I crashed my bike. I’m fine, but my poor bike took a beating. How did it happen? Well, I went out for a ride to the market, and about 2 blocks from home, I fussed with the straps on my bag, I looked down for 2 seconds and I ran into a cinder block pillar. Somehow I managed to hit the thing at such an angle that it completely mangled my right shifter. I’d like to take out a moment now to say, “Fuck you, you crappy wimpy plasticky shifter!”
I’ve had a mountain bike for a few years now and I’ve lost count on the number of times I’ve crashed the poor thing into boulders, smacked it against trees, and generally been making non-lady-like landings on top of the thing, crushing it between me and large rocks. That bike has never asked for anything more than a bit of chain cleaning and tire inflation. I’ve owned this new road bike for about 5 minutes and the damned thing needs a new shifter!? I crashed the stupid thing going at like 2 mph and it crushed the shifter and brake part in, the bike still worked fine, but braking for the back tire was suspicious at best, and shifting required some extra coaxing. I know I’m a bit of a klutz at times, but crashing my bike at TWO mph and destroying it might be a sign that I should not be allowed to operate a bicycle within city limits. I think I just discovered my second super power: super klutz (my first super power is the insane ability to shock myself if there should be any free floating electrons in the air, it’s very handy, I plan to save the local orphanage with it someday).
Now because my new bike isn’t just any old road bike, it’s a god damned princess bike with Campagnolo parts – parts that not everyone carries, my day was spent questing for a new bike part. I started in some bike shop in Capitol Hill, rode down to REI and I ended up in some bike shop at the very end of U District. In the end, as annoyed as I was for having mangled my bike, I had an awesome time riding across town in search of a new bike part. I’ve been very nervous about taking my bike out for long distance rides but in the middle of being fixated by my quest, I didn’t pay attention to the distance and didn’t bother thinking about staying within my comfort zone…because I was on an adventure…and I crossed this magical bridge of hope and wonder. Yeah…okay, next time I’m floating around Capitol Hill and someone passes me a pipe, I shouldn’t take a puff out of it before passing.
One thing to note on being a vegetarian, it’s a royal pain in the ass. It’s not even because I miss fish or anything like that, it’s because it’s actually very hard to avoid fish. If you like Asian food as much as me and you end up in some non-vegetarian specific restaurant, there’s a good chance you’ll end up with fish sauce or oyster sauce in your food. I was at Thai Ginger recently, and one of their vegetarian specialty lists: Soft tofu stir-friend with carrot, sweet peas, baby bok choy, shitake mushrooms and oyster sauce. I know I can buy vegan oyster sauce in the form of mushroom sauce, but I pretty sure they don’t actually use vegan oyster sauce there. A lot of people don’t seem to understand that they don’t call it “fish” sauce just for giggles, yeah, I’m sure marketing execs thought a dancing fish illustration is going to attract more consumers, but that fish is also dancing in the sauce.
So I’ve been staying at Capitol Hill for over a week now, how am I liking it? I can’t say enough about how much I love it. I love wandering the streets at night, and getting hit on by homeless men – it feeds my fragile hungry ego. All joking aside, I really do love living in an area that is teaming with life. My original fear before moving out to Capitol Hill is that I will not be able to stand the noise because I’m a super light sleeper. I’ve lived in very quiet residential my entire life and I wake up if I hear so much as the soft click of a door opening. Somehow living the in Capitol Hill with all its city noise made it a wonderful background white noise.
All this riding around the city has been wonderful, but I do miss me my trees, I need to get my ass out there and hike this weekend before I go crazy. There’s just something rejuvenating about being out in the woods that no amount of biking and pretending that I’m flying can replace.