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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 08-11-13, 06:52 AM   #1
Bob Dopolina 
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The Mystery of the Vanishing Try-Geek.

I was pretty fried today. Literally. After my ride on Saturday I went to an air show and military expo with the family. We were at an airbase and the temps topped out around 40C.

So this morning I decided to do 90 minutes along the costal road next to my house. It is pancake flate and so close to the ocean I could spit in it at times. I use this route for intervals or recovery rides as it is pretty straight and devoid of intersections.

I had a tail wind out so I enjoyed the spin. I settled into a nice tempo. The traffic was light so I didn't even touch the binders until I hit my turn around point. On the way back I had a moderate headwind but nothing to write home about.

As I spun the 53-17 a rider appeared on my left. He was on his aero bars and passed me then stalled about 10m in front of me. It was clear he had chased me down and since we had a headwind and a false flat for the last 2km or so he had made a bit of an effort.

I rode behind him for a minute or so. He was on a Giant TT bike with Ultegra with some pretty decent shoes and kit that looked lived in. He was a bit twitchy but not a squirrel so I thought I might as well finish up my ride with him if he was game.

I drifted up beside him, said hello and slid onto his wheel. Not knowing him I staggered my wheel and left more of a gap than I would with riders I knew. He glanced back and saw I was there. He clicked up a gear and we were good to go.

He pulled for about 2km and I saw that he was starting to labour a bit. He had chased me down and although I wasn't putting in a hard effort he certainly had been working harder than me so I pulled through. I was still on my hoods but I rotated the pelvis and continued the tempo. I squeezed the pace up a tad but not more than 2-3kph or so.

About a minute later I flicked and pulled off. Nothing.

I glanced down and he wasn't there. I glanced back and he was gone.

By gone I don't mean dropped I mean gone. As in vanished. As in nowhere to be seen.

To be clear this section of road is about 5km long, dead flat and dead straight. There are no traffic lights, no intersections and nothing at all to obscure the line of sight. If he was anywhere on that road at all I would have seen him.

But he was gone.

I slowed down just in case I was somehow mistaken, even though I have ridden this rode literally a thousand times or more over the last 15 years as my brain just couldn't understand where the heck this guy was. Nothing. I was right. He was gone.

Gone.

I'm pretty sure neither aliens nor the North Koreans abducted him. I'm pretty sure he didn't stop because he was home as there are no residences along this stretch of road. There are a few shops selling fishing rods and the like and a Coast Guard office but not much more than that.

He was just gone.

I finished up my ride expecting him to come past me again but he didn't. I kept looking over my shoulder expecting to see him off in the distance but I didn't.

Just gone.
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Old 08-11-13, 06:57 AM   #2
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Maybe he wanted a swim workout too?
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Old 08-11-13, 06:59 AM   #3
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You know perfectly well that there can be only one explanation for this, but you are probably still in denial.
That tri guy exists only in your head.
He is your imaginary friend encouraging you to htfu and ride harder.
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Old 08-11-13, 07:02 AM   #4
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Maybe he wanted a swim workout too?
The entrance to the beach is about 5km from where he vanished and in the direction we were traveling. I sure as heck don't know what he would have done with his bike while he was thrashing away in the ocean.
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Old 08-11-13, 07:20 AM   #5
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You probably broke 400w and tore the space-time continuum. You had actually advanced in time, hence the apparent disappearance.
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Old 08-11-13, 07:29 AM   #6
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He preferred the tailwind and turned around ?
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Old 08-11-13, 07:34 AM   #7
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Only one possible explanation: Unless he was racing there was no way he could match your speed. Or maybe you were just a fun rabbit for the last bit of his 4-hour ride. Who knows.
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Old 08-11-13, 08:09 AM   #8
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Welcome back, DrPete
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Old 08-11-13, 08:17 AM   #9
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Only one possible explanation: Unless he was racing there was no way he could match your speed. Or maybe you were just a fun rabbit for the last bit of his 4-hour ride. Who knows.
I wasn't going fast at all, just riding tempo. The thing is there is nowhere to go. Even if he stopped completely I should have been able to see him standing by the side of the road.
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Old 08-11-13, 08:19 AM   #10
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He preferred the tailwind and turned around ?
Possibly, but it would have been a weird spot to do so. It's a divided road with a concrete meridian so it would have taken a bit of effort.
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Old 08-11-13, 08:22 AM   #11
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Alien abduction makes the most sense. Do you feel fortunate, or insulted that they didn't take you ?
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Old 08-11-13, 08:23 AM   #12
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Yes. I, like others, have ridden with 'him' too, but only when I'm approaching peak condition in preparation for an upcoming race. This is the first anyone has dared to speak of 'him'.

It is a sign....
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Old 08-11-13, 08:26 AM   #13
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Alien abduction makes the most sense. Do you feel fortunate, or insulted that they didn't take you ?
This is the theory I am leaning towards at the moment.

I'm glad it wasn't me. My anal probing days are well behind me.
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Old 08-11-13, 08:26 AM   #14
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Stepped in the foliage to take a leak or deuce?
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Old 08-11-13, 08:28 AM   #15
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Stepped in the foliage to take a leak or deuce?
Maybe but again, a very odd spot to do so as there is a beach with flushing toilets a few km up the road.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:01 AM   #16
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You said it yourself in the OP.
On his way to enlist in the Coast Guard he made a quick stop to buy a fishing pole.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:04 AM   #17
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Maybe he wasn't there in the first place..... Maybe you put in such a hard effort that you were hallucinating that you were JoeyBike.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:10 AM   #18
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Catch and release.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:42 AM   #19
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Too bad you didn't have a camera. You could have uploaded a video and posted it in Commuting for the entertainment of all the BF Walter Mittys.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:48 AM   #20
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He dropped and hid just to play with your mind. He laid odds with his buddies he could get you to write about it here on BF.
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Old 08-11-13, 10:04 AM   #21
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Do they have cannibals in Taiwan or is that strictly a New Guinea thing?
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Old 08-11-13, 10:33 AM   #22
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I'm going to guess he got a flat.
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Old 08-11-13, 10:41 AM   #23
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You probably broke 400w and tore the space-time continuum. You had actually advanced in time, hence the apparent disappearance.
I think you mean 1.21 GW don't you? If any cyclists gets to that power level, and travels in time, I'm just going to say right now that he or she is doping. Probably with some REALLY good stuff from the future.
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Old 08-11-13, 10:41 AM   #24
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..... My anal probing days are well behind me.
I see what you did there
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Old 08-11-13, 10:52 AM   #25
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Brett has been known to time travel:


Was it him?
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