Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Ed's ego rides again...

A week ago, as I rolled along easily on my morning commute, I sensed something behind me just as I crested the first bridge at Bird Creek. A second later, someone said, "On your left!" and another bicycle commuter swept by at speed. I shouted, "Good morning!" and he was gone.

Now, the guy was probably 20 years younger than me, and he carried only a large hydration pack. He rode a hybrid, spinning in a relatively large gear. He turned west on 66th and headed toward Mohawk Park.

I kept grinding on south toward the airport.

This morning, as I was southbound on Main Street, I saw another cyclist going west on 76th. It was the same guy! My ego nudged the speed up a couple of notches. He was moving fast as 76th is usually busy with car traffic, but when he turned south onto Mingo, he let up a bit.

I was in the drops, head down, and pedaling at a higher pace than I'd normally try to sustain. I closed the gap from roughly a quarter of a mile down to about 100 yards by the time we reached the Bird Creek bridges. That's when he saw me.

His cadence increased and the gap slowly widened. I gave about 3 seconds thought to sprinting after him, but I knew too well that there would be nothing left when (or if) I caught him. I'd have been able to gasp a hello, and he would have simply ridden away.

I sat up and went back to spinning easily. Still, my legs were mostly big hunks of wood through the morning.

An ego can be a dangerous thing.



Blogger lemmiwinks said...

That certainly raised a smile Ed. I can't help myself, every time I see someone on my commute it's on (even though it's nearly always a one sided race.) I generally get them on the hills, though after one got me back right away I've learned to time my attack. It's great entertainment.

12:19 AM  
Blogger Ed W said...

I seldom encounter any other cyclists on the commute, so it's always a pleasure to meet another one. This year, I've seen far more on the road than in any previous year. I'm sure gas prices are responsible.

Now, I wouldn't half-wheel a newbie while asking him a bunch of questions, making him breathe harder as I slowly increased his speed. That would be wrong.

6:37 PM  

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