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About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

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Posts Tagged “bike”

Rainy Days, Wet Bikes

My parents gave me a bike for my birthday when I was a sophomore, and I love it! Living in the Apartment Village (and University Terrace this summer) meant a slightly longer walk, so a bike helps me get to class on time in the mornings. (Note that Butler’s campus is pretty small, so my “longer walk” suffers in comparison to, say, my cousin’s 20 min commute at a different school.)

Last night I had a leadership team meeting for the Butler Catholic Community, then a call-out meeting for Bulldogs Against Breast Cancer. It has been drizzling all afternoon, and the skies started up again once I unlocked my bike. Riding back in the rain is not the most pleasant experience. I have to squint like mad to keep the water out of my eyes. Also, I whacked my head on the underside of a bed frame on Monday — trying to get something from under there — and I have a nice bruise that makes squinting uncomfortable.

Battle wound. I'm slowly getting a lovely black eye.

Anyway, all this rain/bike reminiscing reminded me of the video I made when I was a sophomore. I posted this on my old blog, but since that’s now tragically lost I suppose I can show you again. I watched it again and winced from the goofiness of it. Oh well. Enjoy! Or not, I guess that’s your call.

YouTube Preview Image

Art scholarship is cool

Art scholarship is cool. I had never really given it much thought, though I always enjoyed my trips to the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The IMA is quite close to Butler’s campus, and I rode my bike there for the BSI event I attended last Thursday afternoon. Close proximity to a free art museum is one of the many perks of attending Butler University… (nudgenudge, I’m winking at you, prospective students whom I saw touring today in the Atherton basement. I was the one in the flowered dress smiling at you when the guide mentioned the ATM I was using.)

Anyway, for the IMA program a guide / art scholar gave a short talk; we then split into groups of threes and fours to make our way through a selection of six contemporary works of art. At each work, we wrote our initial impressions, research questions, technology connections, and queries for the artist. Afterward we regrouped, discussed, and were given ticket vouchers to attend some of the special exhibits.

Art scholarship can be cool. I never really felt engaged with artwork before, but the simple exercises we did have me raring to return and think more carefully about the work displayed. Thank you, BSI/IMA, for helping unravel the mystery of visual art.

When we reemerged after the program, the rain hurled itself to the earth not in drops but in bucket-sized sections. Biking home via the canal path? Even if my brakes worked while wet, the rain would reduce visibility too much. A fellow Butler student was kind enough to give me a ride home. We were soaked even from the short run from IMA lobby to door.

The rain abated, and the next day my roommate dropped me off at the IMA. (One can walk, though it takes a bit longer.) I biked back, though not before puzzling over the gift someone left for me.

(I just spent 45 minutes figuring out how to transfer this picture from my phone to my computer. Appreciate it.)

I found a fruit bar, apple, unopened, and squished from my bungee cord attached to the back of my bike. I poked it, and nothing exploded. Someone must have left it there overnight. But why?

This is a mystery I fear we shall never solve. The fruit bar is still on my desk, a week later. I somehow don’t want to eat it, but since it’s unopened I haven’t the heart to throw it out.

How to fix a bike; or, The kindness of Butler fans

Use a hammer and some pliers and bang on it pathetically until the sprocket evens out enough to slip the chain back on.

Alternately, one could do the above near a bike rack in the Apartment Village during the Butler football game. (If the Apartment Village were any closer to the Butler Bowl, they’d be playing football in the kitchens.) One student had his family with him, and the father was cooking hot dogs on a portable grill (so cool–I’ll get a George Foreman or something like this one day). He immediately offered to help.

“Oh, thank you,” I said, “but if you just tell me what to do, I can do it.” I held up my hands: They were covered with grease stains.

“No, no,” he said. Whereupon he flipped the bike over, told his son to run into the apartment to get paper towels, and stretched his hand out for the hammer. Bless him.

When we were done straightening the sprocket and coaxing the chain back through all the various loops, I took it for an experimental lap around the Apartment Village. The Butler student, his mother, and his father were eating hot dogs and watching the Butler Bowl action from the grassy area near the bike rack when I returned. I gave a triumphant thumbs-up and thanked the family profusely.

“No problem,” the father said. “Would you like a hot dog?”

No, but thank you. Butler bulldogs. They never let  you down.

How to avoid bicycle collisions

Ride on the right!

I am sad to inform you that one Butler student did not get this message. Instead of riding on the right side of the road, and thus cutting a wide curve when turning into a parking lot, she chose to cut straight across into the left lane, where she promptly crashed into me as I rode on my own bicycle. I thanked my lucky stars I’d been wearing tennis shoes. It’s now almost a week past, and I’m pretty well healed.

I had been minding my own business, pedaling merrily along the right side of the right lane in the Clowes parking lot, about to turn up onto the sidewalk to continue on to my apartment. Suddenly, descending like a particle-like object as its vertical velocity component plunges farther into the negative numbers (physics 14 – Olivia 15), another rider whipped around the parked car that was blocking my right-hand view. Coming down a little hill and from out of nowhere, she made several attempts to avoid me as I did the same. Time slooooowed…

Then we locked handle-bars, I on the left and she on the right, and WOUMPH–clatter! Thrown to the ground.

The first thing I did was stand hurriedly. Hands: bleeding but functional. Head: didn’t even hit the ground. Knees: banged up–going to cause my left knee to click and swell for the next few days. Shins: bruised and scratched. Ankles: a little tweak on the left. “Are you okay?” we both explode simultaneously.

“Yes, yes. Are you okay?”

“I’m fine.”

“I’m sorry!”

“I’m sorry. Are you okay?”

“No, no, I’m fine; I’m sorry. How’s your bike?”

“I think it’s fine. I’m sorry!”

“Are you sure you’re okay?”

We were in this state of shock for a few minutes, standing our bikes up and looking mournfully at slipped chains and bloody knees. At least, I looked mournfully at my bloodly knees; the other was wearing jeans and seemed to have sustained no injury. “I’m a dance major!” I wanted to say, but by then she was hopping onto her functional bike.

“I’m sorry. I have to go to class!”

She rode away, while I wheeled my bike up the hill to the Apartment Village. The sprocket was bent and the chain slipped all over the place, and I wanted nothing more than to wash the mess off my legs and ice my ankle.  It was only when I walked my bike up the hill that I realized, “Hey! That wasn’t my fault.”

Darn bikers who don’t follow the traffic pattern. Ride on the right!


Here’s a good–if rather sensationalist–page with some bike safety tips. It’s less “ride with reflectors and a helmet” and more “these are common accidents and how one can avoid them with lane placement.”

P.S. Isn’t my picture lovely? I was studying in Jordan Hall the Sunday before the bike accident.