Sunday, April 14, 2013

A Bike Ride and One of Spring's Many False Starts Coincide

Spring is here. I know this is true because I've recently cut the amount of gear I need to carry on a trail ride from forty pounds to three. For winter rides, I become as bearded and layered up as a homeless person, and carry a backpack full of things like snowpants and a gaiter repair kit. Yesterday, I shaved, wore only a t-shirt, and carried two items:

While riding in the snow can be fun, there's something I prefer about riding in a t-shirt on a day like this:

Perhaps that thing I prefer is getting to see Phillip's bare chest, which made exactly zero appearances on this blog during the winter.

Regrettably, hardly anything made an appearance on this blog during the winter, and for that you have my apologies. I was busy stumbling around in the dark and going to bed before six p.m. However, it is now light until after eight, and the siamese mountain twins have come out of hibernation. They have seen their shadow, so it is time to resume this blog.

Here is my Surly Ogre, all dressed up in a new outfit for 2013.

Not since Casanova has there been such a rigid miracle. However, I've already said my piece about this bike, and what I want to say in this post has nothing to do with anything I've said so far. What I want to talk about is the difference between a mountain bike trail and a trendy restaurant.

I try to avoid trendy restaurants, but occasionally I receive free drink coupons from the employees of trendy restaurants, and I try even harder to avoid wasting free drink coupons more than to avoid trendy restaurants. Thus, I found myself in a trendy restaurant on a Saturday night. I seemed to be the only male in knickers. While waiting at the bar, I observed other patrons indulging poor taste and making unreasonable demands of the bartenders. People bulldozed through the hoard, spilling drinks without apology, and try as I might I could not ignore snippets of childish and unsophisticated conversations held by people posing to be exactly the opposite. I wish I could describe the situation without disparaging generalizations, but the scene was at once too sinister and idiotic to not have been scripted by someone like Darren Aronofsky. I saw much evidence of wealth and primping, not much of sensibility or class. Let's hope I was simply in a weird mood.

The cocktails were ninety percent ice, and the finger of whiskey I ordered cost about half the price of a full bottle. Being in a place like that made me want to learn about arson. 

Riding a mountain bike is entirely antithetical to that trendy restaurant. You show me a dirty, bloody cyclist eating a smooshed peanut butter sandwich on a mountaintop while sharing a six-pack with his friends and I'll show you a person with whom it's worth drinking.

I'm not saying young, affluent people are worthless, or that I haven't had a good time in a crowded restaurant. I'm not saying mountain bikers have a better grasp on life than do people who enjoy socializing in trendy restaurants. What I'm saying is that sometimes I end up not sleeping for several nights in a row, and am unhappy for reasons I can't discover, and the feeling persists until I stand dirty and tired at the top of a mountain, not being bumped into, delivered from chatter. 

Welcome, spring. You are just in time.

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