Breaking In the Bike; Monetizing the Blog

IMG_0275This weekend: breaking in the new bicycle. Yesterday I rode through the neighborhood, swinging by the Saturday open-air market and stopping at the library and a car show; today was the spring Tucson Cyclovia. There are two Cyclovias, one each in November and April, different routes every time. Today’s route was from Himmel Park near the University of Arizona to the Lost Barrio, an old warehouse district that has been gentrified, and back.

I had the roads to myself Saturday but most definitely not today: in spite of low clouds and the threat of rain, huge crowds were out for Cyclovia: riders of all ages and abilities, many attempting to ride six or eight abreast through chokepoints where two abreast would have been one too many, weaving around, inexplicably stopping, making sudden U-turns, or alternatively breaking from the peleton to the imagined cheers of Tour de France spectators. And children? Good lord … and I was making allowances for them, unlike most other riders.

But forgive me, I’m making it sound awful and it wasn’t. I had fun. There were activities and vendors and food trucks everywhere along the route, and even though the threatened rain materialized it came down only here and there and wasn’t bad: I slipped on a light windbreaker and was fine. I kept looking around for friends, hashers, and bashers (bicycle hashers), but didn’t have any luck until Darrell (who is all three: friend, hasher, and basher) caught up with me on the return leg.

It didn’t happen if there aren’t photos, right?

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From left to right: Saturday at the car show; Sunday 1) in the Lost Barrio, 2) on 3rd Street with Darrell.

I stopped at the bike shop on the way home for a minor adjustment to the rear derailleur, which wasn’t downshifting cleanly, and to see about raising the handlebar. They tightened the cables and ordered a replacement stem that’ll bring the bar up about an inch. If I want it any higher I’ll have to order a new bar, one with a bit of a buckhorn bend. I’ll ride for a while with the extra inch and see if it makes the difference. Overall I’m happy with the new bike and looking forward to a longer ride with my Trail Trash friends next Saturday.

A woman who writes children’s books befriended me on Facebook and Twitter. I know she’s an author because on both accounts she goes by H____ J_______, Author. I think she befriended me because I’m a fellow blogger, but I’m willing to bet she’s never read mine. Nor do I read hers, mainly because this is the kind of thing she blogs about:

She says her blog is about her life, as is mine. But the content on her blog is almost entirely composed of posts with titles like Be a Data-Driven Blogger, Reasonable Blog Automation for Shameless Self-Promotion, and Why Not Follow Me on Instagram Too?

It seems as if her life is about monetizing everything she does, and she’s relentless about it. The post she linked to today is about composing Buzzfeed-style clickbait subject lines for blog posts, articles, tweets, and emails. Why? To drive up traffic and make money. Click here to find out how.

I don’t get it. I’m searching my memory for a single Facebook or Twitter post that has revealed anything personal about H____ J_______, Author, and coming up blank. You can’t build a friendship, even a Facebook “friendship,” on posts about monetizing your online presence.

Well, if Jesus comes back and visits the modern-day temple of Facebook, he’ll be shooing lots of H____ J_______, Authors out the door. Me? Keep your money. Just drop by my blog and read. Leave a comment once in a while so I know you’ve been here. If I ever do get off my ass and write a book, well, okay, you can buy that. But you’ll never be expected to call me P___ W_______, Author.

© 2016, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.


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