How's that bike thing?

Doing the epic bike-to-work-route once a week seems to be working out so far. When I did it last week I didn’t feel nearly as worn down to a soggy pulp as I had the week before. This time I only slightly wanted to die and float away on a fluffy cloud, a cloud with built-in adjustable therapeutic massage function, so I suppose that’s progress. I’m told that the angry little knot of pain I feel in my lower back after about ten miles most likely means that I have to get the handlebars adjusted, and it probably does not mean that I am congenitally bike-impaired. And that is good.

The tiredness and the soreness do not outweigh the awesomeness of the trail and the river and the scruffy overgrown back roads and all the things I see on them. The week before last, I saw duck sex. I mean I was riding by and there by the side of the trail I saw a duck, and then another duck was sort of tangled up with it. It wasn’t until I’d already passed them that I realized what they were doing, and then I turned around, because how often do you get a chance to see ducks fuck? But by the time I went back it was all over, and the two of them were walking up the trail with a sort of awkward silence between them. Oh yeah, I know what that’s about, ducks.

The week before that I saw three deer diving across the trail, one after the other, like Esther Williams swimmers in formation. And last week I passed a front yard where half a dozen prom couples posed for photos, the girls lined up together in their strapless dresses.

I expected to see at least a few of the 17-year cicadas on to the trees, but it seems they didn’t really emerge around here, since I’ve only heard about sightings in the suburbs. At least I don’t have to worry about running over all their crunchy little exoskeletons.

If we manage to do most of the things we’re planning to do in the next few months, it’ll be the most summery summer I’ve had in maybe twenty years. The bike already makes me feel like I’m twelve, and when the outdoor city park pool opens for the season I’ll start doing my laps there instead of at the gym. So conceivably I could ride my bike to the pool. I think the last time I did that, compact discs didn’t exist yet, and neither did my boobs. Really, all I need now to truly recapture those days is a pair of jellies and the freakish compulsion to reapply Maybelline mascara every 35 minutes or so, because I was that kind of girl. Now, not so much.


  1. Brandy says

    And just think, jellies are totally coming back in style.
    You could be your twelve year old you.

  2. Brandy says

    And just think, jellies are totally coming back in style.
    You could be your twelve year old you.

  3. Christine says

    I ride to work via bike most every day in the decent weather (well, I did before I got pregnant — bike riding at 8.5 months preggo is hard — my legs keep knocking into the baby) but the most I rode was maybe 3 miles each way. Which I used to be pretty pleased with. Before I read that you ride 10+. Yowzers.

    After the ride you take, can you shower at work? I just used to dry off in front of the AC fans, because I do not stink (heh). I’m sure you do not stink either, but after such a workout, dontcha need some coll-down/refresh time?

  4. says

    I ride (technically) 5 miles each way, but if I get up early enough, I ride 10 miles each way and have come to the point where the weather’s not cooperating, I actually get depressed. I get this whole nice take on the world I don’t get when I commute via car (we still don’t have rail here in m’woky. ask john norquist, we tried, oh how we tried.)

    Anyway, if you can’t shower at work, (shameless prodcut endorsement) Jonathan Re-Do is worth the $17 a bottle to freshen your helmet head up and take the edge off the summer sweat. It’s sort of this millenium’s answer to the Psssssst of my youth. (I have the correct number of esses in that, because to this day, I still remember the damn jingle, “Psssssst, the instant spray shampoo, Psssssst, it freshens up your do, clean your hair so easily, with P-s-s-s-s-ss-t!” It sucked, BTW. Left grainy shit in your head.)

    But I digress. Nobody’s noticed my sweaty sports bra and biking shorts drying out over the HVAC register…. yet.

  5. sarah says

    I had a summer like that a few years ago – freakishly happy, meeting my best bud weekly at an outdoor pool to do a hard workout, then flop on therapeutic deck chairs for a hour. Doze.

    And I found myself buying things in freakishly happy colors at Target.

    Do it! Harness it!

  6. ginna says

    I’m in Paris today and seeing Jellies in the shop windows. They’re officially back in style I guess.

  7. Andy says

    Here’s a new challenge for you….
    This summer I took advantage of the fact my city ( Toronto) is on a lake and learned how to sail. I bet there is a co-op sailing school there too…try it, it’s totally awesome!

  8. says

    I’ve been reluctant to ride my bike because I’ve always had to tow my my youngest in a trailer. She’s finally old enough to stay upright on one of those trail-a-bike things, so I’m going to get out there and give it a go.

  9. Susan says

    I too saw duck sex this past month on my bicycle ride to work! However, this was a duck threesome, right in the middle of the bike path! As I was riding up, I saw a large dark shape in the middle of the path. As these large dark shapes have occasionally been porcupines, I cautiously slowed down. As I got closer, I started to distinguish feathers, then the pile separated into not one, not two, but *three* ducks. One female and two males.

    I was telling a coworker about this when I got to work and she said “Isn’t it a little late for that?” I replied that perhaps it was recreational duck sex, but I hadn’t stoped to ask. I then had to explain the conversation to another coworker who just happened to walk by in time to catch my comment!

    Nothing like a little duck sex to start your day off on the right note!!