This weekend has not been ideal for much of anything let alone ridin’ bikes. Even bikes with girthy problems like my
Surly Pugsley Musk Ox. With that said, here’s a little wrap up of my strange wintry weekend…
Friday night and Saturday were filled with snow showers, strong gusting winds and drifting snow. At times Mt. Pleasant looked more like Antarctica than a small college town in the middle of Michigan. I was sort of glad conditions were so bad because I made some poor choices the night before and found myself out with friends until the wee hours of Saturday morning. It’s not that I drank that much, I was just out late, I’m old and I am just not made for that shit anymore. Twas a good time though and one of the most surreal nights I’ve had in a LONG time.
I could go in to all the strange things that happened that night, but I will just relay what I thought was one of the strangest…
As my friends and I were getting ready to leave, I went to say goodnight to some local soccer coaches and friends I know. Before I could leave they bought me a Guinness, so I sat with them, sipped my pint and talked for a bit. Then a VERY drunk Native American dude comes over and starts talking to our table. He seemed to vaguely know one of the one dudes from somewhere, but the rest of us had NO idea who he was. He is going on and on about the “atrocities his people faced” and how his “grandmother got ‘fixed’ by white people” etc., etc., (by the way, I am not making that up).
We did our best to both ignore him and discuss said atrocities. Then out of the fucking blue he starts yelling at the one dude “BY THE WAY, WHEN THE FUCK ARE MANCHESTER UNITED GOING TO FIRE DAVID MOYES??? HE’S KILLING THE CLUB!!” I just looked at my friends and they were just as taken aback by the fact that this inebriated Native American switched from talking about “his people” and “atrocities” to the tough times Man U are having without skipping a beat. He then bought the table a round of shots (I declined) and soon after promptly knocked over a half full pint of Guinness into my lap. Brilliant. A short time later he was shown the exit by the bouncer. Not long after that, I found myself walking the few blocks home with my friends in gale force winds and blinding snow. Strange times indeed… strange… times… indeed.
With that night of surreal misadventures behind me, on Saturday I opted to stay out of the cold, hunker down and watch footy and movies all day and evening in hopes that on Sunday I would be able to get the Musk Ox out for a ride on the snow-covered dirt roads.
And I did…
I did, but it wasn’t great. Many of the roads had drifting issues and many others had long stretches of ice. It was also snowing with strong, steady winds, making for less than ideal conditions.
As you can see from the top photo, I opted to use a small Princeton Tec EOS headlight (and also a blinky tail light, not seen) due to the blowing snows. I figured if one is riding a 38 pound bike, another few ounces wouldn’t hurt, and the added visibility would help me from becoming Yeti meat.
The drifting snows on the side of the road combined with increased weekend traffic on the dirt roads had me feeling a bit uneasy, so my goals quickly changed. Now I aimed to at very least take some pics and get an hour of riding in so as to justify the 15 minutes it took me to get dressed to ride in 1o˚ temps.
If there had been just a LITTLE less drifting and a LITTLE less traffic I would have continued on for sure, because rolling outside is SOOOOO much more fun than numbing my taint on the trainer for an hour or more.
The increased traffic brought plenty of gawkers. As one pickup truck passed me, I half expected a shout of “GET THE FUCK OF THE ROAD, YOU’RE GONNA GET KILLED!” Instead, I saw a pickup truck full of farmers looking at me and the clown bike I was on with their mouths open and jaws slack as if to say “WHAT the fuck are you riding, WHAT are doing and WHY are you doing it??
Luckily I got my hour minimum in and I was able to take some bailout roads and get back without incident. It would have been nice to ride longer but it’s nicer to get back in one piece. There will be other days to come I am sure, it was just freaking nice to get outside. This winter, if I get out even once a week I will be stoked and will consider this purchase a wise investment.
As a bonus to all this I sold enough gear down at the MMBA swap meet to pay for nerly half of Pugsley’s cost. Win.