet, buy I am enjoying writing and riding.
Take care.
John Manning

On the About page of his new blog, John Manning writes:

In May of 2007, my younger brother Cyril sent me an e-mail, the text of which was simply “You should do this”, followed by a hyperlink to a contest webpage.

An essay? Write an essay? Yeah, I have time for that. Seeing as I had plenty of work backed up that week, and the phone wouldn’t stop ringing, I proceeded directly to the website and spent the rest of the day crafting my tale.

Long story short, along with 49 other essay writers in the San Diego area, I won a brand new, state of the art bike that is supposed to change my life in some way. Hopefully, for the better… so I suppose it would be wise to wear the provided helmet.

So here is my bike story. In addition to telling how this new bike changes my life, I’ll undoubtedly ramble on with other bike-related details from my life.

Now, how cool is THAT? ;-D

Any way, I replied that "the Good News is that you thought to create one in the 1st place." ;-D

I also said that the important thing was "Enjoying, learning, riding, and sharing your thoughts."

We shared a good chuckle over my name, and his brothers name.;-D

In my Father's country Kiril is the same as Cyril, and was the name of my Grandfather.

As John wrote me: "Cyril was also my Grandfathers name, originally from Finland."

As he writes;

I had been meaning to start a blog for the longest time. It's funny how it works... the blog keeps me motivated to ride the bike, and the bike keeps my motivated to write the blog.

You will see that although all the stories will have at least some mention of the bike, the blog is more about everyday life.

I also started a separate blog with my brother in law ( You may have seen the link on the bike blog. ) We both suspect we have adult ADD, so it's called shoprtattentionspanman.

I didn't want to stray from the spirit of the biketown blog, but I felt a little limited in my topics, so since I enjoyed my new writing hobby so much I created it and convinced my brother in law to co-author it.

So, off I went to check out the new guy on the trail. ;-D

1. The Essay that started him on his journey:

It was a contest with two main rules. You had to tell how a new bike would set you free, and you had to do it in fifty words. But the degree of difficulty escaped me entirely. Not the part about not having written an essay since high school, I was completely aware that I could screw that up.

The part about fifty words.

A wonderfully funny 1st Blog post, last June 8th, and the essay is a dandy. ;-D

2. On June 9th he went to claim his prize:

It was a pretty neat thing to see. Fifty brand new bicycles, all lined up in formation, ribbons bearing the new owners names taped to the handlebars. 25 identical shiny black ones, 25 identical gleaming white ones. We gave Anthony the task of finding mine, which took him about 10 seconds.

I just felt like I should stand next to it for a while.

3. Not wanting to waste any time the 1st ride was on the 10th. ;-D

The 1st paragraph deserves to be read in the post itself, not as an intro here, as it is quite a touching sentiment.

So I'll share part of the next one, instead, and only part because it's ending is almost as touching as the 1st paragragh, and the advernture told in what follows is a fun one ( The pictures are great! ):

Unbeknownst to us, someone built a very bike friendly area around our house. And I was actually surprised how quick the trip to the mall was; we had never ventured the “back way” because the roads were only opened a few weeks ago. Before this ride, when driving to anywhere, we got on the main parkway with lots of other people. We knew this way would get us there, but I didn’t realize what a straight shot it would be....

4 and 5. A Week later he takes his 1st SOLO adventure, camera in hand. ;-D

Part 1 involved an hilarious encounter with a Security Guard, that reminds me of my own encounters when caught using a camera on a BookCrossing Adventure. ;-D

Part 2 involved a trip to a fine drinking establishment, hee, hee. ;-D

Oh, and before I forget, he performed an Animal Rescue, too, this day. ;-D

Soon after this there was the 1st Family ride with a twist of an ending, and this outstanding new addition to the BikeBlogosphere, was off and pedaling. ;-D

Reading the blog called COASTING reminds me of why I began The Tour de Bicycling Blogs, almost 2 years ago.

It has been 10 months since my last "Tour", and several people have expressed the hope that I revive it, and I am deeply touched by the interest.

2 years ago such a "Carnival", a staple of the mainstream Blogosphere, where other Bloggers let the host know of something good, and interesting, they wrote some week, or month, was an unfamiliar concept to many, if not most, in our niche, and I ended up making my own choices.

In the year since the last Tour, BikeBloggers have taken up Podcasting, and begun linking to, and writing about, other BikeBlogs, far more than they used to.

Let me think about it, ok. ;-D

If anyone else thinks I should continue, leave a comment about why you think it's a worthwhile effort, at Tour #9

September 5, 2007 in Blogging Cyclists | Permalink


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Pretty cool.

I'd always wondered about your name. Now I know.

Links to blog articles are always good!

Posted by: Fritz | Sep 5, 2007 5:52:23 PM

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