Velocipede Verses #3: 'Burbing Woes

Updated on May 22, 2020
boxelderred profile image

I'm an avid cyclist who has ridden 20,000+ miles over the past five years. I enjoy sharing the little I know with interested others.

Source

The rules of 'burbing are simple: ride every road in a suburb in a single bike ride. If you add the challenge of "without a map," though, even with those simple rules it can be a difficult task. And then there's the question no one wants to ask or answer:

Um..what happens if you miss a street?

Paddington Burbing

Demonstrative snapshot of a ride called "Paddington Burbing" taken by Freddie Butcher from Sydney, Australia
Demonstrative snapshot of a ride called "Paddington Burbing" taken by Freddie Butcher from Sydney, Australia | Source

'Burbing is a Thing

I think there are probably a lot of riders, like me, who've been 'burbing or doing what amounts to a subset of 'burbing for quite some time. The times have brought out even more 'burbers because the nature of the beast is a relatively long ride that keeps you relatively close to home.

A friend recently shared this article with me and asked if I thought he and I could do it in our small town of Moscow, Idaho in a single day.

We've both looked at it in some detail and I think our agreed-upon assessment is that such a ride is doable, it'd be probably close to 100 miles long (give or take, and depending on how 'efficient' we are, and also depending on how we ultimately define the boundaries) and someday in future we are definitely going to do it.

After reading de Neef's article, "Riding 85 km within 2 km of home: Every street in my suburb without a map," I decided I'd take a page from his training plan and do some practice runs--recce runs as he calls them--in order to better prepare for the big enchilada my buddy and I will do one day. To date I've done two of these "route study" rides.

The first of these was pretty uneventful, took me about an hour to complete, was just a little something I added to my daily ride one day. Thing is, at that point I'd missed while reading de Neef's article the part where he says "no maps allowed."

So when I practiced that first go 'round, I used my Garmin gps in street map mode and I could see where I'd missed a backstreet, side road or alley, and then I backtracked, filled it in and kept on going. That actually saved me from 'gapping' on more than one occasion on that first training ride.

For route study ride #2, which this poem is about, I invested two hours of my life and rode a different, and still relatively small section of Moscow, Idaho. I didn't use a map, and when I finished the route I was anxious to get home and check out the map of my success!

Alas...

And so that's the story of how this poem, #3 in the Velocipede Verses series, was born.

Hope you enjoy it.

'Burbing Woes

I am indignant

Is what I will say

It’s over a map

That ruined my day

I rode and I rode

My bike all around

‘Burbing they call it

It’s mapping your town

The “rules” of ‘burbing

They do not allow

The use of a map

While riding no how

That is the challenge

You ride in the blind

Your only ref’rence

Your keenness of mind

You ride your bike through

All streets on the map

You are so careful

You leave not a gap

It’s like your front teeth

Unnoticed when there

But when one’s missing

All eyes tend to stare

Terrain Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Terrain Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride | Source

So I rode and rode

Just like I have said

Remembered all streets

Up there in my head

Meticulous work

Stopping and going

On straights you go fast

In turns you’re slowing

You zag your way here

You zig your way there

You cover all ground

With utmost of care

Each nook each cranny

Your wheels they must touch

Even back alleys

Though we have nonesuch

What made matters worse

On this given day?

It just kept raining

It rained the whole way!

So ‘magine sir, please

Imagine ma’am too

How you two might feel

If happened to you

What happened to me

On op’ning my app

The route was right there

In red on the map

But also there too

So easy to see

A plain old white line

Where red line should be

I could not believe

That I missed East 5th

It couldn’t be true

So angry! So miffed!

So then I zoomed in

With dif’rent map style

Adjusted my gaze

Blinked, stared for a while

And what do you think

My eyes found right there?

A thing so, so wrong

It caused me despair

I looked at it once

I looked at it twice

I spun my chair ‘round

Then looked at it thrice

I zoomed in some more

Further and further

I thought I just might

Scream bloody murther

What thing made me mad?

What thing was revealed?

I now can say calm

What then I just pealed

That thing in white there

A street it is not!!

You are so confused

It’s a parking lot!!


E. 5th St. looks like a parking lot to me. Especially up close and in person. I rode right by it more than once, didn't know it was going to ruin my 'burbing.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" RideEnlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" RideEnlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" RideEnlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride | Source
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride | Source
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride | Source
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride
Enlarged Satellite Map View of "Route Study #2" Ride | Source

I am indignant

I’ll say it again

And prob’ly will say

‘Til I don’t know when

I’m mad here you know?

I’m frustrated, too!

Do mapmakers think

I’ve naught else to do?

Than ride all around

Repeat performance?

Won’t give it to them

Won’t give conformance

Won’t do it I say

Won’t do it at all

I’m going to fight

I’ll call City Hall!

There must be someone

To whom I can speak

I’ll make a huge ruckus

Some havoc I’ll wreak

Get satisfaction

By golly I will

This thing cannot stand!

I will not sit still!

I’ll complain I’ll whine

I’ll start a protest

I’ll call this thing names

It’s a hoax! Ah yes!

That’s the right thinking

This ain’t my damn fault

I’ll sue someone else

Full frontal assault

Divert attention

Will be my new game

No mistakes made here

I can’t be to blame

My ride was perfect

That’s all I can say

I was just bequeathed

The map in this way

I’m glad that’s settled

I’m content for now

No error from me

No way, no damn how

It’s a deal, you know

And a big one, too

‘Burbers are ruthless

They’ll throw barbs at you

If you miss one street

Street-misser for life

It’ll cause you pain

It’ll cause you strife

Nanny nanny boo

Is what you might hear

You’ve gapped it, my friend

Is a fav’rite jeer

Perfection attained

Perfection achieved

Will keep shame away

You will not be grieved

Which suddenly brings

To mind this one thought

My stance on this thing

Too crazy, too fraught?

Perhaps I could ride

The whole route again

Not raining today

Though there is that wind

But two hours it took

To ride that whole ride

Redo it again?

Should I just abide?

A man of honor

I am I will say

And do it again

Is the only way

I’ll sleep well at night

Content in knowing

I did the right thing

Can then start crowing

About this cool ride

One day that I took

I covered the town

Each cranny each nook

Still, I’m indignant

I’m just so damn mad

Or is it not that

And really I’m sad?

Or maybe it’s both

Some anger, some glum

Came so very close

To being so dumb

Was right on the verge

Of changing the truth

But I think it’s plain

It takes not a sleuth

A ride I will do

Of that be assured

And I’ve just re’lized

What made me be cured

The one here to please?

The would-be jeerer?

'TIs the rider himself

The man in the mirror

Source

Man in the Mirror

Questions & Answers

    © 2020 greg cain

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • FlourishAnyway profile image

        FlourishAnyway 

        3 days ago from USA

        I’ve never heard of burbing but appreciate the education and clever poem. You rose to the challenge with both burbing and the poetry.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        11 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Thanks, William. It's definitely not for everyone, that's for sure. Thanks for stopping by!

      • lifegate profile image

        William Kovacic 

        11 days ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

        I enjoyed the education and the fun poem, Greg. Thanks for sharing. Would I consider it? If I could I would, but I can't so won't. It still sounds like fun though!

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        12 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Thank you, Linda. I think the term itself is newer than the concept, but as you probably gathered, burbing is becoming more of a thing because of the interesting times we live in. I'm glad you stopped by, and glad you enjoyed the poem. Have a great evening!

      • AliciaC profile image

        Linda Crampton 

        12 days ago from British Columbia, Canada

        I've never heard of 'burbing before. I appreciate the education! Your poem is very entertaining.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        12 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Thanks, DreamerMeg. Yes, it was supposed to be a bit Seussy, a bit sassy, just a little bit of fun with some rhyming runs. Walking on an adventure of similar type...now that would be an adventure. On these types of rides it's important to bring food, snacks, water. Might hold true for an extended stroll through the neighborhood(s), too. Be well, and thanks much for taking a read!

      • DreamerMeg profile image

        DreamerMeg 

        12 days ago from Northern Ireland

        Great poem, the style reminds me of Dr Seuss. I had never heard of burbing before but a great bit of exercise for lockdown where you are not supposed to travel far from home! Riding 85 km within 2km of homeis the perfect way to get good exercise without breaking the rules. I must remember that and maybe apply it to walking, as I no longer have a bike.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        13 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Thanks, John. I have put it out there now, so I guess I'm going to have to get 'er done one of these first days. If I do, when I do, I'll post some results right here. Thanks for stopping by today, John!

      • Jodah profile image

        John Hansen 

        13 days ago from Queensland Australia

        Greg, you just introduced me to a new term “burning” too. I like it though. Years ago, when I used to cycle to work in a city called Rockhampton I used to take a different route every day so that may eventually covered most streets in one Suburb.

        Now I do a similar thing walking the dog. We take a different route each day so have explored streets I had never been up before. You have done all in one trip though on your bike. I hope you and your friend do succeed in “burbing ” the whole town of Moscow. Good luck.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        13 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Bill - Thanks for dropping by to check it out. Don't know if you caught the hat tip to your recently altered facial feature or not, but just to be clear: there was inspiration due to that modification.

        I believe the challenge will be a blast once we decide when we're going to do it, how much of Moscow we'll do. I agree with you that Olympia would be a huge challenged, but even sections of it would be worth the effort.

        And as you said, it is a great event for an introvert who doesn't mind spending long monotonous hours with herself/himself.

      • billybuc profile image

        Bill Holland 

        13 days ago from Olympia, WA

        If I rode a bike, and if I wasn't seventy-one years old, I would do this. It strikes me as one of those quirky challenges I would really enjoy. Of course it would take a lifetime to do Olympia but still, it's kind of a cool challenge for an introvert like me.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        13 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Hi Liz - Thanks for the great compliment, it is much appreciated. The term burbing was new to me, too, though the concept of it was one I'd hit upon before, as I said. When you ride the same routes day after day, you start to dream up new milestones to chase, new things to do, new ways of looking at the same old things. So that someone came up with a label for something many others were doing, codified it into existence as a thing, was a pleasant find for me. There is also such thing as Everesting, too, which I've yet to attempt, but it is like the name implies: a rider climbs the equivalent of Mt. Everest elevation in one contiguous ride. It is quite a feat if one can pull it off. I'd imagine lots of fueling would have to be done along the way. Perhaps for me, that is a good reason to attempt it one day. I love to eat! It is why I learned to cook, and is why I ride as much as I can these days...the more I go, the more fuel I need.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        13 days ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        It's beautiful stuff, Shauna. The wind's blowing like you read about here today, so we are not getting benefit from it like we normally do...

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        2 weeks ago from UK

        I hadn't come across burbing before. Now I am much the wiser and hugely entertained by your amusing poem.

      • bravewarrior profile image

        Shauna L Bowling 

        2 weeks ago from Central Florida

        It does smell wonderful. I've got star jasmine growing all along the fence on one side of my house.

      • boxelderred profile imageAUTHOR

        greg cain 

        2 weeks ago from Moscow, Idaho, USA

        Thanks, Shauna! You know, I wouldn’t have known if you hadn’t asked, but yes I believe it is exactly that, a star jasmine. It’s at the end of the culdesac on my street and is always beautiful this time of year. I was concentrating so hard on doing this route right that I forgot to stop and take my daily picture enroute. So, right before I hung up the bike for the day, I stopped and took this photo in front of that tremendous bush. Thanks for letting me know what it is, too! Happy Thursday!

      • bravewarrior profile image

        Shauna L Bowling 

        2 weeks ago from Central Florida

        Love the poem, Greg! You actually rode two hours in the rain? You really are a die-hard!

        In all honesty, East 5th does look like a parking lot. I can see how you missed it. There's always next time, right?

        In the last photo, is that star jasmine that your bike is perched against?

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, letterpile.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)