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embarrassing bike commuter story

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embarrassing bike commuter story

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Old 08-01-01, 01:24 PM
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ViciousCycle
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Bikes: My frame is covered in reflective tape. After adding ridiculously large handlebars, a comfy seat, and enough carrying capacity to haul a Thanksgiving grocery run home, the manufacturer wouldn't recognize it.

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embarrassing bike commuter story

Yesterday, at work, I had the misfortune of solving a huge crisis at work. Coming up with the solution meant I finished my work day later than I expected, meaning that I had to bicycle quickly to get to the train station on time. It was a really hot, sticky day, and I didn't have time to change into T-shirts and shorts, but I quickly put some velcro straps around the bottom of my pant legs so that they didn't get caught in the chain. The bicycle ride was grueling, as the garage sale special bike that I use for this part of my ride isn't built for speed. By the time I got to the train station, I was soaked in sweat, and lots of dust and dirt had accumulated on my pants during the ride. I got to the train station a couple of minutes ahead of schedule, and I wanted to get out of my soaked pants. Most everyone was outside waiting for the train, though a person or two would occassionally meander into the train station shelter. When the shelter was momentarily empty, I ducked in, whipped my shorts out of my bag, and prepared to whip my pants off and whip the shorts on. Once my pants had gotten down to my ankles, they were suddenly stuck. I had forgotten about the velcro strips. Unfortunately, the inside-out pant legs were now covering up the velcro strips so that I couldn't unfasten them. Momentarily, I could neither seem to get my pants up or down! Since I was wearing boxers, I was not committing indecent exposure, but I knew that it would still look quite bad if I were walked in on.

I managed to get the pants up enough to get the velcro strips off, and then got changed in record time. No one walked in on me, but still, I think I understand why Superman no longer tries to change in a phone booth.....

Anyone else have any embarrassing commuter stories to tell?
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Old 08-01-01, 02:08 PM
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I can't top that one!
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Old 08-01-01, 02:13 PM
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Ellen
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Boy do I have one for this thread. And I'm only telling this because of the marvelous anonymity that the web provides for us all.

I commute in Washington DC. Anyone in Washington knows of Georgetown park mall which is one of these "festival" river front malls with restaurants and shops located right on the potomac river. There is a boardwalk right along the waterfront where boats can dock on the weekend to come into the mall and have drinks I suppose.
So, always one for extending my commute, for a while I was making part of my commute involve riding directly along the boardwalk along the potomac river. I found out the hard way why boardwalks should be equipped with guardrails, which this stretch of the boardwalk lacks.

I guess I was spacing out and I gained a little too much speed. Somehow, I lost control of the bike and ended up careening on my bike in a spectacular majical mystery flight into the potomac river. Yes, saddle bags, helmet, bagged lunch, and myself were completely submerged.

Mind you, this is about 6:00 am on a Tuesday. There was no one around.

For several minutes I stayed in the water because the dock was too far above me to climb out of the water by myself. I had to hold onto my bike which would have sunk instantly had I not held fast.

Finally some poor jogger ran by and I yelled from the water, "excuse me, I have a little problem here." This, precisely, was my most embarrasing commuting moment.

I'm proud to say he pulled both me and the bike to safety. For months I was pouring water out of the frame. Interestingly, I didn't lose a single doo-dad--the panniers, pump, and computer were still firmly attached!!
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Old 08-01-01, 05:11 PM
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Originally posted by ViciousCycle
Momentarily, I could neither seem to get my pants up or down
Oh, Man! You have to admit, that was stupid. You might be able to pull that kind of trick off in Europe, but not in the USA.

Being caught with your pants stuck down around your ankles in a lonely Chicago subway cubby hole is like bending over to pick up the soap in a prison shower. Getting arrested might seem like a rescue.
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Old 08-02-01, 07:32 PM
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You guys are too funny!

Thanks for the chuckle!

I'll be back when I come up with something...

V.C., yours is too close to home.

Ellen, that was priceless!
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Old 08-02-01, 08:12 PM
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Luckily my commute is to short for anything REALLY embarrassing to happen. Or at least I hope so.
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Old 08-02-01, 10:16 PM
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Originally posted by fubar5
Luckily my commute is to short for anything REALLY embarrassing to happen.
Ha! "Famous last words."

We're waiting.
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Old 08-03-01, 06:14 AM
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I have two embarassing moments and can't decide between the two, maybe you can.
Firstly- I was using clipless pedals for a few weeks and still not used to them entirely,I slowed for the lights, tried to trackstand and promptly fellover! I couldn't get out of the pedals so I had to slide to the side of the road, still clipped in and I waved the cars to go past. I couldn't bring myself to look at the faces in the cars, but I'm sure they all saw my red face!
The next occured on Melbourne Cup Day- a national horse racing day in Australia and almost a national holiday, why a nation stops for a bunch of horses has me beat.
Anyway in Australia we have the govt. run betting shop the TAB. There was a huge line of people lined up along the footpath waiting for the TAB to open. The traffic lights were red and once again I was trackstanding.
I tried to anticipate the movement of the traffic when the lights changed, but I was wrong.Here I am right up the butt of a small truck with nowhere to go. So I reached out to steady myself on the truck side- just as it took off. The stickyness between my fingers and the truck dragged me along , but I was out of control. I speared into the gutter right beside this long line of people!!! Boy did my ego take a hammering that day.
Hope you all get a laugh out of my stupidity, it was my fault both times.
happy riding to you all.
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Old 08-03-01, 06:27 AM
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Originally posted by sillystorm

Hope you all get a laugh out of my stupidity, it was my fault both times.
happy riding to you all.
Well, actually, I'm just glad you didn't get hurt! You may feel stupid, but it could happen to anybody. Of course, if it continues to happen over and over and over--that's another matter!
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Old 08-19-01, 08:01 PM
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As far as embarrassing goes, when I was a kid, I had a bad habit of spacing out (dreamland) on the bike.

Well, one day while hypnotized my front wheel, I ran into a parked car. Embarassing, indeed.
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Old 08-19-01, 08:06 PM
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Originally posted by sillystorm
I have two embarassing moments and can't decide between the two, maybe you can.
Firstly- I was using clipless pedals for a few weeks and still not used to them entirely,I slowed for the lights, tried to trackstand ...The traffic lights were red and once again I was trackstanding...
Sillystorm,

I am so glad you posted this. I have this sense of inferiority when ever I stop at a red light and put my right foot on the ground, while some Mr. Wonderful is standing there like some kind of, well, improbable gyroscope.

Can you scare someone into collapsing while trackstanding?

Just kidding...
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