Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wheelin' Around

After running around frantically for two days getting permits from 548386930458943 city agencies, plus the torrential downpour this weekend, coupled with a 5 day visit from mumsie dearest (I don't actually call her that if you were wondering), I haven't been on my bike much since the middle of last week. I don't think 15 minutes on the rollers on Monday counts. So today I really needed a hard workout. Short, fast, the kind that are perfect to do in Central Park in the middle of the afternoon on a weekday.

Except not. I forgot a little detail: today is the most drunken day of the year in NYC. And I happened to plan my ride right in the middle of the green zone, as the parade was making it's way along 5th Ave. While I didn't see any dishy men in skirts, I did see plenty of drunk, fat tourists walking in the middle of my lane. Not the normal type of walking in my lane where they are just oblivious to all other types of traffic, but blatant, I am drunk and I just want you to fall off of your bike-type of walking in my lane.

So, instead of waiting for my head to explode, I called it quits on the park loops and did Harlem Hill repeats for 45 minutes. Ouch.

You would think that I would have learned my lesson. Almost. But not exactly. My next task of the day was to go pick up something at Rob's down on 23rd St. The worst thing about going to Rob's is the walk. The easiest subway is the R-W. Which stops at 23rd and 5th. One then has to walk all the way past 2nd. It doesn't seem like it would be that long. But it's half the island, and takes about 15 minutes. So today, I decided to bring my skates. While riding in the park (where I get all of my brilliant ideas), I decided that it was beautiful outside and I should take my skates for a spin, since there was no way I was getting my bike down to 23rd St with all of the parade traffic. And what better way to break them out than to get from 5th to 2nd aves? Right? Wrong.

To be fair, I did get there in roughly half of the time it would have taken me to walk. But I forgot a few things about my trusty Carerras in the year or so that I have let them languish under my bed. One, they don't have any toe stops. Second, they still have figure skating wheels on them. Which are super hard and made for doing things like this (me) or this (not me) on an indoor, sealed hardwood floor, but not made for skating over pavement. Not to mention, they are $150 skates. Meaning they don't fit that well and the cushions on the plates are crap.

This story is getting a bit long, but let's just say that 15 years of roller skating is the only way that I made it through the throngs of drunkards and uneven cement on 5 blocks of 23rd Street alive. Nothing is easy in New York. That being said, now I know that all I need is some outside wheels and decent toe stops to make the crosstown bus a thing of the past.

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