I’m not sure how I ended up there. Maybe something of his was retweeted and I liked the message and subscribed to the newsletter. Knowing how my mind works I can deduce that sent me to Richard Sach’s website where I found ATMO Bis (it’s not a blog) and became hooked. From there it was on to the interviews. Those sentences are a long way of saying that I’ve been reading a lot of Richard Sachs.
I will never own a Sachs and there is high probability that I will never have the chance to even experience how one of Richard’s frames actually rides, but reading his ATMOs has had the effect of making him one of my favorite cycling writers. Which I’ll take as good enough.
The side effects of all this time spent perusing the 400 word weekly posts during the slow hours at the shop is an increased nostalgia for a time I never experienced (and therefore have no right to feel). It also makes me look at the bikes I’m surrounded by and see them as rubber stamped bicycle that are literally pressed out of a mold. I’m in a room filled with pretty people who have no personalities. They are without a doubt nice, but each Roubaix™ rides like the other Roubaix™s in rack and just like the ones in boxes upstairs.
More importantly reading those back pages is making me think about writing. I have a small desire to one day build my own road frame, but I have no desire to build them for others. Making things with my hands is not for me. What I do want to do however is take Sach’s view of the frame builder as craftsman – not artist – and apply it to my writing life. Writing is a craft, not an art. I see Sachs and his peer group as blue collar workers. Which is how I approach my writing. You show up and do the work you want to be doing. Wake up the next day and repeat.