Monday, January 11, 2010

Just A Stem Away

You might not believe this, but I’m sitting here and looking at this fuzzy picture of my cyclocross stem and, hell, I’m getting all weepy. That stem is at least 800 miles from me right now, possibly pining away for me as much as I’m pining away for it. Well, probably not. Bikes don’t pine when they’re separated from their owners; they rust; and their owners get fat.

So yeah, I’m out of town for a ten-day stretch, which is a good thing professionally because I’m not out of town on vacation – well, that’s not entirely true: I’m doing some teaching in Oregon (teaching creative writing) and as any non-teacher will tell you, teaching creative writing is a form of vacation from reality. Anyway, owing to travel and to the rainy location where I’m holed up and to the daily schedule at the place where I’m teaching, it wasn’t reasonable to bring a bike. To boot, there aren’t facilities hereabouts with stuff like quality Spinning bikes or bike rentals that aren’t of the beach-cruiser-for-50-bucks-an-hour variety. For a normal person, a non-biker, this would be no biggie. But for cyclists, who are the heroin addicts of exercise freaks, the prospect of ten days without a top tube between the legs is almost unthinkable. In my case, since I had wandered away from serious cycling and now have finally gotten into a great routine with at least two hours at a day on the bike, this 10 day break is literally too much for me to bear.

What are my choices? Buy a case of bourbon and get fucked up? Hang out in the hotel bar and say stupid shit to people? Order pizza three times a day? These seem like wonderful alternatives to what I have been doing. Running. Or really trotting. Or stumbling forward. I’ve been heading outside at six in the morning and trying something my father used to do, when he first started running several million years ago, which is walk to the next light pole and then run to the next light pole and so on. Oddly, I like this, even though the pain is horrific and I’m pleased nobody is around to see.

Nevertheless, my goal for this spring is to find a way to jog a few miles without stopping and when I can do that, I’m going to sign up for a fun run or whatever. Might be nice to join up with the millions of people who run instead of the hundreds of freaks who ride bikes.

Maybe I should just fetch that case of bourbon.


  1. Running is way awesome. That's what
    I do when I'm away from my bike! The light pole thing is genius. Such an awesome way to start from the bottom up. Good luck and keep it up!

  2. Running? Jesus fuck! On your knee? I think they have bikes in Oregon. You can find them. You can rent them. Hell, for less than it would cost to ship your bike you could probably BUY one. Be careful....

  3. Hey Magnuson! WTF? Where is Chef Guido? Running is gonna hurt your knees brother. Better find a bike. Bourbon is good, but only after the writing is done.

  4. My bad i didn't know you had a bum knee!
    Shame on you haha


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