Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Unbreakable

Before I get into the title, lemme explain a few quick things:
  • At work, we are still reeling from the closure of our division and the layoffs of so many people.  Yet, I am soooo grateful to be one of the few who get to keep their jobs.  We are no longer a factory with tons of people...now, about 15 of us will just be a remote outpost, needed now more than ever.  LOTS of work stuff on my plate right now.
  • My eating is decent, but not great.  I suppose I am an emotional eater, but it is a better explanation to say that Honey-Nut Cheerios is easier to grab than making an egg-white omelet with asparagus.  Maybe it just feels easier.  Nonetheless, my focus is elsewhere, not on counting calories.  Got to get back.
  • I haven't run in awhile, but have been on the bike a few times recently...need more of both.
So, where did I get the title from today's post?  From my bicycle accident last Saturday.

We did the "Launch The Loop" ride in Tucson last Saturday.  I did it with Crazy Jim.  We had ridden the same loop a few weeks earlier, but they continue to modify and link this connection of bike paths, surrounding the center area of Tucson.  The connection of several bike paths form a 22 mile loop that is mostly car-free.  In a year or two, it will be 55 miles.  Good times.

In most cases, the bike path is wide...two cyclists can ride, side-by-side, going both directions.  So, there could be 4 cyclists passing each other pretty comfortably.

But when going under a street, you go into this tunnel-type of path, which is a bit more narrow.  I was riding on the flat part of that stretch and starting to come up out of the underpass and was approaching a blind corner.  I couldn't see the cyclists coming toward me in the opposite lane.  They were coming downhill.

I saw a young girl, perfectly holding her line.  Then a slightly older kid.  Then an adult.  I remember thinking "look at these people just popping up from around this corner...", but we were all in our proper lanes.  Beautiful!

And then, the next person popped up, but he was in MY LANE.  We collided.  I braked hard and felt my rear tire raise up as my front tire locked up.  I struggled, then was able to remove my foot from my pedal.  He must not have reacted as quickly, because we hit and he went down.  Everyone stopped.

An older cyclist behind him started scolding him for riding in the opposing lane (my lane).  I was stunned that we had just hit, but amazed that I was still upright on my bike.  I kept looking for damage to my bike or to my body...nothing.

The cyclist was a teenage boy.  He reminded me of Axl on the tv show The Middle.  He was flat on his back and then got up and assured everyone that he was alright.  He started smiling and told all of us "don't worry...I've been through other accidents like this one, but WORSE!   I'm fine everyone, I'm fine."

He didn't apologize.  He didn't get that he put me and other cyclists (including those kids) in danger.  He didn't get that you shouldn't try to pass someone or ride in the opposite lane on a blind downhill curve.  Perhaps he'll learn someday. 

Crazy Jim and I stopped about a mile later and we couldn't believe that there was no damage to me or the bike.  He thinks that I might have reached across with my elbow or arm to protect myself, but I don't remember that. 

It was exciting, no one got hurt and it made me appreciate more than ever my strong and unbreakable bike.   And my kids now think I'm awesome.

By the way, if you haven't yet seen that show "The Middle", I encourage you to check it out.  It is very clever, eventhough it looks like an old re-tread of the typical family sitcom.  Our family likes it so much because we each identify with our tv counterparts.  We are like them, but slightly better.  There may be laundry baskets to empty and counters that need cleaning, but you can tell that this is a family with few fights and a long life together.

Big Clyde

8 comments:

Mer and Mo said...

Yikes - scary moment...reading the outcome I could not wait to get to the end. Glad to read that all were okay (except for the fact that he did not apologize). Hang in there with everything else...can be a tough time!!!

Staying MOtivated MO

Al said...

Good to hear you are all right, Clyde!

RockStarTri said...

Good thing you are ok. Good thing your bike is ok :)

Frustrating experience.

Christina @ Just Running said...

Clyde!!! I am so glad you are okay. That's pretty incredible.

Thta boy didn't say anything to you? Gee, I don't think I'm polite enough to let something like that slide.

Haha, I bet your kids do think you're pretty awesome.

Dr. Fat To Fit said...

Scary moment! Maybe this experience will teach that kiddo a lesson before he starts driving. Sorry you have stress at work.

Kimberley said...

So glad you are okay...you may very well be unbreakable.

Hang in there....

Kyle Gershman said...

Wow...that totally sucks...glad it all worked out when it could have gone all wrong...and too bad our yutes of today have lost their manners.

Alan (Pounds Off Playoff) said...

Really glad you're OK. My thoughts are with you on work. It's tough. I just learned that the WA state legislature needs to cut $2 billion, the equivalent of closing ALL prisons AND the University of Washington. Tough times.