A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

There’s that *&%#@ bike again!

Written December 26th, 2018 by Hasso Hering

Elegant or fast? Neither, but it gets me around town at far less cost than my truck.

On Facebook the other day, somebody complained that my bike shows up in many of the photos on hh-today. “Unprofessional,” I believe was the word used. To which I say: Tough.

Somebody else, also on Facebook, called it a “low-end bike.” That’s not far from the truth, though why anyone would feel it necessary to point it out is beyond me.

As it happens, this old mountain bike has served me very well. I bought it in 2011, at Bike N Hike in Albany, for around $500 if memory serves. That’s an entry-level price for a decent bike, sure enough. But I’m not competing with anybody and I’m not going for speed.

Instead, I found that for tooling around town and getting a little exercise at the same time, this sort of vehicle is just about perfect. A road bike, lighter and more expensive, would be faster, but for the rough condition of some of Albany’s older streets, not to mention the occasional jaunt on unpaved terrain, I prefer the fat tires and sturdy frame of this one. (That’s pretty much why my road bike spends most of its life these days hanging in the garage.)

I’m not the kind of bike fanatic who is down on cars. But I like the option of traveling under my own power when the distance to be covered is not too great and the weather not too wet.

When the bike shows up in photos that go with stories on this site, it’s to illustrate that cycling is a viable transportation alternative for getting around Albany and environs. Most of our streets are perfectly fine for bike travel, and I’ve found motorists almost without exception to be courteous. (Once I thought that the blaring of a car horn was to admonish me for running a stop sign, but then it turned out she was just trying to say hi.)

The bike I ride most of the time is a model called Rincon, made by Giant. This model is no longer made. The odometer on the handlebar computer went out after some 12,000 miles. The mileage reading on the replacement is getting close to 3,000. And the bike itself, with minimal maintenance except for a new chain and cassette, is still working just fine.

So with any kind of luck, you’ll keep seeing it in many of the photos on this site. And if you don’t want to see it, look somewhere else. (hh)



Posted in: Commentary
Tags: ,

27 responses to “There’s that *&%#@ bike again!”

  1. Shelly says:

    I like to think of the bike in the picture as your signature. Enjoy reading your posts.

  2. Lise Grato says:

    Good for you! Your blog, your bike!

  3. Jon says:

    Hasso, you rock. Keep up the good work.

  4. centrist says:

    Always looked at the bike as a signature. Every decent newsy had one, this is yours.

  5. Ray Kopczynski says:

    The bike is very welcome to see! It also gives a subliminal sense of scale & proportion to your photos.

  6. Constant observer says:

    I agree with the four visible comments that precede mine. In addition, I view the bicycle as a reminder to exercise, and the accompanying articles as evidence that one sees (observes) different things on foot or atop a bicycle than one sees when driving a motor vehicle. (The Facebook comments reflect poorly on their writers in my opinion.)

  7. Gordy Gamet says:

    I see your bike as your signature, when I see a photo with the bike in it I figure you took it. Besides you see more from the bike than the car.
    Gordy Gamet

  8. James Engel says:

    Did the “basher” have the guts to leave a name???

  9. Don says:

    !!! Enjoy your research and articles that come from it.

  10. Patricia Eich says:

    I also like the bike in your photos. Says you were there. Keep up the good work.

  11. Geo. Kurtz says:

    Just wish I could traverse the countryside on my bike like you do! Keep it up and continue to keep us all informed. You are the best newspaper we have!!!

  12. Colleen Thompson says:

    Keep keeping on! Your bike is an extension of you, and is great in your pictures. Love your articles!

  13. Dee Dee Egan-Strombeck says:

    Hasso, I enjoy your editorials. Information that I don’t read anywhere else often shows up in you column. Your bike rocks! Keep on writing and riding.

  14. Joyce says:

    So many. many times as I’ve driven I-5 in a hurry to arrive somewhere, I’ve seen a perfect ‘photo-op’ and wished I could slow down and stop for a good look-see! So I support your mode of transportation to the umpteenth level!!!

  15. Bill Clotere says:

    The bike is your LOGO, just like the Golden Arch, I see the bike hanging around your news article and I’ll read the breaking news, (usually two days ahead of “the other media” in town) so keep on riding, and keep the logo in the pix’s!

  16. Craig says:

    What Shelley said ^…

  17. GregB says:

    Atta Boy Hasso. I enjoy your blog.

  18. Bill Kapaun says:

    I’m impressed with the amount of miles you ride, considering you are “a senior”.

  19. Avid Reader 1 says:

    I like seeing the photos of your bike. You make it creative and find new places to tuck in the bike. It gives me hope for all of us that you are riding your bike to the places where you create your stories.

  20. Craig says:

    I vote you keep the bike and lose the reader.

  21. Rick Hanneman says:

    I love the bike in the photos. I’m not in Albany often, but when I am, and I see a bike on the move, I look to see if it is you. I read each one of your posts and really enjoy your writing.

  22. Curious Citizen says:

    I agree with the others. I like the bike too. Always enjoy seeing it in your photos.
    I also enjoyed the information about your bike in this article.

  23. Dave Ferris says:

    The complaint about your bike in pictures doesn’t deserve your lengthy reply. Your first paragraph was spot on …..although you could have added “sh**” after “tough”. …just for emphasis!

  24. HowlingCicada says:

    Of course, another vote in favor of the bike. I have only a mountain bike for mostly the same reasons. It’s in the same price range – seems the right balance of sturdiness and ridability vs price. Much less (including almost everything in department stores) = usually flimsy, heavy, and “soft.” Much more money doesn’t buy you that much improvement, unless you are an elite competitive athlete where any slight advantage matters.

    The bicycle industry tends to heavily promote the high end, with lots of celebrity endorsements and annoying, silly websites. To repeat an old cliché, that’s where the money is. So, you end up with a Boutique Bicycle Cult with deleterious effects on all bike owners. Any usable tools, etc, you can find in a car-parts store cost less than comparable stuff in a bike store.

    “””I’m not the kind of bike fanatic who is down on cars.”””

    Does it take being a fanatic to appreciate the huge benefits of health, well-being, and self-reliance from “active” transportation? Likewise, to see the great harm to the physical and social environment from car-dominance?

  25. Lundy says:

    If only you were comfortable wearing one of your fedoras while riding, then the bike pix could feature a hat hanging from the handlebars. Keep riding and keep writing!

  26. sbruslind says:

    Tell the haters the Rincon gets 4.58 stars on SingleTracks-

    Lots of love for this low-end model.
    Bike ‘N Hike does a good job curating the new bike market to offer PDS- Price, Durability, Style. Always a great experience with the shop, too.

  27. centrist says:

    Two thoughts just clanked together.
    When I check this site, I wonder where the bike is today.
    Does the bike have a name?
    Suggest “Waldo”


HH Today: A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley
Albany Albany Carousel Albany City Council Albany council Albany downtown Albany Fire Department Albany housing Albany parks Albany Planning Commission Albany police Albany Post Office Albany Public Works Albany riverfront Albany Station Albany streets Albany traffic Albany urban renewal Andy Olson Benton County Benton County parks bicycling bike lanes Bowman Park Bryant Park Calapooia River CARA City of Albany climate change coronavirus COVID-19 Cox Creek path Crocker Lane cumberland church cycling Dave Clark Path DEQ downtown Albany Edgewater Village global warming gun control Highway 20 Interstate 5 Kitzhaber Linn County marijuana medical marijuana Millersburg North Albany Road Obama ODOT Oregon coast Oregon legislature Oregon passenger rail Pacific Power Portland & Western Republic Services Riverside Drive Santiam Canal Talking Water Gardens The Banks Tom Cordier Union Pacific urban renewal Water Avenue Willamette River

Copyright 2020. All Rights Reserved. Hasso Hering.
Website Serviced by Santiam Communications
Hasso Hering