Why We Ride
This is a letter from the Editor of Bicycling Magazine that was printed in the June '03 issue: To read more of Bicycling Magazine's Articles, click here
I'm buckling my 2-year-old into the trailer behind my beater cannondale, the one with biopace chainrings. "Stop squirming, Luke," I tell him.
"Why, Daddy?" he asks. He always asks.
"So I can get this strap over your shoulder."
"So I can fasten the belt."
"Because we're going for a ride."
"Because we're both gonna to go crazy if we don't get out of the house, and your mother's going to get there first if I don't get you out right now. Because maybe we'll have so much fun at the playground that we'll lose track of time and we'll have to race the sunset home-and we'll win. Because 'Nair or Lady Gillette? is a great opening line. Believe it. Because one day you'll be climbing a singletrack way above treeline and you'll be gasping for air and then you'll notice a pair of red-tailed hawks soaring in the valley-below you. Because how else are you gonna get Van Halen's 'Hot for Teacher' out of your head? Because nothing gives your confidence more of a boost or your heart more of a thrill than swooping past your friend on the inside line on a steep downhill. And nothing teaches humility better than getting dropped by the same guy on the next uphill. Because of three words: pizza and Guiness. Because you can enter a Best Legs contest in any bar in this country and at least make the finals. Because there's no problem in the world you and a bunch of friends can't solve by talking it over a long ride. Because someday at mile 38, you'll hit the long, gentle uphill between Green Village and Hickory Square and you'll watch your speed increase on your Cat Eye and you'll wonder 'Where the hell did that come from?' and then you'll check out the year's mileage and know the answer."
I start pedaling. And Luke, for the first time all day, stops asking why.