Author: Troy Lambert

Give it Away: Inspiring Others to Ride

The Human Powered Summer Part 4: The cycling as transportation process, and the whole point of this exercise is not only to get myself in shape, reduce my impact on at least my local environment, save a few bucks, and write some interesting articles, but to at the same time inspire others to do the same thing. As a kid, a bike was my transportation. I didn’t have a driver’s license (too young) and my mom worked as a Christian school teacher for nine months out of the year, and odd jobs all summer. My brother and I were often left on our own. The zoo, the park, Longfellow Elementary school (which had a good basketball court), and King’s (a variety store with a huge toy department in the basement) were all miles away. Not walking distance, but biking distance for sure. So we threw a leg over the saddle, got our pedal on, and rode. This week I went to an annual bike giveaway sponsored in part by Boise Bike Project. Over 100 kids signed up through Boys and Girls Clubs and community centers all over the Treasure Valley to come down and get a free bike. The looks on some of the faces were priceless. These were families that for whatever reason, whether a parental job loss or economic hardship couldn’t afford bikes on their own. Bikes...

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Dogs, Physics, and Helicopters

The Human Powered Summer  Part 3: I quickly discovered at the beginning of this season that there are issues biking for transportation. One of them is my wife declaring (over and over) how inconvenient it is to ‘make do’ with only one motorized vehicle. Guess my minimalist bent isn’t rubbing off. Don’t get me wrong. It is inconvenient at times, but only because we have made it too inconvenient to have transportation readily available whenever we please. Despite this discouragement, I moved on, and discovered (or rediscovered if you will) some things about biking as transportation. The issue of the week: Dogs There are areas where it is posted that you should keep your dog on a leash. This is especially true when bike riders are known to be present.  Take the small section of green belt in Kuna on an admittedly early morning. I came around a corner, and a dog started chasing me. The owner called after it, to no avail. The dog seemed friendly. I doubt it wished me any harm, but up ahead I saw something else. A panicky owner struggled to hold three dogs by their collars at the side of the trail ahead. The park was a cacophony of barking now. Of course, one of the three slipped free, and ran, not at me, but at the dog chasing me. “She won’t bite...

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“One Jelly Doughnut. . .”

The Human Powered Season: Week 2 I’m 43. There, I said it. I’m not 21. Those of you who follow me on Facebook and Twitter (if you don’t, just click the links, because you should) know that since November I lost about 60 pounds. It changed my skiing game, my running game, and even how I handled the heat for a month in the desert. With moving and the rest though, my diet suffered recently. I took a week off the exercise regime, and then embraced the idea of a more human powered approach to transportation. I started riding again, and thought “Hey this isn’t so bad.” Then I took some uphill rides. Okay, maybe I’m not in quite as good of shape as I thought. Then this week I hiked Borah Peak, and discovered some more truths: Diet is Fuel: Food is your fuel, and just like your car, it’s important the type of fuel you run on. Those sweets you grab really quick? The corn dog and fatty burger? That ice cream? It all comes into play later. If you are going to add more human power to your life, you need better fuel. One goal? To get my diet back on track. Remember the line from “Full Metal Jacket?” The one where private pile gets caught with the jelly doughnut in his footlocker? Yeah. I’m paying...

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“Anywhere is in walking (biking) distance if you have the time.”

The Human Powered Season Week 1: Remember the formula from school? Distance equals rate times time. So if a bicycle leaving Chicago travels at … Wait. Don’t go. Just kidding. No word problems, just some observations from week one of this experiment. Why it should work: I’m working mostly at home, freelance. So I really don’t need to go that far, right? Sure, we live out in Kuna, Idaho far from the bustle (and bike friendly trails, sidewalks, and streets) of Boise. Most of the time, I don’t need to go there, right? I may want to, but those things can wait. For some reason, not this week. When I am determined to drive less and bike more, urgent errands come to the fore that are time sensitive. No, I can’t bike 30 miles in an hour, then bike back, pick up my wife, etc. The Durango I want to park carried my bike farther than I rode it this week. Disclaimer: I am more of a conservationist than an environmentalist. But less driving means less emissions, even if just locally. It also means less money on gas, and better health for the person doing the riding. I’m not going to go deep into the issues here, another blog on that later, but suffice it to say this is a personal goal and decision. I’m not trying to save the...

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George and the Achievers Part 2:

What Authors (and others) Can Learn About Marketing from the Achievers and George Takei Part 2: Make the Connection In part one of this series we introduced The Achievers and George Takei, two completely different types of internet phenomena. We looked at their core audience. You can read that post here. So they had a solid fan base: core fans. You have them too, whether you are an author, or a business. How do you connect them? They may be scattered all over the world. What tools do you use to bring them together? Internet Forums. The achievers used the birth of social media: an internet forum to share the word about their passion. Fans gathered around a little known film released in the late 1990’s, and found they had more in common then they at first realized. Some even made love connections in the group. More modern forms of these include Goodreads, Kindle Discussion Boards, and Facebook Groups. Facebook. Originally a social media outlet similar to MySpace, Facebook took off and became an advertisers dream: millions of reachable customers and fans all gathered in one giant stadium. The problem is, you are one hot dog vendor among thousands, and your customers are scattered throughout the seats. How do you get them to come to you, to “sit” in your section? Once they sit there, how do you make...

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