Thinking About 2009: Personal Non-cycling Hopes and Dreams


If I’m not riding my bike, I spend a lot of time thinking about them. Or about this blog, or some other cycling related person, product, or activity. As I mentioned a couple weeks back, I’ve already started thinking about both personal and community cycling related hopes and dreams, but the last few days of the year have me thinking about other goals in my life as well. Yes, it’s true, there’s more to me than just bikes, and I’m hoping to accomplish more than just riding as much as I can. Keep reading to see what’s been on my mind….

Bikes Misc

Merry Christmas To All!


I hope that you all get a chance to enjoy time with your family, friends, or whomever you can share some special time with. The snow has really kept most of us from riding out here in the PNW (although some are braving the elements on mountain bikes, or with snow tires) but it looks like the warmer weather may be thawing us out a bit today.

Regardless, I’ve been loving the extra time with family and friends. Enjoying an extra long cup of coffee with encouraging conversation. Riding along with the family extra slow and appreciating the great pines that line our neighborhood — somehow they’ve remained almost hidden without the snow covering their boughs. While the snowfall has been a pain for many, I’ve appreciated the pace that it has required us to take the past few days. I know most will be happy to see it go, but I’ll be a little sad for the winter wonderland to melt away over the next few days.

May you all have a safe, warm, Merry Christmas!

Bikes Misc Riding

Video: UPS Deliveries By Bike in Salem/Keizer, Oregon

I caught up with local rider/racer, and PacificPedalling guest-poster Tina Brubaker last Thursday for a few moments while she hustled through a portion of her Keizer route, delivering packages for UPS. As you can see from the photo above, that ain’t no gas-guzzlin’ brown van she’s driving, but instead an entirely human powered, good old fashioned bike!

When I found out that Tina had been selected as one of the few cyclists to actually take on this task, I twisted her arm until she relented and allowed me to intercept her in the middle of a route one day. This proved to be a tricky task as the winter storm hit during her first full week. But a last minute email on the only relatively dry day was all I needed to drag out the gear and shoot a quick video. Tina is SUPER efficient, and I promised I wouldn’t stop her from doing her job, but would just work around her, and aside from answering just a question or two for me, she didn’t break stride the entire time.

“I’m thrilled that UPS is on board with the bike thing, and really hope it might extend beyond just the holidays,” Tina said. She admitted that getting paid to ride a bike all day long is a bit of a dream-come-true type of job, but trust me, she’s working plenty hard while out on the route. I had considered some sort of sabbatical from work for a few weeks to apply for the UPS bike gig myself, but when the first day started off in the middle of Oregon’s monsoon season, I questioned my ability to stand up to the task. As evidenced in the footage though, the weather isn’t enough to slow Tina down! Enough of my rambling…watch the video! (PS – you can go to the direct Vimeo page if you want to download the full sized HD version)

UPS Delivery By Bike! Salem, Oregon from nwduffer on Vimeo.

Bikes Misc

Weddings On Bikes

Today my wife and I celebrate 18 years together. Nobody told us how tricky, and downright tough marriage could be…but even if they did, we weren’t listening anyway because we were in love and knew it all at our young age! However, nobody would have been able to tell us how wonderful life together is either. They wouldn’t have been able to explain how two people can learn so much from one another and how everyday can be something special if you’re both willing to pour into one another and work towards a common goal. Likewise, there’s no way to convey how incredible the process of raising your kids can be…really, you just have to be there.

Although I did ride a Trek Antelope 820 off and on back in the day, we didn’t have cycling in our lives the way we do today. Some of our favorite times on bikes together are making a mid-ride stop a nice little coffee shop and sitting and sipping together, or riding down to the Saturday Market to spend the morning together. I look forward to many, many years together, seeing what we can on two wheels, as the time allows.

The photo above is not us, is by photographer Josh Goleman, but shows such great emotion. Here’s a great video of two newlyweds pedalling along:

And finally, the beauty and the beast, hunting for a tree with the kids for our 19th Christmas tree as married folk. Happy Anniversary babe!


Update SOLD! – Surly Karate Monkey

Man, Craigslist is just FAST sometimes. Posted this morning, and the bike sold tonight, and the gentleman drove down from Portland to get it. For those that emailed, I have another KM frame and fork, in a not quite complete state that I’m going to be posting later on…check back!

Sad to see this guy go…it was a fun project for my son and I to work on together, but alas, the stable is getting full of other projects, and something has to give. From my Craigslist ad today:

Super nice Surly Karate Monkey single speed. So many new things on this…I built this up with my son, who decided it was too big, and not as much fun as his BMX bike. This is a FANTASTIC deal, and would be a great gift, or commuter. Jenson sells this frame new for $465, and the fork for $96. That’s $550 for frameset and fork alone, plus hundreds in new parts makes this a great deal at $400! So many new parts, here are some highlights:

  • Tektro Aero long pull levers – less than 15 miles on them
  • Tektro Mini-V brakes – less than 15 miles on them
  • Forte ST/Cross Kevlar tires, 700×35- less than 15 miles on them
  • Aheadset – less than 15 miles
  • Moustache bars wrapped in camo wrap tape
  • XERO XSM 29S Element wheels, with Centerlock 6 Bolts – product detail from site
  • Salsa seat clamp
  • Surly Tugnut
  • FSA Crank/chainring
  • Freccia Selle Royal seat
  • skidmark brown paint 🙂

According to the Surly site, this is a size 16″ frame, and is the Small size listed. I’m around 5’8 or 5’9 (hard to say, I think I’m shrinking as I’m getting older) and it fits me decent. Here’s the site link if you want more specs. Also, if you’d rather have it be more mountain style, I do have a flat bar and raised stem that I can put on it instead of the moustache, but I only have one cheapo brake lever, so you’d be on your own for getting decent levers. And, if it’ll help seal the deal, I’ll toss in some Panaracer Rampage 29 mountain tires I have. I’m in Keizer, just off the freeway, it’s about a 40 minute drive from Portland…easy to get here. Available a lot during the day, some evenings, and weekends.

Let me know if you’re interested!

Bikes Misc

Great Recycled Bike Gift Ideas

Now that we’re into the holiday season, you may be looking for what you can get (and/or make) for that favorite cyclist in your life. You may enjoy browsing through the recycled, eco-friendly gifts at Resource Revival. Located in Mosier, Oregon (yeah, I had to Google Map it too….) artist Graham Bergh runs the business from an idea he had while on his bike.

“The idea for Resource Revival sprung from my imagination in 1991 when I got a flat tire while biking to my recycling job. That inner tube became a cradle for my stereo speakers and after three years of tinkering with other ideas Resource Revival was born in 1994.
Now we collect tons of discarded bicycle parts every year from bike shops all over the United States.  We clean them using mild detergents, sort them into more categories than you can possibly imagine, and craft them into the cool products you see on our website.”

In addition to their retail store, where you can find sweet gifts like the chainring clock pictured above, Resource Revival also sells promotional and awards products that can be customized with your logo or message. You can also download the sweet free recycled bike part virtual clock for your Mac or PC. Here’s mine on my desktop:


Thanksgiving Thoughts and the Friday After

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and we’ll be spending it with family and friends, enjoying a day off to hang out, eat, and enjoy the company of those we love. I’d love to hear any of the plans that you have for the holiday, but mostly I hope everyone is able to recognize those things in life we can be thankful for, even in tricky times.

I’m daily thankful for a wonderful family that loves and supports me, and allows me to get out and ride and even gets out there with me from time to time. I’m thankful for good friends and good food, and those moments when they all come together. I’m thankful for our business, and the opportunity it affords me to write about the wackiness of loving bikes and riding them. I’m thankful for my inter-friends too; those who’ve stumbled here somehow and taken the time to read, and come back to see what’s going on here. Generally, I realize I’m a pretty blessed person in every way possible.

On Friday, when many people will be out knocking each other over for discounted Disney movies and waffle irons, I plan to do a few things….in no particular order.

1. Sleep in a little bit – I may get to to do this Thursday as well, but every non-holiday is up and going by 6 am, so I’m looking forward to relaxing at least an extra hour. If nothing else, maybe enjoying a nice cup of coffee in bed with that gorgeous blond lady that lives here.

2. Stop by Breakfast on Bikes – If I get up with enough time to swing by, I’m planning on running down the the Gilbert House to check out the B on B that is right around the corner from my office.

3. Not Hit Any Black Friday Stores – for some reason I’ve never really been a Black Friday shopper, so that’s not all that difficult for me anyway. If you want to join the actual Buy Nothing Day cause, start out at Wikipedia and read more about that.

4. Put Some Miles in on Two Wheels – so far the weather looks like it might be agreeable, so after B on B, I’m hoping to get out for a couple hours and just ride. Best way to spend the day after Thanksgiving.

5. Come home and hang with the Fam – no plans for Friday means taking care of stuff around the house. Maybe a movie, and cleaning the garage.

Hope you all have a happy Thanksgiving, and enjoy your day after!


Cyclophobia – Who Knew?

I have a hard time imagining ever NOT having a bike in the household at any time in the future. However, turns out there are plenty of folks who have the exact opposite sentiment. In fact, I made a joke about my daughter having cyclophobia the other day, and it appears that there is an actual phobia regarding bikes. It may be a disease striking close to home for myself as well. Read on….