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Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I'm "riding early" again this a.m., hoping for time for a sprint around campus. I'm wearing my Professional Waterfall Climber Shoes which you can just mash the heel down on and wear like clogs.
This is a bad idea.

GOod people: always attach your shoes securely to your bicycle, whether clipful or clipless or none of the above.
The chain does one of those little jumps it sometimes does in number four... and because I haven't put the toe clipsback on yet, the foot slides forward... and ... oh, I have big feet.
My toes nudge my spokes and the spokes seize the shoe and suck it right off my foot and sail it right around and it snags the fender along the way.
There was definitely one of those extended "Oh, this is not right. We are going to do a face plant." moments when I realized the wheel Was COming To An Abrupt Stop, and I Assumed the "look up and spread out your arms!" position as one does before landing in the swimming pool with goggles(so they don't fall off), and smack that pavement nicely.

I'm lookin' around but there were no witnesses. I gather myself and get up and stand the bike up and heft it to the parking lane and pick up the bungie cords that fell out.
Then I"m standin' there in front of Holy Cross Church in a shoe and a sock, lookin' like a wayward soul... wanting to put my danged shoe back on... but it's wedged in there so tight I can't get it out. And the fender is all wrapped up in there, too.
But I'm OK. And out of traffic. Which there isn't any of at all. So then I figure I have to do like MacGyver because I can't ride the bike the way it is, with my shoe all stuck in between the fork and the spokes and the fender all wrapped around it. And rats, the metal thingy that was holding the fender on has ripped off and is cutting into the tire, so it must be flat... except it isn't.
So I say, "I have my pump, so I will let the air out of the tire to make more room for things and so that thing isn't squeezing on it. That's what MacGyver would do."
Then I tug at things to no avail and say, "tugging isn't working. My goal is to loosen. What else can I loosen?" So I undo the fender nuts and was doing the last one when I realized it was the same one holding hte light on, and thought, "don't do that!" and just wrestled the fender out so it wasn't tangled.
There's that silly shoe. My sock is getting dirty.

I wrestle with my shoe some more. WHat would MacGyver do? I call work to say "I'll be a little late, probably 15 or 20 minutes, or however long it takes to get this shoe out of my wheel."
"Okay, I'll tell E___." (No questions about shoes in wheels. Hey, it's me.)
The shoe has not been inspired to release itself. What is the rule, here? I say to myself "if it went in, it should be able to get out. Let us reverse the process." I push the wheel backwards. VOila! Shoe extricated!
I bend the fender and the things I've unbolted so they're not going to stick in the wheel. I put my shoe all the way on. It is fine. I've stopped wobbling.
So I ride in and am almost exactly 20 minutes late.

The fine folks at Champaign Cycle helped me extricate the fender and all those things I bent out of shape... I've had prophylactic ibuprofen... tomorrow is another day!

What an adventure your life is!
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