Monday, May 11, 2009

Bike to Work Week - Day One

Time: 1 hour, 2 minutes, and 45 seconds
Distance: 11.23 miles

As much as I enjoy riding my bike, I was reluctant to register for Bike to Work Week. After all, I arrive at my "workplace" simply by waking up in the morning. Given that fact, rather than asking the guys at Wheel Sport what kind of tires they would recommend for hardwood floors, I decided to participate by riding to Sally's office this morning. En route I stopped by Four Seasons Coffee to buy a pound of fresh coffee beans. Mmmm, worth the effort.

I left the house dressed for the rain that was in the forecast, and indeed returned home dripping wet, but not from precipitation. I was drenched in the perspiration that results from mixing physical exertion, unexpected sunshine, and an impermeable layer of plastic clothing. This brings us to the Question of the Day: What does the word "breathable" mean when used to describe outdoor wear? 

At the time of purchase, my rain pants boasted a tag labeling them as "breathable". They have 10 inch zippers at the cuffs, so I guess that qualifies them as "breathable", sorta like pulling a plastic bag over your head after carefully constructing a single vent with a hole punch. "Oooh look! Breathable!" 
(Note to our younger readers: Do not try this at home.)

There have been times in my life when I would have welcomed more effective rain gear. There was the Canadian canoe adventure with my high school physics teacher where it rained, non-stop, for 8 days. There were times in Michigan's Upper Peninsula when we were sure the Northern Pike were in a feeding frenzy, if only we could have withstood the copious quantities of rain dumping from the sky. There were countless hours at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, watching safety trucks drive around the track in the rain, "drying it off" for the unfulfilled promise of on-time start. If only I had possessed then, what I do now: "breathable" rain gear. 

In truth, my rain gear worked. I didn't get wet in the rain today, and I am still breathing.

Tomorrow's post: "Share the Road, Spokane Style"

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