Wednesday, September 09, 2009

I forgot how to ride my bike

KiM has been sorely neglected in recent weeks, so today I pumped up her tires and greased her chain and took her out for a quick jaunt before work. I headed a couple of miles out the Dupont Trail, which is marginally rideable when it's dry, and late-season vegetation provides a nice cushion for falls. I was timid, as usual, but for the most part we rocked it, hopping over roots and dodging boulders.

It's always invigorating to get back on the bike after a longish spell away, and between that the stoke I had left over from my semi-successful traverse of the lumpy trail, I was pedaling hard by the time I reconnected with the pavement. At one point I accidentally lifted my foot off the pedal (yes, a platform pedal), and when I put it back down, inexplicably, the pedal was no longer in the same spot. I pressed my foot hard into dead space, which threw my whole body off balance. I banked hard right, swerved wildly, overcorrected, and finally went over, scraping pavement and skin beneath a thick fleece pullover, and ripping a seam in the shoulder of a cotton T-shirt (Most of my clothing is still stowed away and my access to laundry is limited, so I have been wearing a lot more cotton recently.) Anyway, damage was minimal, but I jolted back up consumed with deep shame, wondering if that was perhaps the stupidest move ever made on a bike.

I didn't tell anybody about it today, and certainly wasn't going to write anything on my blog, but I figured I already rode my mountain bike across the length of the Rockies. I can own up to a stupid crash now and again.

23 comments:

  1. Shhh...we won't tell. I never crash either ;-)

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  2. Stupidest move ever made on a mtn. bike....I highly doubt it :)

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  3. Two types of people - those that have wrecked on their bikes or those that soon will (here I go jinxing myself!)

    But as dave34 said - your secret is safe with us :)

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  4. “…and our final award tonight, the Most Ridiculous Blog Entry Title In the History of Blogger.com goes to…..“

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  5. Everyone crashes! I certainly don't think less of you. In fact, your honesty and realness make me like you even more.

    I'm glad you're OK! And that trail looks fun!

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  6. I would kill myself if I tried mountainbiking. I'm sure of it.

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  7. If I remember correctly Matt McFee crashed and bent his frame doing an on-bike stretch near Lima during the GDR in 2007.

    Stupidest move I've seen lately was the guy on the shoulder of the road a few dark mornings ago with no lights, no reflectors, black clothing, and a black messenger bag.

    Bob

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  8. My stupid move happened last week at cx practice. I was on the far edge of the trail, and brushed by what I thought were some leaves....but those leaves were attached to a really stiff and sharp branch, which reached out and grabbed my jersey, snagging it and yanking me right off of my bike! I scraped my left elbow and have the weirdest 6 inch gash in my shoulder. Lame lame lame. The bruise to my ego was much worse. Oh, and the jersey is RIP.

    So no, your crash is not the stupidest thing to happen on a MTN bike (although technically I was on a cross bike..).

    Smile. You're only human, and a great blogger at that!

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  9. Anonymous7:40 AM

    I couldn't help but laugh at the description of the crash and the picture it painted in my head(since you didn't get hurt). It sounds like one of those things where you get up and look around to see if anyone saw you!

    Kyle

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  10. I was having a blast on a Labor Day ride—riding faster and stronger than ever. When out of nowhere I stall on a small hill, can't unclip and tip over. Now my shoulder and knee are all banged up. Pretty awesome.

    Though it doesn't compare to the awesomeness of stepping off a curb and breaking my ankle. Try to explain that to the cool kids who are injured doing something awesome.

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  11. With clipless pedals maybe you wouldn't of, um [smiling] .... just kidding :)

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  12. Platform pedals are more clipless than clipless pedals since you have to "clip in" to clipless pedals.

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  13. Glad you're okay.

    While this won't make you feel better, most crashes are stupid-related and mine have been especially filled with stupid.

    http://blog.bbkld.com/2009/06/25/stupid-on-wheels/

    Rubber side down.

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  14. brent driggers11:47 AM

    have to admit, my first thought was clipless mtn bike pedals/shoes. fur lined for Alaska of course!

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  15. brent driggers11:50 AM

    Also I am pretty sure that I would eat it big time on the roots shown in the picture.

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  16. hartage1:59 PM

    " I jolted back up consumed with deep shame "

    Lol, the candor, the honesty, what a perfect sit-com moment ! This kind of writing gold keeps me coming back. Thanks a ton for your great blog !

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  17. Happens to the best of us. As long as the worst of it is a bit of scraped skin and damaged ego, then it's ok! ;-)

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  18. how funny(since you're ok that is)....of course if there were no witnesses then it didn't happen...right?

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  19. *Greased* your chain?

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  20. They use bear grease in Alaska. The hard part is rubbing the chain all over the bear without annoying him too much.

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  21. Dumbest thing? Top this: first time I rode over a drop, I sailed gracefully over the handlebars and landed flat on my back, sliding feet-first down in loose sand. I gathered my wits and realized that I'd unconsciously been clamping down on the brakes… the front brakes.

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  22. Scene: Three guys and myself are riding swanky road bikes in Boise, ID up Table Rock Road. 2 of the guys are former pro motocross and downhill mtb riders, one is a registered cycling nut, and myself (a skinny guy with an addiction to riding fast uphill). The oldest guy, a dude with a very impressive resume stops at the top and chats with a cop who is parked up on top (probably taking a break from saving the world...). I began growing restless and since we had went up the hill and back 3 times and I started tightening up. The solution, stretch the quads while straddling the bike as the others shoot the breeze with the cop. To my dismay, my left foot became stuck on my saddle as I stretched the quad muscle, and my bike started tipping to the left. Unable to get my foot off the seat it was straight down on the knee and blood immediately started flowing. The top dog pro then states "you know, the sad thing is that he's the best rider on our team..." and everyone starts rolling with laughter. Needless to say, it was a glorious ride back through town with blood dripping all down the front of my leg and soaking my sock. I got a lot of weird looks that day from the local Boiseans. Is your's the stupidist thing ever done on a bike? Maybe, but rest assured, there are a lot of other stupid-funny things to laugh about out there. Thanks for sharing your crash story.

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