Posted by: facetothewind | May 30, 2014

One bag. One book. One way.

One bag. One book. Zip zip, ah!

My summer home and my summer reading…Zip zip, ah!

As a cyclist, when the temperatures in Arizona reach the century mark, my life becomes very, very small. It becomes after some weeks, like being under house arrest. But Sunday I leave on the evening train to San Francisco where I begin my round-the-world adventure to celebrate my own half-century of life. The journey will take me half way around the world ending in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. And all on one way tickets.

Why one way? Living outside the United States has been burning like a fever in me for a couple years. The country’s priorities of guns, god, and greed are all in disagreement with my own values. It’s a country out of balance and on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Below is a brief and very abridged photo essay of my discontent. Please note that I don’t hate fat people. But America’s obesity is a  glaring sign of its excess and imbalance. And I don’t hate America, either. It’s a beautiful country that has lost its way and I cannot fix it. I can only get out of the way before getting trampled.

You’ll notice some snapshots from the gay geo-social app, Grindr, below. This is the next generation of gay men, folks.

Click each photo to enlarge and read the captions.


Just a few hours after posting the above blog entry, I was cycling home from dinner downtown. The energy downtown was very off. There were a lot of angry skateboard punks screaming and stomping on things to make noise and intimidate people. So I took off looking forward to a nice ride home in the warm evening. A mile from my house, it was 11:10 pm and I heard loud popping noises and looked to my left into the dark dry river bed I was riding alongside to see orange bursts of fire coming out of the barrel of a gun pointed at me. Some crazy person was camped out in the middle of the river bed taking shots at cyclists riding by. I heard multiple shots. It took me a couple seconds to realize that they were shooting at me and my bike light was the visible target in the darkness. So I quickly switched off my light and cycled fast in the pitch darkness to a bridge to call the police. They brought in the helicopter with the search lights but it was 15 minutes by the time they got there and so I don’t think they apprehended anyone. The officer told me it was not the first time some crazed gunman had been hiding out in the bushes in the dry river bed taking potshots at passersby.

So today I’m lucky to be alive. That was probably the closest call to death that I’ve experienced thus far in my life. And ironically it happened just after posting that guns are big factor in my wanting to leave the US. Do I think I invited it by the posting above? Nah. Do I think it was the confirmation that my decision to spend as much time as possible outside of this violent country is the right one? Yes.




  1. ❤ Take care ❤

  2. Let’s face it; the country is fucked. And after what happened to you last night on your way home?? No wonder you’re becoming an expat. Wish I could do likewise.

    Eight more years till Tim retires. Then we can go. Let’s hope we’re allowed out of the police state by then.

  3. I love this blog post title for a book. Your book! One bag. One book. One way. Great!

    Bon voyage… T

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