I had an interview with Ezra Caldwell published in Urban Velo back in September 2007. You can read it here.

I was living in NYC then and (of course) was getting into fixed gear and single-speed bicycles. Ezra invited me to his place in January of 2006, and gave me a spare wheel he had lying around, and even installed it for me.

“On the upper west side of Manhattan lives Ezra Caldwell. A wiry little guy with a stable of bikes, an inviting smile and a wrench. He’ll adjust your brakes over coffee, then tweak your chain line and take you around the block. This is what Ezra does.”

We went out for a test ride, and I remember doing a “track stand” and Ezra saying something like, “Wow, you figured that out quick.”

To which I simply replied, “Well, I’ve been riding bikes for a while!”

God, all these years later, I remember how arrogant that sounded. I was in my early 30s, so that makes sense.

We weren’t close; we were just two people who met because of the internet.

“The internet in general has made wild things possible,” says Ezra. “I’d say most of my friends at this point are people I’ve met on Flickr.”

I woke up on May 18, 2024, and for whatever reason, thought of this seemingly insignificant interview I did 17 years ago.

Ezra passed away on May 24, 2014 after a battle with cancer. I can’t believe ten years have passed, and then this weekend I thought of Ezra for the first time in forever.

We’re in each other’s lives to varying degrees, and then we’re not. I only had a fleeting few moments with Ezra all those years ago, but reading some posts here and there, he touched a lot of people.

Hug your friends. Do cool shit. Life is short.