Lincoln Ve-Low

I was born in Lincoln, Nebraska. Loved it and hated it (often on the same day), then I left. Decades pass. Nostalgia grows, but I know I can’t go back. For one thing, I would be paying the heat bills so my home there would be as cold as my home here. Not the toasty basement bedroom with a fireplace I remember.  Hard to beat that special time when parents paid the bills.

It is already way too cold here. Note the double track tops and the cap. That is my typical winter indoor get-up.  I am at least thankful I haven’t donned long-johns yet. Once those go on, they stay on until spring (with a few washings in between).  Even my Halloween costume was oriented toward cold weather comfort.

Back to Lincoln.  In an attempt to scratch the hometown itch I subscribe to a ‘zine covering the Lincoln bicycle scene put together by Thad Aerts. Highly recommended. A new issue arrived today. In it, I learned my favorite bicycle shop in the world, Monkey Wrench, is doing well enough to have a new home (what a space!), and I read about Gravel Worlds (a long-distance bike race on gravel roads put on by the Pirate Cycling League). Good stuff!

In addition to covering equipment, rides and races, Thad pedals the reader down a side road to cover music. I always enjoy his reviews. Today he shared a site that posts albums from Lincoln and Omaha bands that are no more. You can either stream the content or download it. An amazing project that will help me enjoyably pass many hours.

Thad posted a sticky note inside my copy of LVL reminding me to resubscribe (I stopped writing this post to do so). Nice to get a note. Saddle Creek Records adds a handwritten note with each order, too. Good folks in Nebraska.

I used to feel bad for dragging Lacey to Nebraska so many years ago and for so many years, but I don’t anymore. I now know she loved it. Last weekend I had the pleasure of watching her go into full Chamber of Commerce mode. Someone made a crack about Nebraska and Lacey shut them down with a paragraph long ode to the Cornhusker State ending with something like Nebraska is the best place in the world to live. Sure, I was the designated driver that night, but I don’t think it was just the whiskey talking. I think she remembers the place fondly, like I do. Warms my heart like no whiskey can.

Each issue of LVL helps me feel connected to my hometown. I wasn’t a part of a bicycle scene when I was there (not sure there was much of one), but its nice to know it is there now, and fun to read about it. Thanks, Thad, for shrinking time and space for me every couple of months! Keep up the good work!

p.s. I just spent ten minutes in a frantic search for my camera’s memory card. I last remembered holding it between my lips while typing a few more words. I was pretty confident I hadn’t chewed it up and swallowed it, but I did have a funny feeling in my throat after I formed the idea. The power of negative thought! I hope they don’t further shrink memory cards. This never would have happened with a cassette tape.

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8 responses to “Lincoln Ve-Low

  1. well, I suppose thats one way to try and get a colonoscopy done. Great costume, by the by!

    • Thank you for the compliment (and for sparing me the question as to what I was).

      At my age I don’t think many physicians would deny me the experience. All I have to do is ask. Luckily the card was found on the floor within minutes. Even my turbo charged vegan system does not move that quickly.

      Good day!

  2. Hey buddy.
    Fall is holding out here. Enjoying many afternoon times in the garden, while daughter #2 rests her frenetic head. Digging and forming many large long beds in hopes of making a better run at food production next spring. We put up many a jar of pickles, jelly, and beets. As well, storing a huge bin of potatoes. Children are talkative and active, wearing out parents and themselves all at once. I turned 33 yesterday. I have many friends to be grateful for and whom I never get to see anymore. But because you write this excellent thing, I get to stay close. Thank you. Soon, P

    • Happy Birthday! You are so young! You should consider getting older by twos.

      Nice note. Thanks so much. I wish I were there to see your work in all its forms.

      Say hi to all your people!

  3. Nice hat 🙂
    I can kind of relate. I had a love hate relationship with growing up in Texas and sort of ran away. I love my adopted home of New England, but have some fond memories growing up in Fort Worth. They now have a bike scene and a few blogs that I follow to see what is going on back home.

    We have had a few changes in plans and were not able to come by and visit last time we were in Albany. We will not be there for Thanks Giving, so it may be awhile before we can see you guys 😦

    I am glad you have this blog, so I can keep in touch 🙂

    • Thanks for the nice note. I understand how hard it is to be all the places you want to be. I try hard to keep my life streamlined and sometimes that means doing less. Good to try to keep life simple, but sad that it means fewer chances to be with friends. The time will come when the planets line up. Until then, be well!

  4. “Back to Lincoln. In an attempt to scratch the hometown itch I subscribe to a ‘zine covering the Lincoln bicycle scene put together by Thad Aerts.”

    Randal, I came here from your comment to me on Velouria’s blog. Small world: I went to school there, rode there, loved/hated it. Moved away. Monkey Wrench didn’t exist then. Scratching the same itch I looked them up, subscribed to Ve-Low and bought a MW jersey.

    Small world indeed.

    • Thanks for writing! That’s hilarious! I knew I liked you for a reason beyond your punk rock bicycle-traffic opinions. The prairie grows independent thinkers. Thanks for taking the time to write and I wish for you a long and enjoyable summer of bicycling.

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