So Noumena9, Gnawa (both from the forums) and I set out to do our 6 am training ride in Prospect Park today. Since we’ll all be back in the saddle tonight for the PP races (which everyone reading this in the NYC area should attend) we thought it would be best to take it easy. Since we only ride for less than an hour, we thought we would take the first lap easy, sprint the hills on the second lap (both up and down), take the whole third lap hard and take two recovery laps. So on our approach to the hill the 3rd time I notice a roadie with a Slope Sports kit jump on our pace line. I didn’t think much of it at first. I took off from the pace line at the bottom of the hill, got out of my saddle and took it hard to the top. About half way up I noticed our road bike friend is still on my tire. It was about that time I thought to myself, “I’m pushing 49/15 and this guy is practically spinning out—why am I doing all the work?” Nevertheless, I got to the top of the hill, got back in the saddle to start my 2 recovery laps when Mr. Multi-gear passes by, and without any sign of “hello” or “thanks for taking me up the hill” or anything of the sort, just road past me like I didn’t exist. This was when I became a tad put-off. So about a mile into our recovery lap we start to come upon the very same guy who “left us in the dust” and we pass him. By the time we reach the backstretch of the park I notice our man is back on my wheel (but remember we’re in a recovery lap so we cant be going faster than 15 mph). While on my wheel he’s constantly overlapping my wheel by a few inches and we still receive no “hello” or anything. At this point I decide to cut across the empty road to give him the hint to back off (I’m much to passive aggressive to ask him to do so). When I return to my group, I notice he’s right back on my wheel. It was like in the summer when you would be playing outside and hundreds of gnats would be circling your head and every time you swat them away they just return. At this point I figure this guy is here to stay. When we approach the hill for our fourth time, Mr. Slope Sports takes off from us as to take the hill hard, at which point I say, “Go get um killer.” Now first off, I mumble everything so I never expected him to even understand me, but of course this time it came out clear as day, and second, I meant it with the utmost sincerity—I really wanted him to tear that hill apart (apply sarcasm here). Well I supposed it came out quite snidely and he gave me a 5 second long stink eye as he took off from us. So, Noumena9, Gnawa and I have a chuckle at my comment and more so his reaction and continue with or final recovery lap when we catch up to him again! This time I suggest we stay behind him because I don’t feel like dealing with anything. So we cruise about 50 meters behind him for about 2 miles when another group of roadies come along. We all say “hello” and they ride by. When they catch up to Mr. Sunday stroll one of the riders from the group drops to ride with him while the others ride off. After a few minutes of them chatting they both look back and give me—not the stink eye—but the crook eye. So at this point we come to the hill and they’re just going too slow so we take off for the hill at which point he says to me “go get um killer.” Are you kidding me? How old is this guy? So we leave the park and the guy he was riding with leaves with us and has he’s riding off give us—not the stink eye—not the crook eye—but the evil eye.
Okay so let me explain myself, I have nothing against those who choose to ride with multiple gears, derailleurs and brakes, in fact if I ever get some money I too would like to own one of those hi-tech machines, however, I do have a problem with someone who hops on a pace line and can’t even say hello or ask if its cool he drafts us. Also, I didn’t appreciate this guy riding my wheel while I’m riding 10-15 mph on the top of my bars chatting with my friends, to me that’s like looking on while a stranger sitting next to you on an airplane is reading a magazine. Now I don’t say hello to every cyclist I see but when I hope to join a pace line of either roadies or trackies, I make sure to say hello and see if its cool I jump on—just seems like proper cycling etiquette to me. Oh yeah, and I do my share of the work.
I’m posting this on both the road forum and the SS/FG forum so feel free to tell me how much of an @$$hole I am if you must.