Monday, February 28, 2011

Misery Loves Company - Part 1

I wrote up this ride report last year after the Capital Forest 100. 

Committing. Misery loves company.  Well, at a very minimum, misery doesn’t like to be alone.  Which is why males often band together to do stupid things.  In fact, if someone else joins you, it automatically makes it less stupid, right?  After all, if two or more independently thinking individuals arrive at the same conclusion, it leads you to believe that it must be the correct answer, right?  In this case, however, we may have been asking the wrong question.

Here is the e-mail question that started things.  From - PW; To – GS, PK, CM, GJ – Time to man up.  Who wants to do the Capital Forest 100?  After a suitable period of ignoring PW, he followed up with, “I did it.  I signed up for the Capital Forest 100 on Sept. 11.  Anyone willing to join me?

The e-mail discussion continued, GS response, “Just what kind of dumb-ass are you?” 
PW, “I was feeling light-headed.”
GS, “What made you decide on the 100-miler instead of 50-miler.  I might have been talked into 50 miles.  Anyone else sign up with you yet?”
PW, “Simple, the 100 miles is double the fun!  No one else has signed up yet.”
GS, “Any interest in just doing 50?”
PW, “Course is 2x50 mile loop.  It will be a long day.”

I had previously thought that understatement was primarily an English trait, but it is clearly at work here.  A “long day” is a way to describe a lot of things, like maybe a tough day at the office as you pour another brewskie, but 11-14 hours on a mountain bike, basically from the first light of dawn until dusk is closing in, deserves a description greater than that.  How about, “It will be a long, miserable, tough, difficult day with numerous emotional ups and downs corresponding generally to the ups and downs of 12,000 vertical feet over 100 miles of single-track.”  Or how about, “It will be the kind of day that most normal people will do anything to avoid.”  Or maybe the most accurate, “It will be a long day that will sear a memory into your brain that you will still recall when you are sitting in a retirement home in a rocking chair spilling food on your lap blanket.”  After all, isn’t that one of the reasons that we proverbially make hay while the sun shines?  We may be well past our athletic prime, but if we are still young enough and fit enough to make our way around 100 miles of Olympic Forest single-track, shouldn’t we do that while we can?  Yes, yes we should; as long as someone will go along with us.  Because misery doesn’t like being alone. 

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