Performance? Performance Art? Bad Gear Choice?

this weekend past a "racer" in the National Triathlon rode the bicycle leg of the swim-run-bike event on a Capital BikeShare bicycle

this action drew a good deal of attention
it drew my attention... I bet it got your attention
if you are like me... you are more than likely talking about this at the water cooler
I am not sure if he finished last... but I bet Jefferson Smith got more attention than the first place male and female finishers

I must admit... I have not seen ANY press about the event from last weekend other than mention of this guy and his Capital BikeShare bicycle

performance? performance art? or just bad gear choice?

personally... I am not impressed
if he did the event and used this bicycle and had a competitive time... there would be a different discussion
but to attend the event and pedal the bicycle leg on this lead sled
well... it just seems like poor planning and a poor gear choice

if he wanted to make the Nation's Tri an act of penance like Robert DeNiro dragging his swords, shields, and chain mail up and down the Andes... well... he could have made the other legs of the race more challenging

on the swim... he could have worn combat boots or ankle weights
as for the running... he could have run barefoot and tossed crushed glass onto the road in front of himself
either of these would have made as much sense as using a Capital BikeShare bike in a triathlon

okay... I actually know nothing about Jefferson Smith
it is not his fault that he is getting attention for this
attention may not have been his goal
but... he is getting attention and I am responding to the attention more than the action

the fact that he sign up... set out to do this... got on this fat tired bicycle with its heavy steel frame and its limited range of gears and still finished... well... there is something to this
helmets off to Jefferson Smith!
but... for the 100 dollar day pass... I bet he could have bought a bicycle at a yard sale or a thrift store
alas... he did not
which is why I am typing this now

had he borrowed his a friend's bicycle or bought a beater... this electronic conversation would not be happening

years ago when my brother was a competitive rower he would talk about the "rower in a duck suit"
that whole... performance versus performance art
there are marathoners that juggle
there are mountain bikers that race in dresses
there are.... there are... there are

I get it... but I do not get it
some people can mix and match the attention getting performance art
while others can not
Team Hugh Jass from Harrisonburg Virginia managed to race fast and muck it up back in their day

I get it... I do... I really get it...
I think it was more a bad decision than an effort to get attention
in some ways I liken it to my early days of snowboarding
how I moved out west with my Burton Woody... a snowboard a few steps higher in the evolution of the snowboard further than the Burton Backhill or Performer
this snowboard lacked a metal edge

not knowing any better I went to Loveland Pass with some friends of friends
there was a guy with a VW Bus that worked perfectly for shuttle runs up Route 6
on the Continental Divide we all pointed it down the hill
at the base of each run I got all sorts of questions and comments

I was dim to their questions... I did not get their jokes... I had no rebuttal to their comments
having never skied before... having never been to a ski resort... knowing nothing about the evolution of the ski or the snowboard for that matter
I just rode what I had... the same snowboard that I had used on golf courses and local sledding hills 

later I realized that my riding the Burton Woody down the deep powder in between the tight trees at Loveland Pass was similar to someone riding a downhill mountain bike course on a Mary Poppins bike
it can be done... but could be done better and more safely with the proper gear
shortly after I did get the appropriate gear
when I made my first turn that took me UP HILL... I understood
then when I did a power slide to STOP... I totally understood
and I never rode the Burton Woody again

as for this guy...
I think he realizes that he would have enjoyed himself more had he ridden a lighter more efficient bicycle
there is a chance that all the attention balanced the scales
but maybe not so much that he would use this sort of bicycle for future triathlons

a quick GOOGLE of BIKE RENTALS WASHINGTON DC brings up a long list of choices

Revolution Cycles' City Hub rents a Trek road bike that is a few steps up from my "high end" road bicycle

1 comment:

gwadzilla said...