Bicycle Quotes

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Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.
Albert Einstein
A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.
Irina Dunn
Fantasy is an exercise bicycle for the mind. It might not take you anywhere, but it tones up the muscles that can. Of course, I could be wrong.
Terry Pratchett
A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle." I really hate this expression. I bet fish would totally want bicycles.
Meg Cabot (Princess on the Brink (The Princess Diaries, #8))
Maybe the first time you saw her you were ten. She was standing in the sun scratching her legs. Or tracing letters in the dirt with a stick. Her hair was being pulled. Or she was pulling someone's hair. And a part of you was drawn to her, and a part of you resisted--wanting to ride off on your bicycle, kick a stone, remain uncomplicated. In the same breath you felt the strength of a man, and a self-pity that made you feel small and hurt. Part of you thought: Please don't look at me. If you don't, I can still turn away. And part of you thought: Look at me.
Nicole Krauss (The History of Love)
Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.
H.G. Wells
A man on foot, on horseback or on a bicycle will see more, feel more, enjoy more in one mile than the motorized tourists can in a hundred miles.
Edward Abbey (Desert Solitaire)
Love is a bicycle with two pancakes for wheels. You may see love as more of an exercise in hard work, but I see it as more of a breakfast on the go.
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
Let me tell you what I think of bicycling. I think it has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world. It gives women a feeling of freedom and self-reliance. I stand and rejoice every time I see a woman ride by on a wheel…the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood.
Susan B. Anthony
I thought of that while riding my bicycle.
Albert Einstein
Simon, you’re blushing,” observed Jace. “And you’re a vampire and almost never blush, so this better be really juicy. And weird. Were bicycles involved in some kinky way? Vacuum cleaners? Umbrellas?
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
Rose: Look at you, beaming away like you're Father Christmas! The Doctor: Who says I'm not, red-bicycle-when-you-were-twelve? Rose: [shocked] What? The Doctor: And everybody lives, Rose! Everybody lives! I need more days like this! Go on, ask me anything; I'm on fire!
Steven Moffat
I thought, “I want to die. I want to die more than ever before. There’s no chance now of a recovery. No matter what sort of thing I do, no matter what I do, it’s sure to be a failure, just a final coating applied to my shame. That dream of going on bicycles to see a waterfall framed in summer leaves—it was not for the likes of me. All that can happen now is that one foul, humiliating sin will be piled on another, and my sufferings will become only the more acute. I want to die. I must die. Living itself is the source of sin.
Osamu Dazai (No Longer Human)
One of the greatest myths in the world - & the phrase 'greatest myths' is just a fancy way of saying 'big fat lies' -- is that troublesome things get less & less troublesome if you do them more & more. People say this myth when they are teaching children to ride bicycles, for instance, as though falling off a bicycle & skinning your knee is less troublesome the fourteenth time you do it than it is the first time. The truth is that troublesome things tend to remain troublesome no matter how many times you do them, & that you should avoid doing them unless they are absolutely urgent.
Lemony Snicket (The Ersatz Elevator (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #6))
Toleration is the greatest gift of the mind; it requires the same effort of the brain that it takes to balance oneself on a bicycle.
Helen Keller
It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them.
Ernest Hemingway (By-Line: Selected Articles and Dispatches of Four Decades)
I loved you head over handles like my first bicycle accident — before the mouthful of gravel and blood, I swore we were flying.
Sierra DeMulder
A dog is a great thing for a kid to have. It's like a bicycle but with emotions.
Trevor Noah (Born a Crime: Stories From a South African Childhood)
When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking.
Arthur Conan Doyle
You have to admit that anatomically, this ear business rivals my father’s fear that a bicycle seat could ruin your virginity
Kathleen Zamboni McCormick (Dodging Satan: My Irish/Italian, Sometimes Awesome, But Mostly Creepy, Childhood)
Communication is a skill that you can learn. It's like riding a bicycle or typing. If you're willing to work at it, you can rapidly improve the quality of very part of your life.
Brian Tracy
When we make love, I orgasm much sooner than her. That’s because I know a shortcut on my bicycle.
Jarod Kintz (Love quotes for the ages. Specifically ages 18-81.)
Get a bicycle. You will not regret it, if you live.
Mark Twain
In Britain, a cup of tea is the answer to every problem. Fallen off your bicycle? Nice cup of tea. Your house has been destroyed by a meteorite? Nice cup of tea and a biscuit. Your entire family has been eaten by a Tyrannosaurus Rex that has travelled through a space/time portal? Nice cup of tea and a piece of cake. Possibly a savoury option would be welcome here too, for example a Scotch egg or a sausage roll.
David Walliams (Mr Stink)
I am unable to believe in a God susceptible to prayer. I simply haven't the nerve to imagine a being, a force, a cause which keeps the planets revolving in their orbits, and then suddenly stops in order to give me a bicycle with three speeds.
Quentin Crisp
We’re so self-important. Everybody’s going to save something now. “Save the trees, save the bees, save the whales, save those snails.” And the greatest arrogance of all: save the planet. Save the planet, we don’t even know how to take care of ourselves yet. I’m tired of this shit. I’m tired of f-ing Earth Day. I’m tired of these self-righteous environmentalists, these white, bourgeois liberals who think the only thing wrong with this country is that there aren’t enough bicycle paths. People trying to make the world safe for Volvos. Besides, environmentalists don’t give a shit about the planet. Not in the abstract they don’t. You know what they’re interested in? A clean place to live. Their own habitat. They’re worried that some day in the future they might be personally inconvenienced. Narrow, unenlightened self-interest doesn’t impress me. The planet has been through a lot worse than us. Been through earthquakes, volcanoes, plate tectonics, continental drift, solar flares, sun spots, magnetic storms, the magnetic reversal of the poles … hundreds of thousands of years of bombardment by comets and asteroids and meteors, worldwide floods, tidal waves, worldwide fires, erosion, cosmic rays, recurring ice ages … And we think some plastic bags and some aluminum cans are going to make a difference? The planet isn’t going anywhere. WE are! We’re going away. Pack your shit, folks. We’re going away. And we won’t leave much of a trace, either. Maybe a little Styrofoam … The planet’ll be here and we’ll be long gone. Just another failed mutation. Just another closed-end biological mistake. An evolutionary cul-de-sac. The planet’ll shake us off like a bad case of fleas. The planet will be here for a long, long, LONG time after we’re gone, and it will heal itself, it will cleanse itself, ’cause that’s what it does. It’s a self-correcting system. The air and the water will recover, the earth will be renewed. And if it’s true that plastic is not degradable, well, the planet will simply incorporate plastic into a new paradigm: the earth plus plastic. The earth doesn’t share our prejudice toward plastic. Plastic came out of the earth. The earth probably sees plastic as just another one of its children. Could be the only reason the earth allowed us to be spawned from it in the first place. It wanted plastic for itself. Didn’t know how to make it. Needed us. Could be the answer to our age-old egocentric philosophical question, “Why are we here?” Plastic… asshole.
George Carlin
No matter what she did with her hair it took about three minutes for it to tangle itself up again, like a garden hosepipe in a shed [Which, no matter how carefully coiled, will always uncoil overnight and tie the lawnmower to the bicycles].
Terry Pratchett (Lords and Ladies (Discworld, #14; Witches, #4))
Willem tsk-tsks. "You Americans are so violent. I'm Dutch. The worst I will do is run her over with a bicycle.
Gayle Forman (Just One Day (Just One Day, #1))
The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart.
Iris Murdoch (The Red and the Green)
Novelists have, on the average, about the same IQs as the cosmetic consultants at Bloomingdale’s department store. Our power is patience. We have discovered that writing allows even a stupid person to seem halfway intelligent, if only that person will write the same thought over and over again, improving it just a little bit each time. It is a lot like inflating a blimp with a bicycle pump. Anybody can do it. All it takes is time.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
A turtle is like a lizard in a bicycle helmet, and I think that’s romantic. That reminds me, I should write a love song called, “Dinner for two—plus one.
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
It is well known that a vital ingredient of success is not knowing that what you're attempting can't be done. A person ignorant of the possibility of failure can be a half-brick in the path of the bicycle of history.
Terry Pratchett (Equal Rites (Discworld, #3; Witches, #1))
Ronan hadn't known anything about who Adam was then and, if possible, he'd known even less about who he himself was, but as they drove away from the boy with the bicycle, this was how it had begun: Ronan leaning back against his seat and closing his eyes and sending up a simple, inexplicable, desperate prayer to God: Please.
Maggie Stiefvater (Call Down the Hawk (Dreamer Trilogy, #1))
I do not know what makes a writer, but it probably isn't happiness.
William Saroyan (The Bicycle Rider In Beverly Hills)
The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets.
Christopher Morley (Parnassus on Wheels)
If you were my girlfriend I would give you a hundred lightning bugs in a green glass jar, so you could always see your way. I would give you a meadow full of wildflowers, where no two blooms would ever be alike. I would give you my bicycle, with its golden eye to protect you. I would write a story for you, and make you a princess who lived in a white marble castle. If you would only like me, I would give you magic. If you would only like me.
Robert McCammon (Boy's Life)
What I discovered I liked best about striking out on my bicycle was that the farther I got from home, the more interesting and unusual my thoughts became.
Richard Russo
Pop guns! And bicycles! Roller skates! Drums! Checkerboards! Tricycles! Popcorn! And plums! And he stuffed them in bags. Then the Grinch, very nimbly, Stuffed all the bags, one by one, up the chimbley!
Dr. Seuss (How the Grinch Stole Christmas!)
What a computer is to me is the most remarkable tool that we have ever come up with. It's the equivalent of a bicycle for our minds.
Steve Jobs
Of course we did other things too. We walked. We talked. We rode bikes. Though I had my driver's license, I bought a cheap secondhand bicycle so I could ride with her. Sometimes she led the way, sometimes I did. Whenever we could, we rode side by side. She was bendable light: she shone around every corner of my day. She taught me to revel. She taught me to wonder. She taught me to laugh. My sense of humor had always measured up to everyone else's; but timid introverted me, I showed it sparingly: I was a smiler. In her presence I threw back my head and laughed out loud for the first time in my life
Jerry Spinelli (Stargirl (Stargirl, #1))
Love loves to love love. Nurse loves the new chemist. Constable 14A loves Mary Kelly. Gerty MacDowell loves the boy that has the bicycle. M. B. loves a fair gentlema. Li Chi Han lovey up kissy Cha Pu Chow. Jumbo, the elephant, loves Alice, the elephant. Old Mr Verschole with the ear trumpet loves old Mrs VErschoyle with the turnedin eye. The man in the brown macintosh loves a lady who is dead. His Majesty the King loves Her Majesty the Queen. Mrs Norman W. Tupper loves officer Taylor. You love a certain person. And this person loves that other person because everybody loves somebody but God loves everybody.
James Joyce (Ulysses)
Don't talk." Alec gestured at him with an expression of vague disgust. "Every time I look at you, I keep remembering coming in here and seeing you draped all over my sister." Jace sat up. "I didn't hear about this." "Oh, come on -" said Simon. "Simon, you're blushing," observed Jace. "And you're a vampire and almost never blush, so this better be really juicy. And weird. Were bicycles involved in some kinky way? Vaccum cleaners? Umbrellas?" "Big umbrellas, or the little kind you get with drinks?" Alec asked. "Does it matter -
Cassandra Clare (City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6))
You know, bicycling isn't just a matter of balance," I said. "it's a matter of faith. You can keep upright only by moving forward. You have to have your eyes on the goal, not the ground. I'm going to call that the Bicyclist's Philosophy of Life.
Susan Vreeland (Clara and Mr. Tiffany)
I peddle my wares as fast as I pedal my bicycle and petal my flowers, and that’s why my sales growth seems so slow. But given time, my brand will be in full bloom.
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
Life is like riding a bicycle. You get nowhere standing up, so get up on that seat and go!
Lynne Ewing (Moon Demon (Daughters of the Moon, #7))
There is beauty in silence and there is silence in beauty and you can find both in a bicycle!
Mehmet Murat ildan
There’s truth in only having a bicycle seat. I used to skip class and just hold it out in the hallway. When teachers would ask me what I was doing, I’d hold it up and say, “Sorry I’m late.
Jarod Kintz (This Book Has No Title)
You are likely to fall when you stop paddling your bicycle. Such is life. As long as you don’t give up, you will never end up failing!
Israelmore Ayivor (Daily Drive 365)
Bicycle means simplicity and simplicity means happiness!
Mehmet Murat ildan
And I Decided (From Arabic) And I decided to go Round the world on freedom's bicycle By ways illegal As the travels of wind. When asked for my address I give the address of all sidewalks I chose as permanent residence. When asked for my papers, I show them your eyes And am allowed to pass For they know that travel in the cities of your eyes, my dear, Is the right of all world citizens. وقررت نزار قباني وقررت أن أطوفَ العالمَ على درّاجة الحرِّية.. وبنفسِ الطريقةِ غيرِ الشرعيِّة التي تستعملها الريح عندما تسافر.. وإذا سأَلوني عن عُنواني أعطيتُهم عنوانَ كلِّ الأرصِفة التي اخترتها مكاناً دائماً لإقامتي. وإذا سألوني عن أوراقي أريتُهُم عينيكِ، يا حبيبتي.. فَتَرَكوني أمرّ.. لأنهم يعرفونَ أنَّ السفر في مدائن عينيكِ.. من حق جميع المواطينَ في العالم
نزار قباني
The revolution is like a bicycle. When the wheels don't turn, it falls.
Marjane Satrapi
A bicycle?” Amos leaned on the breakfast bar. “Sure. They don’t need fuel, they don’t get sick. Most of the repairs, you can handle on your own. You’re looking for post-apocalyptic transportation, bikes are the way to go.
James S.A. Corey (Nemesis Games (The Expanse, #5))
So what else can I tell you?" I asked. "I mean, to get you to reveal Lily to me." She triangled her fingers under her chin. "Let's see. Are you a bed wetter?" "Am I a...?" "Bed wetter. I am asking if you are a bed wetter." I knew she was trying to get me to blink. But I wouldn't. "No, ma'am. I leave my beds dry." "Not even a little drip every now and then?" "I'm trying hard to see how this is germane." "I'm gauging your honesty. What is the last periodical you read methodically?" "Vogue. Although, in the interest of full disclosure, that's mostly because I was in my mother's bathroom, enduring a rather long bowel movement. You know, the kind that requires Lamaze." "What adjective do you feel the most longing for?" That was easy. "I will admit I have a soft spot for fanciful." "Let's say I have a hundred million dollars and offer it to you. The only condition is that if you take it, a man in China will fall off his bicycle and die. What do you do?" "I don't understand why it matters whether he's in China or not. And of course I wouldn't take the money." The old woman nodded. "Do you think Abraham Lincoln was a homosexual?" "All I can say for sure is that he never made a pass at me." "Are you a museumgoer?" "Is the pope a churchgoer?" "When you see a flower painted by Georgia O'Keefe, what comes to mind?" "That's just a transparent ploy to get me to say the word vagina, isn't it? There. I said it. Vagina.
David Levithan (Dash & Lily's Book of Dares (Dash & Lily, #1))
The Rider A boy told me if he roller-skated fast enough his loneliness couldn't catch up to him, the best reason I ever heard for trying to be a champion. What I wonder tonight pedaling hard down King William Street is if it translates to bicycles. A victory! To leave your loneliness panting behind you on some street corner while you float free into a cloud of sudden azaleas, pink petals that have never felt loneliness, no matter how slowly they fell.
Naomi Shihab Nye (Fuel: Poems (American Poets Continuum Series))
Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving. —ALBERT EINSTEIN, IN A LETTER TO HIS SON EDUARD, FEBRUARY 5, 1930
Walter Isaacson (Einstein: His Life and Universe)
No more cars in national parks. Let the people walk. Or ride horses, bicycles, mules, wild pigs--anything--but keep the automobiles and the motorcycles and all their motorized relatives out. We have agreed not to drive our automobiles into cathedrals, concert halls, art museums, legislative assemblies, private bedrooms and the other sanctums of our culture; we should treat our national parks with the same deference, for they, too, are holy places. An increasingly pagan and hedonistic people (thank God!), we are learning finally that the forests and mountains and desert canyons are holier than our churches. Therefore let us behave accordingly.
Edward Abbey (Desert Solitaire)
When you were sleeping on the sofa I put my ear to your ear and listened to the echo of your dreams. That is the ocean I want to dive in, merge with the bright fish, plankton and pirate ships. I walk up to people on the street that kind of look like you and ask them the questions I would ask you. Can we sit on a rooftop and watch stars dissolve into smoke rising from a chimney? Can I swing like Tarzan in the jungle of your breathing? I don’t wish I was in your arms, I just wish I was peddling a bicycle toward your arms.
Jeffrey McDaniel
Like a bicycle, like a wheel that, once rolling, is stable only so long as it keeps moving but falls when its momentum stops, so the game between a man and woman, once begun, can exist only so long as it progresses. If the forward movement today is no more than it was yesterday, the game is over.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Cancer Ward)
When I was little, I was out riding my brand-new blue bicycle when I decided to see how far I could keep going without looking back even once. I could feel with my back how my neighborhood was receding, further and further away... but I kept pedaling with all my might, my mind almost going blank. All I could hear was the sound of my own heart, thumping wildly in my ears. Even now, I remember it sometimes. What exactly was I trying to do that day? What was it that I wanted to prove? It's no good. My mind just keeps fogging over. I have this irritating sound stuck in my head. What is it? This sound... Ohh... I know what it is. This is... the sound of emptiness.
Chica Umino (Honey and Clover, Vol. 7)
To ride a bicycle is in itself some protection against superstitious fears, since the bicycle is the product of pure reason applied to motion. Geometry at the service of man! Give me two spheres and a straight line and I will show you how far I can take them. Voltaire himself might have invented the bicycle, since it contributes so much to man’s welfare and nothing at all to his bane. Beneficial to the health, it emits no harmful fumes and permits only the most decorous speeds. How can a bicycle ever be an implement of harm?
Angela Carter
I like places like this," he announced. I like old places too," Josh said, "but what's to like about a place like this?" The king spread his arms wide. "What do you see?" Josh made a face. "Junk. Rusted tractor, broken plow, old bike." Ahh...but I see a tractor that was once used to till these fields. I see the plow it once pulled. I see a bicycle carefully placed out of harm's way under a table." Josh slowly turned again, looking at the items once more. And i see these things and I wonder at the life of the person who carefully stored the precious tractor and plow in the barn out of the weather, and placed their bike under a homemade table." Why do you wonder?" Josh asked. "Why is it even important?" Because someone has to remember," Gilgamesh snapped, suddenly irritated. "Some one has to remember the human who rode the bike and drove the tractor, the person who tilled the fields, who was born and lived and died, who loved and laughed and cried, the person who shivered in the cold and sweated in the sun." He walked around the barn again, touching each item, until his palm were red with rust." It is only when no one remembers, that you are truely lost. That is the true death.
Michael Scott (The Sorceress (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, #3))
The gross and net result of it is that people who spent most of their natural lives riding iron bicycles over the rocky roadsteads of this parish get their personalities mixed up with the personalities of their bicycle as a result of the interchanging of the atoms of each of them and you would be surprised at the number of people in these parts who are nearly half people and half bicycles...when a man lets things go so far that he is more than half a bicycle, you will not see him so much because he spends a lot of his time leaning with one elbow on walls or standing propped by one foot at kerbstones.
Flann O'Brien (The Third Policeman)
Grades are a problem. On the most general level, they're an explicit acknowledgment that what you're doing is insufficiently interesting or rewarding for you to do it on your own. Nobody ever gave you a grade for learning how to play, how to ride a bicycle, or how to kiss. One of the best ways to destroy love for any of these activities would be through the use of grades, and the coercion and judgment they represent. Grades are a cudgel to bludgeon the unwilling into doing what they don't want to do, an important instrument in inculcating children into a lifelong subservience to whatever authority happens to be thrust over them.
Derrick Jensen
Eating a plain bagel with no cream cheese is like eating the inner tube of a bicycle tire, and I’d rather ride my roller skates to work.
Jarod Kintz (This Book is Not for Sale)
people used to tell me that i had beautiful hands told me so often, in fact, that one day i started to believe them until i asked my photographer father, “hey daddy could i be a hand model” to which he said no way, i dont remember the reason he gave me and i wouldve been upset, but there were far too many stuffed animals to hold too many homework assignment to write, too many boys to wave at too many years to grow, we used to have a game, my dad and i about holding hands cus we held hands everywhere, and every time either he or i would whisper a great big number to the other, pretending that we were keeping track of how many times we had held hands that we were sure, this one had to be 8 million 2 thousand 7 hundred and fifty three. hands learn more than minds do, hands learn how to hold other hands, how to grip pencils and mold poetry, how to tickle pianos and dribble a basketball, and grip the handles of a bicycle how to hold old people, and touch babies , i love hands like i love people, they're the maps and compasses in which we navigate our way through life, some people read palms to tell your future, but i read hands to tell your past, each scar marks the story worth telling, each calloused palm, each cracked knuckle is a missed punch or years in a factory, now ive seen middle eastern hands clenched in middle eastern fists pounding against each other like war drums, each country sees theyre fists as warriors and others as enemies. even if fists alone are only hands. but this is not about politics, no hands arent about politics, this is a poem about love, and fingers. fingers interlock like a beautiful zipper of prayer. one time i grabbed my dads hands so that our fingers interlocked perfectly but he changed positions, saying no that hand hold is for your mom. kids high five, but grown ups, we learn how to shake hands, you need a firm hand shake,but dont hold on too tight, but dont let go too soon, but dont hold down for too long, but hands are not about politics, when did it become so complicated. i always thought its simple. the other day my dad looked at my hands, as if seeing them for the first time, and with laughter behind his eye lids, with all the seriousness a man of his humor could muster, he said you know you got nice hands, you could’ve been a hand model, and before the laughter can escape me, i shake my head at him, and squeeze his hand, 8 million 2 thousand 7hundred and fifty four.
Sarah Kay
all his prayers of the past had been simple concrete requests: God, give me a bicycle, a knife with seven blades, a box of oil paints. Only how, how, could you say something so indefinite, so meaningless as this: God, let me be loved.
Truman Capote
Something in the air this morning made me feel like flying. . . " Spring Flight
Eileen Granfors (And More White Sheets: An expanded text edition)
The Old Testament is responsible for more atheism, agnosticism, disbelief—call it what you will—than any book ever written; it has emptied more churches than all the counterattractions of cinema, motor bicycle and golf course.
A.A. Milne
Yet, in reality, Ted loved things more than he loved people. He could find life in an abandoned bicycle or an old car, and feel a kind of compassion for these inanimate objects, more compassion than he could ever feel for another human being.
Ann Rule (The Stranger Beside Me: Ted Bundy: The Shocking Inside Story)
Once upon a time there was a woman who was just like all women. And she married a man who was just like all men. And they had some children who were just like all children. And it rained all day. The woman had to skewer the hole in the kitchen sink, when it was blocked up. The man went to the pub every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The other nights he mended his broken bicycle, did the pool coupons, and longed for money and power. The woman read love stories and longed for things to be different. The children fought and yelled and played and had scabs on their knees. In the end they all died.
Elizabeth Smart (The Assumption of the Rogues & Rascals)
The question the doubter does not ask is whether faith was really useless or simply not used. What would you think of a boy who gave up learning to ride a bicycle, complaining that he hurt himself because his bicycle stopped moving so he had no choice but to fall off? If he wanted to sit comfortably while remaining stationary, he should not have chosen a bicycle but a chair. Similarly faith must be put to use, or it will become useless.
Os Guinness (God in the Dark: The Assurance of Faith Beyond a Shadow of Doubt)
I don't mind exercise but it's a private activity. Joggers should run in a wheel - like hamsters - because I don't want to look at them. And I really hate people who go on an airplane in jogging outfits. That's a major offense today, even bigger than Spandex bicycle pants. You see eighty-year-old women coming on the plane in jogging outfits for comfort. Well my comfort - my mental comfort - is completely ruined when I see them coming. You're on an airplane, not in your bedroom, so please! And I really hate walkathons: blocking traffic, people patting themselves on the back. The whole attitude offends me. They have this smug look on their faces as they hold you up in traffic so that they can give two cents to some charity.
John Waters
It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.
Ernest Hemingway
I sense the world might be more dreamlike, metaphorical, and poetic than we currently believe--but just as irrational as sympathetic magic when looked at in a typically scientific way. I wouldn't be surprised if poetry--poetry in the broadest sense, in the sense of a world filled with metaphor, rhyme, and recurring patterns, shapes, and designs--is how the world works. The world isn't logical, it's a song.
David Byrne (Bicycle Diaries)
I read library books as fast as I could go, rushing them home in the basket of my bicycle. From the minute I reached our house, I started to read. Every book I seized on, from “Bunny Brown and His Sister Sue at Camp Rest-a-While” to “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea,” stood for the devouring wish to read being instantly granted. I knew this was bliss, knew it at the time. Taste isn’t nearly so important; it comes in its own time.
Eudora Welty (One Writer's Beginnings)
Here's some more stuff we're going to need." 1 pair coveralls 1 extension ladder (30 foot) 1 glass cutter 1 artist's portfolio (large) 1 water pistol 1 bottle india ink 1 portable trampoline (collapsible) 1 bicycle w/basket 4 pizza boxes Jonah whistled. "I hope you've got some crazy evil-genius strategy, 'cause–straight up–I don't get it.
Gordon Korman (The Medusa Plot (39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers, #1))
Horses are of a breed unique to Fantasyland. They are capable of galloping full-tilt all day without a rest. Sometimes they do not require food or water. They never cast shoes, go lame or put their hooves down holes, except when the Management deems it necessary, as when the forces of the Dark Lord are only half an hour behind. They never otherwise stumble. Nor do they ever make life difficult for Tourists by biting or kicking their riders or one another. They never resist being mounted or blow out so that their girths slip, or do any of the other things that make horses so chancy in this world. For instance, they never shy and seldom whinny or demand sugar at inopportune moments. But for some reason you cannot hold a conversation while riding them. If you want to say anything to another Tourist (or vice versa), both of you will have to rein to a stop and stand staring out over a valley while you talk. Apart from this inexplicable quirk, horses can be used just like bicycles, and usually are. Much research into how these exemplary animals come to exist has resulted in the following: no mare ever comes into season on the Tour and no stallion ever shows an interest in a mare; and few horses are described as geldings. It therefore seems probable that they breed by pollination. This theory seems to account for everything, since it is clear that the creatures do behave more like vegetables than mammals. Nomads appears to have a monopoly on horse-breeding. They alone possess the secret of how to pollinate them.
Diana Wynne Jones (The Tough Guide to Fantasyland)
The whole idea of it makes me feel like I'm coming down with something, something worse than any stomach ache or the headaches I get from reading in bad light-- a kind of measles of the spirit, a mumps of the psyche, a disfiguring chicken pox of the soul. You tell me it is too early to be looking back, but that is because you have forgotten the perfect simplicity of being one and the beautiful complexity introduced by two. But I can lie on my bed and remember every digit. At four I was an Arabian wizard. I could make myself invisible by drinking a glass of milk a certain way. At seven I was a soldier, at nine a prince. But now I am mostly at the window watching the late afternoon light. Back then it never fell so solemnly against the side of my tree house, and my bicycle never leaned against the garage as it does today, all the dark blue speed drained out of it. This is the beginning of sadness, I say to myself, as I walk through the universe in my sneakers. It is time to say good-bye to my imaginary friends, time to turn the first big number. It seems only yesterday I used to believe there was nothing under my skin but light. If you cut me I could shine. But now when I fall upon the sidewalks of life, I skin my knees. I bleed.
Billy Collins
Art, literature, and philosophy are attempts to found the world anew on a human freedom: that of the creator; to foster such an aim, one must first unequivocally posit oneself as a freedom. The restrictions that education and custom impose on a woman limit her grasp of the universe...Indeed, for one to become a creator, it is not enough to be cultivated, that is, to make going to shows and meeting people part of one's life; culture must be apprehended through the free movement of a transcendence; the spirit with all its riches must project itself in an empty sky that is its to fill; but if a thousand fine bonds tie it to the earth, its surge is broken. The girl today can certainly go out alone, stroll in the Tuileries; but I have already said how hostile the street is: eyes everywhere, hands waiting: if she wanders absentmindedly, her thoughts elsewhere, if she lights a cigarette in a cafe, if she goes to the cinema alone, an unpleasant incident can quickly occur; she must inspire respect by the way she dresses and behaves: this concern rivets her to the ground and self. "Her wings are clipped." At eighteen, T.E. Lawrence went on a grand tour through France by bicycle; a young girl would never be permitted to take on such an adventure...Yet such experiences have an inestimable impact: this is how an individual in the headiness of freedom and discovery learns to look at the entire world as his fief...[The girl] may feel alone within the world: she never stands up in front of it, unique and sovereign.
Simone de Beauvoir (The Second Sex)
We don't make bicycles anymore. It's all human relations now. The eggheads sit around trying to figure out new ways for everyone to be happy. Nobody can get fired, no matter what; and if somebody does accidentally make a bicycle, the union accuses us of cruel and inhuman practices and the government confiscates the bicycle for back taxes and gives it to a blind man in Afghanistan.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (Cat’s Cradle)
As a private person, I have a passion for landscape, and I have never seen one improved by a billboard. Where every prospect pleases, man is at his vilest when he erects a billboard. When I retire from Madison Avenue, I am going to start a secret society of masked vigilantes who will travel around the world on silent motor bicycles, chopping down posters at the dark of the moon. How many juries will convict us when we are caught in these acts of beneficent citizenship?
David Ogilvy (Confessions of an Advertising Man)
Creative work is more accurately a machine that digs down and finds stuff, emotional stuff that will someday be raw material that can be used to produce more stuff, stuff like itself - clay to be available for future use.
David Byrne (Bicycle Diaries)
Well, let me see. He stole a bicycle and rode it, not using his hands at any point, through Trafalgar Square. He attempted to climb Nelson’s Column and fight with Nelson. Then I lost him for a brief period of time, and by the time I caught up with him, he had wandered into Hyde Park, waded into the Serpentine, spread his arms wide, and was shouting, ‘Ducks, embrace me as your king!’” 
Cassandra Clare (The Midnight Heir (The Bane Chronicles #4))
When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments. Here was a machine of precision and balance for the convenience of man. And (unlike subsequent inventions for man's convenience) the more he used it, the fitter his body became. Here, for once, was a product of man's brain that was entirely beneficial to those who used it, and of no harm or irritation to others. Progress should have stopped when man invented the bicycle.
Elizabeth Howard West
Human beings consider themselves satisfied only compared to some other condition. A man who has owned nothing but a bicycle all of his life feels suddenly wealthy the moment he buys an automobile...But this happy sensation wears off. After a while the car becomes just another thing that he owns. Moreover, when his neighbor next door buys two cars, in an instant our man feels wretchedly poor and deprived.
Alan Lightman (Reunion)
Sorry, old girl," I said to [my bicycle] Gladys in the gray dishwater light of early morning, "but I have to leave you at home." I could see that she was disappointed, even though she managed to put on a brave face. "I need you to stay here as a decoy," I whispered. "When they see you leaning against the greenhouse, they'll think I'm still in bed." Gladys brightened considerably at the thought of a conspiracy. [...] At the corner of the garden, I turned, and mouthed the words, "Don't do anything I wouldn't do," and Gladys signaled that she wouldn't. I was off like a shot.
Alan Bradley (A Red Herring Without Mustard (Flavia de Luce, #3))
Everyone would remember Peter for nineteen minutes of his life, but what about the other nine million? Lacy would be the keeper of those, because it was the only way for that part of Peter to stay alive. For every recollection of him that involved a bullet or a scream, she would have a hundred others: of a little boy splashing in a pond, or riding a bicycle for the first time, or waving from the top of a jungle gym. Of a kiss good night, or a crayoned Mother's Day card, or a voice off-key in the shower. She would string them together - the moments when her child had been just like other people's. She would wear them, precious pearls, every day of her life; because if she lost them, then the boy she had loved and raised and known would really be gone.
Jodi Picoult (Nineteen Minutes)
God uses no magic wand to simply wave bad things into nonexistence. The sins that he remits, he remits by making them his own and suffering them. The pain and heartaches that he relieves, he relieves by suffering them himself. These things can be shared and absorbed, but they cannot be simply wished or waved away. They must be suffered.
Stephen E. Robinson (Believing Christ: The Parable of the Bicycle and Other Good News)
It isn't just Wally. It could be a girl, for goodness' sake. I mean if he were a girl - somebody in my dorm, for example, - he'd have been painting scenery in some stock company all summer. Or bicycled through wales. Or taken an apartment in New York and worked for a magazine or an advertising company. It's everybody, I mean. Everything everybody does is so - I don't know, not wrong, or even mean, or even stupid, necessarily. But just so tiny and meaningless and - sad-making. And the worst part is, if you go bohemian or something crazy like that, you're conforming just as much as everybody else, only in a different way.
J.D. Salinger (Franny and Zooey)
For the rest of history, for most of us, our bright promise will always fall short of being actualised; it will never earn us bountiful sums of money or beget exemplary objects or organisations.... Most of us stand poised at the edge of brilliance, haunted by the knowledge of our proximity, yet still demonstrably on the wrong side of the line, our dealings with reality undermined by a range of minor yet critical psychological flaws (a little too much optimism, an unprocessed rebelliousness, a fatal impatience or sentimentality). We are like an exquisite high-speed aircraft which for lack of a tiny part is left stranded beside the runway, rendered slower than a tractor or a bicycle.
Alain de Botton (The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work)
We can't pray that God make our lives free of problems; this won't happen, and it is probably just as well. We can't ask Him to make us and those we love immune to diseases, because He can't do that. We can't ask Him to weave a magic spell around us so that bad things will only happen to other people, and never to us. People who pray for miracles usually don't get miracles, any more than children who pray for bicycles, good grades, or good boyfriends get them as a result of praying. But people who pray for courage, for strength to bear the unbearable, for the grace to remember what they have left instead of they have lost, very often find their prayer answered.
Harold S. Kushner (When Bad Things Happen to Good People)
The things of your life arrived in their own time, like a train you had to catch. Sometimes this was easy, all you had to do was step onto it, the train was plush and comfortable and full of people smiling at you in a hush, and a conductor who punched your ticket and tousled your head with his big hand, saying, Ain’t you pretty, ain’t you the prettiest girl now, lucky lady taking a big train trip with your daddy, while you sank into the dreamy softness of your seat and sipped ginger ale from a can and watched the world float in magical silence past your window, the tall buildings of the city in the crisp autumn light and then the backs of the houses with laundry flapping and a crossing with gates where a boy was waving from his bicycle, and then the woods and fields and a single cow eating grass....... .....Because sometimes it was one way, easy, and sometimes it was the other, not easy; the things of your life roared down to you and it was all you could do to grab hold and hang on. Your old life ended, and the train took you away to another...
Justin Cronin (The Passage (The Passage, #1))
Living "in" a story, being part of a narrative, is much more satisfying than living without one. I don't always know what narrative it is, because I'm living my life and not always reflecting on it, but as I edit these pages I am aware that I have an urge to see my sometimes random wandering as having a plot, a purpose guided by some underlying story.
David Byrne (Bicycle Diaries)
I recall one particular sunset. It lent an ember to my bicycle hell. Overhead, above the black music of telegraph wires, a number of long, dark-violet clouds lined with flamingo pink hung motionless in a fan-shaped arrangement; the whole thing was like some prodigious ovation in terms of color and form! It was dying, however, and everything else was darkening, too; but just above the horizon, in a lucid, turquoise space, beneath a black stratus, the eye found a vista that only a fool could mistake for the square parts of this or any other sunset. It occupied a very small sector of the enormous sky and had the peculiar neatness of something seen through the wrong end of a telescope. There it lay in wait, a brilliant convolutions, anachronistic in their creaminess and extremely remote; remote but perfect in every detail; fantastically reduced but faultlessly shaped; my marvelous tomorrow ready to be delivered to me.
Vladimir Nabokov (Speak, Memory)
NO MUSE IS GOOD MUSE To be an Artist you need talent, as well as a wife who washes the socks and the children, and returns phone calls and library books and types. In other words, the reason there are so many more Men Geniuses than Women Geniuses is not Genius. It is because Hemingway never joined the P.T.A. And Arthur Rubinstein ignored Halloween. Do you think Portnoy's creator sits through children's theater matinees--on Saturdays? Or that Norman Mailer faced 'driver's ed' failure, chicken pox or chipped teeth? Fitzgerald's night was so tender because the fender his teen-ager dented happened when Papa was at a story conference. Since Picasso does the painting, Mrs. Picasso did the toilet training. And if Saul Bellow, National Book Award winner, invited thirty-three for Thanksgiving Day dinner, I'll bet he had help. I'm sure Henry Moore was never a Cub Scout leader, and Leonard Bernstein never instructed a tricycler On becoming a bicycler just before he conducted. Tell me again my anatomy is not necessarily my destiny, tell me my hang-up is a personal and not a universal quandary, and I'll tell you no muse is a good muse unless she also helps with the laundry.
Rochelle Distelheim
The name of the author is the first to go followed obediently by the title, the plot, the heartbreaking conclusion, the entire novel which suddenly becomes one you have never read, never even heard of, as if, one by one, the memories you used to harbor decided to retire to the southern hemisphere of the brain, to a little fishing village where there are no phones. Long ago you kissed the names of the nine Muses goodbye and watched the quadratic equation pack its bag, and even now as you memorize the order of the planets, something else is slipping away, a state flower perhaps, the address of an uncle, the capital of Paraguay. Whatever it is you are struggling to remember, it is not poised on the tip of your tongue, not even lurking in some obscure corner of your spleen. It has floated away down a dark mythological river whose name begins with an L as far as you can recall, well on your own way to oblivion where you will join those who have even forgotten how to swim and how to ride a bicycle. No wonder you rise in the middle of the night to look up the date of a famous battle in a book on war. No wonder the moon in the window seems to have drifted out of a love poem that you used to know by heart.
Billy Collins
And, I think, this greening does thaw at the edges, at least, of my own cold season. Joy sneaks in: listening to music, riding my bicycle, I catch myself feeling, in a way that’s as old as I am but suddenly seems unfamiliar, light. I have felt so heavy for so long. At first I felt odd- as if I shouldn’t be feeling this lightness, that familiar little catch of pleasure in the heart which is inexplicable, though a lovely passage of notes or the splendidly turned petal of a tulip has triggered it. It’s my buoyancy, part of what keeps me alive: happy, suddenly with the concomitant experience of a sonata and the motion of the shadows of leaves. I have the desire to be filled with sunlight, to soak my skin in as much of it as I can drink up, after the long interior darkness of this past season, the indoor vigil, in this harshest and darkest of winters, outside and in.
Mark Doty (Heaven's Coast: A Memoir)
I used to think love was two people sucking on the same straw to see whose thirst was stronger, but then I whiffed the crushed walnuts of your nape, traced jackals in the snow-covered tombstones of your teeth. I used to think love was a non-stop saxophone solo in the lungs, till I hung with you like a pair of sneakers from a phone line, and you promised to always smell the rose in my kerosene. I used to think love was terminal pelvic ballet, till you let me jog beside while you pedaled all over hell on the menstrual bicycle, your tongue ripping through my prairie like a tornado of paper cuts. I used to think love was an old man smashing a mirror over his knee, till you helped me carry the barbell of my spirit back up the stairs after my car pirouetted in the desert. You are my history book. I used to not believe in fairy tales till I played the dunce in sheep’s clothing and felt how perfectly your foot fit in the glass slipper of my ass. But then duty wrapped its phone cord around my ankle and yanked me across the continent. And now there are three thousand miles between the u and s in esophagus. And being without you is like standing at a cement-filled wall with a roll of Yugoslavian nickels and making a wish. Some days I miss you so much I’d jump off the roof of your office building just to catch a glimpse of you on the way down. I wish we could trade left eyeballs, so we could always see what the other sees. But you’re here, I’m there, and we have only words, a nightly phone call - one chance to mix feelings into syllables and pour into the receiver, hope they don’t disassemble in that calculus of wire. And lately - with this whole war thing - the language machine supporting it - I feel betrayed by the alphabet, like they’re injecting strychnine into my vowels, infecting my consonants, naming attack helicopters after shattered Indian tribes: Apache, Blackhawk; and West Bank colonizers are settlers, so Sharon is Davey Crockett, and Arafat: Geronimo, and it’s the Wild West all over again. And I imagine Picasso looking in a mirror, decorating his face in war paint, washing his brushes in venom. And I think of Jenin in all that rubble, and I feel like a Cyclops with two eyes, like an anorexic with three mouths, like a scuba diver in quicksand, like a shark with plastic vampire teeth, like I’m the executioner’s fingernail trying to reason with the hand. And I don’t know how to speak love when the heart is a busted cup filling with spit and paste, and the only sexual fantasy I have is busting into the Pentagon with a bazooka-sized pen and blowing open the minds of generals. And I comfort myself with the thought that we’ll name our first child Jenin, and her middle name will be Terezin, and we’ll teach her how to glow in the dark, and how to swallow firecrackers, and to never neglect the first straw; because no one ever talks about the first straw, it’s always the last straw that gets all the attention, but by then it’s way too late.
Jeffrey McDaniel
Between the roof of the shed and the big plant that hangs over the fence from the house next door I could see the constellation Orion. People say that Orion is called Orion because Orion was a hunter and the constellation looks like a hunter with a club and a bow and arrow, like this: But this is really silly because it is just stars, and you could join up the dots in any way you wanted, and you could make it look like a lady with an umbrella who is waving, or the coffeemaker which Mrs. Shears has, which is from Italy, with a handle and steam coming out, or like a dinosaur. And there aren't any lines in space, so you could join bits of Orion to bits of Lepus or Taurus or Gemini and say that they were a constellation called the Bunch of Grapes or Jesus or the Bicycle (except that they didn't have bicycles in Roman and Greek times, which was when they called Orion Orion). And anyway, Orion is not a hunter or a coffeemaker or a dinosaur. It is just Betelgeuse and Bellatrix and Alnilam and Rigel and 17 other stars I don't know the names of. And they are nuclear explosions billions of miles away. And that is the truth. I stayed awake until 5:47. That was the last time I looked at my watch before I fell asleep. It has a luminous face and lights up if you press a button, so I could read it in the dark. I was cold and I was frightened Father might come out and find me. But I felt safer in the garden because I was hidden. I looked at the sky a lot. I like looking up at the sky in the garden at night. In summer I sometimes come outside at night with my torch and my planisphere, which is two circles of plastic with a pin through the middle. And on the bottom is a map of the sky and on top is an aperture which is an opening shaped in a parabola and you turn it round to see a map of the sky that you can see on that day of the year from the latitude 51.5° north, which is the latitude that Swindon is on, because the largest bit of the sky is always on the other side of the earth. And when you look at the sky you know you are looking at stars which are hundreds and thousands of light-years away from you. And some of the stars don't even exist anymore because their light has taken so long to get to us that they are already dead, or they have exploded and collapsed into red dwarfs. And that makes you seem very small, and if you have difficult things in your life it is nice to think that they are what is called negligible, which means that they are so small you don't have to take them into account when you are calculating something. I didn't sleep very well because of the cold and because the ground was very bumpy and pointy underneath me and because Toby was scratching in his cage a lot. But when I woke up properly it was dawn and the sky was all orange and blue and purple and I could hear birds singing, which is called the Dawn Chorus. And I stayed where I was for another 2 hours and 32 minutes, and then I heard Father come into the garden and call out, "Christopher...? Christopher...?
Mark Haddon (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time)
When Seymour and I were five and three, Les and Bessie played on the same bill for a couple of weeks with Joe Jackson -- the redoubtable Joe Jackson of the nickel-plated trick bicycle that shone like something better than platinum to the very last row of the theater. A good many years later, not long after the outbreak of the Second World War, when Seymour and I had just recently moved into a small New York apartment of our own, our father -- Les, as he'll be called hereafter -- dropped in on us one evening on his way home from a pinochle game. He quite apparently had held very bad cards all afternoon. He came in, at any rate, rigidly predisposed to keep his overcoat on. He sat. He scowled at the furnishings. He turned my hand over to check for cigarette-tar stains on my fingers, then asked Seymour how many cigarettes he smoked a day. He thought he found a fly in his highball. At length, when the conversation -- in my view, at least -- was going straight to hell, he got up abruptly and went over to look at a photograph of himself and Bessie that had been newly tacked up on the wall. He glowered at it for a full minute, or more, then turned around, with a brusqueness no one in the family would have found unusual, and asked Seymour if he remembered the time Joe Jackson had given him, Seymour, a ride on the handle bars of his bicycle, all over the stage, around and around. Seymour, sitting in an old corduroy armchair across the room, a cigarette going, wearing a blue shirt, gray slacks, moccasins with the counters broken down, a shaving cut on the side of his face that I could see, replied gravely and at once, and in the special way he always answered questions from Les -- as if they were the questions, above all others, he preferred to be asked in his life. He said he wasn't sure he had ever got off Joe Jackson's beautiful bicycle.
J.D. Salinger (Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters & Seymour: An Introduction)