Rereading the posts about David and Curtis, I realized there was someone else to acknowledge. I met Tim shortly before meeting Curtis and David. Tim was a journalist, writing for the underground newspaper Kaleidoscope. When editor Mark Knops went to jail for contempt when he refused to disclose sources for a story on the New Year’s Gang (which bombed the Army Math Research Center on the UW campus), the paper morphed into Takeover. Tim wrote for that paper until there was a split in the staff and he was part of the group which started the King Street Trolley, which later became freeforall.
(Among Takeover’s exploits was a front page when Paul Soglin was first elected mayor. The headline read: “Red Mayor Elected: Thousands Flee Lake City”. V.I. Lenin was pictured wearing a “Soglinovitch” button. They also published a special double issue. Viewed from one side it was a parody of the Wisconsin State Journal [the AM Republican newspaper]. From the other side it was a parody of the Capital Times [the PM Democratic newspaper].)
But that’s not why I’m writing about Tim here. Tim never owned a car. To the best of my knowledge, he didn’t ever drive one. Tim’s bike was not a toy or a hobby. It was his primary means of transportation. He served on various city committees and commissions helping to represent the interests of bicyclists.
If you look up “curmudgeon” you might find a picture of Tim. He referred to cars as “deathmobiles”. He was once the editor of the Wisconsin Bicycle Federation newsletter but they moved him out to bring in a more moderate voice. Tim was the person who raised issues others were afraid to raise and spoke in terms others were afraid to use. I don’t think he worried about alienating others very often.
When he edited the Bike Fed newsletter, he once pulled up next to me at a stoplight on a snowy evening. My son was on the trailerbike behind me and my daughter in the trailer behind that. Tim asked my son if he was cold. (He wasn’t.) He then asked if he could take a picture of us to use in an article he wanted to write on bike commuting. The caption would read, “What’s your excuse?” (PS Both of my kids still ride for transportation – my son got his driver’s license just before he turned 24. My daughter doesn’t have one, but is only 21.)
Tim died June 26, 2017.