Another Week, Another Training (Auburn)

Day’s Verse:
What advantage does man have in all his work
Which he does under the sun?
A generation goes and a generation comes,
But the earth remains forever.

Ecclesiastes 1:3-4

Cue week three of one training a week. This week it’s Auburn, and paid for by the Bicycle Alliance’s CPPW grant. Oh, yes, didn’t I mention that the Bike Alliance has two grants where we teach the same thing? CPPW is Communities Putting Prevention to Work, stimulus money that’s aimed at reducing obesity and smoking. It comes through the Federal government to the King County Department of Health to the Bicycle Alliance to me. Your tax dollars at work! The Bicycle Alliance’s CPPW grant is run by John Vander Sluis, a great guy and, more importantly for me, an organized guy. (Seth Schromen-Warwin, who does the OSPI grant, is also an organized guy. I have to give him credit for doing a truly amazing job. Anyway, back to our regularly scheduled blog post.) The Bike Alliance’s CPPW grant is much more than just these two classes, but this is my part in it, and it’s essentially the same thing as the OSPI class. Continue Reading >>

Walking Petri Dishes Strike Again

Day’s Verse:
He who blesses his friend with a loud voice early in the morning,
It will be reckoned a curse to him.

Proverbs 27:14

And by “walking petri dishes,” I mean elementary kids. At least, I assume I picked up this cold while I was at the elementary school in Lynden. I haven’t had a cold in a long time, and I’d forgotten how deeply blah it makes me feel. I could do things…but I could also just blow my nose, drink hot water with honey and lemon (we don’t have any tea), and stare blankly at the wall. The first day of the cold I felt bad but not terrible, which I hoped would be indicative of the cold overall. Possibly I was overly optimistic. I feel pretty lousy right now, now that the cold has moved up into my sinuses. Continue Reading >>

Five-Day Summary

Day’s Verse:
Get me out of here on dove wings;
I want some peace and quiet.
I want a walk in the country,
I want a cabin in the woods.
I’m desperate for a change
from rage and stormy weather.

Psalm 55:6-8

Instead of wasting many thousands of words describing the last week, here are some pictures to summarize.

Wednesday through Friday:

View of Mt. Adams from the Mt. Adams Center (MAC), the headquarters of the Northwest Service Academy, the people I do AmeriCorps with.
Mt. Adams - Clouds Continue Reading >>

Teaching Urban Cycling Techniques: Day 2

Day’s Verse:
But I have had God’s help to this very day, and so I stand here and testify to small and great alike.
Acts 26:22


I can now breathe a huge sigh of relief: After yesterday, I finished all my major weekend commitments. Maybe now I will have some time to:

  • Sleep in.
  • Bake bread.
  • Hang out with Ian.
  • Hang out with friends.
  • Clean our bedroom and bathroom.
  • Go for walks and hikes.
  • Clean my bike thoroughly.
  • Watch a movie occasionally.
  • Go somewhere to take pretty pictures.

Those are just a few of the things I look forward to doing in the time I hope to keep free in the future. Ian and I will be gaining possession of a house almost exactly 1 month from today (!!), but between now and then I intend to use my weekends to RELAX as much as possible. Continue Reading >>

Teaching Urban Cycling Techniques: Day 1

Day’s Verse:
I know that my Redeemer lives,
and that in the end he will stand upon the earth.

Job 19:25

Bike HandleYesterday I co-taught the first half of my first-ever Traffic Skills 101 class. Cascade Bicycle Club calls it Urban Cycling Techniques. To prepare, I diligently reviewed the materials I received during my instructor training and last weekend I practiced the bike handling skills we’d teach this weekend.

Not that I didn’t need to do all that; the review did help keep the material fresh in my mind. But my co-teacher, Ellen Aagaard, runs such a laid-back, easygoing class that if I needed to refer to my notes or the book, that wasn’t really a problem. I liked how Ellen ran the class as a discussion, soliciting most of the information and ideas from the students. I’ve learned quite a bit having watched her interaction with the students. She listens respectfully and makes it clear that the students’ ideas are very important. The class ran over by an hour (!), and a couple people had to leave before then, but everybody stayed engaged and interested, even though it was after lunch and the after-lunch sleepies set in. Continue Reading >>


Day’s Verse:
By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.
Genesis 2:2

Today was a work day. I hate weekends are work days. Last night I was out until 10:00 planning a bike class with my co-teacher, Ellen Aagaard (that doesn’t count for AmeriCorps hours, by the way. It’s just something I chose to do because I “like” it. I have chosen NOT to do any more of those for the time being). Then, this morning, I left the house at 8:45, drove to the Bike Alliance, picked up tabling supplies I had prepared yesterday, drove to the REI in Southcenter, tabled for 3 hours and taught one 20-minute bike commuting gear mini-class, packed up the tabling supplies, drove back to the Bike Alliance, dropped the supplies off, and arrived home at 3:30. If I’m counting right, that’s 7.25 hours on a Saturday. Continue Reading >>