Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I lost my camera while at work yesterday. Really, I was relieved. I have not lost anything the whole time I have been here and was long overdue. My tendency to lose things is just one of those things I have come to accept, a sacrifice of sorts, lest I cling to possessions too dearly.

I kept thinking it would be the thumb drive that is packed with info that I carry everywhere, or my sole credit card or ID, or maybe something that belongs to my employer like their camera, or my students' health forms or one of the two notebooks with all my teaching notes, and contact names (huge loss that would be).

On the camera, I had some photos of Critical Mass that was held this past Friday. I had some decent pictures, mostly of the various music set ups on the bikes. However, I found this video (click image to see video) that does the ride much more justice than my meager photos anyway. It was a scene to be sure. I estimate 1500 riders but have not seen published numbers. I rode with a guy Karl who has lived here all his life. He pointed out the people to me who started Chicago Critical Mass about 10 years ago. He said the ride is "supported" by the police after various negotiations, one concession being that cyclists stay off Lake Shore Drive. We took over the streets all throughout the Loop, and then headed North West for much longer ride than I had anticipated (2 hours going under 10 mph). Very fun. [In case you have not seen, here is the video of police abuse during New York's Critical Mass that same evening.]

I also had photos of the Chicago Criterium held here Sunday. I showed up to see the 2nd half of men's pro race. It was held in Grant Park, and part of the motivation for this inaugural event was to display the organizational abilities of holding sporting events in downtown to the Olympic selection committee. Chicago is bidding for the 2016 Summer Olympics. Here is a good photo.

I even had a photo of a Benson and Hedges cigarette carton on which the organizer of the Wed Night ride was collecting signatures releasing the club of liability prior to ride starting. Now that's a one-of-a-kind image that I could not find on the web!

Now I did not have a photo of my ride this past Sunday. I landed on a ride with elite triathletes and had no time to do anything but hang on to the bars. These guys were super skilled with aerobars paceling, to the point that I commented how comfortable I felt riding behind them in spite of aerobars. Turns out at least two of them used to do track racing and 3 of them are coaches for VisionQuest coaching, the company that Robbie Ventura coaches for. One of the guys was Dr. Jason.

Oh, and I had a photo of the pristine, pink vintage Schwinn FIVE speed that is parked outside my apartment. Recall, it's those bikes where the term "10 speed bike" comes from. Funny thing about photos, once I have taken them, they become part of me even if I don't view the actual images again.


Anonymous said...

Nice to see how much you are enjoying the "Windy City" !!!

See you soon - Wild Bill

Kevin said...

i lose things too, and embrace it as well.
For every item "lost", i tend to pick up two or more...
that is, until i feel like losing said items again.

nice look into the chi cyclo culture

nPlusOne said...

When I was up in Chicago back in May, I had wished I brought my camera. I could have filled GBs worth of pics just of cool and eclectic bikes I saw locked up or being ridden on the streets.