Bagels and bikes

Waking up on Sunday, the morning of the Tour de Blintz, my eyes met an intense downpour of rain. As I slid open the patio door, the sound of the rain was as heavy as a Tom Waits song. It was still early—5:30 am—and knowing Vancouver weather, a lot could happen by 9:30. I was an hour’s ride to the start of the Tour and by the time I arrived, the rain had toned down to a drizzle. Within a few minutes, the rain had stopped.

About 20 people, including a 3-generation family of five (on two tandem bicycles, one with a trailer for the little kid), enjoyed the leisure 45km Tour around Vancouver. We stopped at several

Jewish eateries for a sampling of food such as latkes and bagels with cream cheese.

The Jewish Museum and the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition hosted the ride, and a longer, 75km ride the following Sunday. Thanks to Greg Robinson at the Jewish Museum for organizing the tour.

The 2008 Tour de Blintz

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Steve Martin: Man of many hyphens

Gee, I thought Steve Martin’s memoir Born Standing Up would be funny. What it lacks in humour, though, it makes up in tenderness. Subtitled, A comic’s life, the book focuses on Martin’s life and career as a television comedy writer and stand-up comedian. As the book jacket says, by 1978 Martin was the biggest concert draw in the history of stand-up. Three later, the rock-star comedian quit stand-up.

Martin’s story is a portrait of discipline and hard work, punctuated by long-time difficulties with family relations, particularly with his father. On the comedy-circuit road, Martin was often alone and lonely. He eventually manages reconciliation with family and lovingly describes his last meeting with his 91-year-old mother.

I cried more than I laughed while reading Born Standing Up.

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