14 February 2008

How NOT to go over a bump

Posted by todd under: Riding .

OK, there are certain parts of the body a man should protect at all costs.

Fellas, are you with me here? Can you already see where this is going?

So I am riding the Raleigh Super Course to work yesterday. It has been snowing with freezing rain over the last couple of days. I am coasting up to this footbridge behind Central Baptist Hospital. The footbridge is metal, and it looks slippery, so I am not going to try riding across that.

I get ready to dismount, but as I’m doing so I notice, between me and the footbridge, a hump of slushy-looking snow and ice. This hump is maybe 8 inches high. It looks pretty soft. I figure I will sort of coast through this slush and then dismount. So I am off of one of the pedals and ready to put my foot down as soon as I am past this obstacle, when I find out the hard way that this is not slush — it is solid ice.

The front wheel stops, my body keeps going and The Parts You are Supposed to Protect at All Costs hit the stem with greater velocity than I care to remember. In fact I write this with my legs crossed.

I am proud to say that I did not cuss. All that came out of my mouth in fact, and this is a direct quote, was: “OUCH. OUCH. OUCH. OUCH. STUPID! STUPID! STUPID!”

After crossing the footbridge, while I am pedalling away (accelerating fast, in an attempt to deal with the pain), I notice a guy across the street. He is looking over and sort of taking a few steps my way as if to find out whether I am all right.

Buddy, if you’re reading this, I’m OK — stupid, but OK nevertheless.

One Comment so far...

Rob Says:

19 February 2008 at 8:02 pm.

Central Baptist, like Lexington, KY Central Baptist Hospital? At least you were close to medical attention 😉 I am also a Lexington bike commuter. My route is from Andover area to downtown. I must admit that I usually don’t ride when there is snow or ice. Much to afraid a car will slide into me.

Rob, yes, Central Baptist, in Lexington. Fortunately no medical attention was needed! I don’t ride on ice either, but that is very rare. I find that when it snows, it usually doesn’t stick — and even if it’s on the ground, the cars going over the streets on which I ride melts the snow pretty quickly. -6-

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About the picture atop the page

Yes, that's me, Todd Van Campen. No, I'm not wearing a helmet. Yes, I usually wear one, so please don't scold! Seriously, I endorse wearing a helmet! Pinky swear! In fact, I almost ALWAYS wear one (while riding a bike anyway). (On the other hand, if YOU don't want to wear a helmet, I have no problem with it.) I don't remember what happened on this particular day. Fortunately for all of us it makes for a less-nerdly picture. My exceptionally talented professional photographer friend Charles Bertram took this photo.



Art for art’s sake

I asked my 6-year-old son, Caleb, an avid bicyclist and artist, to draw a bike for me. I think he did a great job!




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