Mechanics Musings

“A Zen teacher saw five of his students returning from the market, riding their bicycles. When they arrived at the monastery and had dismounted, the teacher asked the students, “Why are you riding your bicycles?”

The first student replied, “The bicycle is carrying this sack of potatoes. I am glad that I do not have to carry them on my back!” The teacher praised the first student. “You are a smart boy! When you grow old, you will not walk hunched over like I do.”

The second student replied, “I love to watch the trees and fields pass by as I roll down the path!” The teacher commended the second student, “Your eyes are open, and you see the world.”

The third student replied, “When I ride my bicycle, I am content to chant nam myoho renge kyo.” The teacher gave his praise to the third student, “Your mind will roll with the ease of a newly trued wheel.”

The fourth student replied, “Riding my bicycle, I live in harmony with all sentient beings.” The teacher was pleased and said to the fourth student, “You are riding on the golden path of non-harming.”

The fifth student replied, “I ride my bicycle to ride my bicycle.” The teacher sat at the feet of the fifth student and said, “I am your student.”’

Mechanics Musings

On ingenuity… Sometimes lateral thinking is a good thing:



I’d love to pop across the Exe whenever I felt like it without waiting for the ferry.


Or this:



Steam-powered bicycle. Chuffing great!


But sometimes you can possibly go too far with ingenuity:


Mad as a box of frogs, home-made and very interesting ideas. And it worked!


What shall we build next?

mechanics musings

a bike with fairy lights on

It’s been a good year for cycling to work. I see regular riders most days on my to and fro, and we usually exchange a quick greeting as we pass. Some of them have been in to Ride On and it’s always interesting to talk to someone you usually see zooming in the opposite direction.

The last couple of months cycle commuting in the dark have been interesting too. Some people are lit up like UFOs (others with no lights or dim glow-worms make me wonder how much they can see, and if they realise how hard they are to see). But the ones that puzzle me most are those who can somehow manage to ride with flashing front lights. It must be like being in a B&W silent movie, flickering crazily!

Anyway, we’re near the darkest and the lighter days are coming back, so keep those LEDs glowing, blinking, pulsating and flickering till then.

Bring Your Own Bike – the wheels have officially come off.

Bring Your Own Bike – the wheels have officially come off! Luckily, this isn’t a problem for Sam White our qualified mechanic who runs our weekly Bring Your Own Bike (BYOB) Session. BYOB is a DIY bike repair night. The difference is you will have access to professional bike tools, new and recycled parts not to mention Sam’s expert help and guidance.

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