Friday, October 16, 2009

Rights of Passage

So I got signed up for the Tour de Okinawa some time ago, we all drove up to Nago together and it was really easy. Now I just have to wait for the info package to come in the mail, they told me it would come sometime in October. The thing is, it's now the 17th and I have yet to get it. Now I understand that it's going to take a little while because of the whole FPO mailing address and it's quirks (the package will have to go from here to California and then back to here). I'm just hoping that I don't have to go to the Nago office come early November to tell them that I have yet to get my info.

Anyway, on a different note, Bicycling Magazine posted this Rites of Passage blog like thing, and I thought it would be interesting to use it as one of this quiz like things that you always see on MySpace/Facebook and just to sort of catalog my own experiences. So here goes:

01. Realizing that the hill isn’t in the way; it is the way.
  • I commute by (race) bike to work everyday, of course the hill is the way, it's almost a mile long and at a 6% grade for some of it. But I wouldn't go any other way (except maybe the way with the bigger, longer hill).
02. You go from one pair of shorts to a dedicated drawerful.
  • I have 3 pairs of Cannondale shorts that I use all the time. My old red ones are really small so they get used under other shorts for trail riding and I have two other ones, one is old and really thin, and the other is too big and I really should do something with them, they could probably be good for trail riding too.
03. Being unable to sleep the night after you first shave your legs, because of the tingle of bedsheets against your skin.
  • My wife doesn't let me shave my legs, I used to in highschool and she remembers that, and I think that's why she doesn't want me to now.
04.When "thanks for the ride" goes from something you overhear to part of your lexicon.
  • I don't get this one, is it referencing commuting to work and needing a ride if you need to go someplace during the day, or saying thanks to your buddy that just went on a bike ride with you?
05. You see someone at the beach tanned low on the quads and biceps, and give him a nod of recognition.
  • I have yet to have this happen, but I totally would.
06. Bonking so bad you don’t think you’ll be able to make it home.
  • As far as I know I have never bonked (hitting the wall in running terms). Is this a bad thing?
07. Discovering how a convenience-store Coke can resurrect the dead.
  • YES! Inst-o sugar and calories.
08. Starting and finishing a ride—the same one—in pouring rain.
  • Oh come on, I live in Okinawa, like this is a big deal to me...
09. When you hang out at the bike shop and no one expects you to buy anything.
  • I'm pretty sure I've had this happen to me already, but it could be a language barrier thing too.
10. When your bike computer registers triple digits for one ride.
  • Not yet, haven't had the time. Most I've gone was just over 44 miles.
11. Clearing a log on a the trail.
  • Please, Bigger deal would be clearing a curb, on your road bike.
12. You embrocate.
  • [Definition] to apply a liniment or lotion to (a part of the body)
  • Um... no.
13. Staying with the paceline long enough to take a turn at the front.
  • I rarely get to ride with a group, and when I did, I spent a lot of time in the front, mostly up hills.
14. You’re on the bike for the fifth straight day, and your butt doesn’t hurt.
  • This is a newbie thing, my butt never hurts, my back and shoulders can though.
15. You try bibs and realize you can never go back to shorts.
  • I want to try bibs, but they're so freakin' expensive.
16. You stop riding beside and behind the pack and instead ride inside of it—with no claustrophobia.
  • Note number 13 above.
17. You swing off the front of a paceline before you get tired.
  • Noting number 13; if I didn't I thought that nobody else would ride up front.
18. You blow a snot rocket without hitting your shoulder or leg—or the rider behind you.
  • I don't blow snot rockets.
19. You notice that someone else has the chain grease on his right calf.
  • This has not happened to me.
20. You get stuck in your pedals and topple over at a stoplight.
  • This happened to me a long long time ago. I was at the BP station in Mercer and I had just gotten my new pedals on my Mongoose mountain bike, I had to come to the first real stop of the day and suddenly couldn't remember how to get my foot out of the pedal and down I went, in front of everyone, I was 14 or 15 at the time. Just a little embarrassing.
21. Someone you introduced to the sport kicks your ass on a ride.
  • Nobody I introduce to the sport seems to keep riding.
22. Riding a bike through a big, congested city and feeling smarter than everyone else because you’re moving.
  • This happens everyday, I do live in Japan.
23. You wake up to find the sheets stuck to your road rash—and still feel excited about riding that day.
  • I bandage my road/trail rash at night so that this doesn't happen.
24. Your boss stops by to ask you to explain what’s happening in the Tour de France.
  • Happened every day when I was on the MEU, even some of the Australians would ask me about it.
25. You fix up your old bike to get someone into the sport.
  • I'm still on my first road bike (hard to beleive that I didn't I'm a roadie at heart until I was 25 years old).
26. Wearing out your first set of tires.
  • Just did that not too long ago, seems the roads in Okinawa wear down tires pretty fast, could be all the hill climbing too, or they were just cheap tires.
27. You ride through a pothole, and it’s no big deal.
  • I've gone through a pothole and not even thought about it, could be the mountain bike experience.
28. Getting hopelessly lost—deliberately.
  • It's really hard to get lost for very long on Okinawa, it's a small island.
29. You stop midride to give your only spare tube to a stranded cyclist.
  • I recently started to carry a spare tube, I have stopped to help patch and pump a tube.
30. You realize you’re driving your car as if it’s a bike—drafting, looking for holes, getting away from the squirrelly guy.
  • I was doing this one day and had to stop and tell myself "this van is a lot wider than your bike".
31. Fixing a busted chain.
  • In the heat, on the trail, in the mud.
32. When you no longer have to stop to take off your jacket.
  • I can't do this yet, but I don't wear my jacket often at all.
33.Feeling confident about taking off your jacket while riding—then catching the trailing sleeve in the rear wheel.
  • See above.
34. The first time you crumple your race number.
  • Tour de Okinawa is on it's way.
35. Planning a riding vacation.
  • I've never even thought about this.
36. Seeing a sunrise from the saddle.
  • Used to happen every morning, now the sun comes up at a different time.
37. Wondering how the biggest local hill would rank on the Tour de France climb classification.
  • The hills here aren't tall enough.
38. In your head, Phil Liggett narrates your ride.
  • I love Phil, but I don't hear voices on my rides.
39. You got dropped, you flatted, bonked, got turned around—and when you got home you said you had a great ride.
  • Hasn't happened.
40. You roll through a patch of gravel and, without thinking, reach back to brush the crud off your tire with your palm.
  • I leave the crud there, I don't wear gloves.
41. A rider you respect says, "You were flying today."
  • I tend to ride by myself.
42. Rolling through a stop sign—and knowing it was the right thing to do.
  • Everyday.
43. Doored!
  • I've had a lot of 'almost' encounters.
44. When you crest the summit of a climb, start down and realize you’ve gone the wrong way. But keep going anyway.
  • This has happened once or twice.
45. Rubbing wheels—and staying up.
  • I rub wheels for fun sometimes.
46. Letting go of your kid’s seat and not having to grab it again.
  • Maddock is still to young/small to learn to ride a bike.
47. Getting a bike stolen and being surprised at how deeply it hits you.
  • I've never had a bike stolen.
48. Cleaning the cassette with your old toothbrush.
  • That sounds like a great idea.
49.Sprinting the neighbor kids.
  • They're all way too young.
50. Chasing a rabbit down singletrack.
  • There are no rabbits here.
51. Falling asleep when you stop for a break on a mountain bike ride.
  • Almost happened once.
52. Endo.
  • Duh...
53. Telling someone which bike to buy.
  • This has happened more than once, and neither time was I biased by brand.
54. Overcooking a turn.
  • This has happened on the trails.
55. Breaking a collarbone.
  • Never want to do this again, it's happened twice, and neither time was I on a bike.
56. Figuring out how to layer without overdressing.
  • I can't figure out how to layer without underdressing.
57. Deciding which car to buy in part based on how it will carry your bikes.
  • The car I have I will have for some time.
58. Your first ride with a jersey instead of a T-shirt.
  • That happened a long time ago, about the same time noted in number 20.
59. Riding on a day so cold the water in your bottle freezes.
  • I live on Okinawa, a tropical island. I imagine it would suck though.
60. Discovering that a shot of Jameson in each bottle keeps the water fluid.

  • Awesome, I'd probably use vodka though.
61.Though you’re not clear on exactly how to do it and unsure of the outcome, you manage to fix your first flat.
  • Where's the mystery in this? I learned how when I was like 8.
62. Walking home in your cleats.
  • Yea, like 8 miles too... It was because I didn't feel good, not a problem with the bike.
63. Getting so deep into the sport you think your helmet looks good.
  • My helmet does look good.
64. Following a favorite pro racer—besides Lance Armstrong.
  • Yea, but it's had not to follow him when he's the only one people ask you about.
65. Finding out your favorite pro racer was doping.
  • Nope.
66. Wrapping your bar tape so the handlebar plug stays in and no bare bar shows at the tricky bend at the brake hood.
  • Succeeded the very first time.
67. Naming a route.
  • Haven't really done this one yet.
68.Bumping elbows, then being relaxed enough to make a joke about it with the person next to you.
  • Happens on the trails a bit.
69. Sitting in with the big weekend training race.
  • Nope.
70.Developing that "V" of muscle definition on the back of your calf.
  • Of course, had it back in the day, have it now.
71. Espresso at the halfway point.
  • Nope.
72. Crashing and immediately asking, "How’s my bike?"
  • Trails, every time.
73.Fixing your bike with a rock.
  • No, never, I carry tools.
74. Paying for a coach.
  • Nope.
75. Figuring out that training advice doesn’t get much better than "Ride lots."
  • Yep.
76. Clacking into a rough tavern in cleats and spandex.
  • Does just going to work count? I am a Marine after all.
77. Having a position on Bartali vs. Coppi.
  • Having a position on what? (looked it up, has to do with the 1949 Giro D'Italia)
78. Throwing up after a sprint.
  • Almost happened once.
79. Chasing back on after a flat.
  • I tend to ride solo, so after a flat, I just get going again.
80. Winning a town-sign sprint and remembering it forever.
  • Again, I tend to ride solo.
81. Explicating your training in exquisite detail on a blog, then realizing nobody cares.
  • Um... I'm writing a blog right now....
82. Watching the compressed CO2 from your only canister shoot off into the air instead of into the tube.
  • I just got a CO2 system and have yet to use it.
83. Matching your bar tape to your tire’s sidewall— then realizing on your next ride that your bike looks like it’s been decorated by a blind pimp.
  • You mean yellow tires and yellow bar tape on a yellow & lime green bike doesn't look good?
84. Riding someplace you’ve always driven.
  • I commute to work.
85. Out-sprinting a crazed dog.
  • Dogs are pretty well under control here, oh but I do remember doing this back home one time, he was fast, and I was on a mountain bike.
86. Summiting an H.C. climb.
  • What is that?
87. Waving at a cyclist coming the other way and being ignored.
  • It's happened, so now I ignore them until they wave first.
88. Getting annoyed by an uninvited wheel sucker.
  • Hasn't happened, at least that I know of.
89. Getting so fast you’re confident enough to ride slow.
  • Yup, there are times to be fast and times you need to be slow.
90. Wondering if cycling matters too much.
  • Not really...
91. Not caring if it does.
  • Yup.
92. Surfing traffic on adrenaline and luck in one of the world’s 10 biggest cities.
  • I think that here counts, the traffic is crazier here than a lot of big cities.
93. Sitting up, taking your hands off the bar on a downhill.
  • And on an uphill, and through a turn.
94 . At the PTA meeting, looking around at all the fat parents.
  • I don't go to PTA meetings.
95. Dropping someone half your age.
  • Half of 25 would be about 13, is that fair?
96.Out-climbing someone half your size.
  • Has not happened, plus good luck finding someone that weighs 87 pounds and is strong enough to ride a bike well (and not 13).
97 . Passing someone whose bike costs twice as much as yours.
  • This has happened, passed a guy on a Prince once.
98. Looking inside the bottle you’ve been using all season, seeing mold.
  • My wife is pretty animate about me washing my bottles.
99. Dismissing what used to be your favorite cycling magazine because it keeps repeating topics.
  • Never!
100. Reading The Rider.
  • Reading what?
101.Coming home from Europe with a cobblestone in your luggage.
  • Never been to Europe.
102. Finding out no one makes your favorite handlebar-bend anymore.
  • I just got into this, I don't have a favorite bend yet.
103. Riding down a trail you couldn’t safely walk.
  • Have you seen the trails here in Okinawa?
104. Telling the joke, "God wishes he was Eddy Merckx."
  • I know this joke, and I have told it a couple of times.
105. Cheating a crosswind by joining an echelon.
  • Again, I ride solo most of the time.
106. Feeling superstrong, then turning around for the ride back and realizing you had a tailwind.
  • Yes, this has happened, and I hated it.
107. Pedaling the Brooklyn Bridge, toward Manhattan, at night.
  • What's the dig deal about this? I've never been there.
108.Being the person whose bike squeaks drive everyone nuts.
  • Hell, it drives me nuts.
109. Reading a rites of passage list and finding that your own favorite one is missing.
  • Okay maybe....

Well my kiddo is up now, so we're going to go on a ride to feed the fish at the park.

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