Part of the Tribe

June 6, 2009

We all want to be a part of something. Something great if we had our way, but sometimes just something is sufficient. We are part of our jobs, families, social circles, volunteer networks. But sometimes that “Tribe” is a little less intimate.

I drive a Land Cruiser – a FJ62 to be exact. Kind of the Xtracycle of the car world really. FJ owners have an unofficial tribe: we wave at each other when driving by. But its the old FJs, not those fancy new plastic ones built on a 4Runner frame. Even though it is a gas hog, I have a sense of pride driving the Beast, as we’ve come to call it. We have plans to eventually get a diesel engine hopefully convert to Veggie, but for now its a standard SUV.

Now that I’m an Xtracycle owner, I have the same sense of pride and belong to another tribe. I pass Xtras on the street, and we wave – but with a much bigger smile than the FJ owners. I’m not sure what it is about it, but Xtra owners just seem happier when riding their bike – almost a defiance of not having to use a car to get stuff around.


How to race an Xtracycle – 10 things I learned at the 18 Hours of Fruita

May 4, 2009
The team of Xtracycles

The team of Xtracycles

1.   Take turns wide

2.    Standing while climbing is not recommended; make sure you have a granny gear

3.    Fenders are not recommended when it’s raining – even if it is your townie. Mud gets caught and makes the tires not move

4.    The xtra weight very likely will cause your chain to break if you crank up too hard a hill

5.    The one guy you pass probably totally feels like a looser that he just got passed by a girl on a long bike

6.    When the bike you ride is decorated purple with a glow skull, flags, spoke cards and spray-painted, you feel like aimg_3029 total stud

7.    A start time of midnight makes for a long day, even when you only ride once. Got to cheer on the rest of the team!

8.    The blowup doll strapped on the back of the Xtra is necessary at least for one lap

9.    Beer tastes xtra good – especially when the New Belgium tent is only steps away from the finish line

10.  It’s the most fun on two wheels

Cranking up the final push
Cranking up the final push