How You Stroke It

I was riding to work at The Bikery. Come and visit. We are a no-kill bike shelter and like to find homes for all our inhabitants. Just tell them that Kenny sent you and receive a free valve cap and valve cap adjustment with your purchase of $4,000 or more. This Pinarello Quattro needs a good home in a temperature controlled environment.

No Lycra on this commute, just blue jeans. 5 miles or less and the super suit stays home. No sightly or unsightly bulges today. As I’m riding, I feel as though I’m being observed from behind. I pay whomever no mind as if they want to speed around me, so be it. I’ve been buzzed plenty this year already. I pull up to a light and forgo any attempt at trying to hold a track stand. I’m wearing jeans and it’s Saturday. I move to the left a bit, so the driver who was following me can turn right if they please. An electric blue Jeep FJ Cruiser pulls alongside me. A lady rolls down her window and compliments me on my riding form. She wasn’t hitting on me though, if ever I was going to be swept off my feet, she had the golden tongue.

I was riding with flat pedals and concentrating on using all of the rotation of the cranks. I knew I looked good, but never thought that someone else with a very good eye for form mind you, would notice. Efficiency has everything to do with how you stroke it. You can’t hit it on the dowstroke and neglect the uptroke. Without utilizing all of the rotation of the cranks, there will be no Strava dreams of glory for you.

Besides my wife, getting compliments or critiques (in some cases) on my stroke are non-existent. In the peleton, I guess complimenting ones stroke can be perceived as making something what of a pass. I wouldn’t want to send the wrong signal. People talk and the peleton is sensitive. It’s all in the delivery, I suppose.

The peleton is a living breathing temperamental entity. When it’s ticking off the miles on the road in harmony it’s a thing of wonder. Migrating herds of cyclists searching for bagels and coffee can be found in every part of North America. If any part of this mobile community is not in flux, it can be a sad example of the decline of civilization and nothing is sadder than seeing an unhappy group of men in Lycra. Unhappy groups of women don’t look as stupid.

It was good to be acknowledged in any account.

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