Cycling is a running gag in Calvin and Hobbes. Two bicycles are featured prominently. The first, child-sized, is Calvin's. The second, full-size, belongs to Calvin's father. Calvin and his dad are polar opposites when it comes to cycling: while his father loves to get up early in the morning for a bike ride, Calvin simply despises it.
Main article: Calvin's Killer BicycleOn several occasions, Calvin has tried to learn how to ride his bike, usually with his father's help. When his parents aren't looking, though, the bicycle seems to spring to life and attacks Calvin with a vengeance. Calvin can never safely ride the bike without someone helping him, partly out of fear. If another person is not present, the bike will throw Calvin off of itself and chase after him. Calvin runs for his life, but usually to no avail. When hit by the bike he becomes a dirty, oil-stained mess.
The bike is obsessed with hunting down Calvin, to the point where it has actually entered the house, gone upstairs, and hid in Calvin's closet.
In earlier strips, Calvin is shown riding or mentioning a tricycle that does no harm to him.
Calvin's father, on the other hand, will take his bike out on weekends and ride around. He will do so very early, even during wintertime. Much like with how he uses the family camping trips to teach values of outdoorsmanship, he unsuccessfully attempts to transmit his love of cycling to his family.
Calvin's father tries his best every now and then to teach his son how to ride his bike. However, Calvin is unable to overcome his fear of being attacked.
Calvin's father distinctly prefers cycling to driving. When Calvin asked his father if he had any ideas for his traffic safety poster, he exclaimed: "Cyclists have a right to the road too, you polluting maniacs! I hope gas goes up to 8 bucks a gallon!". Sometimes, when Calvin's dad rides a bike, he ends up getting hurt, though he isn't seriously harmed. Calvin said something about that once in a single strip that angered his father, who had a bandage on his hand from bike riding, unknown to Calvin.
Calvin makes fun of his father riding a bike and maybe his helmet, since he jokingly asked, "How did your head get stuck in a bowling ball?"