All Hail the Electric Bicycle: Ebike Trends and Tips

MC: Right. People often criticize ebikes as those are just wussies who don’t want to put in the work of pedaling an actual bicycle. But I think that’s just absolutely the wrong argument. I think ebikes are great because like you said, Parker, it gets more people out on the road, right? More bikes out on the road, more people, strengthen in numbers. It allows us to have the sort of cycling utopia that we all as cyclists dream of on our city streets.

AS: One of the bike shop owners that I talked to, he said that one of the biggest customer demographic he has are older guys in their 50s and 60s who have been road biking their whole life. As their hips or knees start to get a little bit creaky, they can’t quite keep up with their crews anymore, but they don’t want to let them go because that’s their main source of social and physical activity. So you just get an ebike and then you can just keep up with your friends, and I think that’s totally awesome.

PH: Yeah. Accessibility is such a cool thing that ebikes enable. I’ve heard stories of people recovering from cancer treatment who are riding ebikes instead of their normal bikes, all sorts of people with physical disabilities that made it so that it wasn’t really effective for them to ride a normal style traditional bike. I think it is an interesting thing because you feel some judgment sometimes riding ebikes past these Lycra-clad cyclists, but what’s funny is it’s worth noting that if you’re a regular cyclist who’s been against ebikes, a lot of people have reasons they need to ride those bikes and it’s not necessarily worth judging people just because they’re riding by you in their work clothes and you’re struggling up the hill.

AS: I’m such a bad mountain biker that when we would go out for rides, my husband would have to bike to the top of the hill, run back down, find me halfway up and carry my bike up for me so that we could get home before dinner time. But now what’s harder? That or just getting a motor? I just want to hang out with my friends, goddammit.

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MC: All right. Well, thanks for the discussion guys. Let’s take a break and when we come back, we’ll have a recommendations.

[Break]

MC: All right, here comes the last segment of the show. Adrienne, you go first. What’s your recommendation?

AS: My recommendation is a sunlamp. I live in Oregon and it’s been raining pretty steadily for a month now. I had one before. I didn’t really need as much mood lifting as I do this winter in particular, and it’s just been a godsend. I just put it on for 20 minutes while responding to emails in the morning.

MC: Now, this is not like an alarm clock, like a sunrise, wake up alarm clock, right?

AS: No, this is like … I mean, this is like the 10,000 lux Verilux. I think it has to be a certain level of brightness to mimic sunlight effectively. It has to be shining into your face and you can’t have it just on the back of your neck or something. So I have it on a book by my computer for maximum efficacy, and I think it’s working. I sound pretty peppy now.

MC: That’s awesome. Parker, what is your recommendation for our listeners?

PH: I have been playing a lot of guitar during quarantine and I’ve been trying to write better songs, and I discovered this trio of new albums, new old albums, I should say, by one of my favorite songwriters, Gillian Welch. Basically she recorded these songs in 2002 to finish a publishing contract so that she could, I don’t know, write or record more music, but it’s dozens of songs that she recorded over, I believe, just about a weekend in Nashville in 2002. They are spectacular. A lot of them were done in one or two takes and it’s just so impressive how amazing she’s able to record her music that quickly.