Life Is a Wheel: Love, Death, Etc., and a Bike Ride Across America

Life Is a Wheel: Love, Death, Etc., and a Bike Ride Across America

by Bruce Weber

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Life Is a Wheel chronicles the cross-country bicycle trip Bruce Weber made at the age of fifty-seven, an “entertaining travel story filled with insightful thoughts about life, family, and aging” (The Associated Press).

During the summer and fall of 2011, Bruce Weber, an obituary writer for The New York Times, bicycled across the country, alone, and wrote about it as it unfolded. Life Is a Wheel is the witty, inspiring, and reflective diary of his journey, in which the challenges and rewards of self-reliance and strenuous physical effort yield wry and incisive observations about cycling and America, not to mention the pleasures of a three-thousand-calorie breakfast.

The story begins on the Oregon coast, with Weber wondering what he’s gotten himself into, and ends in triumph on New York City’s George Washington Bridge. From Going-to-the-Sun Road in the northern Rockies to the headwaters of the Mississippi and through the cityscapes of Chicago and Pittsburgh, his encounters with people and places provide us with an intimate, two-wheeled perspective of America. And with thousands of miles to travel, Weber considers his past, his family, and the echo that a well-lived life leaves behind.

Part travelogue, part memoir, part romance, part paean to the bicycle—and part bemused and panicky account of a middle-aged man’s attempt to stave off, well, you know—Life Is a Wheel is “a book for cyclists, and for anyone who has ever dreamed of such transcontinental travels. But it also should prove enlightening, soul-stirring, even, to those who don’t care a whit about bikes but who care about the way people connect” (The Philadelphia Inquirer).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781451695038
Publisher: Scribner
Publication date: 03/18/2014
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 1,112,060
File size: 6 MB

About the Author

Bruce Weber, a reporter for The New York Times, began his career in publishing as a fiction editor at Esquire. He has written for numerous publications and is the author of the New York Times bestseller As They See ’Em: A Fan’s Travels in the Land of Umpires, coauthor (with Savion Glover) of Savion! My Life in Tap, and the editor of Look Who’s Talking: An Anthology of Voices in the Modern American Short Story.

Table of Contents

Part 1 The West

1 Everything Up to the Beginning 3

2 The Geyser Effect 37

3 Billy "Salad" Joseph 53

4 "The Horse Doesn't Think It's a Real Cow" 72

5 Pie 90

6 Downhill From Here 102

7 If I Were Your Father … 119

8 Lost in the West 132

9 Nowhere Is Nowhere 150

Part 2 American Gulliver

10 My War: Bike Pirates and an Armadillo 169

11 The President of the United States 190

Part 3 The East, Eventually

12 My Country 209

13 Head Games 225

14 What if…? 240

15 The Wet Guy 260

16 Life Is an Etch A Sketch 283

17 Time and Distance 294

Epilogue: An Actual Thing 323

Acknowledgments 335

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