This Labor Day weekend our city was the site of the USA Pro Cycling Championship. (We saw more lightweight metal, helmets, and Spandex than we've seen in a long time.) In honor of this event, I'm sending some humor about the sport of cycling.
Last week's iv was about a certain mindset. Whether cyclists admit it or not, there *is* a mindset, a group of assumptions, and a whole set of experiences that set a "cyclist" apart from the vast majority of the populace that simply rides a bike. There are the serious things like an understanding of vehicular cycling and mundane things like knowing where are the good places to lock a bicycle. Here are some amusing characteristics that should make even cyclists laugh at themselves and give some tell-tale hints that maybe, just maybe, there's such a thing as a "bike geek."
You know you're addicted to cycling when...
Your surgeon tells you you need a heart valve replacement and you ask if you have a choice between a Presta valve and a Schrader valve.
You actually KNOW what Presta valves and Schrader valves are!
A Power Bar starts tasting better than a Snickers.
You buy crutches instead of renting them.
The funeral director tells you NO! you cannot ride your Cannondale in the funeral procession, even if you keep your headlight on.
You no longer require a hankerchief to blow your nose.
You think that working on your bike is almost as much fun as riding it.
At some point you caught yourself wondering if your bike might look good if you added fenders.
You discover that you have forgotten to remove your reflective ankle straps hours after you have arrived somewhere by bicycle.
You make decisions about car purchases based on which one more easily accepts a rooftop bicycle rack.
You own any kind of purple annodized bicycle accessory.
Colorado Cyclist sent you a Christmas card last year.
Your bicycle(s) is/are worth more than your automobile.
You know what the difference is between Ultrasensor, Core-Tech, and Microfiber jersey materials.
You empathize with roadkill.
You can tell your wife with a straight face that it's too hot to mow the lawn, then take off and ride a century.
You refuse to buy a couch because that patch of wallspace is taken up by the bike.
When you move to a new area, the first thing you look for is a bike shop.
You use wax on your chain, but not on your car.
You wear your riding gloves when driving your car.
You spend weeks during the summer spraying arrows on the sides of roads.
You mount a $600 cap on a $1,000 pickup truck so your $3,000 bike won't get wet.
You can't seem to get to work by 8:30 a.m., even for important meetings, but you don't have any problems at all meeting your buddies at 5:30 a.m. for a hammerfest.
Your car sits outside your garage because your garage is full of bikes and cycling gear.
You tailgate a semi-trailer to get the drafting effect.
You have more bike jerseys than dress shirts.
You pull up hard on the steering wheel trying to jump your car over a pot hole.
"Four cheeseburgers and four large French fries" is for you!
You actually move farther from work so your bike commute will be longer.
You take a perverse pride in your mid-thigh and mid-bicep tan lines, and even more in that funny little circle of tan on the back of your hands.
You learn you have some money left over after paying bills, and the first thing you do is reach for the nearest bicycling catalog.
Someone in a car asks for directions, and you give them a route that bypasses freeways and busy surface streets.
You have committed to memory the sizes and costs of Johnson & Johnson's complete line of gauze products.
After a crash the first thing you ask when you regain consciousness is "How's my bike?"
We're sad today after losing our cat Linus. He's been steadily declining for over a month. He's lost a lot of weight and has grown more and more lethargic. For the last several days he would hardly eat or drink and wouldn't even purr. He lived a nice, long life and was a friendly, gentle cat. We'll really miss him. In my signature line below, you'll see that there are now only two cats.
"The bicycle is a curious vehicle. Its passenger is its engine." - John Howard, U.S. Olympic cyclist
"Friends don't let friends wear Spandex." - Mark Loach