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'From the very first page of Tony Wilson’s endearingly chatty journal I was completely gripped...Throughout the journey, these two old pals reminisce and witter on, as old pals do, about the human condition, the destruction of the planet, and the ecological, political and economic problems facing mankind'

Light and Shadow

The Universe on a Bicycle

Thoughts about how society works first arose in 1997, during a bike ride round the coast of Ireland. Sensing its potential, I developed the ideas when I got home. Repeated attempts to get the idea accepted by a learned magazine were regularly rejected, so in 2007 I completed The Universe on a Bicycle. On the face of it; this was an account of that bike ride, but my real purpose was to get the idea discussed in public. Inspired by Robert M Pirsig’s ‘Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance’ I threaded my idea into the book as a dialogue which unfolded as we pedalled along day after day. There was no need to bend the truth because that really is what happened. In fact I almost called the book ‘Society – the Birth of an Idea’.


At that stage the idea which I called ‘Dual-nature Theory’ was still a work-in-progress but at least it was out in public. In the fifteen years since this publication, the project kept growing and growing until finally, much like the weaving of a Turkish carpet, all the loose ends tied themselves together. I re-named the idea ‘Assembly and Performance Thinking’ and in February 2021 Quartet books published it as The Wheels of Society.

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