“Always plan for assholes” – A cycling parable from Dingo the Clown

Dingo’s son Bruce growing up on a tall bike.
(Photo: Dingo the Clown)

Years ago there was a special place on Northeast Alberta known as the Clown House. It was a place where a merry band of bicycle-inspired entertainers would perform all types of wonderful feats during Last Thursday — from tall bike jousts to mud wrestling and mini-bike races. In the middle of the shenanigans was always Dingo the Clown

Dingo at the 2014 Pedalpalooza Kickoff Ride.
(Photo © J. Maus/BikePortland)

The Clown House Era ended in 2007, but Dingo has continued his clowning ways. He’s now a professional with his partner Olive and the dynamic, tall bike-riding duo stay busy entertaining kids and adults at parties and events citywide.

Riding a tall bike dressed as a clown for so many years has given Dingo a unique perspective on life, as illustrated by this story he shared on Facebook recently:

Last week we were riding tall bikes with our 14-year-old son. He got to see something unusual. He grew up on my tall bike but only recently started bike riding long distance with us on his own tall bike. For the most part he had to get used to folks cheering at us a lot. Well on this evening my bike light fell off the handlebars. I blame the butterfingers who installed it (myself). Our kid pulled over to pick it up for me but had to wait for a passing car. To his horror the car deliberately swerved a tire to the center of the road and atomized my light. Then it sped off leaving my light shattered into a million pieces.

He was freaked out. “Dad that car went out of it’s way to kill your light. What are you gonna do?”

I was smiling the whole time. “I’m gonna do what I always do.” and I pulled out an identical light with a sturdier strap, attached it without dismounting and clicked it on “Always plan for assholes son.” He just rode for a while silently smiling.

Thanks for letting me share this Dingo!

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and [email protected]
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