Saturday, May 16, 2009

21 excuses

I've been compiling in my head a list of the possible excuses cyclists, runners, and joggers might use to explain their inability to be friendly while encountering other cyclists (i.e., me) out on the road, and I'm finally putting them down on (figurative) paper:

  • breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breath out, breathe in, breathe out . . .
  • my mother taught me never to be friendly to strangers.
  • I'm in training, this is serious, I can't waste energy being social.
  • I am in a crappy mood and just want to pound out my frustration on the pavement and if I even see a happy person I'll explode.
  • this waving thing is overrated: what has it ever done for me? forget it.
  • I look stupid in this helmet and these ridiculous shorts, and I'm embarrassed to be seen: if I don't see them they can't see me.
  • I am so caught up in the music on my ipod I don't even know there's anyone else out here.
  • I'm counting to one billion and don't dare get distracted.
  • if I look down at my cyclometer at the right moment, I won't have to wave at that person, opening myself up to an actual encounter with another human.
  • if I pretend there's something wrong with my foot (hand/neck/knee/whatever) I won't have to acknowledge that person coming toward me, possibly connecting for just one moment with a fellow human.
  • this is my time, I am focusing on me, it's not about other people.
  • I am using every bit of strength I have to pedal: I have nothing left over for a wave.
  • if I move my hands from the handlebars I will lose control and crash.
  • I only wave to other professionals like me; everyone else is beneath me.
  • I look cooler when I pretend I don't see anyone else.
  • why do these people have to ride bikes? can't they just run, like us genuine athletes?
  • I'm painfully shy, and waving or nodding my head will throw me well outside my comfort zone.
  • wow, this gal coming toward me is way too cute, she won't even acknowledge me, I won't even try.
  • this is my bike lane, what are these other people doing here?
  • huh? what other cyclist?
and I, being the gracious soul that I am, will even concede that a handful of these excuses are acceptable and valid.

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