Show #553 – May 1, 2021

Guests: Jon Biemer; Javier Sanchez; Dennis Markatos_Soriano

You might remember that, two weeks ago, we spoke with members of the Business Climate Leaders organization about the importance of a bill introduced into Congress by Representative Deutch of Florida that would begin putting a price on carbon emissions.

Today, we bring it down to a personal level with Jon Biemer.  Jon is a Portland Engineer and Energy Conservation Expert and he believes we can CALL be energy conservation experts too.

Jon’s diverse background includes process psychology as well as engineering and conservation, had a “vision” of a sort back in 2013.

He didn’t feel as if he could get much better at reducing his own footprint on the planet, but he could see so many ways that all of us could become proactive as opposed to reactive with a deep sense of generosity.

His new book, Our Environmental Handprints, outlines the many small and large steps we can take – as individuals, families, and communities – to “Recover the Land, Reverse Global Warming, Reclaim the Future,”

Javier Sanchez is the Miami Dolphins Foundation Director of Development & Partnerships.  Back on April 10th, the Foundation held its 11th annual Dolphins Challenge Cancer ride with over 3300 participants.

Touting the title of the largest fundraising event by any sports franchise, DCC XI raised over $6M this year alone – and every penny goes directly to cancer research.

If you are ready to get back out to some larger events, especially events where you come together with friends and colleagues for a philanthropic fundraiser, or maybe you’d like to ride with some of your favorite Miami Dolphin’s players, perhaps you’ll head down to Florida next winter for the 12th annual Dolphins Challenge Cancer Ride.

You could even be knighted by the team’s Coach Flores as you come across the finish line when he presents you with your medal and announces your name. To whet your appetite for a century ride, or maybe a 50 or 62 miler, Javier Sanchez, the Miami Dolphins Director of Development and Partnerships, is here to lure you to Florida next winter.

Lastly, we check in with Dennis Markatos-Soriano, the executive director of the East Coast Greenway.  And, in the interest of full disclosure, I am an advisory board member of the Greenway.

I wanted to talk with Dennis about a ride that is coming up to highlight the section of the Greenway from NYC to Philadelphia.  It’s the first ever for this ride and only 500 people can attend.  There aren’t a lot of spots left – about 175 when Dennis and I spoke a couple of days ago – but, I wanted him to fill you in on it.

He also told me that just that day, ECG had posted a new job opening for a coordinator for the NY and NJ area and that this ride will fund that position.

Show #551 – April 17, 2021

Guests: Randy Salim & Rich Fein; Kendall Young

This week, it’s about climate and carbon pricing first.

There is, of course, a sea change of thought and action in Washington about climate, thank goodness, and the need for action; and the bicycle industry has a place in that conversation.

And, there’s has been a lot of talk about carbon pricing and frankly, I didn’t really understand it. It’s not a new idea and in fact, what we are going to discuss with Randy Salim and Rich Fein from the Business Climate Leaders organization in an effort to finally get the Energy Innovation and Carbon
Dividend bill passed that has been introduced in Congress for the third time.

This time might be different though as momentum builds for a new infrastructure bill that includes climate initiatives to help stem the rise of greenhouse gases.

And, to that end, more than 200,000 people from over 1,000 companies are actively involved in the Business Climate Leaders organization.

My second guest is Kendall Young from SpinCycle LLC. Working behind the scenes as the guy behind the guy behind the guy, as he puts it, Kendall matches his clients with product managers to spec bicycles.

And, after over the 30 years in the business, he has some deep insight as well as sage advice as we face months-long waits for parts and accessories.
Kendall Young works with high-end European brands and talks to all the US product managers to spec products that we all want to buy.

In an editorial for Bicycle Retailer titled “the value of diversifying the supply chain,” Kendall stresses a need to move from single-source suppliers to multi-source options and as our conversation unfolds, he explains the reality of the shortages and what we can expect and when.

Show #550 – April 10, 2021

Guests: Tim Jackson; Max Pratt

This week’s show started out a lot differently from the way it has ended up.

We do have a fabulous conversation with Max Pratt, a young and very talented frame designer/builder from Providence, RI. And, I think you’ll find his perspective about frame building and the other projects he supports refreshing and somewhat unusual.

By chance, I was looking at the list of exhibitors from the N.E. Builder’s Ball from 2020. Of course, the event had to be postponed due to the pandemic, but I decided to check into a few of the builders who were new to me and saw Pratt Frameworks.

Of course, I clicked on the link and really liked what I saw. Of course the bikes are lovely, but it’s the other things that Max Pratt, who calls himself a frame designer rather than a frame builder, is not only saying but what he is doing that made it so compelling.

And, there was another very interesting and pertinent topic I was ready to offer up and went ahead with a great conversation about that too. It’s all about climate and carbon emissions and what business and industry is doing along those fronts.

But, I’ve bumped that piece until next week, and here’s why.

Much more urgent news has made headlines – specifically Arkansas and the laws that are and will continue to affect transgender athletes as well as young people who are, as Molly Cameron put in her piece in Bicycling Magazine this week, ” navigating identity and just trying to be themselves in a state that clearly does not care about them.”

To discuss all the ramifications of what is happening in Arkansas, especially as it pertains to the UCI and USAC, the World Championship CX races, and the threats of boycotts, we talk with Tim Jackson whose editorial in Bicycle Retailer, The Industry Has An Arkansas Problem, tried to make the case for pulling the USAC and UCI World CX Championships out of Fayetteville in 2022.

We know that the Walton Family and the Visit Bentonville, Arkansas organizations have invested heavily in making Arkansas a welcoming place for bicycling with a deep and honest commitment to mountain biking.

But, in the wake of new laws targeting the LBGTQ+ community and especially transgender youth, Visit Bentonville’s president Kalene Griffith was only willing to offer a one-line comment about the controversy of the new laws stating: “”We’re committed to inclusive trail and visitor experiences in our city and welcome everyone to Visit Bentonville.”

The Walton Foundation’s Tom Walton, issued a written statement on April 6th that begins: “We are alarmed by the string of policy targeting LGBTQ people in Arkansas. This trend is harmful and sends the wrong message to those willing to invest in or visit our state.

But, do the Walton Foundation and the Chambers of Commerce have any clout that might move the legislature toward rescinding these draconian laws?

Show #549 – April 3, 2021

Guests: Lynne Tolman; John Surico

This week, we take a trip east – first to Worcester, Mass to meet Lynne Tolman,  the president of the Major Taylor Association.

Most of us know who Major Taylor was and today especially, his life and achievements stand out as being most remarkable.

Arguably, he was the first black athlete to break the color barrier, and long before Jackie Robinson, Major Taylor was a cycling phenomenon. When he won the world championship back in 1899 though, it wasn’t here in the U.S. – his home country. He spent many years in Europe to escape the Jim Crow Laws of the day and was revered for his prowess on the bike.

Today, the Major Taylor Association in Worcester, Mass. is dedicated to keeping his legacy alive with programs for schools, rides, and much more.

Then, it’s down to NYC to speak with journalist, teacher, and urban planning researcher John Surico.

As we begin to inch our way out of the pandemic and back into what life will begin to look like, I wanted to speak with someone who has a particular interest in cities – both here in North America and in Europe – and how they are changing in response to the way we work, play, and live.

John Surico focuses specifically on issues of mobility, open space and sustainability. His articles in Bloomberg’s City Lab are of particular interest in these areas and one in particular titled In Covid-19 recovery, London Bets Big on Low Traffic (from June, 2020) caught my eye.

Show #548 – March 28, 2021

Guests: Sara Dykman, Selene Yeager

In July of 2017, I spoke with wildlife biologist Sara Dykman. At that time, she was embarking on a 10,000 plus mile journey to follow the migration of monarch butterflies – by bicycle.

Starting in Mexico, bicycling up to Canada and then to the east coast of the U.S., she made the return trip to Mexico to complete a full migration cycle.

I caught up with Sara Dykman where she alighted in northern California for a bit.  In addition to writing a book, Bicycling with Butterflies, she’s begun a series of virtual chats about her trip and the book and is thinking about her next adventure.

Signed copies of her book and information on the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge virtual discussion and book club package can be found on  the Ottawa NWR website.

Then, we check in with Selene Yeager. Bicycling Magazine calls her the Fit Chick, and so do a lot of others.  But, she’s gone so far beyond that title with a podcast, a multitude of articles, and several books.

Among her many projects are a follow-up to her book ROAR and her podcast  Hit Play, Not Pause – which she says is for Feisty Menopause podcast for active, performance-minded women who aren’t willing to put their best years behind them.

Show #547 – March 20, 2021

Guests: Paul Tolme & Ethan Campbell; Joe Lindsey: Caron Whitaker

I want to begin with a statement and a question.

We 100% support the wearing of bicycle helmets – for everyone. That said, should there be a legal mandate insisting that everyone wear one when riding?

We begin with King County, Washington, into which Seattle’s boundaries fall. It’s had a bicycle helmet law on the books for YEARS. The law was marginally enforced for a while and then enforcement just sort of dropped off. However, citations are still being issued.

That begged several questions – why had it dropped off? And, if citations are still being issued, what are the circumstances around that?

Now, that law is being challenged and there is a campaign to have it struck down. I speak with PhD student Ethan Campbell – whose field of study is not even remotely connected to the topic of bicycle helmets by the way – and to Paul Tolme, content strategy and media relations manager for the Cascade Bicycle Club out in Seattle.

Then, we do a quick check-in with journalist Joe Lindsey. Like me, he watches the news carefully for bicycle-related stories and we both caught the story about former NBA star Shawn Bradley who was seriously injured back in January while riding his bike.

And while t hat’s a big story unto itself, it is the media’s coverage that irked both of us.

From renown news outlets such as cbsnews, espn, , abc, tmz, and more, the reporting about former NBA star Shawn Bradley, is just wrong. As we have had drilled into our heads over the past few years, these are not ACCIDENTS – they are crashes.

And, since I always like Joe’s straight forward thinking on these types of things, I knew he would have some helpful and insightful things to say.  (Read Joe’s article about this topic!)

Lastly, we speak with Deputy Executive Director of the LAB, Caron Whitaker. This year’s National Bike Summit wrapped up recently and I thought we should all be aware of what resulted in this unusual time of not being able to actually see our legislators face-to-face – well, unless you consider Zoom.

I want to preface my conversation with Caron Whitaker with an apology for the sound quality on Caron’s end. I was unable to clear up some of the distortion in editing; but, the conversation was too good to discard all together.

This year’s National Bike Summit was, of course, virtual. What I didn’t expect though was how incredibly successful it turned out to be!

Show #546 – March 13, 2021

Guests: Victoria Munro; Barb Hoyt

In a mini-tribute to Women’s History Month, this week’s show highlights a woman-owned tour company and a woman from history who changed the face of bicycling while adding to the rich history of women’s emancipation at the turn of the last Century.

My first guest is Victoria Munro.  Victoria is executive director of the Alice Austen House on Staten Island in NYC.

Alice was a prolific photographer at the turn of the last century who documented New York City, and especially the lives of lesbian women.  Her photographs of women and bicycles appeared in the original work of Maria – Violet – Ward’s book, Bicycling for Ladies, originally published in 1896. 

The book covers topics from skills and exercise to mechanics and dress and gives us a glimpse into what freedom for women began to look like over 100 years ago.

Barb Hoyt is the owner of Timberline-Adventures out of Boulder, Colorado.  Specializing in small groups – 6-12 people – the tours offer the cyclist or hiker a full day of adventure with great support accompanied by inviting accommodations.

While she didn’t start the company, she became the owner with a passion for adventures and expanded the company from mostly west of the Mississippi to covering much of the U.S. now including Hawaii.

Although COVID curtailed most of 2020, Barb is ramping up some great adventures for 2021 including a 3-month, 4section tour of the East Coast Greenway.

Show #545 – March 6, 2021

Guests: Patrick Lucas; Landall Proctor, Vic Micolucci

Have you ever thought about who owns the land under your wheels when you roll out onto a trail with your bike? What if these trails were built without the permission of the land owners?

Patrick Lucas not only thinks about these things, he does something about them as a community planner and intermediary between First Nations’- people who often never ceded their land through treaties or other means – and those of us who want to ride or otherwise recreate on those lands.

Patrick lives and works up on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. He wears a lot of hats including one as a community planner, one as a storyteller, one as a writer, and he’s the founder of the Indigenous Youth Mountain Bike Program. While in a meeting with a remote tribe of indigenous people, an elder asked Patrick what he knew about mountain biking. The question came up because Patrick always had a mountain bike strapped to the back of his car. And, out of that conversation came the Indigenous Youth Mountain Bike Program

But, the thing that drew me to Patrick was an article he wrote that accompanied a webinar video about Decolonizing Trails in B.C. and I didn’t know what that meant or why it was important.

Today, Landall Proctor is a software developer.  But,  pretty much right out of college he just wasn’t ready to make a long term career choice and quit the day job he had at the time.  Instead, he decided to take a 100 day 10,000 mile cross country trip.

He kept a journal filled with the stories of that ride and when he returned he thought about turning the journal into a book.  He started and stopped and started again and it just didn’t happen – until now, 15 years later. 

That book is “Headwinds – A Memoir,” and it was worth the wait for him to write it.

We also have a quick conversation with TV anchor Vic Micolucci from WJXT-TV4 in Jacksonville, Florida.  On Sunday, February 28th, during a 72 hour bike race from the west coast of Florida to the St. Augustine on the east coast, several crashes between cars and riders occurred resulting in injuries and one death.

Vic is covering that story and will fill us in on some of the details he knows up until now as there is an ongoing investigation.

Show #544 – February 27, 2021

Guests: Elizabeth McGowan; Rob DeMartini

This week, we meet journalist and long-distance cyclist Elizabeth McGowan.

In addition to her work – she’s a Pulitzer prize winning journalist – she’s also an ardent adventurer and a cancer survivor.

I found her to be one of the most articulate, interesting, and candid people I’ve spoken with over the many hundreds – nope thousands – of interviews on the show.

Yes she wrote a book – a really good one about her cross-country bike tour. But, it was her reasons for taking the trip and then teasing out the whys that became the real story.

Elizabeth fought melanoma for many years. Her father died from the disease at the age of 44. Some of the treatments Elizabeth experienced were experimental – all were brutal. So, when she received her 5-year clean bill of health, she decided to celebrate with a cross-country bike tour.

Her book, Outpedaling the Big C is the telling of the story of that trip.

Then, I welcome USA Cycling’s CEO Rob DeMartini back to the show. Rob wanted an opportunity to respond to some of the comments that George Mount made on the show two weeks ago.

According to Rob, George’s assumptions were based upon outdated knowledge of the organization and Rob DeMartini l wanted to offer a more current explanation of how the organization works.

So… equal time…