April 17, 2005

Splinter Cell: Tangerine Bicycle

I could either start by saying that I saw my parents this weekend, or I could start by saying that I have a bicycle. Alternately, I could start by making one of the billions of other possible statements in the English language, such as tangerines are delicious or the left door of Jacob's car makes a noise like an angry duck, but you're not here to talk about tangerines or ducks. So, I have a bicycle.

It's my spiffy black and yellow road racing bike that I got as a birthday present in high school and foolishly left behind when I moved to Berkeley. After four years of driving everyone nuts talking about how much I miss my bike, I finally got it up here in a box and had it put back together. The guy who opened up the box in the Bent Spoke called it "old school" and called my bluff by putting the original (horrible) toe-clip pedals on it instead of the big clunky ones I actually used to ride it with. My position on this is that he mistook me for someone who knows how to ride a bicycle, but it's only because he never saw me try.

Lots of other people saw me try today, because Jacob and I went out on a ride around Berkeley to celebrate my new gear-assisted mobility. It's important to mention that I didn't die, but I did spend five minutes explaining to Jacob how certain I was that I had nearly died and how, excuse me, your attention seems to be wandering, can we please get back to the part where I almost died? I don't have bike instincts anymore. I have no idea how long it takes me to get across a street, and twice I just barely started to cross only to brake in a panic and back awkwardly out of the oncoming car's way. I'm used to stopping by not moving my feet, which is why I was halfway into traffic both times before I remembered that there was something I had to do in order not to keep going. Jacob, nonchalant and expert in the starting burst of speed, would cross calmly and easily and wait on the other side for my shaky self to join him. In other words, I was schooled.

Tune in tomorrow to see how much I regret this. I'm placing a wanted ad in the paper for some thigh muscles; for trade, some nicely developed calves? Great for walking up hills, not bad-looking on top of a pair of boots, but, as I have discovered, not the necessary power supply for two-wheeled vehicles.

Posted by dianna at April 17, 2005 10:54 PM

And...how're your parents?

Posted by: Arianna at April 18, 2005 03:15 PM

Well, my mom tripped over a bump in the parking lot of her hotel in San Jose and fell on her head. She says she's okay, though, and she works with enough head-injured people that she probably ought to know.

They're my parents. We talked carefully about innocuous subjects like cars and Mexican food and things that happened when I was three, and kept our mouths entirely shut about everything else. It's a polite facade. It functions. And yours?

Posted by: Dianna at April 18, 2005 04:03 PM

Christ, I'm bitchy today. The proper answer to your question should have been that my parents are apparently doing fine and we chatted amiably over a nice wharfside lunch with Jacob, my sister and my sister's housemate. My mom was in town for a speech and hearing conference. My dad is, I think, getting warmed up for the summer music season although he's not just playing surf any more.

Both of these answers are entirely true, so the only deciding factor for which you should read is how much of my attitude you're feeling prepared to tolerate.

Posted by: Dianna at April 18, 2005 04:10 PM

My left car door is a bitchier duck than you, Dianna. Take that, quacker!

Posted by: Jacob at April 18, 2005 05:24 PM

i for one AM here to talk about ducks. that's all i've been hanging around for all these years.

Posted by: didofoot at April 18, 2005 05:57 PM

So I hear that ducks like tangerines. Have you heard that also?

Posted by: Dianna at April 18, 2005 07:38 PM