Saturday, July 26, 2008

It's good exercise but with complications

I really enjoy riding my bike. As a kid we lived at the bottom of a hill. I am sure that hill isn't as scary as I remember it but it seemed huge. I would get about halfway up and quit, turn around and then coast back down. It was .2 miles.

Riding in the city can pose some challenges, but I do enjoy it. Since we have moved we are now on the backside of the hill that kept me from riding as much as I would have liked. But now, departing and returning to the house is relatively flat.

So... the challenges. Last week I headed out to the Minute Man bike path. Now that I known how to get there on bike lanes (Thank you Peoples Republic of Cambridge) I ride it at least once a week. Roundtrip is almost 30 miles. It takes you through Arlington, Lexington and then on to Bedford. So the last time I was on it just after I had crossed through Arlington center I saw about a hundred yards ahead some kid back his bicycle into a pedestrian. I had assumed he just didn't see her. Wrong. This kid was the biggest shit I have ever run across. I watched as he continued to buzz pedestrians and then swerve in front of those who were trying to get past him. He had a buddy with him who watched but didn't partake. Clearly this kid was going to do the same thing when I tried to pass him so I held back, and of course they slowed down. Getting nervous I was just like, okay, step on it. And of course he swerved in front of me. I am totally motivated by a fear of falling. My knee can't take it. I swerved to the other side and so did he and that was when I just unloaded on this kid. Screaming as loud as I could with more swears than I have used in a really really long time I let this kid have it. His buddy stopped in his tracks and I think I actually saw fear in this kids eyes. I was so mad. I kinda felt bad for calling him a useless piece of shit but he deserved it. Who lets their kids act like this. After the 30 second tirade of F bombs and the like, I peddled off and that was it. I was going to ride the bike path today but got a bit too much sun at the beach yesterday so instead I headed to the Charles River. It's a shorter ride by almost 10 miles.

I come through Harvard Sq and hop on the bike path at the corner of Memorial Drive and JFK Street. Today as I was coming down JFK I watched some guy bang a Uie (Boston term) and move into the right hand lane. You are not supposed to ride on the sidewalks in Cambridge so I was on the road. The first car turned right on red and the guy who had made the U turn started moving forward and edging right. Which is when my handlebars nicked his sideview mirror. I'm not sure if he saw me or not but he was kind enough to get out and ask if I was okay. More or less. When I went down it was, of course on my bum knee. Since my kneecap is so far out of whack it doesn't do much protecting. I rode on even after that incident but am now starting to regret it. My knee is a big ball of fluid. Something jabbed me just above my latest incision line and now I ache. Oof. I also scrapped up my wrist pretty bad, but all in all it could have been much worse. Imagine if he had turned into me. I should have realized he was going to turn right after he banged the U turn on one of the busiest streets in Cambridge, but there was no blinker. As I am fond of saying... I don't care where you are going, I just want to know when.

One of these days I should renew my gym membership. There is only so much lifting to be done at home. I'll cardio on my bike though as long as the weather holds out, I don't get run over or assaulted on the bike path.

PS. Edited to add-- I can only imagine if I had still been fat what that little shit would have said. I shudder to think.


Cammy said...

Okay, so even in cities with bike lanes, people still act like shits. That's sad.
I'm glad you're mostly okay, and I hope that knee is better by morning!

appple said...

people who ride like that should be beheaded, have their handlebars shoved through one ear until it comes out the other, and have their heads fixed upon the fork of their bike and put on display on a heavily trafficked road for all to see.

/stooping to the level.

but srsly, what a shit. i'm glad you kicked his ass.

Jim Purdy said...

sounds like the kid deserved every word you used, and apparently it worked. good for you.