Where does the time go?
("I'd explain to you where the time goes but you're too stupid to understand.")
So I realize I've been breaking Bicycling's balls (relax, it's just a figure of speech) over anointing my hometown as the number one bike city in the country (if this is as good as it gets please shoot me), but here's something they published about cycling in New York City by a guy who really knows what he's talking about:
And no, that's not my bike.
Also, I finally read our city's actual profile, which was extremely interesting to me because I appear in it and I absolutely love reading about myself:
Not everyone finds riding in NYC so idyllic. I meet with blogger (and BICYCLING columnist) Eben Weiss, aka Bike Snob NYC. “Show me New York’s underbelly,” I tell him. Rolling through Central Park, Weiss points out where a cop once tackled Lance Armstrong for riding on the sidewalk. En route to Harlem we swerve around limos parked in a bike lane and teenagers walking three abreast in the bike path.
“Typical,” says Snob.
As I explained to the writer at the time, there is nobody less qualified than me to show anybody the underbelly of anything. At this point in my life you can bet I do my very best to stay on the soft, pale, flabby surface of the belly at all times, which is precisely why I met him in Central Park and not at some sub-cultural shitshow like "Bike Kill:"
I don't find this sort of thing even remotely interesting. My advice is to leave the belly's "treasure trail" untraveled, for that way pubic lice lies.
I should also clarify the anecdote about the cop and Lance Armstrong, since I probably didn't go into sufficient detail at the time. Technically, the "cop" was with the Park Enforcement Patrol, not the NYPD, and our violation was rolling into Central Park from Columbus Circle via a path which is for pedestrians only. (Yeah, like you never enter the park that way.) Also, he didn't exactly "tackle" Armstrong; rather, he grabbed him, but Armstrong quickly extricated himself--much as he used to do from all those doping allegations, now that I think about it. I was quite impressed by the maneuver, which Armstrong explained to me had become second-nature after years of escaping the grasp of crazed fans at the Tour.
Hmmm, I guess maybe I'm more familiar with cycling's underbelly than I give myself credit for.
Anyway, while I failed to show the writer the city's sordid underbelly, we did take a nice little ride up the Harlem River Speedway. It was also raining, so at least we got dirty. I had originally intended to add a swing through the Bronx to our trip which would have culminated with a coffee stop on Arthur Avenue, but unfortunately his schedule didn't allow it, which was too bad because I was enjoying his company.
Oh well, more cannoli for me.
Speaking of the underbelly, I was stuck in Brooklyn until late last night, and when it was finally time for me to head home I really wanted a Citi Bike so I could ride to the subway station:
(Yes, Brooklyn Geography Snob, there's a subway station right here, but I wanted a different one, okay?)
This was the second Citi Bike station I tried, and I'd been looking forward to a little nighttime spin before retreating underground for an hour. Instead, as I stood there contemplating the three broken bikes, a rat nearly crawled over my foot and scurried into the storm drain.
So I said "Fuck it," scrapped the Citi Bike idea, and sucked up the inconvenient transfer.
And yes, because I'm underbelly-averse, I did use my smartphone flashlight to inspect the area around my seat for bedbugs:
That's just how I roll.
When I finally get it together to move to the suburbs at least you'll know why.
Also, here's something to contemplate:
There are two lessons here:
1) Lock your frame and not just your wheel;
B) You know those signs they have at amusement parks? Well, your wheel needs to be at least this shitty for a thief not to bother with the cable cutters. So if you're palping a 27" steel wheel with a massive metal pie plate, the cable lock is probably fine, but if you've got anything better than that (which is pretty much anything) you're going to need more security.
Here's something else to contemplate:
I like to think that rack is for carrying the car on your bike and not the other way around.
Speaking of which, yesterday I talked about putting my bike on the roof of THE CAR THAT THE BANK OWNS UNTIL I FINISH PAYING THEM BACK, and a commenter pointed out the following:
Yeah man! Roof racks are the bomb. Especially when you drive into a parking garage and forget your bike(s) and kayaks are on them.
Very true. Generally, I find the best way to avoid doing this is not to drive under low stuff when you've got a bike on the roof.
It's not that hard--though now that I've said that I'll probably do it tomorrow.