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Humans are funny animals. Our huge brains allow us to do so many things on this planet. Some are great and some are not so great. Our innate need to control our surroundings and experiences is not lost on me. I try to appreciate the wildness in our world as much as I can, probably because I see so little love for the natural world that existed long before our time as homo sapiens (and will continue to balance itself out after our time). Saying hello to the birds in the morning, watching a spider walk across a screen, or admiring a giant twisting monstera plant as it stretches for the sun are all things I do regularly.

My grandfather was a farmer who was known to be incredibly handy. He had a medium-sized farm in Iowa where he had to be able to fix anything that broke and he did. I still have his rusty steel anvil in my shop today. Both of my parents charted their unique paths as organic farmers and carpenters in the world and I am grateful to have learned from them that I don’t have to follow a “normal” path in this world. I think about my sense of style in how I solve problems, make tools, and create relationships with the things around me and I am happy to be different.

“Comparision is the thief of joy” is real and as I scroll social media I see other framebuilders who seem to build in surgically clean shops with machine-like welds on polished metal tubes. There are many amazing bicycles in the world and just as many ways to put them together. Seeing other ways to create can be inspiring and helps me evolve my own process at the bench and as a one-person┬ábusiness. I am my own sometimes twisted plant growing towards the sun. My soil is rich and I try to keep it fed with the things that keep me growing.

Ira Ryan

Author Ira Ryan

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