Dear Miss Monon: Trail & Error

Questions—and answers—on peacocking, texting, and obscene-photo manners.

Dear Miss Monon,

A friend says my Instagramming is disruptive to other trail-users, but everyone “hearts” my tilted shots of trees and bridges. What’s the verdict?

Remember what you’d tell a classmate staring at you on the school bus? “Take a picture; it lasts longer.” In this case, the saying should be: “Don’t take a picture; we’ve seen it.” We’ve seen the trail at sunrise and sundown, we’ve seen it photo-bombed and Instagrammed. The only one staring is the biker you just cut off. #keepwalking

Dear Miss Monon,

The Monon is a great spot for “peacocking.” I’ve accessorized my bike with flashing lights, a horn, and a bell! But I still like to yell “on the left!” when I’m approaching someone. Is that okay?

It’s more than okay; it’s hilarious … for Saturday Night Live. The civilized structure of Monon alerts: Ring your bike bell once while approaching others—and if there are several groups ahead of you, once is still enough. Don’t honk; it sounds like a clown car is approaching. A good rule of thumb: If you can hear yourself yell “left” over your iPod’s “Just Peacocking” mix, passersby can, too.


Dear Miss Monon,

Should I let my pup relieve himself on the Monon? Waste is organic and eco-friendly!

No, you shouldn’t. The Monon has enough obstacles to dodge without your pooch leaving his mark all over the asphalt. Make a pet pit stop before heading out.  


Dear Miss Monon,

No one “liked” my photo with the father-daughter statue on the trail in Carmel. What did I do wrong?

You mean the “father” who looks like a creepy cross between Burt Reynolds and Jon Cryer? Like some people who pose with that bronze dude, chances are you were doing something pervy or cheesy. Smacking the dad’s posterior and attempting to climb onto the handlebars are the Monon’s version of “holding up” the Leaning Tower of Pisa.


Dear Miss Monon,

Wat r some tips 4 txtn n walkn?

First, look up, because your nose is buried in a stranger’s ponytail. Second, unplug and take in the Monon experience. If you use it for music, check your phone for “don’t disrupt” settings. But the birds have some serenades that could put your playlist to shame.


Illustration by Ryan Snook

This article appeared in the June 2013 issue.