Saturday, September 09, 2006

Time to Accelerate

Time to Accelerate

Live Reports From the Midlife Adventure

Washington Post Health Section, Tuesday, August 22, 2006; Page HE02

Heat and haze, the bike path nearly deserted, and I'm cranking west. I'm 53; both I and my ancient Benotto road bike are somewhat rusty and crusty but in good mechanical condition.

Why do I do this? Year after year, recording the miles, repairing the flats, pampering the old knees, sweating or freezing as the season dictates, out on the W&OD trail. I could be on a couch watching the random flow of Americana on the tube, savoring a good beer and eating whatever comes to hand. I'm reasonably happy, solvent and of contemplative temperament -- so why do I continue to ride? Is it just a bad habit?

As I muse thusly, a sleek and powerful young man passes me; his bike is shiny and high-tech, and his legs are shaved. I note that he is not traveling at warp 10, so I bring my own speed up and draft on him for a mile or so, without breathing down his neck. At a long straightaway, I fire the reserve dilithium crystals and pass him crisply, and I keep cranking until I'm out of sight.

Boomer motto: Too young to die, but not too old to rock and roll.

No comments: