so young, he is also rational. He has chosen the most rational
mode of transport in the world for his trip around the
Carpathians. To ride a bicycle is itself some protection against
superstitious fear, since the bicycle is the product of pure
reason applied to motion. Geometry at the service of man!
Give me two spheres and a straight line and I will show you how
far I can take them. Voltaire himself might have invented
the bicycle, since it contributes much to man’s welfare and
nothing to his bane. Beneficial to the health, it emits no
harmful fumes and permits only the most decorous of speeds.
How can a bicycle ever be an implement of harm?"
Carter, in her gothic and ornamental short story The Lady of
the House of Love (from the collection
as an essential as well: Vittorio De Sica’s 1948 neorealist
(Ladri di Biciclette–The Bicycle Thieves is the original
title) tells the story of Antonio Ricci, a poor worker who hangs
up posters for a living and whose bike is stolen one day on the streets of
Rome—without his bicycle he cannot perform his job or support his
family. And so begins a tumultuous adventure through the
piazzas and boulevards of Rome (the film was shot entirely in
situ), a frantic attempt to find his beloved, lost bicycle.
De Sica used unknown actors—the lead, Lamberto Maggiorini, was a
factory worker—for his adaptation of Luigi Bartolini’s novel and
emphasized the everyday, realist grittiness of the human
condition. The film’s poignant ending is a commentary on
post-World War II society and economy.
elegant in its simplicity, ever so green, like some marvelous
extension of the body—man and machine in almost perfect unison.
The early history of the invention of the bicycle is hazy; there
were several people who contributed elements that were important –
among them, the German Karl Drais with his 1818 Laufmaschine
or Running Machine, which had to be pushed with one’s feet
but could be steered, the Scot Kirkpatrick Macmillan contributing
the pedal in 1839, and the French brothers Ernest and Pierre
Michaux’s 1861 model which is sometimes referred to as the first
contemporary bicycling there’s the
Lance Armstrong, the sport as obsession for some, and even the
rather critical but popular
blog that is pedestrian, popular, and vents on all things bicycle, complete with a
seal of disapproval! But to those for whom every ride has some of
that joy of their first time on a bicycle, then Angela Carter has
said it all already in that one brilliant paragraph….
Boats, Angela Carter
bike-friendly Ride in NYC