Thursday, 25 August 2011

I'm Not Racin' Ya!

Had an eventful ride down the coast to Reculver earlier. First off a dog, soggy and excited from swimming in the sea, dashed in front of the bike. We collided but it was only a glancing blow and no damage was done to me, the bike or Fido either. On the way back I experienced my first real "car door" moment on Herne Bay seafront. There was no other traffic around so I was able to swerve to avoid the door. If there was other traffic on the road what would be best? To brake and crash into the door as slowly as possible or swerve and hope the other traffic was able to avoid you? A nasty situation so easily avoided by car drivers glancing in their side mirrors before exiting their vehicles...

The best bit came later though. I was almost back, just alongside the skate park in Swalecliffe, when a dude came alongside. Recently I have challenged myself to not let anyone overtake me on a ride. Yes, I am fully aware of how sad this is, please read on. Usually my victories consist of passing children on hills or tandems or old men but this guy was my age. He had a large pair of white headphones on and a swish bike with a super-thin frame and funky wheels.

I immediately accelerated and changed gear in a rather obvious NONE SHALL PASS manner. Moments later he cruised alongside, lifted the headphones from his ears and announced "I'm not racin' ya!" before cruising past. Now if you are a cyclist you probably know how it is. It's always a race. Not a proper race with a start and finish line and agreed rules etc but a race nonetheless. I was about to say something like this when I realised I couldn't since he was already too far away. Come back! It is a race! It's always better to get into these kind of duels at the start of a ride or, as previously mentioned, with people you are very very likely to beat. But I was in it now. Did I mention the headwind? There was the mother of all headwinds. That affected the dude too but I am bad with headwinds. They get to me. I felt it affected me more. I was also jealous of his bike that looked a lot lighter and faster than mine. (That's just an excuse I hear you cry.) He also had some pumpin' choons to boost him. (That's an excuse I hear you cry.) Well battle commenced. I worked hard. I sweated. I gradually began to catch up. As I got closer I could see he was wearing flip-flops. Usually people who beat me in races wear helmets and lycra - all the gear. But this dude was in flip-flops like me. He wore no helmet like me. He turned around, smiled, and accelerated away again. Right. Dig deep. COME ON! 

I almost caught him in the end but by that time we had run out of seafront. I made sure he knew I was just on his back wheel as I turned off for home. Damn. 

Back at the hoose I needed a shower I was sweating so much. In the mirror I caught sight of my paunch. Why does my six-pack disappear every time I take my clothes off? The whole episode reminded me of playing table football with one of my dad's friends when I was about 10 and he was probably 40 ish. I kept on beating him. He kept on insisting on one more game. I would beat him again. Pretty soon I realised he was properly cross. Now I understand. They call it middle age I think...

No comments:

Post a Comment