Monday, August 23, 2010

Flushable movements: of kids, cross and mud

As the days of August slowly fade, the eyes of many a summertime roadie drift toward cyclocross season with the same anticipation that workaday clockwatchers stare at the number 5.  They have put their time in, and now want to start to play.  And in Mid-Missouri, cyclocross happy hour begins officially with the 3rd Annual Hermann Cross race.
Registration is now open, so follow the link above to start getting your mud-buzz on Sept 18 and 19th.  And speaking of cross, a reader sent this video to me, which was posted on Cyclocross Magazine online:

Of course this video may be construed as being quite sexist, as there are probably just as many women as men out there who want to escape the kids for a little while to spend time on their bikes.  And there are some men who will find a way to bring the kids along.  Take the cyclist I passed this morning on my way to work:

On first examination, I thought this gentleman had his daughter straddling the tob tube, tucked into his crotchal region holding on to the handlebars.  But as I passed, I realized that she was actually sitting on a top-tube mounted child's seat complete with foot rests and a handle platform to grip.
Not having kids, I feel somewhat ignorant to a certain "paternal consciousness" which I'm guessing kicks in at specific times to help discern at what age a child is safe to do various things, like bathing the cat, lighting the gas stove or retrieving a burned bagel from the toaster with a fork.  So my initial impression of this contraption was that it looked pretty risky....especially if you endo-ed and your child ended up being squished between the pavement and you.  That said, I cannot see much difference between this and my father letting me sit on his lap as he drove our family's 73 Oldsmobile down the highway at 75 mph sans seatbelt or airbag back in the day.  And really, is having your kid ride in front of you any more risky than having her ride in the trailer behind you....especially if you are going to be doing a long gravel ride after a rain shower, as fellow COMO cycling blogger Lieutentant Dan wrote about last March in a post entitled "Mud baby."

"Mud baby: the aftermath"

Alas, as cyclists, we accept certain risks ourselves and then subsequently deal them out accordingly to the ones we love, like it or not.  And speaking of risks, I am proud to say that I partook in the Booneville Festival of the Arts ride this past Saturday, a "rolling" 52 mile route (damn you, Hill of Lupus, damn you to hell).  We hadn't been on the road more than 5 miles when I heard someone behind me say, "Yup, the beginning of these rides always starts out the long choade line."  I'm guessing I was one of the choades this individual was speaking of.  The Booneville ride raises money for something, but for the life of me, I cannot remember what.  I do know however that I paid a whopping $25 to do it.  Before we started that morning I had to use the bathroom inside Thespian Hall and saw this sign, which a reader also noted, photographed and sent to me.
But I always flush after I perform anyway? 

Maybe I could designate that my $25 goes to pay to fix up the bathrooms in Thespian Hall....I mean, sometimes a good performance can evoke movements that truly are flushable....

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