Have you ever been in a situation that was so ENTIRELY awkward, uncomfortable, and near puke-inducing that the only way to get out of there fast enough would be to go back in time and put yourself in a sleeper-hold!? I have. As my train of thought is more like a train wreck on an acid trip than a linear thought process, I ask that the lovely and becoming Bike Commuters readers bear with me… I promise journey will end with bikes abounding!
Ultimate Fail: The other day I decided to try to be a supportive co-worker by joining my colleague (let’s call him “Bloop” for the sake of anonymity) after work in his sport of choice: ULTIMATE. FRISBEE. Bloop is a new co-worker at the office who bikes to work (he has single-handedly dismantled our 100% female bike commuters record) and is as enthusiastic about playing some Disc as I am about riding some Bike. Bloop teaches a beginner workshop on how to play Ultimate at the Ala Moana Beach park only 5 minutes away from the office by bike. Let’s all recap that I am anti-sports involving balls, equipment, and coordination of handling said balls or equipment. I generally abstain from flying discs and balls but decided to make an exception.
I roll up to this beyotch (Macedonian pronunciation of “beach”) and see 30-40 people in cut-off tanks running, chasing, discing, throwing, and yelling simultaneously. No noodley-floppy, dorktastic, non-disculated newbies eating shit and listfully prancing in the sunset like I had envisioned. I frantically scan for Bloop who is sitting on the sidelines waiting to “sub in”. Well shoot me in the faccia (Italian for “face”)! I had shown up on Hardcore Pick-Up Ultimate Frisbee Day instead of Newbie What’s a Frisbee? Day. Before me, the spartan kings of all unconventional, hippie, drunken-athlete sports were tearing it up on the beyotch. Bloop insisted that this was “really no big deal, and nobody cares if you suck! It’s all just for fun!” RIIIIIGHT. I attempted to throw and catch some disc with Bloop for a solid minute (backhand, forehand, WTF??!!!) and then almost vomited on myself right before I grabbed the Xootie, hurriedly shouted goodbye and rode home. Panties in full twist, I had to stand on the pedals the whole way back… In a panic, I then plunged head first into the jacuzzi for an Ultimate cleansing, figuring the high temps would kill off the awkward germs.
Back to Bikes: There are some individuals I know who will again remain nameless (for the sake of this article, let’s call them “Lumps”) who must feel the same way about cycling! One of my aunties is a self-proclaimed Lump: she attended UC Davis in the 70s and wanted to fit in with all the bikey college students. Auntie Lump was so uncomfortable with the act of cycling that she bought a bike just to walk around campus with it everyday! Other Lumps tell me all the time, “No way in HELL I’d get on a bike… I haven’t been on one of those contraptions since my abacus broke!” Some people have no desire to try, claiming phobia of two-wheeled objects, that pedaling gives them carpul tunnel, or taintal allergies keep them from perching their sensitive bums on bicycle saddles for longer than 5 seconds.
To me, and many bike commuters, riding a bike may have been a bit uncomfortable at first… the first time I used hand brakes instead of coaster brakes, road drops instead of flat bars, or clippie shoes have all put my bike shorts in a temporary twist at one point in time. But eventually we come around. I honestly have ZERO desire to ever come around to Ultimate Frisbee, or doing something weird with a “disc” that they call a Land Shark. Are there Lumps out there with equivalent sentiments towards bike commuting? You guys must know a few… In the Lands of Nether, biking is an everyday means of transportation. If that’s the case then maybe Tron is the the land where Disc is an everyday means of beating the living crap out of your enemies.
Anyway, thanks for sticking with it, Bike Commuters. For those of you who made it to the end of this crack party ride, I leave you with some images from my Bike P0Rn presentation last summer. Thanks to the readers who contributed their photos!