"Cross Bike, A Moron and a Douche Bag". Isn't that the title of a Tom Wolfe novel? Or maybe Hemingway.
This morning’s ride could not have been more pleasant. The sun is up by 5.50am so the need for bike lights is almost gone. I have been braving Downtown San Anselmo without a front light simply for the ease of not worrying that the lights will get stole off my bike in the new garage. It is not quite regular short-sleeves weather yet. But I can feel it around the corner. The winds are crazy at this time of year. But that just gets me a little more exertion and exercise.
The Cross bike is holding up as a fantastic replacement bike while the new bike gets built up. It is amazing how comfortable this cross bike is compared to the old race/road bike. I don’t know enough about bike geometry to tell you whether it is the wheel base or the angle of the fork or the 28mm tires or whatever. But I can tell you that I am flying downhill these days. For some reason, it is just feels safer to go faster downhill. That said, it is also a slug going up hills (even harder than normal) and a significant effort to keep the bike moving at the same speeds that the road bike can achieve.
I have not mentioned one of my road girlfriends on this blog before. But Johnny and I saw her this morning again. We have bumped into this moron several times over the last 12 months, always in the same place ... Battery Street (the very end of our commute) between 6.50 and 7.10am. She drives a white, older model Nissan Altima with the license plate starting with a 6 and ending with 567 (I’ll get the full plate one of these days). Anyways, on our first memorable encounter with the moron, we were merging from the Embarcadero onto Battery. There is a bike lane that on the left of the car traffic on the Embarcadero which allows bikes to turn and ride on the left hand side of Battery.. As we start to turn, out of nowhere, this moron starts honking, yelling and revving her engine. She got inches from our rear wheels and then sped off around us. Johnny caught up to her to give her a talking-to and all I caught was the end of the exchange; the woman screaming the F-Word and waving her coffee in one hand and cell phone and cigarette in the other. After seeing her a few more times, Johnny and I vowed to get the better of her in future exchanges. Another time, I was riding in the left-most lane with a lot of other car traffic when this moron sped up a bit too close to me. I gave her a look that probably was not too nice, and before I could say a word, she busted out with some serious F-Bombs, and called me both the C-Word and the N-Word (I have been called a lot of things in my time, but never the N-Word. I have been previously called the C-Word). Note to self … this moron is crazy. This morning, we saw her again. Being the jerk that I am, I rode up past her as she was stopped at a red light (surprising that she even stopped) and got right in the middle of the lane in front of her. Johnny followed me to do the same. As the light changed, I lead out and she blasted by us ON THE LEFT IN THE LANE FOR METERED PARKING. As she swerved back into the correct driving lane, she jerked her wheel in our direction and would have hit us if we had not slowed down to avoid her aggressive move. Catching up to her again at the next red light, the smoke from her marijuana joint was as obvious as day. She threw out a few cuss words and we opted to let her go without further issue. One of these days she is going to kill someone on Battery Street. Even without my provocation, we've seen her fly at 50 miles per hour down that street. She must do the same thing even on the days that we don’t see her. So much for San Francisco’s finest.
And then the Douche Bag … As I was hanging up my clothes in the gym locker, preparing to get in the shower, cooling down from the moron interaction, a fellow bike rider walked up to the locker next to mine. He was dressed in all black gear, full pants, jacket, bike hat under his helmet, all matching with Colnago labels everywhere. But the thing that caught my fancy was the fact that he was still in his bike shoes and booties (booties also matching Colnago brand). I couldn’t resist. I said, “Booties in May? That’s pretty aggressive. Where are you coming in from”. He response was classic. He looks at me with his nose turned up and says, “Its pretty windy where I ride. It gets cold. Gotta protect myself. I come in all the way from Sea Cliff.” I just giggled and nodded having just ridden in five times the distance of his commute in a tornado ... wearing just a long sleeve under top and mountain bike shoes. Douche Bag.