Biking Narratives: The Schwartz Interview
Sitting down and interviewing a stranger can be an extremely nerve wracking experience. What if my questions stink? What if they give me one word answers? Should I have dressed better? Luckily this was not the case. I would be interviewing one of my closest friends on the shared passion that made us become friends. Freshman year, I brought my bike to Dickinson seeing it merely as an easy way to get to Frisbee practices. Within a month however I was going on 30 mile rides exploring the good, the bad, and the ugly of what rural Pennsylvania can offer. What brought about this change? Almost entirely the zany kid down the hall, Alec Schwartz. He had also brought his road bike to school, and coincidently his roommate had too.
The three of us started biking on the weekends to find creepy dilapidated barns, or a cool spot down by the great Carlilian rivers. Soon we were constantly going on night bike rides in lieu of the usual freshman rite of going to parties whenever possible. It’s three years later and not much has changed. In order to catalogue our biking adventures, I thought it would be a good to ask Alec about why he had brought his bike to school Freshman year and the journey that led up to that. As a note this interview is mostly paraphrased with Alec’s approval. Who has time to transcribe audio anyway?
MR: Tell me a little about how you first got into biking?
AS: My first memories on a bike were when I was seven years old. My dad was riding for a competitive club mountain bike team and he would convince me to come with them sometimes. Essentially I was pulled in the woods by people more confident than me.
MR: Did you have any special attachments to your bikes growing up?
AS: My first bike was a bright red Specialized Big Hit which was pretty expensive for kids, but it was the only bike my dad had that fit me. It was way too heavy for me and as a result going uphill in that thing was awful. It had a full suspension, which meant uphill’s and flats were brutal. It was a champ at the downhills though.
MR: What is your favorite place to ride at home?
AS: My family recently moved to Burlington Vermont, so I’m still discovering new routes whenever I’m home. So far my favorite has been the Mt. Philo loop. My dad showed me this ride and it’s pretty beautiful. It goes past Lake Champlain and the terrain is almost all rolling hills with farms and cows to the side. Biking around Vermont has been a great way for me to learn more about my new home.
MR: Sounds similar to our trips around Carlisle Freshman year.
Freshman Shenanigans Senior Shenanigans