I bumped into my friend and neighbor, Steve, at the Quantico Commissary this weekend. Steve is into triathlons and I often see him cycling or running through the neighborhood. Like me, Steve is a retired Army officer and he had the misfortune of being my boss on two occasions – once in 1987 at Fort Carson and again in 2002 at Fort Belvoir. Unlike me, he is in tremendous physical condition and is far more experienced than I am with cycling. It was nice catching up with him and it also gave us the opportunity to have some “cycle talk.”
I told Steve about my flat tire experience and he nodded sagely. He informed me that he checks his tire pressure before every ride in order to avoid the “pinch flat” I suffered. Oops. I guess I need to tighten up my preventive maintenance routine.
Steve also mentioned that he was on an eighty mile – eighty! – ride with some friends the previous day and he suffered THREE flats. While I marveled at his ability to treat an 80-mile ride with a cavalier attitude that most people take when discussing a drive to the local Taco Bell, I was also comforted to learn that even a rider of Steve’s ability was not beyond the sort of calamity that befell me a few days earlier, times three.
The conversation turned to the summer’s triathlon schedule and I was disappointed to learn that the Montclair Triathlon has been discontinued. Montclair is the community I live in and I was toying with the idea of signing up for this year’s event. The triathlon features relatively short distances (1/2 mile swim, 18-mile cycle, and 5-mile run) and is known as a “sprint” event. In my vernacular, it is called a “do-able” event. Apparently, my home owner’s association is hacked off at not making more money from this charity event (yes, it’s for charity and the HOA still wants to make a profit), is concerned about possible litigation issues from injured athletes, and is tired of receiving complaints about traffic problems caused by the cycling portion of the event. Jerks.
This is the second time I had my hopes dashed by a potential race, the other being the Army 10-Miler, which was already full when my wife suggested we sign up. Right now, I have my sights set on a 65-mile ride in Warrenton, VA, in October and a 10k run in Virginia Beach the following week, which the missus is eager to join me in!
By the way, as of this posting there have been over 100 visitors to the site. Thank you for putting me over the century mark! I am trying hard to keep my total number of miles logged higher than the number of visitors. Right now, I’ve got 254 miles on the bike. At this pace, it won’t be much longer before the visitors pass me by. I never would have imagined that!