Wednesday, April 30, 2014

3-speed bicycle made in England in 1972, rebuilt lovingly many years later in New England by Ken Skier, the Running Photographer.  #RunwithKen

Please don't point out that the bike
is so ugly it hurts your eyes just to look at it.

It is painfully ugly by design.

This is my beater bike.

Thirty-five years ago,
I rescued it from the bottom of a big pile of junk.

The wheels wouldn't turn.
The seat wobbled like a drunken sailor.
Nothing worked.

It clearly belonged at the bottom of a junk pile.

But when I touched it I felt...

I heard a small voice, pleading:

Fix me.
Ride me.

(Call it a weakness, but I believe that,
just as all babies are beautiful,
all bikes are beautiful.)

When it was young, 
that frozen pile of rusted metal
had been a bike.

Back then, it rolled silently on wheels that were true
and carried its rider safely for miles.

Someone had mistreated it and discarded it,
but it had been a bike once.

As I lifted it by the top tube and felt 
the faint spark still beating in that frame,
I knew it would be a bike again.

And I would ride it.

I replaced the front wheel.

I built a new rear wheel by hand,
from quality spokes, rim, and hub.

I replaced the crankset, handlebars, seat and seatpost.
(And of course the chain, brake pads and all cables.)

With steel wool and elbow grease I removed all rust
from the frame and fork.  I applied clear nail polish,
 and waxed the frame to protect it from the elements.

But I never painted the bike.

I knew most people would see it as
an old, rusty piece of junk.

And that was just fine with me!

I could ride into the city,
and lock it up just about anywhere.

No bike thief would touch it!

(What bike thief would want
an old, rusty piece of junk?)

So I know this bike strikes you as ugly.
But that's not what's wrong with this picture.

Today I added something to my bike, 
but I made a small mistake.

Can you spot it?

Copyright (c) 2014 by Ken Skier

Friday, April 25, 2014

Dramatic, up-close photo of runners at the 2013 Energize the Earth 5K/10K road race in Beverly, MA. Photo taken from 'inside the pack' by Ken Skier, the Running Photographer.
At the Energize the Earth 5K/10K in Beverly, MA (April 21, 2013)

Look at the intensity of these runners!

I was just a few feet ahead of them 
when I snapped this photo at last year's race

(Yes, I was running.  Didn't stop or slow my pace.
After all--I was in a race!)

The Energize the Earth 5K/10K will be held again this weekend:
on Sunday, April 27 in Beverly, MA.

A beautiful course...
and it looks like it will be a beautiful day!

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

What's more fun than barefoot running?

FOUR barefoot runners--
romping through the streets of historic Lexington, MA
at the 100th Patriot's Day 5-mile Road Race!

These four, running at the race on April 21, 2014,
 are among the many barefoot runners
in the New England Barefoot Runners group.

Barefoot runner--running barefoot at the 100th Patriots Day 5-mile Road Race in historic Lexington, MA

(As you can see:
experienced barefooters actually run on air!)

Barefoot runner--running barefoot at the 100th Patriots Day 5-mile Road Race in historic Lexington, MA

See you at the next race!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Ken Skier, the Running Photographer, lifts a glass of Cape Ann Fisherman's Red Bliss Potato Stout and makes a toast to runners who will be running the 2014 Boston Marathon.

Are you running the Boston Marathon on Monday?

Then I lift this glass of beer--
(a stout, microbrewed not more than 26.2 miles from Boston)
--and make this toast to YOU:

May every mile be light and sweet!

Run with Joy, my friend.

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