Monday, February 2, 2009

I didn't die, which only added to my enjoyment of the ride

Today I'd like to talk about the Super Bowl Sunday Ride that we did yesterday.

As I mentioned in my last post, every year on Super Bowl Sunday, cycling groups from all over the Dallas/Ft Worth area, ride to the area of downtown Dallas called the West End, have lunch, then ride home. For Team Bikin, this was about a 50 mile round trip ride. Now usually, a 50 mile ride isn't a lot to get excited about. But since this was the first time I've ridden outdoors in over 3 months, I was extremely excited about it. Some might say, I was down right giddy about it. Given to my Lutheran heritage and upbringing, I smiled myself downright silly.

For those of you who didn't get the humor in that last line, allow me to explain. If you aren't of Germanic heritage, or of Lutheran upbringing, the German people are typically very restrained, and not prone to outburst of emotion. So you wouldn't be bursting out in laughter. Therefore a big smile would be the most outward show of emotion that you would allow yourself. So when I say, "I smiled myself silly", I'm making fun of the reserved nature of the German people. While making fun of a particular ethnic heritage is somewhat frowned upon, as someone of German heritage, I feel that I get a free pass on this. So, now you get it don't you? When I explain it, it's extremely funny. It does tend to lose something if I have to explain it, but trust me, it's very funny.

As for the ride itself, it went pretty much as expected. As we started out from Plano, it was quite chilly, relatively speaking for Texas. I believe we were in the low 40's at our 9:30am start. For we Texans, that meant having on every piece of winter weather gear we had. We went straight into about a 15 mph headwind the entire trip to downtown Dallas. Traffic levels were quite low, given that it was 9:30am on Sunday morning. That would change on our return trip home.

Lunch was at Landry's downtown. It never ceases to amaze me how oddly people will look at you when you walk into a rather nice restaurant in full winter cycling gear. The way people stopped and gawked, you'd have thought I was from Mars. The looks only got more intense as one by one, the seven of us started stripping off the layers of clothing that we were wearing. There was a palpable excitement in the air as the patrons of the restaurant were trying to gauge just how far this impromptu striptease was going to go. And if I do say so myself, a bit of disappointment, when we all stopped just short of getting arrested.

Given the southerly winds, the ride home should have been much quicker than the the ride downtown. But, as these things always seem to do, the wind died down significantly for the return trip. It wasn't in our face, but I'm sorry, we had earned a much better tailwind than what we got. The other concern for the ride home was the fact that the amount of traffic had basically tripled from the morning ride. So, even though we didn't have nearly the tailwind that we were expecting, the added adrenaline that we had pumping through our veins probably made up for it. Never underestimate the fear of imminent death as a motivating factor.

As for me, I rode much better than I expected. Given my recent illness and brush with death, I was very pleased with my form. (My wife will tell you that I was never really in any danger of dying, but she always minimizes these sort of things. Again, trust me, I was gravely ill). I wasn't in middle of the summer, riding in the Hotter-n-Hell, type of form, but I did alright. I didn't get dropped, and I don't think I had any sort of cardiac incident, so it was a good ride.

You'll want to check back late Wednesday night or Thursday morning for my next post. In that post, I promise to reveal my newly discovered super power.

Peace out.....Nearly Famous Fred


331 Miles said...

Stoic and sedate? You must be Missouri Synod! ;^)

Nearly Famous Fred said...

Good guess. Sounds like you're familiar with the breed.