Bringin’ it to the squares

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Word has it people like race reports. Since my race reports usually end with me cramping up while fighting it out for 68th place, I’ll bore you with a ride report.

Last weekend was our local MS fundraising ride. 140-something miles over two days, with a night spent camping on a small college campus. Raise some money to fight one nasty disease, ride bikes, eat.

With two teams of city folk converging to bring 40 or so freaks to the suburban squares, it was bound to be a grand time. My plan was to ride all genteel-like listening to some tunes provided by a fellow teammates boombox. Plans rarely go as originally thought, as I know all too well. Mile 15 rolls by and a sorrowful tear was shed as our two-technologies old analog equipment ate up some Public Enemy. Damn it all to hell. Someone should really invent a superior cassette tape already. The radio in rural Pennsyltucky being unbearable, with no music to keep us together we splintered into a few loose-knit groups. A few of us formed a line and went at it…

Our group: One smoking lawyer, a unicycle riding independent circus performer, a graphic designer with dread’s down to his ass, a female messenger, a guy I sorta-kinda know from town, and my sorry ass weighing down the back.

Everyone else: Well meaning and surely perfectly nice, yet squirrely ridin’ folks with bar ends on top of bar ends. Antlers are in for the AARP-set.

So then we rode a bunch, saw some dead things on the road, and filled our gullets with whatever slop they were handing out every 15 miles or so. Yeah, that’s the story and I’m sticking to it.

Day 1 found us taking over a corner of the campus lawn, unknowingly encircling another team who pretty well kept their mouths shut, even when our dreadlocked friend crashed through one of their tents, landing with a deathgrip on a nameless, sleeping man’s face. Earlier, a brisk walk took us past a house of toothless folks that pointed us towards the nearest beer distro. It may or may not have been a contributing factor.

Another 60 miles, another gut full of bananas, another quest for refreshments. Day 2 ends with us Pennsylvanian’s realizing we are in Ohio! The birthplace of aviation! Not usually a reason to be excited, but for those of us from the Keystone State of God this means we have magically ridden to the promised land. Where beer flows freely from grocery store and gas station shelves, begging to be consumed by weary travelers.

Clearly, two miles out is the proper place to pick up a fridge pack of mini-kegs.

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About Brad

Bikes are cool, and I’ve been making a go at this ‘industry’ thing for a while now. You may remember me from some nine years at Dirt Rag Magazine. Or not. Now I do some writing, wrenching and photography to pay the bills. And run my half of a little magazine project called Urban Velo. We love riding in the city. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA