Seems I was mistaken about when exactly the last snow of the year was. I’m almost happy my expansive and lovely Ass, the sheer acreage of which is impressive, didn’t do all the shit necessary to get ready for riding when we had that warm week in late February. I reckon my astronomical ass, the moon can control tides and mine can displace a lake, wouldn’t have suffered had I done so, but I would have had to redo it all. My cool ass trail bike could ride in the snow with no problem, but it needs to sleep indoors. The bike isn’t averse to sleeping outside, it’s just that in my fifty eight years of orbiting the sun I never had been ripped off, physically, of such valuable things as the great bike theft of 2017 (hmmm, or was it 16? 17 I think.) So, I keep my valuable bike inside and even the bikes I use for parts.
Oh, yeah, and my over-developed hind halve American cheeks don’t particularly care for pedaling in the snow. Hmmm, my literal ass doesn’t mind so much, it’s my figurative ass, the ass that is my mortal form, that doesn’t care much for sub-freezing wind blowing in my face. Though, given my relative shape at the moment, I don’t think I’d be creating much wind of my own. Heh, not cheek wind, speed wind.
Today I’m feeling the effects of my sedentary winter. My smartassphone doesn’t help much; it still gives me an “active” minute readout for the day, 12 minutes. To be fair to me I didn’t take my phone with me, um, it might have been more like thirty minutes. I haven’t worn the fitness tracker since November. My last intern, who I honestly only saw the once, out of two appointments she missed the second, had recently delivered a baby, her own, and though she didn’t discuss weight (as if) she did ask if I was planning on a winter fitness regime. The upside to her missing the march appointment was the not having to make excuses. I told her I was going back to the gym. I didn’t.
I’m typing instead of doing something about it. Waiting for the real spring to come, or, at least, the temps to be above 32 farenheit, seems like a fair a reasonable attitude to me. Still, if it were nicer out I’d be moved to move. It’s going to hurt for a week or so, but then I’ll feel better. False starts would just be frustrating.
I’m a member of a facebook group called cycling over fifty. This past week I’ve been ignoring them even harder than I have in the past. Although they say it’s for cyclers of all levels, the ones who post the most are serious gung ho motherfuckers. When a new member joins and politely says they are just recreational there’s about fifty notes that say things like “Keep Riding” and “Welcome” and other sort of polite but non committal stuff. Then theres a few that say shit like “When I first started I was only doing fifty miles a day, keep at it, you’ll get there, I’m doing 2500 a week now”. Also, new members will do things like ask how people track stuff. Half the answers are high end equipment, a quarter of them are convoluted mathematical equations and about five percent are “Don’t worry about, just enjoy” but when you check out those peoples posts they have maps and shit and are gung ho motherfuckers.
I don’t use a fitness tracker to track my level of fitness, I use it more to track what I’m not doing. I ride a bike because I love the feeling of a good bike ride. Fitness goals or pushing past whats comfortable would sort of ruin that the way High School English teachers ruin literature by making kids read Fennimore Fucking Cooper. I’m cultivating joy not … whatever. All things considered for someone as fucked up as I am, I’m in an agreeable shape (well, not right at the moment, but it’s the lethargy of my ass that concerns me more than it’s shape).
If I still lived in Oregon I’d either be in much better shape or I wouldn’t be riding. It’s not as challenging riding here. Even the steepest of grades are short. I was talking with my son this weekend and we talked enough about bike riding that he was getting pumped for going for a ride. From his house, if you take the street, it’s an immediate 8 percent grade up, if you’re coming to his house you can’t even see it as you crest the hill. To go any where much from his house, like, say, a twenty mile ride, he’d be facing nothing but serious hills. From my old house to his, as the crow flies, was about five miles. A walking crow, however, would be in constant change of elevation. I remind myself of such things when I feel a bit worn out riding around here. After a month or so I chose routes that hit the most change in elevation; not too impressive but I’m usually happy with my average speed. Again, the stats have little to do with anything, except that they aren’t zero.
Some folks my age get into fitness regimes because of a sort of fear of death. Me, personally, I’d rather die riding than live longer and die in a retirement home at some impossible age where even binge watching TV hurts. There’s something a bit desperate about that. I’m not denigrating those who work-out to keep the fear at bay, I just can’t imagine there’s much joy in that. Relief, perhaps, not joy. Typing is not really an activity. Restless, today I’m restless, but not so much so that I feel like, say, going to a large mall and walking a few laps around it. For one thing it’d remind me that I’m way past due for an eye exam (There isn’t a near by mall I can think that doesn’t have a place I’ve gotten glasses or doesn’t pass the big Ophthalmologist office.). Last time they called I gave what I thought was a lame excuse, true but lame, and they accepted it enthusiastically. I have an appointment with a Neuro-Ophthalmologist in June, and I told them I wanted the results first before getting glasses. Seems like they would have talked about how great their opthamologists were and maybe new glasses could spare me a few months of grief. No. They thought it wise to wait.
It’s a bit weird to me that there is a lot more competition for eye care here than general health care. For the most part doctors here belong to one group or the other; Sparrow or McClaren. I’m sure there’s a few non affliated practitioners but I’ve had neither the patience nor determination to find one and it’s not like I haven’t tried. When I first got here I went through the phone book just to get an appointment; out of everybody listed only two would grant me an appointment. With eye docs, well, those motherfuckers are mercenary. They compete on just about every level except price. Yeah, sure, there’s a couple ‘Americas Best’ you know, the folks who advertise 2 pairs for 69.99? Yeah, not for me. For me, no matter where I go, the glasses are going to range from between four and six hundred.