Wednesday, June 13, 2007

A different world
On a bicycle, you experience the world differently:

1. Garbage trucks and dumpsters. On a warm summer day, driving behind a garbage truck with your windows rolled up and the air conditioning blasting, you don't fully appreciate the hard work our friendly garbage collectors do. Try it on a bike and find out what all the fuss is about. Did somebody smear some poop on a dead raccoon and inject it with hoof fungus and burning hair from an undercooked Beef 'n' Cheddar? I think someone did!

2. Lawn sprinklers. If a clumsy homeowner has set his sprinkler so the spray flies into the street and hits your windshield, you might become mildly annoyed at the wastefulness and possible rain spots on your new Hummer. But on a bike, you've got to stop and clean your glasses. On the other hand, it can be refreshing.

3. Bumper stickers. Riding a bike gives you a better opportunity to enjoy bumper stickers. In the Highlands, there are some good ones.

4. Crazy people. It's much easier to enjoy the company of crazy people on a bicycle. Sometimes they say funny things, like, "Are these leaves good to eat?" or "Jesus is my homeboy, bitch!" Also, if you smile, they sometimes smile back at you.

5. Going incognito. You'd think the lack of a hunk of steel surrounding you would make you stick out like a sore thumb. But nobody expects to see YOU on a bicycle. Cyclists are those weird, frighteningly thin people in too-tight pants who disobey the rules. Avert your eyes at all costs! If I had to go into the witness protection program, the first thing I'd do is get on a bike. You become invisible.

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