A Little Con to balance all the PRO-ness around here (or) Bicycle Catacomb
It’s a pretty unique position that I’ve found myself in this November. I’ve the responsibility to get out to public events with an enormous athletic apparatus on wheels that seems to make people really happy, somehow I’m hoping it is working out as a promotion of the best dang moving company around. I doubt I’d be getting out and racing again this fall while short on spare time and money if it weren’t for the fact that the races I like also happen to be the last outdoor venue that is running as the looming threat of bitter cold descends on New England and the best place for me to go with the Speed Stairs is a cyclo-cross race. I figured if I am going to a race while out promoting my company I should represent them while I am on the course as well so I registered for Plymouth today in the 1-2-3 race with Gentle Giant Moving/Budd Bike Works as my team. With no glistening GG team kit I taped our logo to my well worn, dog chewed, wool jersey and did my regular wheely warm up. At the start the sargents of the Embrocation PRO police noted my disregard for the PROgram of technocolor billboard kits and $800 wheelsets and I could only answer in knee jerk opposition that “We need a little con to balance out all the PRO-ness around here.”
It was a glib statement made to get a laugh and not something that I’d really thought about until later when I noted that the homogeniety of the typical start line of a recreational bike race and the obsessive fastidousness of that particular crowd with regards to parts selection and bizarre grooming rituals could be what keeps the sport from having a broader appeal in this country. There are a lot of really fast folks I’ve ridden with over the years that wouldn’t be caught dead in a crowd of menthol lathered dudes in kalidescope skin suits and $5,000 bikes. It’s too bad more of them don’t just put on what they are comfortable in and ride the bike they’ve got in a cyclo-cross race because they are missing out on a heck of a fun (albiet a bit painful) time, though I couldn’t promise that looking normal wouldn’t make them stick out like a sore thumb. I’m just really glad I found a way to have a great time getting paid to race as the anti-pro, looking like a con & I’d be much appreciative of any pictures from the day that anyone could send me, (ahem J. Dunn). I guess it does bear noting that the extra mile the compulsive dudes go to could make some bit of difference as 75% of them finished the race before me.
Getting home this evening I was still really excited about the re-organization that I finally executed in my shop space on Saturday. I took advantage of the creepy, deep, mortuary storage to make a bicycle catacomb of frames and wheels and cleared the floor space of the clutter that accumulated in my housemates 10 years of residing at our address. Not working in an ill lit corner anymore feels amazing but I still find my self reaching or looking for things in the awkward places that they used to be stowed. Major metalwork on BBW #26 should be done by mid-week.