WARNING: I don't want to piss anyone off again about religious stuff, so if you don't believe in evolution then you may want to go to another site.
This past weekend, out on our new tandem, RandoGirl was telling me her theory about the Evolutionary Stages of a Cyclist. I told her that she should do it as a guest blog -- thus giving her a platform for her opinion and, even more importantly, giving me a day off from writing.
Okay, so I don't write every day. Sue me. And, to be honest, I enjoy writing my blog. Otherwise, why would I do it? Believe me, the ad revenues are flat. I make more money from the sale of RandoBoy Brand Taint Paint (Our Slogan: "For When Your Saddle Is Not Your Friend").
Anyway, I don't want to spoil RandoGirl's column, but I was reminded of our conversation last night at the track. As loyal readers will doubtless recall, a couple of months ago I did the Harpeth River Ride with TNABA athlete Dan Dillon. Since then, the Harpeth Bicycle Club has continued to work with the Tennessee Association of Blind Athletes, and every Tuesday night at the Nashville Motorplex we ride for an hour on tandems.
For those that don't know, a tandem is a "bicycle built for two." The rider in front is called the captain, and he steers. The rider in the back is the stoker.
So far, we've been putting the blind athlete on the back, but last night the TNABA folks were talking about swapping seats.
Ha-ha. They were kidding. I think.
You see, the thing is that they've gotten really serious about this. I mean really, really serious.
When we first started, almost all of the TNABA athletes were wearing jeans, t-shirts, and tennis shoes. By the time the River Ride came around, a few had gotten cycling shorts ... probably a good thing, since many of them were doing the 42-mile option or longer.
Unfortunately, this dashed my evil plans to expand the market for RandoBoy Brand Taint Paint (Another Slogan: "Put An End to the Pain in Your End").
Two weeks ago, Mark Montgomery rode on the track with me. As usual, the night before I removed the clip-in pedals from the stoker cranks, putting on flat platform pedals. Well, Mark shows up in shorts, jersey, and SPD-compatible mountain biking shoes. All night, his feet are slipping off the flat pedals.
So, last night I left the regular pedals on. Mark clips in, I get on, and we're off.
We do the first couple of laps just chatting and catching up. But then Mark hears someone coming up behind us, and he lays into the pedals like mad. I, of course, have to respond, so next thing I know we're in the big ring and zipping around the track at 25 mph.
Later that night, we get into a fast paceline of four tandems -- all with blind stokers -- roaring around the track as fast as we can. Everyone is working hard, trying to go faster than the other riders, and gaining major fitness. Afterwards, we're standing around at the side of the track, and we begin to talk about maybe doing a race, or at least a time trial. I told Mark that we had done over 11 miles at just under 18 mph. He was pretty psyched about that.
I wonder if Saris has a PowerTap with a voice read-out for current watts ...