May 03, 2004


Not for the first time, John Kerry has difficulty maintaining verticality:

Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry took a spill from his bicycle after hitting a patch of sand during a ride Sunday afternoon, but he was uninjured, campaign officials said.

Kerry was riding south on a two-lane road at about 1:00 p.m. in the direction of Walden Pond State Reservation in Concord, a quiet, suburban town about 18 miles northwest of Boston.

The Massachusetts senator was riding his custom Serotta bicycle, and was wearing a helmet.

A Serotta bike will cost you anywhere from $1,800 to $5,000. And that’s before you add wheels. Take better care of your investment, Mr Junior Senator man!

Posted by Tim Blair at May 3, 2004 12:57 PM

"I didn't take a spill, that son of a bitch sand knocked me off".

Posted by: fred at May 3, 2004 at 01:05 PM

Fred, you beat me to it!

Posted by: Bruce Rheinstein at May 3, 2004 at 01:06 PM

Sen. Kerry had better watch it or he is going to get tagged with the "klutz" label like Gerald Ford was...

Posted by: Major John at May 3, 2004 at 01:11 PM

WARNING! USA Today article has a picture of Kerry in bicycle shorts. Not for the faint of heart.

Posted by: Dash at May 3, 2004 at 01:14 PM

Did they apply botox to more than his face?

Posted by: JeffS at May 3, 2004 at 01:15 PM

In Kerry's nuauce speak; "I did not fall. I was riding the bicycle and then I was not riding the bicycle."

Posted by: perfectsense at May 3, 2004 at 01:23 PM

Dash — Any sign of a big plastic flower this time?

Posted by: Richard McEnroe at May 3, 2004 at 01:29 PM

Good thing John Kerry only had to deal with the Vietcong in Vietnam, not Secret Service Agents or bicycles...

Posted by: PW at May 3, 2004 at 01:55 PM

PW — Charlie don't BMX, boy!

Posted by: Richard McEnroe at May 3, 2004 at 02:04 PM

Y'all being mean. He deserves another Purple Heart

Posted by: c at May 3, 2004 at 02:40 PM

"Bicycle launches savage attack on Kerry's patriotisim"

Posted by: Harry B. at May 3, 2004 at 03:00 PM

Letter to the editor in today's Daily Telegraph:

Never mind weapons of mass destruction: the blatant abuse and mistreatment of prisoners of war by American and British forces has given their enemies a far more powerful weapon, the weapon of propaganda. I pray that our Australian soldiers have the professionalism and discipline not to imitate such behaviour.

No misbehaviour by Australian troops reported so far. Australian nurses, on the other hand ...

Elderly hospital patient 'slapped'

A 94-YEAR-OLD dementia patient was allegedly slapped across the face, had her thumb bent back and was threatened with smothering by hospital staff, it was revealed yesterday.

Posted by: Andjam at May 3, 2004 at 03:07 PM

Kerry quote I'm looking foward to:

"My poll numbers didn't fall, Bush demolished them".

Posted by: Andjam at May 3, 2004 at 03:08 PM

To be fair, many people of moderate means who are bicycle enthusiasts can afford to spend that much on a bike. As many middle class folks can afford to spend similar amounts on their favorite hobbies (bass fishing, wood working, home theater, etc.). However, his performance on seemingly simple terrain indicates he's less of a cycle enthusiast than merely a poseur who can afford to dump what would be a month's salary for an average joe on a "hobbie" he's no good at.

P.S. Who is running this guy's campaign? Karl Rove?

Posted by: Robin Goodfellow at May 3, 2004 at 04:02 PM

Robin Goodfellow — No, Shemp Howard...

Posted by: Richard McEnroe at May 3, 2004 at 04:05 PM

If he cannot ride across a "patch of sand" without falling down, how is he going to get out of Iraq?

Posted by: Greg at May 3, 2004 at 04:32 PM

I was turning left. Well there was a bit of right in it. Some of the way. Followed by a sweeping nuanced turnaround and dismount.

Posted by: Michael Gill at May 3, 2004 at 05:53 PM

I've got an expensive bike despite modest means, an immodest gut, and advancing age. In my defense I used to race back in the day, still like to flog a bike up and down a ridgeline now and then, and worship at the Church of the Holy Fifty Mile Sunday Ride. Kerry is apprently a decent, or at least persistent, rider. He's done some 100 mile rides.

It's pretty easy to drop $2K on a "nice" stock factory bike. (Think Lemond Zurich or Trek 5200.) The Serottas are a step above that and not strictly factory bikes, but often custom geometry--made to fit the individual rider. Kerry is 6'4", and it's difficult to get a good fit at that size in a factory bike.

Besides, they're nice bikes.

Posted by: Ernst Blofeld at May 3, 2004 at 05:55 PM

Herr Blofeld,

We're not laughing at him because he rides an expensive bike...we're laughing at him 'cause he's a friggin' dick.

Posted by: JDB at May 3, 2004 at 06:55 PM

Oh my god - I have seen the picture of Kerry on the USA today website. The smile, the wave, the motion - at least Dukakis had the sense to be in a tank when he was grinning.

Posted by: Rob at May 3, 2004 at 07:47 PM

Now, he might not be a biking poseur ... it could just be that he's getting old. Your reflexes slow down as you get older, and it gets more and more difficult to respond to adjust quickly. That's why so many elderly get in car crashes...

Posted by: meep at May 3, 2004 at 08:36 PM

I bike 8,000 miles a year commuting, and can report that it takes about 20 years to discover all the ways you can fall down. Then you don't fall down any more. I don't know that any of them are frequent though. That's what you'd have to look at. It could be just really bad luck, like the snowboarding and the skiing.

Working for 35 years to reduce the number of fellow bicyclists (motorists are not angry if you're the first bicyclist they've come across that morning. Sometimes they wave.)

Posted by: Ron Hardin at May 4, 2004 at 12:03 AM

That's odd. There were lots of pix of Bush falling off his Segway, but not a one of Kerry with his aquiline nose in the sand.

I wonder why?

Posted by: Theodopoulos Pherecydes at May 4, 2004 at 12:53 AM


I want to ask if he put himself up for a Purple Heart.

Nice one.

Posted by: aaron at May 4, 2004 at 02:17 AM

having just bought a new Trek and launched a cycling blog, I'll give Kerry a pass on falling off his bike. Interesting thing is, he didn't get back on it. Wimp.

By the way, if you are a cyclist and want to contribue to the cycling blog, let me know via the comments feature on the cycling blog.

Posted by: bill at May 4, 2004 at 02:24 AM

I don't care how much he spends on a bike, he can afford it, so what. I don't care if he's not good at or not, at least he's trying to do something he likes. But, looking like that should get you beat up by grade schoolers.

Posted by: aaron at May 4, 2004 at 02:24 AM

" Interesting thing is, he didn't get back on it. Wimp."

Damn. When I was riding my (cheap, used, rusty) bike to grammar school I used to fall down and get back on all the time. That was way before kids had to wear helmets and shin-protectors and all that crap, much less an entire clown suit like that. It's pretty sad when a grown man is outdone by an eleven-year-old girl, especially the eleven-year-old girl I was.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at May 4, 2004 at 05:28 AM

he's not half the eleven year old girl Andrea Harris was

Posted by: Sortelli at May 4, 2004 at 12:14 PM

I was disappointed that he wasn't wearing elbow/knee/chin protection gear...

Also disappointed in how he treated that $5000, you could get like 5 haircuts for that baby!

Posted by: Timothy Lang at May 4, 2004 at 06:04 PM