Monday, August 27, 2007

a final comment?

a brief, terse reply, pete--
if you wish to talk about "selfish," ask those who scattered in your wake at the rainy april road race as you wound up your sprint. ask those who had to leap out of your way as you bulldogged your way around the last corner in iowa city. i could go on. road cycling is a sport of strength AND finesse, and not just brawn and brute force. i intend to address the tt bars issue the next time i ride a tuesday night. i am out of town tomorrow, so it will be the following week. i will address with my typical humor and aplomb the need for folks to maintain focus and attention to the task at hand while riding at speed with 50 to 60 other cyclists, and the need to be able to make prudent and safe manouvers in a split second. i would also hope that, as their friend, YOU would have told them ahead of time NOT to ride in their aeros. there are many things that are learned with time and experience. judgment is one of those. in the meantime, an air of deferrence is helpful. and when i smash my head on the pavement, you hereby have my permission to sit it out.
--the mostly reverend
. . . . .
jesus. i am really happy that so many folks are sitting around worrying about my inevitable demise. seriously, folks, i HAVE been riding for over 50 years. you think i haven't had more than my share of close calls and near hits? of course, i have.
do you think that with these "oversized brains" of mine that i haven't thought about those circumstances?
or that i haven't thought--EVERY time i ride my bike--about chris, harold, block, sherry, and all my other dead friends, PLUS all the dead strangers whose funerals i've attended over the last few years?
do you REALLY THINK that when i talk about the profound effect these funeral rides have had on me, that i'm just talking bullshit, for effect?
do you think that i don't think about my grandchildren?
do you think that i don't consider this and more as i teach my granddaughter to ride her bike?
do you think that i don't think about my daughter and son-in-law?
do you think that it doesn't occur to me--EVERY TIME I RIDE MY BIKE--that this could just be my last ride?
well, i do.
and still, i ride as i do.
respect that. i don't ask that you understand it.
. . . . .
so i appreciate your concern.
but the likelihood of your friends causing a crash on a tuesday night ride
is MUCH greater than the chances of me causing a crash
because i'm bare-headed.
tell them to stop looking at my head,
and to watch the wheel in front of them.
. . . . .
from lou's blog:
Kim, I have a few issues with your remarks, and none of them have anything to do with the "squirrely" comment. First of all, I can't believe we're getting safety lessons from a guy who doesn't wear a helmet. Yea, yea, spare your speech regarding, "my not wearing a helmet doesn't cause any wrecks". Bottomline very selfish to the others that have to scoop your oversized brains up when your melon splats all over the pavement. You want to ride without a helmet then do it on a ride when your by yourself. The raccoon may not care but WE do. I'm 100% with Mable on this one. I'm sure that infringes on your "rights" but I don't want to live with the image of your hairy lid squashed all over the pavement as I'm holding it together waiting for the ambulance. No thanks! Besides, with all the recent cyclists being hit, and you being the self-proclaimed intellect that you say you are, one would think you're smart enough to figure it out.Secondly, aren't you the guy, only months ago, that was writing emails saying the TNWCS ride needed to be more of a training ride? Weren't you the one that said we should be waiting up for others so as to not discourage them from riding. I respect that your trying to put the rules out there for everyone to abide by, I've learned some things this year by listening, but we don't need to turn this thing ugly causing people to not show up. As someone who understands the differnt ways to delivery of a message you do a poor job of it during the rides. Take a more democratic approach, single the guy out and privately talk to him as not to put him on display for ridicule. I've always respected the guys who do that more than the loud mouths that bark out orders like they've never made a mistake in the peloton. These TRI guys are my GOOD friends and I don't want them to be discouraged in anyway to ride with us or to feel any tension when they show up. Besides, a little rubbing int he peloton isn't all bad, it definitely happens in the races. Rubbin' is racin'.Third, can you please not drag the "TT" comments into every single email on TeamEMU for the next month. You tend to grab ahold of something and wear it out; ie raccoon and now the TT bars.Good luck today at the State Crits, see you there.


Pete Basso said...

Kim: It is typical that you would post something with no knowledge of what you’re talking about. By saying that I cause accidents in my sprint is utterly blasphemous and irresponsible. Your problem is that you listen to your little cronies and take their words as gospel. As a lawyer I’d expect you to get the facts before you speak. Ben did not go down because of my sprint, regardless of what SR or any of the others had to say. The reason my sprint didn’t cause the wreck, first of all we were over a 1000 meters from the finish when he went down; second, my legs were cramping in that race and I couldn’t sprint so I had to push from the saddle, there was no sprint for me. Ben went down because it was his first road race and he had not learned where to position himself, plus he had just been on the front of the peloton at LT speed. He was very tired and I can only imagine what happened. He tried to go from the front of the peloton to third place which is sketchy as you know. One more thing, Curt was leading the peloton, he was on my left and I was following his wheel, I only mimicked his moves as not to cross his wheel. For the record, I never felt anything touch my wheel. I had nothing to do with that wreck. It just seems that others are so quick to point the blame at me, instead of researching the facts….hmm, kind of reminds me of someone else I know???

As for IA City…What the hell are you talking about? I sat in the front of the peloton, (2nd to 3rd wheel), the entire race only to get attacked by one of our own selfish riders, (from Mankato), who only raced with us once and hasn’t raced again since. I was in the IA Cup points lead at the time and therefore should’ve had everyone working to protect that lead but this guy didn’t. I don’t even know who he was. As we came around the final turn I was sitting third wheel when suddenly my back tire hopped side ways from a crack in the ground. Thankfully, no one was close behind me, (Dominic was 3 to 4 bike lengths behind me), I recovered nicely, then my rear tire blew but I still managed to sprint for third. So again, your comments are absolutely false and unwarranted.

I’m still learning a lot about road racing but feel as though I’ve come a long way. I’m not the best bike handler out there but will contest that I’m still better than most at my level. My mtb skills have always been above average and have helped with my road skills.

Your comments about the TT bars are absolutely correct; no one should be riding in the peloton on Tuesday night with them. Going back and reading my post I realize that message didn’t come through on my post as I had intended. My main comment to you was that the delivery of your message to these guys is confrontational instead of informative, just as it is with me. Try being a little more diplomatic in your approach and you’re words will be received with more seriousness. In the meantime you need to work on getting the facts straight before perpetuating a stereo type that isn’t true.

If you had truly thought of all those things you mentioned in your post after 50 years of riding your bike, and still don’t bother to wear a helmet, then you’re full of crap, not as smart as you even think you are and one selfish bastard of a grandfather, father and friend to boot. Grow up and be a man for a change. Stop accusing everyone of things that aren’t true and show some responsibility for yourself in the name of your loved ones and friends. Stop putting yourself first in everything you do and consider the feelings of others, or is that too much like what Jesus would do?

Kim, what’s so funny to me about this thing is that the only reason I even argue with you about the helmet is because I actually do care, WE ALL CARE!. Why don’t you try RESPECTING that for a change!!

Anonymous said...

I felt like I should respond to this since it's the first bike related post in about 2 weeks on Kim's sight.
It's not even 2008 for Petes sake (pardon the pun).

Here is my thoughts on the helmet thing if anyone cares. Wear one if you want to. If people don't like it they don't have to ride with you. Bottom line is that by not wearing a helmet Kim is not indangering people around him. NOT EVEN A LITTLE. I get the feeling that some of you think that you can get hit by a mack truck and live only if your wearing your helmet. Where do we stop with this false security. The other day I saw a lady pulling her 3 year old in a wagon and the kid was wearing a helmet. No helmet rules at my house. Unless your playing middle linbacker that is.


Anonymous said...

this just in from a colorado reader:
"Speaking of group rides, everyone's favorite bad-ass, name-taking, pro-slaying racer Kelly Ruddick broke his elbow and wrist last tuesday in the Boulder group ride.
The ride was over and they were in a double pace line riding back to Boulder and 3-4 rows of guys failed to point out a rock in the road and he hit it.
Now he has a bunch of new metal in his arm in the form of screws and his season is over.
Kids, be safe on those group rides!"

moral of the story?

Lou Waugaman said...

Just wanting to make sure everyone understands that the comment "from Lou's Blog" is from Pete.

Everybody knows that Pete and I take ton of ribbing for sharing similar political views.

On the topic of helmets, I appreciate his concern for my safety but I think he's got it wrong in this case. But I don't see it as my friend showing concern, I see it more as my friend being not respecting my personal opinion. But I get it from lots of people - Pete, JJ, Kristen, Marsha.

Wearing a helmet has absolutely nothing to do with riding safely in a peleton or riding in aero bars. In fact, I think that the folks who group the helmet topic with the other two are totally missing the point.

By riding erratically or by riding in your aero bars where it would take valuable seconds to apply the brakes, creates a potential unsafe environment for other cyclists.

Kim's choice not to wear a helmet only directly effects him.

The Helmet Nazi's try to make the case that by riding without a helmet is a selfish act because if he were killed his family would suffer. But if we carry that argurment one step further, one could say that even riding a bike on city streets where one could be hit by a car is also being selfish. SO if you love your family should you only ride rollers in the basement? Oh, one step more ridiculous - you could fall off rollers and die. Maybe we should only ride on a stationary bike? Maybe not ride at all? Maybe never leave the house? Where do you stop. How about just honoring individual values?

In the end, it is a personal decision. I personally would not come to the Tuesday ride without a helmet but I often ride alone without a brain bucket. It's my choice. I'm not directly effecting your safety.

So, you are welcome to express your opinion and pretend that it has something to do with your concern for me. It doesn't. But go for it. I'll continue to ignore you, and feel disrespected. It's a big world. But please don't tell me that I don't love my family.

You think I'm stupid for not always wearing a helmet. You ought to see yourself through my eyes.

the mostly reverend said...

"You think I'm stupid for not always wearing a helmet. You ought to see yourself through my eyes."

is there an echo in here?
thanks, lou.

remember: elvis died pooping.

Bart said...

Helmet or no helmet? I don't like 'em riding by myself or in a very small group of folks that I've ridden with for over 20 years. On T/Th IC group rides I've taken to the helmet, also on the MTB and gravel rides. It's a choice that one makes and I don't care one way or another.

Tri bars in a pack, very dangerous, the UCI banned the spinnachi's a few years back and the Scott clip on hooks dissappeared as well............
Stability and reaction issues.

Pre-discussions with buddies keeping civics in mind go a long way towards pack harmony.

Keith said...

Many thanks to folks on differing sides of the helmet issue for their concerns. Fixating on helmet usage only detracts from our real mission. I'm not sure why we need to go after each other on this. We've bigger fish to fry. We've got an ever-increasing supply of couch potatoes out there who IMHO are doing themselves and their planet a greater disservice by not pursuing a more active lifestyle. By sitting by and watching others work. Let's encourage all of them to join us out there on the open roads. Later maybe we can focus on debates like trail/road usage, Campy/Shimano, bike color, drugs in cycling or helmet usage. Far later.
On the issue of safety, I can't say as I ride a bicycle for that purpose. Bicycling isn't a 'safe' sport. Check out golf and shuffleboard for that. I accept the risk. We all do. I ride a bike for fun, entertainment, comraderie, good health and the variety of stresses and challenges it offers. It's a privilege, a beautiful thing that I'll make available to my children. Focusing on safety is a bit like wandering into a Harley bar and telling them to put helmets on. Tain't what they're all about, son. Life can be for the living. We'll all meet our Maker soon enough and be grateful for that. I'm not convinced eternal destinations hinge on length of days, anyhow.
Oh, and yes, I would be willing to hold anyone's brains together until the ambulance arrives... anyone's ('cepting maybe the raccoon's. He's on his own.). It'd be the least I could do.
My riding? Doesn't really matter, but it's 95% helmetless. Yes, there are occasions I choose to wear one. Grateful that it's still my choice in this country.
P.S. Fixies are kind of cool. A chance to fall in love all over again. I encourage those without to give it a go. Thanks Kim, Luggs, and Steve (Merle Hay Bike World) for your help, tips and encouragement. Cheerio, pip, pip and all that...