“Clean” RAGBRAI 2021?

Maybe not to early to get ideas on how to make RAGBRAI 2021 more sanitary, more CV19 compliant. Like RAGBRAI’s dirtiest challenge, keeping Kybos sanitary, do riders carry masks to slap on in crowded beer gardens, etc.? Maybe we can help make 2021 happen with the right ideas?

201 Replies

NYC Highwheeler, February 21, 2021 at 12:42 pm

The RAGBRAI leadership will make the call in a few weeks. If they had the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in 2020 we can have RAGBRAI.

mootsman, if I didn’t know better, I would think you were trying to get RAGBRAI canceled. If you want RAGBRAI 2021 to happen, DON’T say it will be like Sturgis! Sturgis was a disaster for South Dakota! It caused covid numbers to spike to double or triple what they were before the rally.

You don’t need a study or anything more then basic graph reading skills from elementary school to understand. Here is the graph of SD on the Johns Hopkins site:
Things are stable form late May to late August, with about 100 new cases per day or less. Then 1-3 weeks after the Sturgis event of 8/7 – 8/15, there is spike where cases almost triple. On August 27, 623 new cases are reported!

If you want the ride to happen, show the people of Iowa that you understand the risk, and that you take it seriously, and will do everything that is asked of you. You (and others down-playing the risk) are doing the opposite of that right now.


LawnchairMan, February 21, 2021 at 2:37 pm

Jboz wrote,

LawnchairMan wrote:

If he stops, I will.

“Regarding political comments one finds objectionable on an Internet forum, to paraphrase an old Einstein quote in contemporary parlance:

Weak people escalate.
Strong people find common ground.
Intelligent people ignore.”

Looks like escalation to me. I don’t see common ground, and you certainly didn’t ignore it!


Jboz, February 21, 2021 at 3:15 pm

Looks like escalation to me.

Nope, not in the least. My comment was related to not escalating political comments on this forum. And clearly I’m not escalating a political argument. Sorry if that was too nuanced for you.

You will see no political side taken from me, nor will you ever. I see many comments that I think are asinine (both sides), and mostly just roll my eyes. In this case, your “If he stops, I will” when someone called you out just rubbed me the wrong way. Quite frankly, it reminded me of something my son would have said when he was 9. These political jabs just don’t belong here, and most rational adults know that. Fortunately, most posters here avoid these topics for obvious reasons. When someone posts something inflammatory of a political nature, whether they agree or disagree, most posters here simply ignore it. Based on several of your posts, you apparently like to jump into the fray. That my friend is escalating, and it detracts from the spirit of this forum. I’m not excusing the original post either…but feeding a troll is just as bad as the original troll post.


LawnchairMan, February 21, 2021 at 3:18 pm

Einstein’s actual quote was
“Weak people revenge
Strong people forgive
Intelligent people ignore.”

Jboz, you are taking large liberties in your paraphrasing.

I have ignored a lot of what has been said in this thread, but Einstein also said,
“The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything.”
I finally had to say something!


Jboz, February 21, 2021 at 3:32 pm

OK man 😉

Maybe we discuss can Einstein over a beverage in late July. Maybe the temp will be lower by then. Be good.


Heather, February 21, 2021 at 3:41 pm

Einstein also said,
“The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything.”

Was this in regards to the Manhattan project?


Joseph Schlau, February 21, 2021 at 4:22 pm

“Here is the graph of SD on the Johns Hopkins site:

Things are stable form late May to late August, with about 100 new cases per day or less. Then 1-3 weeks after the Sturgis event of 8/7 – 8/15, there is spike where cases almost triple. On August 27, 623 new cases are reported!”

MM was talking about this study.

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally that drew 462,000 biker enthusiasts to South Dakota in August was a superspreading event, responsible for more than 260,000 cases of COVID-19 — or 19% of the 1.4 million new COVID-19 cases from Aug. 2 to Sept. 2, claim researchers from San Diego State University and an independent research institute.

This study not only drew flack from the SD governor but John Hopkins University as questionable in several respects.

The study tracked cell phones from Sturgis to and through different counties and then assigned any rise in covid numbers to Sturgis. The study ignored other covid trends and factors. The study made no attempt to back up their assertion with actual contact tracing.

In my view, bad science. It had the appearance the conclusion preceded the data.

260 cases were attributed to Sturgis by contact tracing in and out of SD. The 600, plausible. 260,000 is a big stretch.

After the event, I was watching the numbers rise in and around Meade County SD on the Covid Act Now site. Sturgis appeared to coincide with the bump in numbers.

This reply was modified 5 days, 8 hours ago by Joseph Schlau.


LawnchairMan, February 21, 2021 at 5:09 pm

I think Einstein’s quote was referring to fascism.

Oppenheimer spoke out about the bomb.
“Now I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.”


Joseph Schlau, February 22, 2021 at 9:02 am

Dr. Fauci Says This One Mistake Could Be Deadly comments on WSJ opinion piece

You’ve heard that if 70% or more of America has antibodies against coronavirus we can return to some kind of normal. So when will we get there? One expert recently predicted it’d be as soon as April. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief medical advisor to the President and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has other ideas, which he shared today on Meet the Press with host Chuck Todd.

Dr. Fauci Said We’re Not Near Herd Immunity

Chuck Todd mentioned an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal that claimed we’ll have herd immunity by April. “There is reason to think the country is racing toward an extremely low level of infection,” wrote Marty Makary, a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health. “As more people have been infected, most of whom have mild or no symptoms, there are fewer Americans left to be infected. At the current trajectory, I expect Covid will be mostly gone by April, allowing Americans to resume normal life.”

“Yeah, I’m not so sure that this is herd immunity that we’re talking about,” said Dr. Fauci of the cases dropping. “We had a big peak and it was starting to come down. Certainly the number of people that have been infected are contributing to that. Also some contribution with vaccines—not a lot. I don’t think we vaccinated enough people yet to get herd immunity.”

“I think you’re seeing the natural peaking and coming down,” said Fauci, adding: “The one comment I want to make about that…is that the slope that’s coming down is really terrific. It’s very steep and it’s coming down very, very quickly, but we still at a level that’s very high. What I don’t—and none of my colleagues want to see—is when you look at that slope to come down that to say, ‘Wow, we’re out of the woods.’”
“Now we’re in good shape,” he continued. “We’re not because the baseline of daily infections is still very, very high. It’s not that 300 to 400,000 that we had some time ago, but we want to get that baseline really, really, really low before we start thinking that we’re out of the woods.”
“So keep wearing your masks, everybody at a minimum,” said Todd. Fauci said he couldn’t agree more.


This reply was modified 4 days, 16 hours ago by Joseph Schlau.


Mike Howe, February 22, 2021 at 10:09 am

Temps lower in July?!?! Good god no…I don’t want to do Ragbrai in the freezing snow. Will have to trade in the road bike for a fatty (fatty bike that is).

I kid kid…


Joseph Schlau, February 22, 2021 at 4:10 pm

Melon City Criterium and Davenport’s Kwik Star Criterium postponed to 2022
ANDREA GRUBAUGH Feb 15, 2021 Updated Feb 16, 2021

MUSCATINE — For many cyclists across eastern Iowa, Memorial Day weekend bike races are a fun tradition and a way to meet fellow riders and old friends. 
Representatives from the four Memorial Day races — Burlington’s Friday Night Fever and Snake Alley Criterium, Muscatine’s Melon City Criterium and Davenport’s Kwik Star Criterium — have announced the races are postponed until May 2022.

“Since I’ve been the race director for the Melon City Criterium for many, many years, it’s disheartening that we can’t have it this year,” said Greg Harper, owner of Harper’s Cycling & Fitness. “But the weekend organizers all talked it over and we decided that this year is still too unknown. … With things still not completely back to normal, we just felt that we had to be proactive.”

Organizers said in a news release they hoped they would be in a better position than 2020 — a position that would allow them to safely gather and hold these races — but that’s not the case.

Given the state of the pandemic, the original date of the race, and the uncertainty of how long the vaccination process will take, the race committee said the safest course for its races and the communities would be to wait until 2022.

Harper said that bike sales are high despite the pandemic and races canceled or postponed. He encouraged cyclists to still get out Memorial Day weekend if they can.

“I know last year on that weekend that they would have had the races, there was a group of about eight of us that did a long ride that day, and the same thing should apply this year,” he said. “The one thing about bicycling is that you’re outdoors and it’s hard to get closer than six feet to each other, so it’s a pretty safe activity.”

Harper said he hopes to continue filling bike orders and, once the weather warms up, looks forward to another good year of biking.



Sandaltan ., February 22, 2021 at 7:10 pm

More on the Sturgis Rally. Statistical modeling is a risky business.



Joseph Schlau, February 23, 2021 at 9:18 am

More on the Sturgis Rally. Statistical modeling is a risky business.

“The recent mass gathering in South Dakota for the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally seemed like the perfect recipe for what epidemiologists call a superspreading event.

Not surprisingly, the internet lit up with “we told you so!” Headlines and social media shaming and blaming”. The SD Governor describing the media as “breathlessly reporting” the event. (Jumping with joy).

The huge figures immediately hit the “confirmation bias” button in many people’s brains.

Confirmation what?

Confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms or supports one’s prior beliefs or values. People tend to unconsciously select information that supports their views, but ignore non-supportive or contradicting information. People also tend to interpret ambiguous evidence as supporting their existing position. The effect is strongest for desired outcomes, for emotionally charged issues, and for deeply entrenched beliefs.

Confirmation bias is a broad construct covering a number of explanations. Biased search, biased interpretation and biased memory have been invoked to explain attitude polarization (when a disagreement becomes more extreme even though the different parties are exposed to the same evidence), belief perseverance (when beliefs persist after the evidence for them is shown to be false), the irrational primacy effect (a greater reliance on information encountered early in a series) and illusory correlation is the phenomenon of perceiving a relationship between variables (typically people, events, or behaviors) even when no such relationship exists.

Sound familiar.


Jboz, February 23, 2021 at 11:51 am

Confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms or supports one’s prior beliefs or values.

I have long held that social media is the primary culprit of worsening confirmation bias we see in our culture. Social media, Twitter in particular, allows consumers of information and news to filter out sources that make us feel bad, and filter in only those viewpoints which make us feel warm and fuzzy. We often talk about how our society has become polarized, and many are quick to point the finger of blame at their favorite political villain, but the ease with which we can curate our own information to the exclusion of opposing ideas or unpleasant facts is the biggest contributor. Play it out over a decade or so and people become increasingly locked into their own little thought silos. Within the world of social media, un-friending, blocking, and canceling is the answer to polite disagreement, and just creates an even bigger divide. Critical thought, compromise and rational dialogues are sadly disappearing from our culture. They have unfortunately been replaced by trolling, hyperbole & ad hominem attacks. And it’s all culminating in cancel culture, where disagreeing with a person is not enough…we seek their destruction.

This is why on this forum I tend to bristle when an otherwise civil conversation begins to devolve into a partisan internet flame-war. It’s nice to have a place where people are united by a common passion, in this case bikes and RAGBRAI. I really hope we can keep it this way.


KenH, February 23, 2021 at 7:38 pm

I too mistook Ken’s meaning when he used the word “orthogonal”. A secondary meaning is:

“having a sum of products or an integral that is zero or sometimes one under specified conditions”

So, I think Ken meant that all the conflicting theories cancel each other. My apologies if I have this wrong.

But masters, remember that I am a goody two shoes. Though it be not written down, yet forget not that I am a goody two shoes.

I don’t know why you would bother apologizing to a goody two shoes but I thank you, kind master.

On another note, somewhere, way back when, the stated purpose of this thread was to brainstorm ways to help ensure that RAGBRAI comes off this year. Since then it seems to have devolved into more sub arguments than I care to follow. However, if you want to help make sure RAGBRAI happens then you have to understand that by now not only the RAGBRAI team but also every town we would visit is monitoring this thread.

If we publicly state that we will comply with everything that Dieter promises the towns then we help the cause by giving teeth to those promises. But we are goody two shoes.

If we mock that position then we hurt the cause and undercut Dieter by making his promises hollow. But at least we are numbered among the group of worldly, jaded, cool kids.


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