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I went to a lot of trouble (meaning I dumped V at J's Saturday night) so that I could ride with whimmydiddle and chickenhat today at noon. This morning I was unable to assemble my real bike because I left half of the thingy that fastens the seat in the garage in Columbus (I hope). B can mail it to me. Undeterred, I wrested the seat off the crazy old Motobecan* in the garage, cursed mightily at the six discrete pieces that flew in all directions when I did so, found them all and managed to get my seat where I wanted it. I put my pedals on. As I was pumping air into the tires, I remembered that the last time I rode this bike I snapped the valve top off of the tube. Since I couldn't force air into it, I replaced the tube—but I am a terrible tire-changer and emit great waves of exasperation every time I do it. Now I had no spare tube, which practically guarantees a flat, but I had patches and the will to continue. Then I couldn't find my special bike socks! Seriously, someone wanted this ride called off. The start-and-stop rain was bugging me, too. Still, I set out for Proteus, the shop where we were supposed to meet, and things proceeded damply but apace. Then my phone rang. C needed to convey some information, something he is incapable of doing briefly. I am not blaming C but I will say that I missed meeting the ride by FIVE MINUTES according to the guy at Proteus. This guy radiates optimism: "You can definitely catch them! They just left! And they're slow!"

What a salesman! I took off, expecting to see them around every curve. It was not to be, however. I sorta convinced myself that no human-powered vehicle could catch the furious juggernaut that was a whimmydiddle-and-chickenhat-led ride. Later I figured out that they stopped for a polar bear encounter, which I missed. I don't have much experience riding around the Ag Center but after a few poor choices I managed to put together a really fun ride. I did end up coming back the way I came in, like a lollipop loop. I was trying to figure out whether I should return to the bike shop or go straight home (and also, thinking about a way to go home that would avoid an unpleasant spot on a trail Google had suggested) when my back tire blew. The one with the new tube. My last tube, of course. I think we all knew this was going to happen, but I was about two miles from the Greenbelt Metro station at that point so I went with option C. Pushed my bike there, got to Takoma Park, and stopped by a bike store on the walk home to pick up a couple of tubes. He wanted to sell me Sunlite tubes but I have had two defective tubes already from them and insisted that he find something else, which he was happy to do. You can tell I've had a good day when I fork over $20 for two bicycle tubes and I'm still smiling.

Pretty much everything went wrong but nothing terrible happened and I got to ride a bike. Win!

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*Crazy mostly because it's a fab old bike I can't manage. I have to leave the chain on a middle cog in back and rely on switching between the two front gears or the chain pops off. Suboptimal.

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
chickenhat
Aug. 19th, 2013 01:56 am (UTC)
KHAAAAANNNNNN!
whimmydiddle
Aug. 19th, 2013 02:06 am (UTC)
He was right, we ARE slow, and we were even slower than usual today, and on top of it we stopped several times to let me indulge in picture-taking. So I am AMAZED you didn't catch us. We had a nice enough little ride, but it would have been loads of fun with you along!

We didn't hang around at the shop later waiting for folks because there were no posts on FB indicating more interest; we figured the weather scared folks off. Just email us, call, or post to the Proteus FB (if you do FB) and weare delighted to wait a few minutes more for you or anyone.


....Dang! That woulda been KEWL!!!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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