To those of us who do it, riding nearly every day doesn’t seem all that unusual. It’s just what we do. Riding becomes just another part of the daily routine. But every so often something happens to make me realize that it’s an obsession.
I’m looking at the rented road bike leaning against the wall in my hotel room in Phoenix. I’m pretty sure I’m the only one here at the conference who has that in his room. If I didn’t have that bike, I would be spending the entire time here thinking about how I’m not riding in the sunshine and warmth. It would gnaw at me every day.
I know some guys have golf bags leaning against the wall in their rooms, but they don’t have the same level of obsession.
Now with the bike, what I’m thinking about is how I want to get rid of its stupid reflectors. You’d think a bike shop would have some appreciation for that. But I came to realize that even in the relatively obscure world of cycling we are the lunatic fringe.
When they wheeled the bike out, my first comment was, “um, could you remove that (wide-load) saddle and put on one that I could ride for more than a few miles?”
“20 miles? No, more like 75.”
“Which pedals? I have mine”.
“Don’t need a saddle bag.”
“I have my helmet.”
“Brought a computer.”
“Also brought a stem, because the 80 that’s on is way too short.”
“Really? You can’t take the reflectors off?”
Unfortunately I didn’t bring a screwdriver to remove the reflectors myself. Next time that goes on my checklist.
I just have to make sure to ride extra fast so I don’t get tagged as a “Fred”.