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Halfway to Fredericksburg: Tom and Ted’s Advocacy Adventure

by Ted Johnson

What is Tom & Ted’s Advocacy Adventure? Read this.


Here’s the rundown.

We’re hanging out resting at a Denny’s in Carmel Church, Virginia. I just ate a hockey puck disguised as a veggie burger. We’re more than halfway to today’s goal: Fredericksburg, Virginia:


View Larger Map

The television above me is reporting on the two feet of snow that dumped on my home of Flagstaff. Where I am it is warm and a bit muggy.

Weather Man

Ha Ha!

But let me start at the beginning.

From Tom Bowden’s six bikes, we chose two ultra high-performance touring machines. My bike has three — count ‘em — three speeds. We dressed in the latest aerodynamic cycling attire.

A new Raleigh upright roadster, and an old Raleigh upright roadster

My bike has cute blue plastic pedals.

Because of the unseasonably warm weather, my full-fingered gloves were feeling a little warm. Tom led me to WalMart Supercenter so I could buy some fingerless gloves.

I entered the store.

I spotted an employee, a nice lady with a blue vest.

“Excuse me, can you tell me where your bicycles are?”

“Yes. It’s straight down this isle to the end. Turn right. You’ll see it: Toys.”

WalMart Bike Section

Grrrr…..

The pretty much sums up the advocacy challenge we face. Our journey has begun. We just need to make it to DC to begin our work.

Our tire pressure was low. On principle, we refused to pay one dollar to use a gas station air pump. We stopped at the first real bike shop we came across in Ashland (“The Center of the Universe”), pumped up, and chatted up, Dave Murphy, owner of Olde Town Bicycles.

The store was neat and impeccable. Dave says, “I’m kind of anal about that.”

Olde Towne Bicycles

Eat-off-the-floor clean inside.

We got directions and spent some money.

And we continued north through Virginia.

I know this is the South. I understand the veneration of Robert E. Lee. I read a book about it once. My middle name is Lee, after the general. Really.

But there’s hero worship, and then there’s obsession.

Lee's Movements

Tom: “That’s gross.”

We pedaled and pedaled until we stopped here, at Denny’s.

Tom is getting bored waiting for me to finish this.

To be continued…


My participation in this years’ National Bike Summit is made possible by these sponsors.

Bike Shop Hub Tern Flagstaff Biking Organization Bike Virginia
 
BOB Trailer Sale

4 Responses to “Halfway to Fredericksburg: Tom and Ted’s Advocacy Adventure”

  1. How’s the road? Any shoulder, rumble strip? What are you dealing with out there?

    Do you notice that the people who buzz you almost always have church/religious related iconography slapped on their vehicles? They believe in god and heaven and therefore aren’t worried about hitting you, if you’ve taken care of your soul you’ll end up in the right place so why should they need to get over, right?

  2. BluesCat says:

    Yeah! Good old Bell Pro Gel cycling gloves! So cheap, I’ve got a pair in every handlebar bag and the sling bag and even in rack bag. (I have a tendency to remove them, set them down somewhere, and forget where I put ‘em! I wish they came in four-pacs, like tube socks!)

  3. Graham says:

    “Toys” about sums it up, don’t you think?

  4. Ullr says:

    “toys” as in, “You two should just grow up, buy a car, and get jobs.”

    How does it feel to buy something that was once so proudly and impeccably made in these here United States of Commerica but now slapped together in our 51st state?

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