As in, "does it suck to be dumb?"; the question some friends of mine will surly be asking me. In a word, yes, it does.
It started raining here in the Circle City last night, and ended sometime early this morning. I wasn't really worried about it, I got to sleep in (you know its bad when the alarm clock goes off at 0600 and you call that sleeping in), left early for work, and planned on taking my time and enjoying the ride into work. I cruse along, having no trouble with wet pavement or puddles, adjusting how I lean to get into and out of curves. No slipping, no sliding, no problems.
Then, I get to the train tracks 1/2 mile from the office door. I know I should have approached them from as close to perpendicular as possible, but I had gotten complacent in my ride this morning. I cleared the first rail with no problem, and then splat. My front wheel caught the grove next to the second rail, snapped to a 45 degree angle to the left, and now I'm doing my best "superman" impersonation, right into the pavement. Thankfully, I was standing at the time, and I always keep my pedals set at low tension, so I just slid to a stop, scuffing my right hand, arm and lower leg. I manage to get up just as someone in a pickup stops to make sure I'm okay. "Broken, but not dead" I reply, and we proceed to make sure that there really isn't something seriously wrong with me.
Nope, no major damage; but I knew I had a date with the bottle of peroxide as soon as I got to work. Picking up my bike, I reattached the panards and put the chain back on (I managed to throw it off both the cassette and the chain rings), and disconnect the rear break (I still haven't figured out what I could have done to that), and the bike at least roles. Off I go to work, a little worse for the wear.
The boss has his Trek Portland hanging on the wall of the office, so when I walk in, I don't have to worry about explaining what happened; he's been there and done that already. He offers a little assistance in me cleaning myself up, and then it's off to work. The worst part, having to call the Mrs and explain what happened (and the lecture that followed).
So, what's the point here. Well, don't get complacent, for one thing. In the past 3.5 months of work, I crossed those tracks hundreds of times, and racked up over 1000 miles doing it (1005 to be exact). Plan for the hazards on your rout and pay attention to how things change with the weather. Oh yea, and have fun riding; this was my first wreck in the past 6 years of active cycling. I'll take that.