90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Bicycling Across America

Biking coast to coast. It’s on a lot of bucket lists. Bruce Weber did it. He brings us his tale of 4000 miles.

Bruce Weber biked across the United States. His new book, "Life is a Wheel," narrates that journey. (Marcus Yam)

New York Times obituary writer Bruce Weber biked across the United States. His new book, “Life is a Wheel,” narrates that journey. (Marcus Yam)

If you’ve dreamed about bicycling across the United States, get in line.  It’s on a lot of wish lists, bucket lists, to-do lists.  Of course, most people don’t.  Coast to coast is a long way.  There are mountains and very wide prairies and wind and rain and eighteen wheelers out there.  But still, every summer, people do it.  Bruce Weber did it.  He’s an obituary writer.  And one day, all the writing about death and sitting around to do it just got to be too much.  He pulled out the bike.  And rode.  Four thousand miles.  Coast to coast.  Sweating.  Searching.  This hour On Point:  Life and death and bicycling across America.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

David Howard, executive editor at Bicycling magazine. (@davehoward99)

Bruce Weber, obituary writer for the New York Times. Author of the new book, “Life is a Wheel: Life, Death, Etc., and a Bike Ride Across America.” Also author of “As They See ‘Em: A Fan’s Travels in the Land of Umpires” and “Savion! My Life in Tap.” (@nytbruceweber)

Ellen Russell-Gage, dispacther in the Liberty County, MT Sheriff’s Department.

From Tom’s Reading List

New York Times: One Man, Two Wheels, 4,122 Miles — “A man in the grip of a midlife crisis often gets himself a new set of wheels: a Porsche or a Jaguar or a Mustang convertible. But at 57, Bruce Weber, the author of the memoir and travelogue ‘Life Is a Wheel,’ opted for a different vehicle, a shiny red custom-made titanium bicycle, which he resolved to ride from the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic.”

Charlotte Observer: Book review: ‘Life is a Wheel’ — “Unlike most of you, however, Weber has no spouse, no kids, no place of worship, no ball-and-chain cramping his style. A confirmed New York bachelor, he enjoys freedom to take an adventure most of us can only dream about: a four-month-long, coast-to-coast bike ride. Weber’s travel diary, ‘Life is a Wheel,’ originally appeared as a series of blog posts for the New York Times, where he has worked for more than 25 years. Not merely a chronicle of a 3,600-mile bike ride, it’s as much an exhibition of the cyclist’s emotional state, booby-trapped with lifelong anxieties.”

Minneapolis Star Tribune: REVIEW: ‘Life Is a Wheel: Love, Death, Etc., and a Bike Ride Across America,’ by Bruce Weber – “The title itself has kind of a rambling feel to it and aptly reflects the tone of the memoir. There are no revelatory scenes or great surprises along the way. There is equal space given to the cycling details of the ride, Weber’s reflections on his family and his life in journalism, and daily scenes of the United States, where he finds his sense of patriotism fired up. ”

Read An Excerpt Of “Life Is a Wheel” By Bruce Weber

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Oct 1, 2014
Pro-democracy protesters hold umbrellas under heavy rain in a main street near the government headquarters in Hong Kong late Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. The protesters demanded that Hong Kong's top leader meet with them on Tuesday and threatened wider actions if he did not, after he said China would not budge in its decision to limit voting reforms in the Asian financial hub. (AP)

China, democracy and Hong Kong. They’re in the streets in Hong Kong with their “Umbrella Revolution.” What now?

Oct 1, 2014
Actress Eva Longoria, center, Henry R. Munoz III, co-founder of the Latino Victory Project, left, and Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, are seated at an event launching The Latino Victory Project, a Latino political action committee, at the National Press Club in Washington, Monday, May 5, 2014. (AP)

Latino America. It is very large and growing very fast. How will it move the country?

RECENT
SHOWS
Sep 30, 2014
In this Jan. 15, 2013, photo, Rosser Pryor, Co-owner and President of Factory Automation Systems, examines a new high-performance industrial robot at the company's Atlanta facility.  (AP)

Nicholas Carr says automation, all over, is turning us into zombies. Out of touch with the world. He’s with us.

 
Sep 30, 2014
St. Louis county police officers advance on protestors trying to shut down Interstate 70 in Berkeley, Mo. on Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014 near the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Mo. where Michael Brown, an unarmed, black 18-year old was shot and killed by a white police officer on Aug. 9. (AP)

Police shootings, cop culture, body cameras. And the big debate over how to protect the public and the police.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Transcript: Taking A Close Look At America’s Police Force
Wednesday, Oct 1, 2014

A partial transcript of our panel conversation with experts on the modern American police force.

More »
Comment
 
Transcript: Peter Thiel Wants Us All To Go From ‘Zero To One’
Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014

Entrepreneur Peter Thiel on innovation, technological failure and humanity’s uncertain future.

More »
Comment
 
Transcript: Sexual Violence Under ISIS Control
Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014

A transcript from our September 25, 2014 conversation on the Islamic State and sexual violence.

More »
Comment