April 19, 2013 marks the 70th Anniversary of Bicycle Day. On April 16, 1943, Swiss scientist Albert Hofmann, while attempting to create a respiratory and circulatory stimulant accidentally absorbed a small amount of the drug through his fingertips which is now known as the first “Acid Trip.” During his first 2 hour experience with LSD, he experienced anxiety, believed his next-door neighbor was a witch, thought he was going insane, and experienced exceptional changes in perception of reality with visuals such as kaleidoscopic images, shapes and colors.
Since motor vehicles were prohibited due to wartime restrictions, Hofmann had his lab assistant escort him home on a bicycle. Hofmann then decided to intentionally experiment with the drug and did so for the first time on April 19, 1943. This date was chosen in 1985 by Thomas Roberts, former Professor of Northern Illinois University, when he coined the “Bicycle Day” name and organized a gathering to celebrate the day. Since April 16th, 1985 fell on a Tuesday and wasn’t an ideal day to party, he chose April 19th, a Friday, instead. Today just happens to be a Friday as well… freaky, isn’t it?
How to Celebrate
“Drugs are bad, m’kay?” – Mr. Mackey, School Counselor, South Park.
Go forth and ride a bicycle today. Each year there are more and more bicycle paths opening up whether they are for mountain biking, rails-to-trails or in bike lanes in your city. You can also listen to “Bicycle” by Queen.
If you want to celebrate the real meaning behind this holiday, listen to some classic Pink Floyd, like the song “Echoes” which is 23 minutes and 44 seconds of psychedelic listening pleasure. There is also a horror film you can watch called “Bicycle Day” based on this holiday’s origin. Finally you can find a Bicycle Day event in your area.
To honor this day we are featuring a 1992 Diet 7up can with Fido Dido carrying a bicycle. This can is perfect for Bicycle Day because not only does it have a bicycle on the can, but it poses the question, “Is There a Mountain Bike in This Can?” Ponder that for a while.
Happy Bicycle Day (4/19)!
Photo used by permission of CanMuseum.com