Most people bring their inner child on an epic adventure. Joe “Metal Cowboy” Kurmaskie actually took his two kids along. For a 4,000-mile bicycle ride across America, Joe’s seven-year-old son, Quinn, rides a tagalong bike attached to his dad’s; and behind that is five-year-old Enzo in a bike trailer.
Our hero the Metal Cowboy answers the question “What are you, crazy?” with a resounding and cheerful “Yes.”
Unassisted—with no support crew except his boys’ comic relief and the periodic kindness of strangers—he pedals hundreds of pounds of gear and offspring over mountain passes, across the wide plains, through thunderstorms, and into the heart of what it means to be a dad.
Along the way they encounter everything that makes up America—small-town kindness and inner-city heart, wild horses and highway roadkill, a bitter Vietnam vet and a hopeful young inventor, grizzly bears and bison roaming free, cyclists and monstrous RVs, a very peppy cheerleader and a visitation from the ghost of the author’s father, horrible traffic and serene dirt roads, a monastery and a distillery, baseball, and yes, lots of pie.
By the time they reach Washington, DC, two months after leaving Portland, Oregon, they’ve bonded in a rare way. Kurmaskie
writes, “We share a secret, the three of us; one permanent summer in our hearts now, where we’re never apart.”
Praise for MOMENTUM IS YOUR FRIEND
“Give Huck Finn a bicycle, give Lance Armstrong a sense of humor and give Jack Kerouac a good editor and you have Joe Kurmaskie’s latest road trip. Hilarious. A one-of-a-kind voice in the travel world.”
—Tom Lang, author of Coffee, Cat, and Mrs. Claus
“With his two sons in tow providing moral support (and comic relief), Joe Kurmaskie treats us to a reader’s trifecta: a humorous travelogue, a stirring adventure tale, and a touching family story.”
—Bart King, author of The Big Book of Boy Stuff
“A witty, whacky, and pensive midlife adventure with the Metal Cowboy and his two sidekicks. Joe rode the sort of miles we all wish we had. A highly entertaining read.”
—Andrew Pham, author of Catfish and Mandala
“Joe Kurmaskie is the real deal and Momentum Is Your Friend is true to the man himself. Intimate, ironic, worldly, wise, and most of all, fun. It reads like a wild, downhill ride with lots of switchbacks, hanging on for dear life and enjoying every bump. Read it.”
—Robert Ferrigno, author of Prayers for the Assassin and Horse Latitudes
“As Melville is to the sea, Mark Twain to the raft, and Kerouac to the car, Joe Kurmaskie is to the bike. It is the great gift of Momentum Is Your Friend to follow that essentially American, writerly imperative: to go, to go, to go! An absolutely gobsmacking beauty of a book.”
—Andrew Lewis Conn, Author of P and The Last American Novel
“Joe Kurmaskie is a supercharged storyteller for the new millennium, and I would cross the desert sands and climb the Rockies to listen to him tell his tale.” —Jay Atkinson, author of Caveman Politics, Ice Time, Legends of Winter Hill, and City in Amber