Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Simple Pleasure of Riding a Bike

"Get a bicycle.  You will certainly not regret it.  If you live."--Mark Twain

When the weather's good, like it is in September, I love to ride my bike to and from work.  It's good exercise, it's economical, it's fun, and it's conducive to thinking.  (Einstein came up with the Theory of Relativity while riding his bike.)  My bike's a bit big for me, so I've been looking for a new one.  But, now that gas is so expensive, bicycling is hot; as a result bicycles are expensive, ranging from $400 to $700.  The beauty pictured above costs $649.  It was love at first sight for me when I saw it in our local bike shop, but I just can't justify that kind of money.  Not yet anyway.  A few more near misses on the bike I'm riding now, and I just might plunk down the cash.

Here's a list of seven movies that feature--or star--the humble bicycle.
  1. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969).  Features Paul Newman and Katherine Ross on a bicycle with Burt Bacharach singing "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head."
  2. Breaking Away (1979).  A coming of age story about an Indiana youth obsessed with the Italian cycling team.
  3. E.T. (1982).  An alien makes his escape on a flying bicycle.
  4. Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985).  O.k. I've never seen this one, but, given its plot, I can't not include it on this list.  Pee-wee loves his bike, which is stolen from him, so he goes on a cross-country adventure to retrieve it.
  5. Kiki's Delivery Service (1989).  A Japanese animated film about a young witch who makes her way in the world running a delivery service--by bike, of course.
  6. One Day (2011).  A bicycle figures in a pivotal scene in this love story starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess.
  7. Premium Rush (2012).  This action thriller, considered by some to be the best movie of the year, pits a bicycle messenger (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) against a dirty cop (Michael Shannon).

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