The Puzzled Cyclist by Tom Dorigatti Amazing Cool Cycling Book
6" x 9" (15.24 x 22.86 cm), 168 pages
Serious Fun for Serious Cyclists. Puzzles, Scrambles, Word Searches, Trivia, and Brain Teasers. Includes informative narratives on bicycling history, events, and personalities.
About the Author
Tom Dorigatti has been passionate about many things during his lifetime. Tom’s books really came about as a result of his being an avid archer and Bow hunter for over 50 years. He has been hunting with a bow and arrow since he was 10 years old, starting with rudimentary equipment, moving up to recurved hunting bows and finally on to refined target equipment in the late 1960’s. Bow hunting was Tom’s primary objective, but target archery quickly took a front seat for the times when the hunting season wasn’t open. Tom has been a member of the National Field Archery Association (NFAA) for 44 years and has actively participated in tournaments or on ranges in no fewer than 37 of the contiguous United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the Azores. He has also been involved in managing archery leagues and tournaments up to and including NFAA Sectional level events. He is an NFAA Certified coach and a Level II NAA Coach as well.
Tom has an Associate of Arts degree in Secondary education, a Bachelor of Arts Degree, with majors in Secondary Education and biology with minors in Physical Science and French. In addition, Tom holds a Master’s Degree in Teaching and Leadership. He also served in the United States Air Force as an Instructor Navigator and Standardization/Evaluation navigator in the KC-135A jet refueling tanker for the Strategic Air Command. He has 22 years experience in private industry as an instructor, manager, quality assurance manager, budgeting, and computer systems manager. In addition, Tom has 10 years’ classroom teaching experience in public schools both junior high and high school in subjects ranging from biology, physical science, French, applied science, human anatomy & physiology, and earth science.
Tom has written numerous articles for Archery Focus Magazine, US & International Archer, and has also written a few articles for The Glade. He has created puzzles for the above magazines and also for local cycling club newsletters. Tom is the author of two previous books, The Puzzled Archer and ProActive Archery. He hopes to offer more books of puzzles relating to archery and cycling in the very near future.
Tom is also heavily involved in exercising and maintaining physical fitness. His greatest involvement is in competitive racquetball, and long distance road bicycling. Tom has logged over 30,000 miles the past 6 years on his road bicycles, and has logged 7,300 and 6,600 miles the past two years alone. He has taken week-long bicycling tours in Colorado, Georgia, Florida, Wyoming, and Wisconsin. During the riding season, during periods of good weather, you will find Tom and his riding companions out on the rural roads in Illinois. In the afternoons, you will find Tom at the local archery range, either indoors our outdoors, or during inclement weather, on the racquetball court.
The Author’s Cycling History
--Cycling, yet another passion; the Starts and the Stops
When I was growing up, learning to ride a bicycle was a most memorable task. I still have vivid memories of the many falls, scrapes, bumps, and bruises. My first bicycle was a 24” Hawthorne that was way too big and heavy for me. I remember my father putting 2x4 blocks on each side of the puzzle so that I could reach the pedals. He tried training wheels, but those seemed to make my many falls worse, so off came the training wheels. This bicycle had a New Departure coaster brake system on it, and I can well remember just how difficult it was to pedal this big, heavy bicycle. Ultimately, my big break in learning to ride a bicycle came when a girl down the street offered me her 16” Schwinn bicycle to try out. I could easily reach the pedals on this bike, it wasn’t heavy, and it didn’t have that cross bar for me to have to try to get my short legs over in order to get onto the thing to get it going. In addition, the girl’s Schwinn had a Bendix coaster brake setup on it and was far easier to pedal than my albatross Hawthorne. I got on that Schwinn without any effort and took right of without incident! Magic had happened and I now knew how to ride a bike! I rode her bike many hours that day, and later on, got on that heavy Hawthorne and also took right off on it too! A few months later, I started a paper route that I would have for the next 9 years. It required me to ride my bicycle to get the job done every morning, seven days a week 365 days a year. My Hawthorne was my only bicycle for another couple of years.
My mother was a WWII English war-bride. She and my father were married in England shortly after the conclusion of the War in 1945. She came to the United States in 1946. For her, riding a bicycle was a way of life and she too had to use the bicycle as her only source of transportation. She was instrumental in my passion for riding bicycles and the impetus for getting that beloved “English racer”; if my mother had one, then why shouldn’t I also have one? In the mid-1950’s, the English Hercules 3-speed bicycles made a smash hit in our hometown. We had to order them through Montgomery Wards and wait several weeks to get them. The store only stocked one bike at a time. Many of the kids I rode with got these shiny new “English race bikes”. They were really touring bikes, but we kids didn’t know any better and since they rode faster and easier, we called them “English Racers”. They had lots of chrome, and the great saddle was comfy; it had tons of springs underneath the leather. The bike had a saddle bag with tools in it, and best of all, it even had a “Dynamo” that you could engage on the front wheel and you had a bicycle light that got brighter the faster you went. It even came with a chromed tire pump, too! It only came in 3 colors, Red, Green, and Black. None of the kids I knew had a black one, however. Most were Red. I cannot remember the price of the bicycle, but I do remember that my parents told me that if I wanted a Hercules, then I had to save up the money to purchase one from Montgomery Wards. Two years later, I had enough money to buy myself that beautiful red Hercules 3-speed bicycle. However, that was my fun bike because the skinny tires and the fact that a race bike wasn’t intended for heavy duty work like hauling around newspapers would restrict its use to road riding and going on trips of varying distances.
The other problem was that many of the roads that were on the paper route weren’t paved. Soft dirt and gravel and those skinny tires did not mix, ha! I found out that I needed a spare bicycle for my paper route, because when my Hawthorne broke down, walking the paper route in the mornings would make me late for school. A neighbor lady saw my plight and had me come over to her shed and dig out her son’s old bicycle that had been in that shed for who knows how long. It wasn’t in bad shape at all; it simply needed a good scrubbing and cleaning and it was perfectly serviceable. It was an old, ancient, red Roll Fast bicycle, and it also had a Bendix coaster brake system on it. This bike was far easier to pedal than my New Departure Hawthorne, so it quickly became my primary paper route and trail riding bicycle. Then, one cold Sunday morning, I had the bike loaded down with nearly 100 pounds of newspapers, and while trying to pedal up one of the hills, I heard a loud snap in the frame. The weld for the down tube where it connected to the bottom bracket had completely broken. I was able to finish the paper route that day. I took it to my uncle that had a welding unit and he did attempt to re-weld the joint, but after only a few days, that weld broke too. I had to ride the hated Hawthorne again for my paper route for a few weeks until I managed to find a red middle weight bicycle that had a Bendix coaster brake system on it and was much easier to ride and manage that the heavy Hawthorne. It was on sale, and I had enough money in my bank account to purchase it. I rode that bicycle for my paper routes and dirt trail riding until I was into college, finally parting with that bike in 1969.
From that time on, until 2006, I probably didn’t ride a bicycle for a total of more than 100 miles, if that. I rode with my kids around the block on a 3-speed Sears bicycle that I picked up for $25 as something to go around on with the kids. I sold that bicycle around 1994 so we didn’t have to haul it in the moving van from New York State to Illinois.
I got back into riding again on a simple request from a close friend, Dennis Sans. Dennis and I taught together at the local high school. When Dennis retired, he was looking for something to do and he went out and bought a road bicycle. He asked me if I’d ever done any cycling, and I told him some of the above story. He asked me if I would join him in some “short” road cycling rides. I figured that I had nothing to lose by trying, so, I went to the bike shop, got fitted up for a shiny new 9-speed triple Raleigh road bicycle with Shimano 105 components. I remember telling the salesman that I probably would only be doing 10-15 miles at the most on any one ride, so didn’t need a really expensive road bike. He had a funny smile on his face, but his non-verbal communication didn’t register at the time. Little did I know at the time how passionate I was about to become with road bicycling. Jeremy sold me exactly what I was asking for and didn’t pressure me into anything more expensive; he didn’t really have to. After only a few short months, I had joined the local bike club and found a group of people to ride with in the mornings. By mid-October, I had logged over 3,000 miles on that blue monster. My friends, however all had fancier, and lighter bicycles, so I had to get me something better. I ended up with my 2nd roadie bike, this time a Raleigh Cadent IV triple with a steel frame, and yes, red in color, but with carbon forks and tail section. It, too, had Shimano 105 components on it. I finished out the season on that bicycle and went well into the next spring and summer with the Raleigh. Then, one fine morning, I had occasion to ride my friend’s all Carbon Specialized Roubaix bicycle with Ultegra components on it. In a matter of only 2 miles of riding, I was hooked! I ordered up a newer model Specialized Roubaix Expert Triple with Ultegra components and couldn’t be happier with that bicycle. It is basically black, but has red logos on it, and I also normally ride with RED tires on the bike, too. What is with this “red” on my bikes thing, anyways? I’ve logged over 22,000 miles on that bicycle and counting. Of course, a person that rides this much needs a “spare” bicycle, correct? So, a few years ago, I purchased a backup bicycle, an Orbea Onyx compact double, and yes, back to RED again, ha. It is also all carbon, but has “only” SRAM Rival components on it. It is a great bicycle, but I don’t take it on the week-long rides or on rides where there is a lot of hill climbing to do, ha.
Our cycling group, besides riding most every day of the week, also will take week-long cycling trips that start in various locations around the country. We’ve been to Florida (3 times), Georgia, and Wisconsin (twice), Wyoming, and Colorado (twice). The group of people I ride with regularly is always looking for new roads to ride and new places to go for week-long tours. Who knows where the next cycling season will take us? We are the “Pie Power”, L. S. D. riders (Long, Slow, Distance) that “Ride to Eat”
The Puzzled Cyclist by Tom Dorigatti Amazing Cool Cycling Book