Taking The Edge Off The Holier Than Thou Cycling Vision

Background Reading

Summary

In a nutshell I’m planning to cycle around the world, getting stoned with people wherever I go. The blog (www.healthy-stoner.com) started out as a response to the classic image of someone who happens to enjoy weed as an unmotivated, unhealthy and sedentary being. As someone who enjoys nothing more than ripping a vaporiser and doing intense physical exercise I couldn’t see much out there for people like me so I decided to start videoing mine and my friends’ stoned adventures and putting them on the internet. The first post on the blog is literally the first video I ever made so I’m very much learning on the job and I was given the name Roger Boyd in this Details magazine article so I decided it’d be rude not to go with it.

A few years ago I cycled from Land’s End to John O’ Groats with a good friend of mine. After two weeks of riding, covering just over 1000 miles I felt like the hardest bit was done and I could have gone on forever and from then on I’ve always wanted to cycle internationally. I’m self funding this and it’s been 18 months of hard saving but I’m now getting close to setting a departure date. I can’t say more than that currently but watch this space!

What I can say is that it is close enough to start appealing to anyone who’d like to meet up, get high and chat about the weed situation where they live. If people are happy to let me pitch my tent in their garden for a night and maybe take a shower then that’d be really excellent, and the ultimate dream would be to have people come and join me for a leg of the journey. What I’d love to do is to be able to plot a route around the world and stick pins in a map in each place I’ve got fellow weed enthusiasts to get high and chat shit with. Doing that in a different place every night is my ultimate dream!

As it is I’ve made plans to meet up with people in Serbia, Slovakia, France, and of course Spain. I’m working towards my life becoming a non-canine, THC infused version of the Littlest Hobo. I just googled the Littlest Hobo and discovered S1 E1 is called ‘Smoke’. Every stop I make, I make a new friend, can’t stay for long just turn around and I’m gone again…


TakeAways

We cyclists are all about health and healing, right? Well not really. Some of us like to make cycling into our own image. We envision it as whatever we hold dear. But there are far too many people who self-identify as cyclists to make that a uniform view of the world.

In our midst are people who take on jobs as heads of DOTs across the country. In a recent discussion on the Chicago ‘Whine and Jeez Club’ Cycling Forum the conversation got around to whether or not the replacement for our previous CDOT head was herself a bicyclist. Who cares?

I know that if I were honest I would want someone who had been in the trenches to lead me whenever possible. But trenches are not pleasant places. Wanting a CDOT head to have a cycling experience is like wondering whether a virgin nun could be the leader of a successful sex-worker reclamation project in the slums of Calcutta. I guess we never stopped to think what Mother Teresa was doing, did we?

Well it turns out that for some folks the answer to all of life’s questions is BEER! They hate to be called alcoholics any more than a person who needs anonymous sex twice daily likes to be called a sex addict. And frankly the number of ounces of beer you consume is unimportant to me so long as you pass on that freedom to the motorists who keep turning their cars upside down on the highways.

If you say for instance that you believe in Vision Zero this is not a trivial thing. Some folks believe that Vision Zero is just the predecessor to Vision Two and perhaps Vision Three. But it should be something other than a placeholder for a series of fundraising themes meant to bring in money to fatten up the wallets of the bicycle advocacy corps around the world.

Vision Zero is, or at least should be a statement about our willingness to pursue perfection in the fight to eliminate unnecessary deaths and injury on our roadways. In light of that notion it means that there is little or no room (I prefer the latter) for the ‘I’m the only one with skin in the game thinking‘ that we often slump onto when trying to justify our inability or unwillingness to observe road rules.

I find that a lazy way to think. If you truly believe that no one should be injured then that goes for you and your bouts with the bottle as well as a driver’s bout with the bottle. Do you really do not have a moral leg to stand on when you criticize a motorist for drinking and driving when you do the same after your bartending shift by riding home on your bicycle in a similar condition?

Obviously this author has a ‘close relationship‘ with his drug of choice. If you are not a weed user, but love your beers, then perhaps you might want to reserve judgment. I’ll simply say that at some point in our conversation with the rest of the world, we cyclists have to decide what is best for us as individuals and the world at large.

We are perhaps in need of some rethinking about the nature of healthy living. Is a person who is high on cannabis several times a day but bicycles any more healthy than a person who does not ride a bike and eats lots of fatty foods but avoids alcohol and weed?

Give it some thought.