Sunday, March 10, 2013

Inquiring Cyclists Need to Know

While the book writing is in a bit of a lull right now my riding is going strong.  Yesterday, I put in my first big ride of the year at 67 miles.  I’m not sure I rode that far at all last year.  Since we were increasing the distance, Coach Tim and I decided to get a very early start.  We would leave from his house at 7:15, which meant I was rolling from home at 6:45.

As you can imagine the city streets are pretty quiet at 6:45 on a Saturday morning.  At least they are here in Santa Rosa.   In fact, for the first mile or so I didn’t see a single car.  However, what happened when I did eventually see that first car on the road generated a litany of questions in my mind as I rode to Tim’s.

Here’s what happened.  I was cruising along enjoying the quiet ride.  The traffic light ahead of me was green and since there were no cars around I expected to roll right on through.  However, before I got to the light, a car (the first of the day) came in from the left just in time to change my light to red and make me stop.  This happened two more times before I got to Tim’s.  After the third time I was thinking, “how in the hell do these cars always seem to time it perfectly so my light changes and I have to stop?”

As I finished the ride to meet Tim I couldn’t help but think of other questions that inquiring cycling minds need to know and I pose them to you here.  Feel free to comment if you think you know the answer.

Q – What is it about the smell of cinnamon buns coming from the bakery that makes your legs go weak?  (This same question applies to the morning aroma of chorizo and frijoles cooking at the little taqueria stands in Roseland.)

Q – How can 40 riders, who have their bikes pointed in 40 different directions, start the ride as a picture-perfect definition of grace, harmony and unison as we clip in and start to roll?

Q – How is that these same 40 riders, who are now going in the same direction, turn into the police from a Charlie Chaplin movie on the road when someone yells “Car Back!”?

Q – How come young stupid guys in pick up trucks only know how to shout one word (it always seems to be faggot) as they drive by?

Q – Why do so many century rides place the lunch stop at the base of a big climb?

Q – If I haven’t had a flat in over 4-months should I change the tubes as preventive maintenance or keep making daily sacrifices to Bibendum?

Q – Will Westside Road ever be repaved?

I’m sure there are more but that’s all I can think of for right now.  So while you sip your coffee and give these questions some very studious thought I’m going to get back to the book.


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