Join 3,556 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


A man, A plan, Unicycle.
May 13, 2010 9:59 AM   Subscribe

"The road looks empty, but it is sprinkled with massive centipedes, tarantulas, and the occasional unicyclist." People on unicycles have plans, man. When not riding seriously long distances across America, they ride a few hundred miles for cancer cures. They ride shorter distances playing musical instruments. And perhaps they'll get to ride the Segway of unicycles, the UX-3.
posted by cashman (29 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
What's with the future trying to make us look like dorks?
posted by wcfields at 10:09 AM on May 13, 2010


Four wheels bad
Two wheels good
One wheel wheelbarrow
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:11 AM on May 13, 2010


Thanks for the reminder. Despite the early spring, I haven't been out on my uni at all this year.

Never tried long distance. I'd need a much bigger wheel.

The strange thing I find about uni riding is, every time I pick it up after a break of however long, I'm better at it than I was before. I wonder if it sets up improvements in balance unconsciously practiced doing other things. Will have fun checking out the links, thanks.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:14 AM on May 13, 2010


Oh, and Japan may have wakaresase-ya, but they also have unicycling schoolchildren. It's a pretty standard part of elementary school, at least in the area I was in. Little kids pick up unicycling and make it look like nothing; just step on and go.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:15 AM on May 13, 2010


Question:

Is a unicycle even more uncomfortable to sit on than for long distances than a bicycle? At least on the bike you can shift your position and lean on the handbars.
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:18 AM on May 13, 2010


Are there any pics of the massive centipedes? Tarantualas are fuzzy and almost cuddly. Massive centipedes, not.
posted by jfuller at 10:18 AM on May 13, 2010


They do even crazier shit, too.
posted by Nothing... and like it at 10:22 AM on May 13, 2010


Grar. I can't look at these midday; I'll go stir crazy. And I can't ride tonight; I'm going out for drinks.

NEVER drink and unicycle. Not one drink. Don't do it. Seriously.

They do even crazier shit, too.

That they do.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:24 AM on May 13, 2010


I have a neighbor who has a 36-er uni, he's doing a century this month on it. He also commutes to work on it. I'm still in the wildly-flailing-then-jumping-off phase of learning on my 24-inch Torker.

Cool post, thanks!
posted by everichon at 10:25 AM on May 13, 2010


Also riding a century in 20 5-mile laps around a suburban neighborhood for Livestrong (the 100 Miles of Nowhere)
posted by ghharr at 10:35 AM on May 13, 2010


The strange thing I find about uni riding is, every time I pick it up after a break of however long, I'm better at it than I was before.

If you never got back on the unicycle, would your mastery become infinite?
posted by GenjiandProust at 10:35 AM on May 13, 2010 [3 favorites]


they also have unicycling schoolchildren

One of my favorite moments in my town--not in Japan, mind--was walking down the sidewalk and being passed in the street by two tweenaged girls very casually riding unis and chatting. So cool.
posted by everichon at 10:44 AM on May 13, 2010


"The strange thing I find about uni riding is, every time I pick it up after a break of however long, I'm better at it than I was before.

If you never got back on the unicycle, would your mastery become infinite?"


That'a about as Zen as it gets.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 10:47 AM on May 13, 2010


Ok, I wasn't strong-willed enough. I couldn't resist the "volcano tour" pics. That being said, if you haven't seen Unizaba, Kris Holm's Bolivian volcano ride footage (under the One Tired Guy title), you have a treat in store. I've never seen another descent like it. It's completely crazy.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:02 AM on May 13, 2010


They ride shorter distances playing musical instruments.
Guitars. For some reason I expected accordions.
posted by Killick at 11:03 AM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


a group of unicyclists in NYC are traversing every area bridge, 125 so far.
posted by klapaucius at 11:04 AM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I want a pair of UX-3s that I can strap to my legs and ride standing up, like battery-powered roller blades.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 11:17 AM on May 13, 2010


Or just one that has an adjustable seat would do.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 11:19 AM on May 13, 2010


I want a baby-sized U3-X. When other kids are kicking around the kitchen in those stupid walkers, my kid is going to race down the sidewalk trailing clouds of glory (and farts).
posted by pracowity at 11:30 AM on May 13, 2010


Someday, I shall realize my greatest invention: the recumbent unicycle! *cackling laughter*
posted by JoanArkham at 12:11 PM on May 13, 2010


A number of years ago I had the good fortune to find myself biking the Slickrock Trail, solo. I was having a good day - I was feeling great, riding well, the weather was hot, I was about an hour and a half or so into the ride and about as far away from the trailhead as you can get. I had stopped for a little water break underneath a bush (juniper, I think) and was having a snack and patting myself on the back for making it that far without doing any serious bodily harm to myself or others, and in general I was really enjoying the day.

And then around the corner wobbles this guy on a unicycle, riding the loop in the opposite direction. In basically full body armor, on a 90 degree day, he rides past me, smiles and waves, hop/jumps up onto the next petrified sand dune, pedals hard a few times, and disappears over the crest.

Sure he looked comical, but it was also hugely, hugely impressive. To this day, I'm still amazed that there is at least one person out there who could ride a trail that required such a level of technical skill without relying on silly things like gears, brakes, suspension, a chain, or even an extra wheel to balance on.
posted by the painkiller at 12:20 PM on May 13, 2010


Lexica & I did the Berkeley Urban Assault Ride 2 weekends ago, and there was a team of two guys who did the whole course on unis.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 12:21 PM on May 13, 2010


At least clowns have the courtesy to wear bright colors and makeup so you can see them coming at a distance and avoid them. /not unicyclistist
posted by Anoplura at 12:38 PM on May 13, 2010


Someday, I shall realize my greatest invention: the recumbent unicycle! *cackling laughter*

Eh, it's been done.
posted by backseatpilot at 12:50 PM on May 13, 2010


And tandem, too.

Where are y'all, fellow uni-ers? We should all go ride together... I've been deprived since moving to Boston 2 years ago.

the painkiller, for 10 years there was an annual Moab muni-fest in late March. I got to go one year; I only made it part way on the Slickrock Trail but it was a blast! Lots of fun to be a in a group of c. 200 unis stretched out over an off-road trail. (And a little confusing to the bikers we ran into, yes).
posted by nat at 1:14 PM on May 13, 2010


All I'm going to say is Unicycle Basketball.
posted by anoirmarie at 2:21 PM on May 13, 2010


"If you never got back on the unicycle, would your mastery become infinite?""

That'a about as Zen as it gets.


When you ride a unicycle, ride the unicycle. When you ride a bike, ride the bike.
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:59 PM on May 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


I had a uni, about 1971 or so... for a month tried to learn how to ride it... someone finally stole from the garage..probably saved me from serious closed head injury..
posted by HuronBob at 5:42 PM on May 13, 2010


I was in Laos three years ago, bicycling from Ventiane to Luang Prabang. One day, I saw a man on a unicycle going the other way. And another, and another. There were probably at least two dozen of them. We all waved at each other, but I didn't stop to ask what they were doing. It was all so surreal, seeing a sight like that so far out in the middle of nowhere. Months later I found out it was a fundraiser/charity excursion, the details of which I've forgotten. Bizarre!
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 4:39 AM on May 14, 2010


« Older A recent spate of school attacks in China has left...  |  Best of History Web Sites... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments