Uni's and Bi's

At 04:26 PM 1/21/98 -0500, you wrote:
>Got your letter ~ great stuff. Instead of putting it in as a letter to the
>editor, I’m going to make it into a Brief in “Shorts,” giving the contact info
>you provided.

I will be honored to be in your “Shorts”!

>We’ve gotten about 30 letters on Judge Peck (quite a few for a Shorts piece).
>Most of them were positive, but you might find it interesting to note that
>about 5 or 6 of them complained that he wasn’t wearing a helmet.

Didn’t that article cover two pages? I’m glad to know there was positive
feedback, and I hope those people will have access to the contact information if
they need it.

Here’s my take on the helmet thing. Do mountain climbers wear helmets? hikers?
whitewater rafters? When George rides, he goes a little faster than walking
speed, sometimes slower. The types of crashes that put a bicyclist’s head in
danger of injury are very rare on a unicycle, because you have a tendency to
stay right side up. It’s easy to jump away from it, which makes it safer than a
mt. bike on a cliffside trail. Last fall we hosted our California Mountain
Unicycle Weekend at the Northstar ski resort near Lake Tahoe. On their property,
helmets are required. The only complaints came from George, but unfortunately he
was not able to make it to the event.

I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it can’t
hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on observers when
they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.” Anything we can do to separate
ourselves from the circus stigma is good for our sport. I have nothing against
circus, and have made my living in that field, but the circus stigma keeps
people from thinking of unicycles as a piece of sports or recreation equipment.

At the same time, I’m not in favor of mandating helmet use among unicyclists
(outside where the law already mandates it for bikes, whether or not local
laws recognize unicycles). We have no history of head injuries or deaths in
our sport, and no sign of a trend as of yet. Freedom of choice works fine for
us for now.

>Your info will be welcome to many of our readers, I’m sure. Thanks! Stan
>Zukowski Managing Editor BICYCLING MAGAZINE Phone: 610.967.8908 Fax:
>610.967.8960 Email: szukows1@rodalepress.com Snail mail: 135 N. 6th St.,
>Emmaus, PA 18098

I look forward to reading more about unicycling in BICYCLING!

John Foss, Director International Unicycling Federation Host: California
Mountain Unicycle Weekend www.calweb.com/~unifoss/

Hey, unicycle newsgroup people, just wanted to give you a heads-up on some more
coverage for unicycling in BICYCLING Magazine. The December issue had an article
about George Peck, and I sent a letter offering contact information for
unicycling (because there was none in the article).

RE: Uni’s and Bi’s

John ~ BTW ~ I’m a closet unicyclist, too, and spent three years street
performing, going juggling, uni’ing and closeup magic. Our editor, Geoff Drake,
talks about his learning to ride a uni in the upcoming April Buyer’s Guide issue
as part of his larger tongue-in-cheek piece on “How many bikes should a fanatic
REALLY own?” (and of course a one-wheel two-wheeler is among the must-haves).

Keep 'em rolling, regardless of quantity…

~Stan “Goes Both Ways On Wheels” Zukowski

>----------
>From: John Foss[SMTP:unifoss@calweb.com] Sent: Wednesday, January 21, 1998
>10:30 PM To: Zukowski, Stan
>Cc: unicycling@winternet.com Subject: Re: Uni’s and Bi’s
>
>At 04:26 PM 1/21/98 -0500, you wrote:
>>Got your letter ~ great stuff. Instead of putting it in as a letter to the
>>editor, I’m going to make it into a Brief in “Shorts,” giving the contact info
>>you provided.
>
>I will be honored to be in your “Shorts”!
>
>>We’ve gotten about 30 letters on Judge Peck (quite a few for a Shorts piece).
>>Most of them were positive, but you might find it interesting to note that
>>about 5 or 6 of them complained that he wasn’t wearing a helmet.
>
>Didn’t that article cover two pages? I’m glad to know there was positive
>feedback, and I hope those people will have access to the contact information
>if they need it.
>
>Here’s my take on the helmet thing. Do mountain climbers wear helmets? hikers?
>whitewater rafters? When George rides, he goes a little faster than walking
>speed, sometimes slower. The types of crashes that put a bicyclist’s head in
>danger of injury are very rare on a unicycle, because you have a tendency to
>stay right side up. It’s easy to jump away from it, which makes it safer than a
>mt. bike on a cliffside trail. Last fall we hosted our California Mountain
>Unicycle Weekend at the Northstar ski resort near Lake Tahoe. On their
>property, helmets are required. The only complaints came from George, but
>unfortunately he was not able to make it to the event.
>
>I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it can’t
>hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on observers when
>they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.” Anything we can do to separate
>ourselves from the circus stigma is good for our sport. I have nothing against
>circus, and have made my living in that field, but the circus stigma keeps
>people from thinking of unicycles as a piece of sports or recreation equipment.
>
>At the same time, I’m not in favor of mandating helmet use among unicyclists
>(outside where the law already mandates it for bikes, whether or not local
>laws recognize unicycles). We have no history of head injuries or deaths in
>our sport, and no sign of a trend as of yet. Freedom of choice works fine for
>us for now.
>
>>Your info will be welcome to many of our readers, I’m sure. Thanks! Stan
>>Zukowski Managing Editor BICYCLING MAGAZINE Phone: 610.967.8908 Fax:
>>610.967.8960 Email: szukows1@rodalepress.com Snail mail: 135 N. 6th St.,
>>Emmaus, PA 18098
>
>I look forward to reading more about unicycling in BICYCLING!
>
>John Foss, Director International Unicycling Federation Host: California
>Mountain Unicycle Weekend www.calweb.com/~unifoss/
>
>
>Hey, unicycle newsgroup people, just wanted to give you a heads-up on some more
>coverage for unicycling in BICYCLING Magazine. The December issue had an
>article about George Peck, and I sent a letter offering contact information for
>unicycling (because there was none in the article).
>
>
>
>

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

In a message dated 98-01-21 22:43:05 EST, you write:

> I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it
> can’t hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on
> observers when they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.”

I started wearing a helmet primarilly for this reason. Kids are drawn to
unicycles and we need to set a good example.

> Anything we can do to separate ourselves from the circus stigma is good for
> our sport. I have nothing against circus, and have made my living in that
> field, but the circus stigma keeps people from thinking of unicycles as a
> piece of sports or recreation equipment.

…and that’s the second reason. I cringe every time I hear a kid say “Hey
Mom, look at the clown!” Being a clown is OK, except when you’re not trying to
look like one.

-Mike UniChef@aol.com

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

> In a message dated 98-01-21 22:43:05 EST, you write:
>
> > I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it
> > can’t hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on
> > observers when they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.”
>
> I started wearing a helmet primarilly for this reason. Kids are drawn to
> unicycles and we need to set a good example.

I started wearing a helmet after my wife bought a bicycle for road riding. I
told her how she should have a helmet, and she pointed out that I ride on the
street on the uni, so I should have one too. The only time I wear it is when I’m
on the road. The way I get myself to wear it is to store my rear-view mirror in
the helmet. I really like the rear-view mirror, so if I leave the house without
the mirror I go back to get it, then I get the helmet while I am there.

I also consider the fact that I had a fractured skull when I was a kid when
riding my bike, so that helps me wear a helmet too. I don’t wear one if I’m not
near cars, though.

Beirne

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

>In a message dated 98-01-21 22:43:05 EST, you write:
>
>> I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it
>> can’t hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on
>> observers when they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.”
>
>I started wearing a helmet primarilly for this reason. Kids are drawn to
>unicycles and we need to set a good example.
>

Kind of the same for me. My little girl (6 yrs. at the time) gave me one for
Fathers Day because, in her words, She “didn’t want daddy to bust his head”. So
I wear it when we ride together.

I must admit, though, when I’m not with her I usually don’t wear it- for the
reasons John stated. We just don’t go fast, and in the year and a half of a lot
of learning/riding, I’ve fallen past landing on my feet only 5 times- and then
it was on my rear.

All of that aside, I hope there never comes a day that I have to explain to
her that the reason my helmet didn’t protect me in a fall was that it was
in the car.

Hugh


(also hughallison@compuserve.com evenings and weekends) for now…

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

On Thu, 22 Jan 1998, UniChef wrote:

> In a message dated 98-01-21 22:43:05 EST, you write:
>
> > I encourage the use of helmets for unicycling for two reasons. First, it
> > can’t hurt to wear one. Second, it makes a much better impression on
> > observers when they see a unicyclist is acting “sensibly.”
>
> I started wearing a helmet primarilly for this reason. Kids are drawn to
> unicycles and we need to set a good example.
>

I started wearing helmet when I started to learn to ride. Besides doing it
because my wife wanted me to, I had another reason: it better concealed my
identity to neighbors who were seeing me repeatedly fall down!

:sunglasses:

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

> > Anything we can do to separate ourselves from the circus stigma is good for
> > our sport. I have nothing against circus, and have made my living in that
> > field, but
the
> > circus stigma keeps people from thinking of unicycles as a piece of sports
> > or recreation equipment.
>
Sports schmortz! It’s just lots o fun! If it’s any consolation, I ride with a
motorycle jacket, bicycle helmet, work boots and a messenger bag. Not too clown
like,…'cept for the rainbow wig…JUST KIDDING!

Marlon Solar

Re: Uni’s and Bi’s

JohnX Foss wrote:
> No matter what I’m wearing, what kind of one wheeler I’m riding, and what kind
> of attitude I seem to be projecting, I still get asked if I’m in the circus.
> How about being sweaty, with muddy shoes and legs, kneepads, a Camelbak, a
> helmet and a unicycle covered with mud. AND, you’re on a dirt trail, miles
> from the nearest road? You still get asked if you’re in the circus… You
> can’t win.

Yup. Happened to me the other day. I was riding off-road and heard some kids in
the distance calling “hey, there’s a clown”. I must admit I just assumed they
were referring to me - I didn’t turn around to check. Maybe there just happened
to be a brightly dressed person with red nose, floppy shoes etc. ambling along
just behind me. Somehow I doubt it.

So there you go - the same comments 5000 miles away. I’m sure somebody could use
that as the basis for a thesis.

BTW, I was wearing a helmet and cycling gloves (and various other items of
clothing before some bright spark jumps in). I reckon the gloves are more
important - I’ve used my hands to break my fall a few times while unicycling
(never yet while off-road) and gloves also help when grabbing branches etc.

Regards, Mark.


Mark Wiggins, | markw@ftel.co.uk +44 (121) 717 6255 Fujitsu Telecom Europe
Ltd,|----------------------------------------- Solihull Parkway, | o Birmingham
Business Park, | In the land of the pedestrian, /|\ Birmingham, | the
one-wheeled man is king. << ENGLAND. | O