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Saga of Mr. Sew-up

June 18, 2010

Last night’s air was like the breath of a young women.  Cool, crisp, just beautiful.

I thought about records, but at Lander (1/2 mile point) only was averaging 11.9 mph.  Had a scary run down Jackson; on a curve I drifted into the oncoming traffic lane at 40 mph.  At River road my average was only 18.5 mph.  Still, I was strong.

I came up to Cedar, hadn’t decided yet if I would take it or not: It is so challenging!  Skipped it and took Berkshire.  At Berkshire’s start my average was 16.5 mph- not bad.  I charged up.  I have markers; for example there is a stop sign 2/3 of the way up.  Usually I’ve dropped 1 1/2 mph at this point, but last night I’d only dropped 1 mph.  Fantastic.  I kept charging, gulping air.  At the top my average was 15.4 mph, but my lungs wanted a break.  I wasn’t given it to them.  Kept charging.

There are two types of bicycle tires: clenchers and sew-ups.  Most people use clenchers; racers and enthusiasts use sew-ups.  Sew-ups are light but prone to flats.  They are expensive and difficult to repair. 

Two days ago, I got passed by a guy on River; while i was able to catch up to him for a mile or so he pulled away on a hill.  Soon he was gone.  He had a defining feature:  a sew-up under his seat, to be used if he got a flat.  The tire had red sidewalls.

At Berkshire’s top, I got on to Gates Mills Blvd., still cranking hard. A half mile ahead I saw a guy.  He was so far ahead that at first I couldn’t tell if it was a rider or jogger.  After a bit I confirmed it: a rider.  I cranked harder and started catching up.  It took me 1 1/2 miles; maybe 2, but I caught up and got behind him.  Then I saw who it was: Mr. Sew-up.

I blew by that guy so fast I was surprised he wasn’t knocked over by my wake!  He never caught up to me.

I finished the ride with an average speed of 16 mph.  My fastest in two years.  I was pleased.


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  1. Joyce permalink

    Doug…what’s the air like when it’s like the breath of an old woman????? Just had to ask…..

    Glad your ride went well….sorry for Mr Sew….


  2. It’s cold. Very cold. Ha! I was trying to be poetic, and I didn’t really like the way it sounded, but at least I got a comment!

  3. Sandy permalink

    That is soooo wrong! A mature woman would compare to an aged wine so that the air is full-bodied and enveloping.

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