29 March 2006

The Return of the King

After two posts of b/w shots, a deliberately desaturated one. Sometimes color is just too colorful.

Then, after three years of rotting in a closet, my poor neglected 15ish year-old road bike has been given the kiss of life... New tubes & tires, bar-tape, and a basic tune-up was all she needed.

It ocurred to me with great melancholy that it was the first "real" ride (not in a gym) since we lived in Arizona. Also during that time, something significant has happened (indirectly) to the culture of cycling:

The trail was busy on Saturday morning, as expected, with joggers, runners, power-walkers, non-power-walkers, dog-walkers, and other cyclists. Easily 90% of those on foot were sporting the telltale white earbuds of the iPod; some of them playing their tunes so loud, I could identify the song as I passed.

And that's Snide Observation #13,067: Thanks to the iPods blasting in everyone's ears, it's now useless for a cyclist to bleat "passing left" as a subtle way of saying SCOOT, DAMMIT, YOUR AMBLING TEA-PARTY IS TOO DAMNED WIDE. I WILL PASS YOU OR I WILL DESTROY YOU. The only thing for it is to give them extremely wide berth (on a narrow path) and hope nobody dies of shock as you pass, falling headfirst into your spokes.

Nevertheless, it's good to haul the bike out after all that time, and re-discover the joy of punishing one's quads and grinning into the wind. A strange addiction, surely.

The old neglected Bianchi performed like a champion, proving that greatness never dies, but sometimes it takes a helluva long nap.


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