Fueled by Rice - biking from China to...France
September 17, 2007 12:15 PM   Subscribe

Fueled by Rice - Five recent grads from the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's Unviersity recently set off from Beijing to bike across Asia and Europe. The goal of their bike trip is to spread international good will on the local level and advocate reducing carbon emissions and living slower-paced, more enjoyable lives. Along the way they will bike through rural areas and play music in villages. As they travel, the group is posting photos, a blog, and will attempt to get a podcast up and running. They've even got the site up in Chinese, though the site seems to be blocked for most folks in China.
posted by pithy comment (11 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
seems to be blocked for most folks in China

Might want to check that clustermap again.

As someone who used to bike across Beijing daily, all I can say is, watch out at intersections and don't let the bus drivers or old ladies bully you!
posted by Pollomacho at 12:26 PM on September 17, 2007

I think it is great that these people have the means and desire to take an extended post-college vacation, and biking and blogging and making music and whatnot all sounds like fun, but why not call it what it is? The crap about "spreading international good will on the local level and advocating reducing carbon emissions and living slower-paced, more enjoyable lives" just comes off as pretty lame. I also don't think that this is in any way rare or notable.
posted by ND¢ at 12:47 PM on September 17, 2007

I can access the site here in Beijing (yes, I am up pretending to work in the middle of the night). They seem to have written the Chinese blurb themselves - it's charmingly awkward. Not that I'd do much better.
The old cynic in me wants to sneer at the way people have to dress a fun holiday up with good intentions, but they're doing it and I'm not, so good on 'em.
posted by Abiezer at 12:48 PM on September 17, 2007

I just don't understand how they think those dilated tailpipes and dopey ground effects look "cool".
posted by everichon at 1:18 PM on September 17, 2007

This is kind of silly. Advocating a slower-paced lifestyle in Chongqing or Shanghai would be quixotic at best. Doing so in rural China is sort of like preaching to the French of red wine's health benefits. But like ND¢ and Abiezer said, I hope they have fun on their little vacation.

Although this:

If you happen to have an in with a high governmental official in Iran or Myanmar who loves skirting regulations, feel free to hook us up!

makes me wonder how much of this they've thought out. Personally, I'd have my shit together before I came within ten miles of the Iranian border.
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 1:27 PM on September 17, 2007

No, no, no, it's "Powered by Rice." Jeez.
posted by wuwei at 1:44 PM on September 17, 2007

Who cares?
posted by rhymer at 2:21 PM on September 17, 2007

Who cares?

I do. ... though I agree that preaching the benefits of a simpler lifestyle to rural Chinese and Indians seems a bit silly.

That said, it's not their primary goal (#3 on their mission statement.)

That also said, it's also only day #2 of their trip. The site might have been a better post/discussion later in their journey, since it will likely have a lot more content then.

Still, that's a hell of a bike trip. Good luck to them.
posted by mrgrimm at 3:21 PM on September 17, 2007

From the site: To advocate deliberate, simple, low-impact lifestyles.

I think if I was some poor person along the way, I would be pretty pissed off at rich young westerners lecturing me about my lifestyle.
posted by Joeforking at 3:28 PM on September 17, 2007

I do

I'm sure it's a fun thing for them to do and I hope they enjoy themselves in the abstract way that I'd prefer most people to be happy.

But with three caveats:

1) I don't buy all the bollocks that goes with it.
2) Travel blogs were ubiquitous and dull by 2004
3) Even of they pogo sticked naked across China, you would be able to smell the shit I didn't give in London.
posted by rhymer at 4:10 PM on September 17, 2007 [1 favorite]

I met some people doing the same thing in Vietnam a few months ago (I think they'd been in Europe and India already), for a minute I thought this was them.

They played some good music, but they were tools.
posted by borkingchikapa at 10:24 PM on September 17, 2007

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