Bike Expo: Day 1

Day’s Verse:
So the word of God spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem increased rapidly, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith.
Acts 6:7

Today I spent 9 hours at the Bicycle Alliance booth at Bike Expo, handing out maps — hundreds of maps — and Share the Road postcards, Bicycle Alliance brochures, and even more maps. My throat is sore and my voice croaky after an entire long day of basically hollering at people over the noise of the crowd. Actually, the space where our booth is located is not overly loud at all, but the sound of hundreds of people talking all at once just adds up after a while. Also, standing on a concrete floor for all those hours started taking its toll by the end, and my legs and back feel quite sore now, too.

Some of that I may have to attribute to riding the Xtracycle 26 miles, well loaded, into a headwind, up gentle but endless inclines. That was hard work, no question, and I was proud it only took 2 hours all told. As you commenters have pointed out, it’s not about speed on an Xtracycle, and that’s something I like about it. However, when I really just want to get to my destination in as short a time as possible, it’s not the bike for me. I did get a lot of compliments on the bike, though, and it did a fabulous job hauling and holding my food, changes of clothes, cable and U-lock, SLR camera, and extra bike clothes. Ian rescued me this evening by picking me up and taking me to Kidd Valley for dinner, where I got a veggie burger with bacon. The strange looks were so worth it, seriously.

Anyway, I have lots of pictures, but I’m totally wiped out and I have another 6 hours to do tomorrow. I’ll just say that I got to see lots of friends and people I knew from all over the place: Dean from Pedal Dynamics; Neil Jander, a guy I grew up with; John Whitlow, my dad’s cousin and on the Board of the Bicycle Alliance; Jean from KDOG; a number of Cascade staff people, which makes sense since they run Bike Expo; Jon, an AmeriCorps member; Leo, from the LCI Seminar class I helped co-teach; and a selection of Bicycle Alliance volunteers and supporters. I talked to probably hundreds of people today (I’m horrible at estimating how many people I talked to, but if you say 20 an hour, which would probably be conservative, we’re still over 100) and I think I managed to stay cheerful and enthusiastic the entire time.

I enjoyed myself for certain, but I have to admit I’m utterly exhausted. If you define an “introvert” as somebody who finds social interactions draining, and an “extrovert” as somebody who finds social interactions energizing, I’d fall firmly in the “introvert” category. It doesn’t mean I dislike talking with all sorts of different people — I’m finding that to be quite enjoyable, actually. I’m just so tired at the end of it all.

1 thought on “Bike Expo: Day 1”

  1. Here’s a question: which is more important, the time you save or the impact you have on every pair of eyes that bestows a bicycle obviously Intended for the Purpose of Practicality? I honestly suspect I’ve shifted some Tides of Thought and Actions that wouldn’t have happened were I just another bicycle goin’ by.

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