Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year Pedicab Scramble

This is the calm before the storm. I'm riding the pedicab. It's busy, but I'm wondering when the insanity will truly begin. I've heard 10pm. The night started rough. I was on a spare cab because the rear timing chain was broken on my usual bike. These bikes are old pieces of shit. I'm not being mean: they are total shit. The steerer tube of the $20 Pyramid brand shitty fork broke. Snapped right off, because the headset is loose, and there are about 10 spacers on it instead of zero, 'cause nobody wanted to buy a hacksaw and cut off the extra threads. There are no back brakes, so the full force of a loaded pedicab is slamming on a shitty fork built for a normal bicycle - and it's a shitty fork even for that. That means I was lucky not to lose my face. Seriously bad news, and this has happened before to my friend Mateos. On this bike. I was way out by the Casa Marina Hotel. I had nothing to steer with. I jogged and pushed from behind the cab with the fork turned backwards so I could 'steer' by turning the entire cab - if I kept up enough speed. Not easy. Once I got back to Duval St, my Serbian hero - Goya - gave me a lift while I 'steered' holding top tube and riding in the passenger section. He even picked up a fare going the same direction! I shared the back with a couple from Alaska. Back at the shop I very carefully - very, very, carefully - stole the back timing chain from that spare bike, and got my usual green machine back on the road. There are no spare chains, and I've never changed one of these types of chains. The theory is the same as a normal chain, but this chain is extra wide, and the cage plates are extra thick. It also takes a chain tool I'm not familiar with, that Anthony (pedicab guy) miraculously owns and keeps at the shop. I took my time and very calmly and meticulously took the 18 year old chain from the broken bike and transferred it to the green machine using a hammer, pliers, and that chain tool. I knew full well the whole time that if I fucked up just one link on this ancient chain, I would lose hundreds of dollars for the night. I got on the road at 6:30 with a feeling in my chest of explosions of relieved awesomeness.

Sunday, December 30, 2007


It's 7:21 - I'm driving an empty pedicab. Probably daydreaming about bullshit.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Low on blood

I'm situating myself in my van. It's my night off. I'm passing my laptop and electronics bag to the back, and my curtain clip just came off. Just before the beeping I mumbled "fuck you, fuck you, fuck you" to myself. Not with any anger, but just a mild scolding frustration. I'm light headed. I donated blood for some snacks and a movie ticket this morning, and I'm just now feeling how I should be more careful after donating blood. I haven't eaten enough - just a burger and fries - and I had a couple beers, which can dehydrate a man. I was warned about that. So I'm back at the van to sit for a minute and make some easier plans, cause I almost passed out on Duval St. about 10 minutes ago. I have a free coffee from Kevin who works at the info / tourist booth connected to Denny's. I'm having that, water, a peanut butter bagel sandwich - then finding a place to cook some food and listen to an iPod. Couscous. That's the current plan.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas at Wendy's

It's Christmas, I'm working, and it's not a very high-dollar pedicab day. I'm taking a break in front of Wendy's. I got a $1 crispy chicken, and a $2 small chili. I'm hungry as hell, but going light because there is usually free pizza sitting around somewhere on Duval or a side street, and I always find it because I'm always circling. Starvation is not likely in Key West. In about two seconds I will give solid, accurate directions to Ernest Hemmingway's old house. So far I've got seventeen bucks in my pocket.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Mooshy Cookie

I'm sitting on the back (passenger seat) of my pedicab in front of a coffee shop toward the ocean side of Duval. I have a coffee and a big cookie. A peanut butter cookie. The coffee shop was technically closed, but the door was wide open. The man behind the counter was very nice. Friendlier than most - which I've found is not at all uncommon in Key West. He gave me the coffee for free, and asked for $1 for the cookie (marked $1.25). So I'm sitting here breaking off pieces of the cookie, which is extremely moist to the point of falling apart and being extra delicious. My last customer was generous, and kept peeling off bills until I was holding $65. I paid the pedicab rent already.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Awesome Sunday

I'm riding toward Front St, and I already have $100 in my pocket. I "paid the rent" within about one hour of riding. We call making $100 'paying the rent,' and on a slow night we'll ask each other "did you make the rent?" Or we'll say "I made the rent in an hour!" This quick cash flow is a good indication that I'll be having a lucrative evening of pedal-work. When you get money fast, you are in a good mood, and when you are in a good mood you have confidence, and when you have confidence people seem to sense it and they are ready to get in your pedicab and give you big tips. Conversely, if you make $0 for 5 hours, people can sense that you want to shoot yourself, and they stay out of your pedicab to avoid issues of mess and crossfire.
[ed note: $270 night = rent + past 2 days rent + $100]

Saturday, December 22, 2007

More of the same

For a Saturday night, this is pretty slim pedicab work. I pay $100 to rent the cab each night that I work. I work every day except Wednesday and Thursday. Last night I made $63, so I owe money after many hours of work.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Somewhat dismayed

I'm pedicabbing toward the ocean side of Duval at about US-1/Truman Ave. I've been out for hours, and haven't made $0.10. I'm anxious for this money that I hear I'll be making soon.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Toward the Keys, happy as pie.

I'm 75 miles from Key West, headed south, driving my new van. I have a Pumpkin Spice Cappuccino from the Circle K, where I just got a full tank. The coffee is in my right hand, resting right above my knee. My driving hand is on the wheel. I have the cruise control set at about 50, and the combination of all of these details makes me a very happy and content man.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Delirious at Staples

I'm in or around Clearwater Florida, pacing around, tired to the core, talking to my mom on my cell phone. I have a package of clips in one hand that will cost $3.19. My mom and I talk about things and my status for 28 minutes while I pace around, happily delirious. The clips are to be used to hold up a makeshift curtain, which I don't yet have, so people can't see me in the back of my van, which I just purchased an hour ago.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Need a ride?

I'm pedaling the pedicab at Duval and United waving to a girl in her twenties or so who is talking to her mom. The girl is talking about a TV something-something, and it seems unlikely that they are going to need a ride. I'm correct. They do not.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Wild for the Conch Train

There is a Conch Train full of tourists wearing Santa hats, waving and calling out. I ring my bell repeatedly and make a hooting and yelling ruckus as I pass going the other direction. This is typical. But this time my watch beeps.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Pumkin Spice vice

I'm pushing the button which dispenses Pumpkin Spice Cappuccino from a whirring machine at the Circle K on Duval St. In my mind - in a lazy daydream - a played out scenario, I am saying this reminds me of home. In reality, it does not. It reminds me of Pumpkin Spice Cappuccino only.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Talking to Tom

I'm sitting with my pedicab outside the CVS by Duval and Front St. talking to Tom, who has cycle-toured 23 countries and subs 'suck' and 'shoot' for other more popular curses.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Vehicle meetings

I'm riding out to Truck House, which is still parked on Stock Island getting an electrical problem fixed. Beer, iPod, sweatshirt. That's what I'm retrieving before I head back into town, or the beach, or wherever my bike ends up with me on it. I just ran into Seth outside the tattoo shop on Stock Island. The tattoo shop is next door to the truck repair shop, so our vehicles are close enough to wave to each other. We chatted a bit, then he and the tattoo artist went back in to put more birds on Seth's leg. I headed toward the truck, and my watch started beeping.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

ed note: on pedicabs

I'm going to break the mold here, and admit to writing this on the 10th. I don't know where I was, but I was driving the pedicab again. The pedicab is a real trip. It's a great source of 7:21 info, but if I don't write down the specifics it all blends together. I'm pretty sure I was driving around the couple with the baby and I told them that I'm planning to go to law school next. I've thought about law school, so it's not a complete lie. I'm definitely going - but I just need to use their bathroom.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Friday, December 7, 2007

Pedicab again...

Now I'm headed east on Duval from Front St. No passengers.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Pedicab again

I'm coming up to the same exact intersection as yesterday.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

First pedicab night

I'm driving around a pedicab, and it's my first night on the job. I'm pointed west on Duval St. I'm stopped at a red light across from the place where I'd previously purchased a 16oz beer in a brown bag and asked about the specifics of the public booze laws. My phone rang, and I was very happy to see that Mary was calling me. I answered, rang my little bell for her, then hit the lower right-hand button on my watch because it was beeping.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Walking with beer

I know I usually write this in the present tense, but I'm not sure exactly what was up at 7:21 last night. I was somewhere walking with a beer in a bag. LEGAL here. I only had one beer and I walked around for a good amount of distance and time. I need a better way to kill time, and that's what I was thinking. I still don't belong here. I talked to Mike Bradley on his birthday, and it cheered me up some.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Convenience store

I'm in a convenience store. I've been looking for free wifi, and I stopped to get a beer. I bought the beer. $1 even for a 16oz Milwaukee's Best Light. Not a killer deal. I saw that what is probably the bathroom says "out of order." I've seen this trick before. After I buy the beer, I use my friendliest inquisitive-effeminate soft voice - head slightly cocked - "would you happen to have a restroom I could use?" Yup. Coming out of the bathroom I notice there is a "cycles trader" catalog. I'm thinking it's bicycles. Then my watch beeps. I pick up my beer, thank the guy, and leave.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

AIDS memorial, bicycle, booze

It's my first night in Key West. I've spent hours - hours - walking around and exploring. I stopped back at Truck House to lay down for a minute. It was hot as hell and smells like cheap wood and paint. I got up, got my jacket with my weed in it, the rest of my Old Crow, and my city bike. I headed down the street to the AIDS memorial, where there's a long pier. I only spent a minute, while my watch beeped, because my heart wasn't into this plan.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

South of Cocoa Beach

Truck House is in southern Florida. I'm pulled over at a rest stop, and taking a break in the back. It's warm! I just replaced my pants with some shorts. I've got the main RV door open, so the RV screen door is in full effect. I just got off the phone with Nat about a minute ago. I was glad he text'd me, cause it's great to talk in the midst of a big weird transition like this that's all new and up in the air. I'm chugging along pretty good. Shorts are nice. 7:21 came at a happy moment today.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Diesel at the BP

I'm putting diesel into Truck House at a BP that's 28 miles north of South of the Border. It's chilly out. This is my fullest tank so far: $105. It's getting split with Dave, apparently aka 'Noodles,' who is my random Craigslist ride share taker.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

West on I-76

I'm heading west on 76 from Philly headed toward West Chester to say goodbye to Julia and Dave before I hit the road toward Key West tomorrow morning. I just spent the day getting stuff out of my storage space and my parents house and taking it to Nat's house and Shelly's house. It all consisted of bicycles, my ex-bed, a washer and dryer, and some other shit. I'm relieved that it's dealt with, and a little anxious about the trip coming up. But overall I'm happy. I'm glad that Julia called me, because it made me feel loved, and I really wanted to see those guys before leaving.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

East on I-76

I'm headed toward Philly in the back of Danielle and Gary's GTI. I'm getting pretty smashed off some Old Crow in a coke from Wendy's. I'm leaning up between the seats telling Gary that there's probably going to be a picture of me holding a framed painting of a clown in the back of Truck House in the sunday edition of the Philly Inquirer. Or monday or tuesday.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Same shit, different day. Picked that term up from "The Dreamcatcher" on audiobook (iPod). It fits. I'm sitting in the same place, on the same laptop, and I've got the two-watch 7:21 tango going. This time I let the backup watch on the windowsill keep beeping. When the beeps occur I'm working on changing the layout of my other blog, I just blogged over there about peeing in a bottle the good way. Now I'm over here sending more messages out into space.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Emailing about hook spanners

I saw 7:21 coming in advance, and still this is the best I can do. I'm composing an email to Nat about what I think is a good starter set of bicycle tools. I'm sitting in the upstairs back bedroom. My current room. There is a watch on the window sill across the room. My watch is crapping out at the velcro wrist band. I found another one in a drawer in the bathroom. Looks like it's barely used, probably my sister's from way back. I set the alarm for 7:21 thinking that I might make the switch. This is the first time it's gone off that I've been in the room, and it kinda got on my nerves. I was trying to think of the tool "hook spanner" and this thing kept beeping for a really long time. So I put down the laptop and silenced that bastard.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Wii at the farm

I'm sitting at James and Laura's place at 'the farm.' It's a big 85 or 100 acre old farm right outside of West Chester that's been in James's family for a long time. They've got a projector and screen for playing Wii. I'm sitting on the couch, and Paul is there too. I'm watching James play tennis.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Talking to Mark

I'm sitting at the table at Mark and Nat's place in Philly talking to Mark. We've played some Wii, had some Sly Fox, and now it's chatting. I'm in a good mood. This was my last day of work at 1-800-got-junk, and I'm happy to be somewhere doing something.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Backwards on Barnard

I'm rolling backwards on Barnard Street in West Chester in the Mazda. I'm about 10-15 car lengths from Brandywine Ave at Everhart Park. I was going to do a 3 point u-turn, but realizing that Barnard is a one way, I opted for creeping backwards in neutral. I just left Jennie's place. I'm listening to the Dream Catcher on my iPod. It's a chilly night, and I need a little more than my navy blue zip-up hoodie.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Craft room

It's Thanksgiving. I've been watching 7:21 creep up. I saw it on the clock radio over an hour ago, since it hasn't been re-set. It's been another day of anxiety, but not all bad. I'm sitting across from my mom in her craft room across the hall from the room that I'm using as a bedroom these days. Jeopardy is on, and the last question was something to do with wine. She's working on scrapbooking-style cards for an event I'm not sure about. I think they're for Cathy. I don't know how driving down to Key West all alone is supposed to help with this weight I've been feeling. Not to keep talking about it, but you know how it goes. I think it's mildly ridiculous how this blog is currently about equal to an anonymous email to a few friends who probably have an rss feed. So here I am talking about feelings in a public forum, saying shit I'd never compose an email about. The whole point of this 7:21 project is to lay down equally spaced bread crumbs that I can follow into my past. It's a positive thought for me that I'm at least going to be putting down some interesting crumbs pretty soon, good or bad. I want to tell about shit that makes me proud. Brag-able stuff. But 7:21 happens every day, and life has very limited hoopla sometimes.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Asleep and dreaming strong

I wake up to the beeping in my ear. I'm so asleep that I don't even register what it is at first. My wrist and watch are inches from my right ear. I'm in the middle of a lucid dream about sifting through a box of someone's personal effects - specifically looking at a high school diploma from 1754. The box was hidden under some old boards that were rotting in the ground outside in a small clearing of pine trees. It's daytime in the dream, and there are at least a few people with me, though I don't remember who.

I'm dead asleep and have been for hours, because I don't know if I was even able to fall asleep last night at all. I had the worst case of anxiety I think I can imagine which didn't fully go away until late this morning, and now seems to have died down. I don't like taking medication that changes how I think and feel, but if anxiety like that comes back I think I need something. I don't have and such medication, and won't seek it out - but when you feel like that, I think you need it. I keep going through moments of different degrees of serious difficulty. I need to find my simple happy niche or fall into a groove that can work for awhile. I'm doing what I think makes sense - quitting my job, moving to Key West, planning to live in a truck - but it might be too much to all handle. The standard-living option (job/car/apt.) feels like a cop out when I compare it to the awesome adventure I have lined up. I just don't know if I'm ok as a body. I keep going back and forth between being able to handle my life and not. I'm having difficulty keeping my third-person over-my-own-shoulder perspective on life which always helps me laugh at everything. This is the closest thing to a reason why I got a huge turtle tattooed on my stomach. I knew back then at 17 that I would be a man one day, and I'd be faced with an overwhelming case of the serious. The turtle is a reminder from my past (I think I remember literally riding in the back seat of a car, past the Super Fresh on route 1 leaving Kennett, exactly where the super Wawa now is - and telling myself as a note to my future self to NEVER take anything too seriously.) I still don't think you can go wrong with this philosophy. I don't expect that I can always squash down my pure grinding emotion. I'm fully aware that chemicals are at work in each brain, and said chemicals can fuck your shit up. I know this. I'm just typing about what it all means for me right now. This is all just saying how I am.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

PhillyCarShare pickup

I'm sitting shotgun while Shelly drives a PhillyCarShare Tacoma pickup through south philly. We just moved a bunch of stuff out of my parents' place to her new place in west philly. Now we're headed to a bar to see Nielle.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Citron combination

I just combined two bottles of partially full Absolut Citron vodka into one bottle. Someone was throwing them out on Saturday at work, and I intercepted them. Now I'm sitting at Danielle and Gary's and the bottles are on their coffee table.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I want to kill time. Rainy bored apprehension.

I'm wearing my orange t-shirt. I'm also laying in bed and wearing boxers. There's a commercial about constipation on tv. I turned on the tv a few minutes ago, and there's a cold case related detective show. I want to go to sleep soon. I don't have any ideas about how to kill time any better. I'm on a laptop that Shelly gave to me last night. I'm thinking about Key West and how apprehensive I still am about it. I just want it to go smooth. I know it seems like a good idea, but it's definitely going to be a crazy move for me. Even if it's just temporary. I'm just worried about how it'll all go down. Paradise is still just another place if you're not happy. I want to be happy when I'm there. I want to meet good people and enjoy the pedicab job. I want to be happy living in a truck. I want to stop thinking about what could go wrong.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Wii on Howard

I just got to Mark and Nat's place on Howard Street a short time ago. After a long day at work, and a ton of driving, my mood is: very happy. Relaxed, satisfied, comfortable, good. I have a Wii controller in my hand, and a Lord Chesterfield can right next to me. Mark and I are playing: tennis. Mark's got a projector, and the wall is a huge screen. I've never played Wii, and I'm impressed with how well it knows what you're doing when you wave the controller. I'm happy when my watch beeps, because I'm in a genuine good mood.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Carrying boots

I'm transferring my work boots from the mini van to the Mazda for work tomorrow. I just pulled into the garage. I have a real apprehensive and surreal feeling about the way everything is going for me right now. Everything. It's not a happy apprehension. It's freaky ass nerves and I don't enjoy it.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Almost to Danielle's

I just turned onto Five Points Road from Westtown Road. I'm driving my ma's mini van, and I have my cell phone in my right hand. I'm poised to call Danielle as soon as I turn onto Edward Lane and roll to a stop. I just ate dinner with my parents at Benegan's. All true.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Big plan camera man

I'm sitting on the love seat in the living room at my folks' with the news in the background. My mom is at her spot on the adjacent couch, 90 degrees and four couch-squares away. I've just gotten a little ranty to my mom about how bullshitty the news always is. What happened right before the watch beeped is me taking a picture of my mom. I'm using her awesome digital camera. I'm testing around with it to see about getting some pictures of me painting the inside room of Truck House. She agreed to take some pictures, in spite of the fact that I know she doesn't like the truck or especially the idea of me living in it. I just told her I'm moving down to Key West in two weeks. She thinks college is a better idea, but I'm going to operate a bicycle taxi in Key West instead. I'll be down there while it's cold up here, then move back when it's too hot down there - in time for it to be warming up and beautiful around here again. I was only thinking about it before, but today it's a done deal. I talked to the guy, and if I'm down there, I get a job. I'm not wading around through a landfill all winter. I'm just about done with that. Now it's time to make more money in a better climate doing something way more fun. Reasonable! Awesome!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Cheap RV Living

I'm dorking around on my computer. I'm re-reading the electricity summary at Click over to that website right now. It's fucking awesome. I'm thinking about the logistics of Truck House electricity. Seems complicated and expensive. Naturally. Gotta get batteries, a battery charger, some way to charge the batteries (generator or some such). Then you have to put wires all over to connect it all, which I'm not super comfortable with. Anyone want to help me out? Oh yeah - gotta be hookin' up an inverter too, so I can have a microwave or some such item. All this makes me wonder if I can live in it more like camping style and do without all that. I don't know, man.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Dinosaur Jr.

I'm sitting in the Mazda on Brandywine Ave. in West Chester right at Barnard St. I'm parked and getting ready to walk up to Julia and Jennie's place. I'm listening to the album 'Whatever's Cool With Me' and the song 'Quicksand.' I'm belting it out pretty loud and asinine with my vocals when I notice the car clock says 7:21. That makes it interesting while I still kinda continue to belt out vocals while looking at my watch a few times until it is the 'official' 7:21 which counts. That time quickly comes, and I hit the button to stop the beeping, get out of the car, and keep listening while I walk the bunch of blocks up to the place. I park down here 'cause that's just where I park. There are closer spots, but it feels better down here, and gives me a little outside walking time. The spot is next to Everhart Park. I love this park.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

$1,184.60 / drugs / stolen shit

I'm sitting at my desk in the upstairs back room at my parents house (my room for now). It isn't a desk. It's a card table with a ton of bullshit all over it. I've seen 7:21 creeping up for at least 45 minutes. I'm working on moving the whole project over to a blogger blog, so I can post from anywhere with the internet. I'm moving over all of the past entries, and I've even gone back to move some of the original entries that I made before quitting for a long period of time. I'll be happy to have everything in the same place in the same format.

Let me tell you what's on this card table. A folder on information about truck driving school. My computer tower and all that shit. A pint glass that I stole from the Half Moon saloon last night right in front of my parents, and I don't think they noticed. We joked about it, and I did say I was going to steal it. They'll think that's funny at Christmas when I give it to Cathy as a gift. She likes pint glasses, and gets them from all over. Also on this table is a mug that I swiped from the Waffle House when Shelly and I went to Scranton awhile ago. I have the DVD "the Game" that I'm borrowing from Jennie. There's the empty box that my awesome-ass 80gig iPod came in. There's two empty glasses that had water. There's a caffeine free diet coke can that I mixed with booze plenty of days or weeks ago. There's 5 regular empty coke cans on the windowsill to my right. I have a coffee can that I'm stashing my illicit drugs in. It's a pretty lousy hiding place. By drugs, I just mean weed. About 1/388th of a gram at this point. Don't arrest me. There's also loose change and 30 Canadian bucks in the coffee can. There's a deposit receipt from my credit union for a $1,184.60 check that is a refund for part of an insurance policy that I got when I started the official "Chris Harne's Bicycle Business" to get a wholesale parts account. Apparently they sent a check a long time ago that I never cashed. So they sent a new one very recently. I don't know how I let that sum of money slip by - like 10% of my average annual income. I'll chalk it up to being awesome. I have fingernail clippers that I owe to Nat from a long time ago, and haven't remembered to return, which makes me a dick since he brought it up at least a few times. There's other shit too, but you get the idea.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

spyware and all that shit.

I'm sitting at my desk. Scrubs is on TV, and I'm waiting for firefox to load. It takes about seven hours after I click the icon, 'cause my computer is running nasty slow 'cause I'm sure there's way too much spyware and all that shit.

Friday, November 9, 2007

pedicab idea

I just finished typing a short email to a pedicab company in Key West. I'm thinking about how awesome it would be to drive Truck House down there for the winter and operate a bicycle taxi. I emailed to ask about two logistical questions. Hot damn. If I could get that gig, I'd be fucking happy. I'm trying to see if Nat wants to go too. He's very interested, and this could actually be a good idea. I can't keep fucking around this area non-stop. Some shit needs to start moving. Me. I've gotta do something.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Pizza with Danielle

I'm sitting across from Danielle at the Exton mall eating a slice of pizza under a tree in the food court. I'm having a great time. We're looking for paint for the inside of Truck House. I'm a little bit color blind, so I need help getting the right shade of super-brightness. Danielle is good at that.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

November 7, 2007

I'm in the Mazda in the driveway of my parents house. I just spent 42 minutes up the street, pulled over, on the phone answering questions for an interview with the Pottstown Mercury. The interview was about Truck House, minimalist ideas, and consumerism and stuff like that. There were a few points that could end up classic in print, or I could be made to look pretty foolish. Either way, it's 7:21 and that interview left my cell phone battery on the last notch. I'm cussing about not being able to find my charging cable, and how I hope I can find it fast. I'm trying to get going, 'cause I'm hanging out with Josh again, who I just met through Craigslist. I said I'd be there before 7. I'll call him after I get my charging cable, which is very easy to locate because it happens to be sitting right inside the garage on some of my Truck House shit that's cluttering everything up and probably getting on someone's nerves a little.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Simultaneous beeping occurs

Lots of beeping is going on, and I'm on my cell phone with my mom. I just hopped in the Mazda with a cell phone on my ear, and the car starts beeping due to a safety feature and it's absolutely simultaneous to the watch beeping. Timed perfectly. Very exciting 7:21 shit here. I also just left the home of Josh, who is a person who I've been in contact with through Craigslist and just finished hanging out with. So basically, a whirlpool of excitement is vortexing everyone's brain.

Monday, November 5, 2007

I just peed

I'm walking out of the bathroom at Jennie and Julia's place in West Chester. I just peed. My watch beeps as I'm crossing into the kitchen toward the living room to continue talking to Jennie about stuff in general.

Sunday, November 4, 2007


I'm thoroughly frustrated about losing the cord to my rechargeable LED light that I bought for Truck House. I have no idea where it is, and I've been wandering around poking through stuff and angry-cussing-muttering way too much. I'm walking up the stairs to the top floor of the house when my watch beeps.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Red Lobster

I'm at the Red Lobster on 202. I'm sitting on the end of one of those tall tables in the bar area which require a stool instead of a chair. I'm as close as you can be to the host stand and waiting area, while actually being seating in the restaurant being served. There's a short railing behind me separating those who have not yet been seated. Karl and Cathy are at the table to my left side, and dad and mom are sitting on the side to my right. I just asked the waitress what beer was on tap, and was hit with a barrage of boring choices and said I'd pass. In a minute, I'll opt for a 'Lobsterita' - a fine fitting birthday celebration dinner drink.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Work to party transition

I need to unwind. I'm just now getting off of work. Right as my watch beeps, I'm still sitting in the work truck with the driver-side door open. I have just completed the task of taking off my boots, and putting on sneakers. Now I'm going to wait for a few minutes until Danielle and Gary can come and whisk me off to Philadelphia for a day-after-birthday party at Nat's.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

SuTao birthday

This is great. It's my birthday. I'm at SuTao with Mary, Jennie, Julia, Dave, Gary, Danielle and Nat. We're in the back room sitting around a large round table. I didn't even know there was a private room, and it's great back here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

standing in Truck House

I'm standing in Truck House staring blankly at where the 'back wall' will go and wondering what I'm going to do to build it. I'm building an insulated box within the box, and every single step is taking an extra hour while I stare at it and wonder how this is going to be accomplished.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Mary has shotgun.

I'm driving the Mazda today. Mary has shotgun. She noted that my watch still beeps at 7:21 - she hasn't seen that in awhile, I guess. I told her I'm keeping track of it again, and she'd be mentioned. "You made the cut" I told her.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Jeopardy on radio

I'm in the back seat of the Mazda. My dad is driving, my mom has shotgun. We're listening to Jeopardy on the radio, and we're headed out to Perkins to eat. We're right at the exit for Avondale / Chatham.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Geico commercial

I'm on the couch watching TV with my parents again. There's a Geico commercial on. I just told my mom that my birthday get-together is going to be this Friday in Philly at Nat's house.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Food on legs

I'm sitting on my parents couch with a bowl of black bean soup on my left leg and a grilled cheese sandwich on my right leg. Action News is on, and there's a football player explaining how he would take down a 7'6" pre-historical skeletal something - if it were still alive and playing football.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Mary Gary Danielle Me

I'm over at Danielle and Gary's again. X-Men is on the tv, and I'm not really watching it. Mary is over here too.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

bland mood

I'm laying around and I'm in a pretty bland mood. I'm on my inside bed - the one in the upstairs back room at my parents. The TV is on, and I'm sort of watching Grounded For Life on channel 50. There's a clock radio beside the TV. I noticed that it said 7:21. When I looked at my watch, it was 7:20:54.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Connect Four

I'm sitting over at Danielle and Gary's again. On their couch. Me and Danielle are in the midst of an intense game of Connect 4, and Gary just got home. He's still standing up. And he's wearing a hat that I haven't seen him wear before - an Under Armour hat. At this point I've eaten most of their chips that are left over from their weekly Seniora's dinner, which they get every Monday.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Movies with Mary

I'm sitting in the seat to the right of Mary. We're at Regal Cinemas on 202 in Delaware to see Into The Wild. Chris McCandless just yelled "Hello!" into the abandoned bus, and now he's scoping it out.

Monday, October 22, 2007

back to reality

I'm in Truck House again. I'm standing up, leaning both forearms on what will be the bunk area over the cab. I'm staring blankly at the studs and insulation, wondering how I'm going to go about putting up the OSB sheets of wood that I'm using for the walls. It looks like a complicated mess. I'm throwing it together. I'm expecting that it will look slightly haphazard yet cozy when all is said and done. My watch beeps, and I come back to reality, committing the moment to memory.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

in the kitchen

I'm standing in front of the fridge using the built-in filtered water dispenser to get a glass of water. I'm about to eat soup and a grilled cheese sandwich that my mom made, which is sitting on the counter. I have to pee pretty bad, and I'm wondering if I have to pee more often now than I did in the past, and why that might be.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

bland rice

I'm sitting at the counter in my parents kitchen with a laptop open in front of me, and a Kathy Griffin show on the TV just to my right. She disgusts me. I went to channel 45 hoping for Top Chef, and I have no excuse for leaving it on. I'm paying more attention to this bowl of rice that I'm almost done eating. It's Uncle Ben's long grain rice that comes in a pouch that only takes 90 seconds in the microwave. It's a little bland, so I put in a little Classico-brand sun dried tomato alfredo sauce, which helps a lot. When my watch beeps, the first thing I think about it how it sucks that I have to mention what's on the TV.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Talking to Gary

I'm sitting on the sectional sofa next to Gary at his place. I'm sitting in the curve. Danielle just went out to get Indian food. I got what Gary's getting, 'cause it sounds great and Indian food kinda confuses me. We're talking about how Gary used to smoke, and who else smokes and how they got started and when or why they quit.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I'm updating the Truck House blog, typing about how I installed most of the insulation today. I was in the middle of a sentence, so the watch got 4 beep-beep cycles off before I found the time to hit a button. Now I'm going to get back to blogwork.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

It's beautiful outside

I'm standing toward the back of Truck House with my left hand wrapped in the seatbelt-material webbing loop that is used to pull down the door. My right hand is holding a cell phone. The door is open and I'm hanging outside looking up through the leaves on the tree that has a branch that wants to grow inside the truck. "It's beautiful outside" beep-beep beep-beep. I said it the instant before my watch beeped. It was an observation that has nothing to do with my stunted conversation with Shelly that is just coming to an end. I have some tears on my face, but I'm done crying. I'm happy when my watch beeps because I like getting caught when I least expect it, at a moment that I'm feeling specifically satisfied to just be alive.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

October 16th, 2007

I'm sitting on the popizon chair at Danielle and Gary's place in West Chester. Danielle, Jennie, Julia and Dave are sitting on the sectional couch. That list is clockwise if you're on the ceiling. Right before my watch beeps, Julia is talking about a food that she likes from Trader Joes. She's not really talking about it. She states it for a simple fact. It's smoky or smoked something. We're all high. We're all talking. I'm happy to be here with a group of people that should all get together more often. And I am hoping that we do.

Monday, October 15, 2007

October 15th, 2007

I'm in a rehearsal space in the basement below a lawyers office across the street from the 7-11 on High St. in West Chester. The lighting is in chill mode - meaning Christmas tree lights only. I haven't played drums in years, but I'm playing them now. This is Steve Klopp's space. He and his twin brother Matt and visiting from Vermont and sleeping on couches here. We all go way back.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

October 14th, 2007

I'm sitting on the toilet and crying a little bit.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

October 13th, 2007

I'm sitting in the pavilion at Everhart Park in West Chester with Steve and Matt Klopp. We're drinking and talking. I got a small bottle of wine at work, which we shared, and now I'm following up with a 24oz Mickeys can.

Friday, October 12, 2007

October 12th, 2007

I'm slightly embarrassed to admit that I'm looking at the 'casual encounters' section on Craigslist. I'm sitting here deciding how to word this 7:21 description properly. I have three choices. I could use it as a springboard for a brave and honest admission that I'm a dork and explain why. I could turn the whole thing into some sort of explanatory joke that isn't quite funny. Or I could be vague and wait until 7:21 tomorrow.

See how witty? I did all three. Now that I'm very proud of myself, I'm still not certain that I've completed my mission. First I look at 'strictly platonic' to see if there is anyone who is up for meeting random people who don't live in philly. Then I move on to "W4M" because something could be posted there which could lead to meeting someone to do something. Then I move on to 'casual encounters' half because I'm just curious, and half because I think there's going to be a smoking hot babe who is a real person with no STDs who wants to get crazy with me. In real life. Truthfully, I'm embarrassed because I am a little bit socially desperate and I just got caught looking for friends in a really backwards way.

Why do I ever bother with something like this 7:21 log? I think it's an egotistical thing to get people to like me and think that I'm really awesome. Having a personal website of has to have some kind of egotistical motive behind it. I want people to think I'm interesting. So I put this website up about how awesome I am. I'm not completely proud to admit that, and I do mean all this with measurable sincerity.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

October 11th, 2007

"I swear it smelled too." He's talking about oil. My dad is sitting across from me at Cafe Gelato in Newark, DE. It's a fancy type of restaurant that can't figure out if it serves ice cream or wine. We're done. My dad has his bi-fold out, bills exposed, and the check is lying prone on the table. A minute ago I asked how much of his navy career was actually spent on a boat at sea. 28 days. The bunks were stacked three high, and he was positioned right above the fuel tanks where he could hear oil sloshing around.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

October 10th, 2007

I looked at my watch at 6:56, and knew what was coming. I am at the Outback in Frazier celebrating my dad's birthday, which is tomorrow. However, I either didn't hear my watch, or I robotically turned it off. Present here are Cathy and Karl to my left, in that order - an dad and mom across the table.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

October 9th, 2007

Jeopardy - what is asparagus. Elementary school kids are playing. I'm standing, non-committal, in the living room. My dad is there, my mom is taking a glass fusing class. I know it's almost 7:21 while I'm standing there. Slightly later, on my way up to type this information, I wished I was in a hot air balloon or something. I yearn for something better to report. If you yearn for that too, please bear with me.

Monday, October 8, 2007

October 8th, 2007

Once again, I'm sitting at my computer and I see the time creeping up. I'm hoping that 7:21 doesn't get lame because I'm always on my computer, and I always see it coming. I'm currently writing an email to Carrie, who I met from Craigslist, and have been exchanging about 20 emails with. Unspoken, and to my delight, they've all remained under the same original subject thread. As my watch beeps, I'm explaining that nobody ever has to walk on eggshells around me.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

October 7th, 2007

I was fully aware that 7:21 was coming for several minutes in advance. I am at my computer in the upstairs back bedroom that I inhabit in my parents house. I am updating my Truck House blog to announce the successful installation of my new entrance door. The door really warms my heart. I'm drinking a little bit of Sherry that I got from work. I watched the 7:21 countdown from 7:20:47, and poised my thumb on the button to stop the alarm when the minute turned. Somehow I missed, and only managed to get it on the second round of "beep-beeps." I can't remember the last time I saw 7:21 coming in advance. I like it much better when it's a surprise. This time I almost decided that I should be doing something truly interesting, since I had a small advance notice. I decided not to. Just updatin' a blog. Nothing too wild.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

October 6th, 2007

I'm driving to West Chester in my dad's Mazda with Nat. We're about one second from turning onto Market St. from 52.

Friday, October 5, 2007

October 5th, 2007

I'm sitting on a stool at the counter in the kitchen at my parents' house, where I've been staying for the past three months. Jeopardy is on, and the last question was Renoir. Then my watch beeped. My sister, Cathy, and her husband, Karl, are both over. We're going to have salmon for dinner. I thought that today would be the day that Karl would help me install a door in Truck House. But it's not - hopefully that day is very soon. I'm wearing a black Under Armour shirt that Shelly bought for me for a dollar while she was in Denver. She broke up with me a few days after she gave it to me. I like wearing it because I think it makes me look hot. At this point, I've just finished my second beer. The first was a Saranac IPA, and the second was a Yuengling that I got for free from a 1-800-GOT-JUNK client who might have rebottled something other than Yunengling into the bottles, but I can't be certain. Set up on the deck outside is a telescope that I rescued from work to give to Cathy. I think she was genuinely happy to get it, and we might try to look at something after dinner.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

October 4th, 2007

I'm sitting at Perkins with my dad, and I just said something. My watch beeped before he responded. I ordered a broccoli and cheese omlette and asked for lots of broccoli. This omlette isn't on the menu, and broccoli doesn't appear in the 'build your own omlette' ingredients list - but this is the second time I've ordered it with no trouble. It hasn't gotten here yet. I skipped the coffee, and just ordered a water. I've been here many times recently, and this is the first time I haven't ordered coffee. My dad ordered some though. So now he has a whole carafe to himself. Mom goes to Weight Watchers on Thursdays - so it's just me and dad.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

"Let's Make a Pie"

In the car with Shelly - passenger seat. Listening to a song about "Let's Make a Pie" with lyrics about a awesomely ridiculous inaccurate recipe. We're driving toward University Ave. Just got ice cream. These are the best days of our lives.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

lining up all my ducks

Talk to Excel. I'm figuring out how much each part costs and where I'm going to get it for my production run of bicycles. I'm lining up all my ducks, and if all goes as planned, the frames will arrive in May. Just in time for me to go on a two month bicycle vacation... but you can't keep putting off bicycle vacations. If you're following the story of the production run, it just changed a lot. Before: touring bikes, Now: 3 speeds. I made the decision for a myriad of reasons, and I'm very relieved and excited about the switch. I can also get an account with J&B as a manufacturer when I get the appropriate insurance policy. Talked to them on the phone this morning for awhile. The insurance policy I'm looking at is affordable, and I'm getting the final information and application in the mail. So... 7:21pm : mind on overdrive. Danielle is almost here - we're gonna go see the Flyers.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Hangin' out

Hangin' out in the kitchen with Danielle and Gary. Shelly is there.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

It's heatin' up.

I'm standing in my kitchen talking to Shelly and Jonas. Shelly brought my some leftover chinese food, and I just put it in the microwave for 38 seconds. It's heatin' up. Veggie general tso's chicken with pineapple chunks in there. Jonas is getting ready to split. Got his coat on and everything. But at this moment he's talking to Shelly about making money at the Fire.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Calculating spoke lengths

Calculating spoke lengths for wheels to be built.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Standing in the kitchen

Standing in the kitchen. Just got back from taking Penny on an extremely cold walk. Shelly is putting together quesadillas for a potluck at Jonas's that was postponed from last night to tonight. I thought I was being anti-social yesterday, but now I have a second chance. This is good.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

watching youtube

Watching YouTube. Sorry I don't do cool stuff around 7:21 anymore. I'll try to throw in a curveball soon. ?

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

eating raisins.

Hanging out with Shelly in the cave, eating raisins.

Monday, January 22, 2007

'One Got Fat'

Sitting at Shelly's computer watching an asinine bicycle safety video. I found it by searching 'bicycle' on Google video. It's called 'One Got Fat.' The cycle-riders in the film are grotesque monkey-faced kids riding vintage nonsense bikes. I'm pretty sure that clips from this video were used in a Dr. Dog video. This shit's pretty intense.

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Exhaling. Sitting down at my computer.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Friday, January 19, 2007

standing around

At my parents standing around the kitchen table

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Lacing up a wheel

Lacing up a wheel for my ongoing coaster brake project. I'm trying to put together a slew of coaster brake bikes.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Monday, January 15, 2007

3 speeds

Designing and planning 3 speeds...

Sunday, January 14, 2007

bridal expo

I'm standing behind a truck on the loading dock at the Sheraton at 17th and Race St. I helped load and unload and setup for a bridal expo. Load in: 2am - 8am Load out: 3:30pm - 7:30pm. We're almost done, and I'm definitely ready to go. I cleaned stalls at the stable for three hours in between the load in and out. That's 13 hours-o-labor.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

impending empanadas

I'm sitting at a mexican restaurant with Danielle and Shelly. We just all shared a key lime cheesecake slice. Apparently that wasn't enough, 'cause now we're about to share empanadas. The order is in, we're waiting. Shelly is telling a story about the kids that she babysits for meeting a puppet.

Friday, January 12, 2007

3 speed conversion

I'm at the workshop hunched over getting some brake pads for a bike that I'm working on. The bike is the world's best mismatch of parts. Yes - another 3 speed roadbike conversion. Why does it feel like such a victory when a 3 speed comes together? I'm writing an article about this bike for Vintage Bicycle Quarterly.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

couch at Jill's

I'm sitting on the couch at Jill's house with Shelly. I'm drinking a coke, those guys have a yuenling. Jill is on Shelly's hockey team, and she's giving me a folding bike. We all hung out for awhile. The bike is nice. I should post a picture of it.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

I just let it beep

I'm just pulling away on my bicycle to ride to my workshop with Nat to work on a Raleigh Grand Prix. He's holding the frame. We ran into Pamela on the sidewalk when we exited my apartment. We chatted a minute and said goodbye a moment earlier. The watch started beeping, and we started pedaling. I let the beeping continue, and it lasted until we approached Farragut St. Usually I hit a button to stop the beeping. This is one occasion where I just let it beep.

Monday, January 8, 2007

composing an email

I'm sitting at my computer in my bedroom. I'm composing an email to Nat about our impending bicycle trip to Nemaska, Quebec this coming summer.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Playing Clue

I'm sitting around on the floor in my apartment's main room playing 'Clue' with Danielle, Gary, Nat and Shelly. Penny is sitting in the circle too, and currently licking Nat's arm. Alarm goes off, and everyone knows they're going to get written about here.

Saturday, January 6, 2007

eating eggplant

Sitting around the dining room table at my folks' in Kennett. Just got done eating eggplant parmesan. Cathy is telling us about a movie she saw recently involving a guy who goes from being homeless to being wealthy or some such.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Benotto taped Salsa bars

I'm at home in the nicely newly cleaned and organized main room of our apartment. I'm re-installing the left hand bar end shifter on my bike after installing nice new old stock green Benotto handlebar tape. Almost done... looks nice! Odd to see this vintage tape on black Salsa bars. I like that kind of thing though. Now that I just installed a tall Specialized stem, the tops of the bars are as high as my seat. It's super comfortable, and I'm really starting to dig this bike. The wheels have to go... the back one has a flat spot that I can feel bumping around on a smooth road. Rims are on the way now to build up a really nice touring wheelset that should last me a good long time. Then when I get my sample Sleeper Cycles frame, I can transfer all of these parts and have almost an exact prototype of the Sleeper Cycle I'll be selling. Excitement / apprehension. Not bad.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Walking out of the cave

Walking out of the cave - just looked at a website called that's affiliated with NBC and will feature an article about my bicycle workshop in February. There's nothing there yet. One of the staff reporters bought a coastie from me, and we talked for quite a bit. I'm in the process of building up eight - count'em eight - coastie wheelsets to put on frames that I've stripped all the parts off of. Should make some good bikes. If I can get people interested in these bikes, and buying them, I'll be a very happy man. Hopefully the article will be positive, 'cause the coastie he bought was pretty nice, so he ought to really like it.

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

reading Bicycle Quartery

Reading 'Bicycle Quarterly' in my office chair at home next to my newly arranged computer desk. It's an article about different lighting setups using a generator hub and two headlights. The article explains the strengths and weaknesses of different lights - all generator powered - using the same hub (the SON28). This magazine gets really specific and technical about stuff. The apartment was just re-organized with my desk in the bedroom. Shelly did most of the work. It looks good for now. This is good.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Nutted to recessed

Up at my Cedar St. workshop enlarging the brake mounting hole in the back of the fork crown on my main bike - the Panasonic reflecto bike. I'm enlarging the hole to fit a recessed brake nut. This should be a simple two second operation with a drill, but I don't have the right size drill bit, so I'm alternately squirming the smaller drill bit around and using a round file. This is a really stupid way to spend your time.

Monday, January 1, 2007

Watching TMBG

Watching a They Might Be Giants video with Shelly in her office - "the cave."