Friday, May 20, 2005

Bike to Work Day

Today is it: bike to work day. Not that I needed a reason to ride, but I seemed to notice much more bikes than normal (yet still a tiny amount, given how easy it is to ride to work). I encountered maybe a dozen other riders on my 20 mile commute that began around 6am. Usually I see one or two.

I literally have the perfect commute, a shower, indoor spot to store my bike- and a great job to ride to. Life is wonderful.

This morning was a bit unusual in the sense that I usually don't encounter many other riders "going my way." Today, I saw two hammerheads tearing it up on a deserted MUT as I was on the road. At an intersection they hopped on the road behind me. The guy in front was in his aerobars followed by a guy on a Cannondale who said "nice bike" as they passed me on my fixed. I hopped on his wheel for a free draft- until they blew through a red light without even slowing. Sorry, that just isn't my cup of tea. I watched them blow through another- and I'm convinced they really didn't know each other, since they really weren't working together and the gap started widening as even the guy on the Cannondale probably realized they were riding a bit crazy.

Later, I encountered a guy in a full Postal kit that I managed to catch. He, of course, kicks it in high gear and drafts me for a few miles. Nobody likes being passed by the guy with a backpack on a beat up Schwinn fixed commuter He ended up taking the shoulderless highway as I took the commuter trail. The trail isn't so great, but nobody else uses it- except chronic inebriates who like to break bottles on the pavement. Anyway, watching cars buzz him in pre-rush hour traffic (it is posted at 45 or 50 mph, meaning everyone is driving at least 60) reinforced my belief that I am better off NOT using the road during that stretch.

Lest anyone think I'm using "Cannondale" or "Postal" as perjoratives, when I commute, I tend to attach nicknames to everyone I encounter- including "hockey-helmet-dude": no lie. Yesterday I passed a guy wearing huge winter ****-kicker boots, baggy shorts, and a hockey helmet without a face mask (on his head crooked)- riding an old roadbike- wearing some whackass goggles. Unreal. Looked like he'd lost a bet- but he was just too into it.

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