Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Shock value

I just got back from a fun "wintry mix" trip to the pharmacy and to pick up some supper for the misses and I. I'll mention that the ice studs helped pretty well on parts of the sidewalk that were frozen over. I also took one of my favorite "unorthodox shortcuts" behind Lenexa city hall. The ground was soupy with a crispy layer of ice and snow over it. With ragged steel edges pulverizing the ice, I sounded exactly like a snow plow on tarmac as I barged through the pristine passage with first tracks.

Along the way to the restaurant from the pharmacy, I almost got broadsided by a PEDESTRIAN who was running out of a bar to his car. Reason for running: Freezing rain. Famous last words: "Oh S*** dude! I'm sorry! Hey, it's too cold for that S***!" I laughed.

Seconds later: Some guy walking toward the same bar: "Hey Noah!" What the deuce?! It's a fellow (fair weather) bike/bus commuter that I see most every day on the bus. I stopped for a moment to show off my new kicks.

At the restaurant, the bartender/waiter who only knows me as "the bike guy" jokingly asked if I rode today. Since this place is so close to home, it's actually faster to ride there, so I often do, and bring it home on the bike. "Of course!" I reply. Quizzically, he asks if it's kind of slippery for a bicycle. "Probably for most, but I have ice tires. I was on my way home from somewhere else anyways."

I should also mention that today was a pretty heavy "20 questions" day from my "concerned" (read: critical) cow-orkers, all of which seemed to think today would be the day to break me of my riding habit. I pointed to the spiky front QR wheel sitting neatly under my desk. Reactions ranged from amusement and/or awe, to disbelief. Every last one of them felt the need to firmly prod a machine screw with their finger before telling me how sharp the studs are. I really hope none of them get Tetanus from that.

So, even if the tires didn't do any better than run-of-the-mill rolly stuff on the slushy watery roads this afternoon, the ghetto ice tires earned their keep with shock value.


Apertome said...

Haha, that's hilarious. I got some crazy looks from my coworkers today and it was merely foggy and a little drizzly. I can't wait to see their reactions when conditions worsen.

That said, I try to be as inconspicuous about my riding to work as possible. So I'm sure I don't get as many comments as I otherwise would.

Sirrus Rider said...

You Go Boy!

Sending you positive Karma from the warm Texas Coast!

Noah said...

Thanks, SR :)

As for my inconspicuousity... (err... that's not a word)

Of about 300 people on my floor, I'd say 30 are aware that I'm a cyclist, and may have seen me ride to work. About half of those are aware that I'm a little on the obsessive side about it. It's that core of people who get "concerned"

Then, of that core, I think there are 5 that genuinely want to see me give in to the car. Without going into detail, they have a severe inferiority complex for no good reason. It wouldn't surprise me if there is a pool going between them in regards to what day or what temperature will bring me into the office without my bike.

Jon said...

I get a wide range of snowy-day reactions from my co-workers here in Denver, on snowy days.

Some people think it's cool (and really are impressed with the snow-chains on my tires), and others think it's foolish.

But my favorite is my department head whose lower jaw actually dropped, yesterday, when he found out I had ridden in.

Sheesh! There was only about 4 or 5 inches of snow on the roads!

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