Festivus starts way ahead of time for me. I cleaned my apartment for a month, off and on. Did lots of spreading the word. Set up a preride for guests that wanted to arrive organically. Bought food and drink. (Part of the formula for frestivus is get the cheapest beer and the cheapest wine at each store I shop at regularly to put out at the event.) Not saying I got it all right, but there was plenty there. Then I started the cooking cycle by harvesting these collards from my garden.



Cooked up collards three different ways. Not going to say they were that popular with the guests, but my goal was to give them something that was pure local sunlight, and lots of people tried at least one of those dishes. Happy to be eating the leftovers. I like collards a lot.

Then at the last minute Mother Nature threw me a curve ball. Rain starting at 5 PM and going until morning. The pre ride was canceled. I was in total suspense about who would show up. What if all that shopping and all that cooking was for nothing?

     

Turns out I didn't have to worry.

  

There was plenty of eating, drinking, smoking, and talking. Soon enough it was time to pass around the pole and share our grievances.

Kincaid's grievance was all the stuff in bike lanes. Sometimes it's cars, sometimes it's debris, sometimes it's just leaves and puddles. Please report serial offenders and be careful out there!

        

One of my goals was not to obstruct the proceedings, so I just got one decent picture (meaning exposure and focus were good enough) of most of the participants. Sorry if this isn't how you want to be remembered! My goal is to share the real experience while moving forward together.

        

        

One of these people was the first one to plead the fifth.

Daniel was grateful for all the people that came on bikes or by transit. Such awesome feats of strength.

           

Toby's grievance is the political system. He wants more Ghandi and less Machiavelli. Why do so many voters seem to want something even worse?

Boone was totally surprised by the sudden closing of streets to cars during COVID-19. It's so great that the change is hanging around in places like downtown Mountain View.

Amy wishes trash cans parked in the bike lane were easier to see. How hard can it be to add a dayglo reflective stripe around the thing?



Nat needs more bike parking. There should be plenty of bike parking everywhere people congregate! And good bike parking, not racks so close to buildings they can't be used.

           

Eleni wishes she didn't have to see fifteen more movies to understand the jokes she's heard in the last year. She listed off some of the ones she'd missed to date, but the list was long and I forgot it.

Alex finds too many new ebikers are going out on the road carelessly. Keep power in control!

           

Ann is worried that spending too much time on social media is turning our brains to mush. She plans to be offline more in 2024.

Isabella finds it a tough grind to be poor. Always some problem to deal with! Never enough money!

Erik thinks "We should convert more service roads along our creeks and channels to walking and biking trails. We have a nice untapped resource there."

     



Robs grievance is the same thing it is every year. We need better relationships between cars and bikes.

           

Stephanie thinks that anybody who works full time should be able to afford a place to live. Her grievance is that too many people who should be able to afford homes can't.

        

Matt thinks that insulin prices are too high. No way should people have to make such tough choices about what to pay for. The stuff isn't that expensive to make.

After that everybody who wanted to and quite a few others as well had said something. Even Meatball took a turn. Probably Lloyd was the only one to escape the opportunity. Didn't realize until I couldn't find a picture of him with the pole. Talked to him about it. He said "Stephanie speaks for me."

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This picture was copied from Matt Sparks. He also took video of some of the speakers which I drew from making captions above. Thank you Matt!

     

After that we just had a good time until the security guy came around and asked us to clean up and turn out the lights, because it was late.

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