4.07.2005

this basically sucks

here it is the last minutes of my work day
working late...that happens sometimes... sometimes we have to work late
today was a beautiful day
the day was beautiful and now it is gone
sure I walked around the corner to grab my lunch
sure I stood out front and made small talk with a coworker for a few minutes as we took in the spring air
but that was about that
for the most part I was prisoner in my cube
well... a prisoner in my diminutive back office with a view out the window that hardly reveals night or day much less temperature or climate
a view of a brick wall 20 feet from my window showing many windows of seldom occupied many furniture-less offices

my day was spent in anticipation of a quick post work ride
yesterday I took a little urban trail across town on the Karate Monkey
the trail is less than technical
but car free
the absence of cars makes for a much more enjoyable post work bicycle experience
the feeling of dirt under my rubber tires makes for a much more enjoyable post work bicycle experience
it was a great little ride on my rigid frame with 29 inch wheels and its one single gear

the short trip from my office to the trail is enough to almost justify my scoff law behavior
but not really
so I take my excuses and rational to the next level...
the cars making their fast and aggressive maneuvers never looking for menever seeing me
never noticing until they feel that I am in their way
they got to pass me....
why are they angered when I pass them?
I know I only get angered when they pass too fast.... when they pass too close... and when after their pass, they swerve cutting off my line on the right side of the road
too often the cars pass within inches of me... when they have a few feet to move over to the center line
why do the car driver's feel as if they need to pass me so that they can file into the queue at the next red light?
like a ghost I drift through traffic
let me go my way
I am here and gone
my passage will not alter their destiny
if I am in their way... it is my right
my being in your way is similar to you being in my way
we are traffic
my taxes are spent on these pot hole filled roads just like yours
if I do slow them down for a few blocks or even a mile... they can make up for it with a push of the pedal
but... if they had been going the speed limit all along... they would still be miles back

to justify things more I look at the trail,
I look at the trail use and the trail users,
I look at my impact and their impact and make my decision

on a dry day... my impact on the bike is no greater than a hiker and their dog
on a wet day... I stay away... that same hiker with their dog, well, they march through making the trail wider
as they move around each puddle as they walk on the outskirts of the soft center of the single track trail
they kill the vegetation making the trail wider
their leashless dog runs off trail crushing fragile ground vegetation at their feet and brushing against fragile low lying bushes and young saplings trying to grow to be trees
runners and hikers going around obstacles rather than over them
runners and hikers taking the "b-line" bisecting the curve instead of taking the trail
those are the ones that are causing the greatest damage
not me on my bike
it is the soles of running shoes and hiking boots not air filled tires that are causing the greatest impact and damage
it is the small little leathery paws of our furry pets that break down the brush that thin out the woods off trail
but... they are allowed to be there
well, the hikers are allowed to be there.... the dogs.... they can not read so they do not know the law
I am not supposed to be there

I go there just the same
the speed limit says 25 MPH... the cars modify that little rule with a standard deviation of 10, 15, 20 and even over 25 miles per hour
the STOP SIGN says STOP.... the cars roll on through making less than a pause
so.... I get to make my own little modifications
only my modifications are not putting anyone at risk
I yield to the blue haired lady with the blue haired dog
when a runner approaches and the trail is not wide enough for both to pass... I slow... I stop
everyone gets a polite and sincere greeting
most people do not mindmost people are walking with their dogs off leash
but there are a few who are aggravated by my bike cruising past it is always a tad ironic when a leashless dog walker can get all "uppity" about the law when they themselves are doing a tad bit of scoffing

so what is it that is such an issue?

the issue is that the bright sky with the warm breeze has been replaced by a dark cloud filled sky a sky that has started to rain on my bicycle parade
puddles visible in the alley bellow show that the rain is falling and starting to collect
that little urban adventure that I had looked forward to all day has now been canceled
sure... I may still take a spin on the pavement... but I was looking to go car free on the dirt

oh well...April Showers!
guess I will race straight home
not just in time to change my young boys' clothes and leap into bed to read Dean a story
but to get home in time to aid in the whole "off to bed" process (and it is a process)
tonight I plan on reading Dean a new book...
we have been reading SHREK by its original author
now we will move to The Amazing Bone by the same author

no time to read this over
time to get in my gear and go home
straight home
do not pass GO
do not.....

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