Saturday, June 27, 2009

Fear Factor II: They're Baaaaaack!


OH, SWEET JESUS, THERE ARE MORE OF THEM.




This one was dead. But where there are dead ones, there are surely more live ones...

Cue hyperventilation.

"It's Like Riding a Bike."

A teaser: This post will include A) one of the least attractive photos of me ever taken, and B) one of my most shameful stories to date.

I want a bike. In fact, I want a bike so badly that I check Craigslist at least four times a week in the hopes that someone will be selling one within my price range. No dice.

One of my friends (the one I discovered The Cookie Diet with) is in St. Louis for the weekend. In her absence, I was granted temporary possession of her bicycle, which was locked up at our office. Yesterday, as I headed out to dinner at Cafe Luna for a girls' night (refer back to yesterday's post about my favorite typo ever), I realized I had the blessed option of riding "my" bike there. Enthusiasm abounded.

I walked it to dinner because a friend joined me for the trek, but I was beyond jazzed about the prospect of riding home afterward. Unsurprisingly, a few factors quickly brought my usual nerves to full attention:
  • A sideways-raining thunderstorm queued up halfway through dinner, soaking the city.
  • I was reminded that there are no bike lanes on Connecticut Avenue, greatly increasing my chances of being mowed down by a vehicle.
Needless to say, I began to think of all the many ways I could die a painful bike-related death on the two-mile ride home:


Post-meal, my about-to-bike-ride situation went down as follows, as a crowd of guys looked on in disdain & my friends laughed at, not with, me:
  • I could not get the bike unlocked.
  • Once unlocked, I could not figure out what to do with the lock while I rode.
  • Once we realized there was a lock-holder, we struggled to get the lock into it, & I ultimately threw it in my purse.
  • As I tried to hop on, I discovered the seat was so high that I couldn't keep my balance.
  • I struggled to readjust the seat, deferring to my friend Jill, who handy(wo)manned it into a manageable height.
  • Once on the bike, I could not get my feet in the pedal straps, resulting in much unsteadiness.
  • Once I really made it on, I promptly tumbled onto a parked Vespa & damaged whatever dignity I'd held onto.
  • And once I actually made it on & got moving, I was too scared to ride in the road, thus pissing off people on the sidewalks.
Three blocks in, I bailed, walking the bike back to work & hopping on the Metro. Needless to say, that old cliche is wildly false. I am 24 years old. And I can no longer ride a bike.
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