Spider Web in Space

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I heard a story on NPR a few months back about some spiders that were taken up to the International Space Station and proceeded to spin their webs in outer space. I had been meaning to check it out more, in depth, and I did on the way back to Kansas yesterday. It is truly amazing.

Spiders use gravity when they are spinning web on Earth. But, since there isn’t any gravity in space, the spiders had to adapt and “figure” it out. This experiment had been done back in the 70’s with the same results. I never really thought much about a spiders ability to overcome a huge change of environment, in just one day, and be able to go about its business of collecting food. Obviously spiders have a thought process, and that is way beyond anything I’d imagined.

It goes to show you how important adaptation is to survival. In the sport of bicycle racing, that couldn’t be more true. It is an ever changing environment, especially if you’re so lucky to be mixing it up with road, MTB and cyclo-x. I think the key to success in this sport is to be able to adapt quickly, quickly enough that it becomes 2nd nature. Good, quick decisions serve you well in cycling. Getting to the point of making them is the problem. It takes a ton of experience and time.

Calfee Spider frame.

4 thoughts on “Spider Web in Space

  1. Ron Wade

    Well, Steve, there are not too many folks in the sport with as much experience and time as you….. I really enjoy your insights…. I hope there are many juniors that ready your posts, they would learn a lot! Keep it up!

  2. john

    Adjustments – very good. And, we have the big adjustment to the aging process in this sport. Personally, I fight and try to ignore the need to make those adjustments at every turn of the wheel. We applauded your continued efforts in the highest level of our sport.

  3. Ted Lewandowski

    Little known fact – any spider found in any house in Poland is taken outside and let go – not sure where that originated from – but there is a total respect for the spider there.


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