Professor, writer, and expedition cyclist.
I am a member of the Department of Philosophy and Chair of Cognitive Science at Williams College. I've toured and raced bikes the world over, most recently in Central America, South Africa, Greece.
New York City
- May 1, 2015
Familiar enough, meet a friend to talk bikes, great cycling trips, heroic riders. But chatting with David is something else entirely.
- 10April 21, 2015
J and I only have a couple of days left before we leave, so I’ve proposed something dead easy, maybe relaxing, a little scenic: we’ll resupply, pedal out to Kane Creek Canyon, spend the night, then curl around Behind the Rocks to return to town via Pritchett Canyon.
- 6April 18, 2015
Can’t say how many times I’ve ridden this trail. But never in this light, the breathless excitement of fatigue and the end of our food, never with the whole desert rock sand cliff dusk warping wrapping around us like a well told fairytale.
- 8November 18, 2011
I did not want to go to Cusco and backtrack, nor did I find the usual way aesthetically appealing at all. I contemplated skipping it altogether.
- 3November 24, 2010
1988: We were simultaneously conceiving and articulating and inventing the constraints of our ambitions, our florid naivete and ignorance so deep that it swallowed even the possibility of a suspicion that there were crucial things we didn’t know.
- 5August 22, 2009
In 2006 and 2007 I raced road and mountain bikes in Pakistan, first as a member of an American team and then on a Canadian/American composite team. The races were to keep world attention on the devastating earthquake that struck the north of the country on 8 October 2005.
- 18August 6, 2012
This is the gear that I had at the end of traveling in South America.
- 36November 13, 2011
Here’s what I think after two months riding the Pugsley in South America. It’s perfect, ideal, optimal, I wouldn’t for a second pack another bike if I was packing tonight.
- 24July 14, 2011
Okay, so you’re going to tour on your road bike. That’s a great idea. How do you carry your stuff?
- January 20, 2014
Nearly sixty miles on dirt today. Pre sunset I sit in front of a tienda sipping another coke, sideways conscious of my vacant look.
- December 24, 2013
Christophe Noel at Expedition Portal—a terrific source of inspiration for wheeled adventuring world-wide—was generous enough to interview me on bicycle travel.
- April 2, 2012
Tremble frigid, but thinking it in unfluid blocks stumbles far short of the cutting, the blades in your lungs, the warning away pain and strain in moving such that a warm pocket in your clothes might bellows inhale the cold. Exit the car when there is enough activity to confirm ten minutes to go, the way it always is before a race, even one that you didn’t conceptualize as it but instead as something perpendicular with a built in urgency…
- January 15, 2012
A long climb at the end of a long day. You knew it was coming, thought about stopping just before it and tackling it fresh in the morning but there are more hours of daylight so you accept the slopes. You left at maybe nine, it’s eight forty five. A half hour for lunch, a few chats, 20 minutes sitting in the early evening just to listen to the sounds. After a steep loose wet switchback you stop, you’re trembling but it’s not cold, in fact you’re sweating arms slick. But it’s colder than you think, your piss is steaming. And your breath. You’re in no danger of falling down really but you’re unsteady on your feet …
- November 16, 2011
I have two hand-drawn maps, one on paper towel, one on a child’s ruled notebook paper, reassuringly they agree in spite of their wildly divergent styles, I memorized them over dinner last night…
- October 3, 2011
You walk in, there are four or five tables. You don’t necessarily get your own, you just find an open spot, perhaps people rotate around and bring in a chair to make room for you…
- January 31, 2011
I arrived in Cairo, a lone cyclist pedaling into a metropolis, on the evening of 28 January, 2011 at the end of a tour of the western oasis circuit from Luxor. From the warnings of local contacts I knew that I should keep vigilant. The city — indeed much of Egypt — was rising to a new pitch in the protest against the government. Today, Friday, a day off work and a day of consultation after prayer, was expected to be a turning point, and it was. By now the world knows of the events on that day from television images of burning and overturned police tactical vehicles, teargas braving mobs, rocks against rubber bullets and water canons, allegations of live fire in some cases, and tanks rolling across urban bridges and through downtown streets…
- December 8, 2009
Holy shit, went to a wedding last night, and it was insane and wonderful. Three of us — Sunil, his cousin, and I (Raju had to work) — took a cycle rickshaw uptown, stopping on the way due to the incredibly dense traffic and to get beetlenut. Of course, my mouth immediately filled with blood red saliva…