what was that? is that all there is? who is this? this is it.

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she sees me, she'll stop

November 27, 2019

Just about exactly 28 years ago I was riding home from work in the rain and dark of a Seattle winter around 6am atop Queen Anne. Done with another graveyard shift in the grocery store deli cranking out hundreds of sandwiches and salads in individually wrapped convenient containers (but that’s another story) I had a clunky Cateye headlight with two C batteries that gave off a sickly yellow light for about 90 minutes before it began to fade to black. It was clamped to the handlebar of a GT Continuum rolling 700D wheels (but that’s another story) I was nearly hit by a car at a 4-way stop because I assumed they could see me. In 0.33 seconds it’s the: she sees me she’ll stop, she sees me she’s just a shitty driver, she’ll stop, she’ll stop, SHIT. she’s not stopping, she doesn’t see me, she actually can’t see me, she never slowed down, she didn’t stop, she didn’t see me. 


Just about exactly 28 hours ago I was riding home from work in the rain and dark of a Seattle winter around 5pm. Done with another shift on the electric assist bathtub at the education factory (but that’s another story) I had a small rechargeable headlight that gives off a bright beam, a wicked bright rear Knog light, a little blinky light on my backpack, a completely DOT reflective toptube pad made by DANK bags from an old road sign, reflective strips allover my jacket and reflective bands strapped to both ankles.  Two cars blew right across my path as I slowly rolled across a side street that feeds into a Rainier Ave because they didn’t see me. When I stopped just short of the second driver’s window he rolled it down and said  “you are not visible” I didn’t say anything but I thought “welcome to Rainier Beach” and I know there are not enough lights or reflectors in the world to make a cyclist “visible” in many a car context. 


I actually drive a car sometimes and I’m more aware than ever how invisible pedestrians and cyclists are at night from the driver’s seat point of view through a windshield slathered in rain and condensation. 28 years ago I thought the act of clamping on that crap Cateye meant something. 28 hours ago I thought it was the thought that counts or something like that. 

 she blinded me with science

Ask me about my conspicuity. 

Seen it. Done it. Designed the t-shirt. 


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should we talk about the weather?

November 25, 2019

give 'em 2.54 centimeters

and they'll take 1.6 kilometers

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get up - get to work

November 24, 2019

remote control




play that one more time


keep your finger on the button

feel for a pulse

oh I see  it’s a parable

no actually  it’s a parabola

no matter how you hit it

it comes back to get you

not too hot to pick up

but too hot to hold

onto other things

Is that all there is?

What was that?

Who is this?

This is it


hurry up


get on the elevator

get in your car

get in traffic

get home

get in front of the tv

get in bed 

get to sleep

get up 

get to work


play it again


Does this phone look ok with my hair?

Does this outfit look ok with my career?

looking to the future of a redshirt kindergartener

handmade with love by a Chinese prisoner

it’s the best of both worlds

too bad we’re in the third world

baby needs new shoes

baby can go barefoot

we’re not related and it’s all relative

confusing to the courteous

it’s a five-way intersection

where Antidepressant Ave

runs parallel to Depression Blvd



back up

play it again 

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November 22, 2019

Urwahn Stadtfuchs

steel frames are cool and although I believe there is no such thing as the ultimate urban utility bike

it's great that people keep trying


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November 20, 2019

still life with lime bikes

November 18, 2019

through   threw   thru 


Please open your textbooks to page 369 and follow along as I read aloud: Modern use of Thru originated in American English as a phonetic and simplified spelling of Through around 1839. Thru is mostly used where the preposition through could be used (e.g. Monday thru Friday); it is less common as an adjective or adverb (I'm thru with the vacuuming). It is rarely used in formal situations, except in cases where brevity is wanted such as roadway signs. 


If the bike wheel is a clock the fender struts are the hands always reading somewhere between 3:07 and 3:11 blurring the lines between Tukwila and Renton a lot of people aren’t sure where that is and steer the conversation elsewhere to avoid uncomfortable situations especially at the dinner table around the holidays but it’s a scenario that stands out only because it’s constantly compared to one that exists only in Currier & Ives prints or instagram horseshit. 


The property manager purportedly put a positive spin on it pointing out the fresh paint job and new carpet however the prospective tenant picked up  the off-gassing in the hallway long before she even entered the apartment and declined to sign the rental agreement for a studio where the windows don’t open and the “fresh” air is supplied via HVAC ducts installed in 1972 when a long sequence of variables began to fall into place. 


The first step is denial same time different daze like clockwork purple  hemp milk mocha no whip schmaltzy coffee klatchy shut up and listen idle hands are tools of the coozie it turns out it’s all been a series of short errands strung together into a life cycle in the margins of utility cycling taking the path that sucked less has made all the difference like pedestrian overpass utilitarian underpants your 35 year old brake pads are grabbing 27” steel wheels on a long descent in the rain so don’t ask me about the lowest coefficient of friction ever recorded because you’re totally fucked.


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November 14, 2019

39 photo


This one’s raspberry and this one is marionberry said the barista to the woman in front of me.  


Oh i’m glad you can tell the difference because marionberry would make my throat swell up she said. 


My mind went to anaphylactic shock. Then retroperistalsis. Then poking the EpiPen into the meat of the thigh and remaining calm.  


Then my mind said “bitch set me up” 


Pondering the differences between Marion Barry and marionberry I was smiling in my own world when the barista turned to pour my drip coffee.  There’s a punch line in there somewhere. I could tell the difference between a raspberry and a marionberry if they were growing in the alley behind my house. But when they’re slathered on a pastry in a coffee shop I couldn’t care less. I’ll be eating marionberry jam on my pb&j in a couple hours watching the sun come up over the cascades behind Husky Stadium.  If it was raspberry jam the sunrise wouldn’t look any different. 


As a lowly intern walking the streets of DC in the fall of 1990 I saw Marion Barry t-shirts featuring variations on the bitch-set-me-up theme for sale at random street corner stands allover town. Mayor Barry was in the tail-end of his 3rd term and hadn’t gone to jail yet. Those shirts are still available online in neoretro knockoffs. They don’t make my throat swell up but they still make me chuckle 30 years later.   


When the factual narrative gets boring it’s important to explore the landscape of memory which is often prompted by the poetry of petty details. 

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there there here here

November 13, 2019


Spotted this Spot yesterday. Took a photo because it was clearly the coolest bike in the rack. But upon further review it wasn’t as cool as I thought. I don’t read bike reviews or bike magazines very often and live in a thumbshifter retro world so I had no idea the acme has been around for a couple years. Spot has a special spot in my mind because they used to advertise in the outcast which made them cool by association and they were right here on the I-5 corridor. Their bikes were unobtainable so I bought one of their t-shirts. Now 20 years later they’re in Colorado and their bikes are made of unobtainium or actually dontreallywantium.  


This bike is cool for sure. But I wouldn’t award it ultimate urban utility bike status because there are too many incompatible doo-dads. I like to visualize riding a bike across Iowa in July and I have a mechanical issue and roll into the one and only bike shop in the small town I happen to be drinking in at the time and the mechanic smiles, reaches up on the shelf and grabs the exact part I need and sells it to me for $5. In my standard visualization the part has never been anything hovering around an 11-speed internal hub or a gates carbon drive. In the visualization where I'm stuck with this bike the mechanic looks at the gates belt and says “shit, the vacuum repair guy went out of business right after WalMart came to town. But I bet he could have helped you with that thing” 



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November 11, 2019

as the NFL gets closer and closer to Rollerball

it's easier to look away

but I couldn't look away today

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on your left

November 9, 2019

big plans for the weekend

November 8, 2019

1 cubic centimeter of bullshit

November 7, 2019

Ron Sutphin used to tell us about Albert Eisentraut and the “one cubic centimeter of bullshit” that is an important addition to anything you do. 


When I write a book, aside from my coffee table books about discarded dental picks and garbage cans overflowing with bags of dogshit, I’ll write a book that’s kind of James Tate mixed with Patti Smith. A book that leaves the reader wondering if any of that really happened or it was all a dream or if they call it poetry then anything goes.  A book that stumps the librarian because it defies classification. A book that doesn’t fit in on the nonfiction shelf at one of the few remaining brick and mortar bookstores so they have to display it on a folding table near the checkout line.   A book that contains more than just one cubic centimeter of bullshit. A book that contains a bit of truth but dumbfounds because it’s written from the point of view that hovers on the fringes and sits in the corner watching the petty details of everyday life. 


Until I write that book I recommend this one:


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repeat the question

November 5, 2019


They’re 33.3% DWI’d  why not go all the way?  I’m not sure what the question is but drop bars are not the answer. It’s all in the wrists rolling on the hoods all day in her own way. When shimano came up with STI this is not what they envisioned for total integration. Bikes are cool because they can be half-ass jerry-rigged cross-threaded slap-dash ad-hoc zip-tied and people love them the way they love them.


Dutch Oven 


Stare at your phone download the app tap swipe scroll repeat. They’ve got you where they want you. Don’t ask questions. 


There’s a lot of jibber jabber about the last mile especially during this holiday e-commerce shopping season. But they’re only going 5230 feet.  

I’m taking it the final fifty fucking feet. 


It would be depressing if it wasn’t so comical. 


I find this point of view has helped me deal with Seattle in general over the past ten years. 


Repeat the question. How can people take this shit seriously? 


No euphemisms here.

It’s all fucking horseshit. 


No tip toeing human relations eggshell dancing 

It’s fucking horseshit. 


The UPS truck is parked in the bike lane but you’re getting your amazon package in 2 days or less. The UPS truck is parked in the bus lane because  you’re getting your amazon package in 2 days or less. The UPS truck is parked in the alley but it’s OK because you’re getting your amazon package in 2 days or less. 


If it’s not UPS it’s  FedEX USPS DHL OnTrac or some independent contractor chuffer in a U-Haul slinging boxes onto front porches that may or may not match the address on the package. 




Don’t ask questions. Please submit your questions in writing and one will be randomly selected for comment during the last week in February (excluding leap years) If your question is chosen you can surrender all your personal information for a chance to win a $3 Starbucks gift card


“So, this is comfort.   The absence of discomfort.” 


That’s one of my favorite lines from Mother Load. 


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Jabba et al

November 3, 2019

Jabba  2019  black marker on post it note 3" x 3"

Jabba's Wife 2019 marker on index card 4" x 6"

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