by Steven K. Roberts Somewhere in North Dakota August 25, 1988 It has been a time of long roads through cornfields, of unexpected happiness in small-town America, of music, sickness, dreams, ham radio, and still nights so hot that there’s relief in the tiny breezes of mosquito wings during final approach. Between New Orleans and…

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Above: the Rebirth jazz band in 1984 (photo by Steven K. Roberts) NOTE: We were in New Orleans July 9-12, 1988, exhibiting the bike and signing copies of Computing Across America at the 107th annual conference of the American Library Association. This little impressionistic story is not about that event, however, but about what happened…

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by Steven K. RobertsLouisville, Las Vegas, Charlotte, Columbus, Dayton, Atlanta…May 19, 1988 An unreal sense of detachment strikes me now, after a half-decade of visceral struggle against wind, gravity, motivation, and (most recently) bus-mechanics. It’s confusing, oddly serene: the sweat on my forehead is an abstract brew of managerial stress and poor ventilation, not the…

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by Steven K. RobertsKey West, FloridaMarch 7, 1988 Ah, tourists. With every street encounter I am distanced further from the picturetaking plague of bustling intruders who descend en masse on every place immortalized in brochures. You can see them in the tour trains, faces turned to follow the amplified prattle of the driver; you can…

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The marvelous drawing above is by Chris Browne, cartoonist of Hagar the Horrible, who hosted us for a couple of days in Sarasota. Another of his illustrations is down the page. In this story, the Computing Across America book is at last published, and we make the transition from bikes to converted school bus… wildly…

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by Steven K. Roberts Titusville, Florida 15,382 miles December 27, 1987 AUGH!! Slow down, reality (or speed up, fingers). I keep adding to both ends of this story from different cities, scrambling it beyond all recognition, trying in vain to keep some kind of perspective. Impossible. What looms as a major event one day is vague…

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The accident described in this story had lifelong implications; it is funny how often something occurs that we don’t recognize at the time as significant. Three decades later, as I add this to the archives, I squirm in pain that is directly traceable to this grisly tale. There was some coverage in the local paper…

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by Steven K. Roberts Cary, North Carolina 14,475 miles November 8, 1987 How’d I get into this, anyway? The movie’s over, and still I sit dully switching the cable between the decadence of music video, the two-dimensional world of late-night soap opera, and the hypnotic criminality of religious broadcasting. I miss Max Headroom. Our host family…

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by Steven K. Roberts Richmond, Virginia 14,241 miles October 28, 1987 At last we have fled the madness of metropolitan DC. Looking back, it seems a marathon — a sort of delirium like those tangled memories of fevers past. For a month we cruised the confusion, working, doing the media dance, visiting new friends and old……

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by Steven K. Roberts Reston, Virginia 13,962 miles October 2, 1987 Yes, we’re still alive. Through the frenzy of the last three weeks, I have opened a half-dozen mini-files, each an aborted attempt at writing this update. Since the Easton story I have lived a year’s worth of adventure and change, with the notion of…

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