“Would somebody please tell Father Time to kiss my ass pause.” – Th1rt3en
Back at it again… like a crack addict… on a two two-wheeled tours a year habit…. I suppose I have The Panda to thank for it. You know, the pandemic, corona, the vid, COVID-19. As in 2019. Back in the day. Really though, I suppose I have COVID to thank for… having COVID. Twice! I feel like such a failure – in the elusive (and offensive) journey to collect all three variants, I only garnered as many positive tests as I have vaccination dosages — at least with that crap I know that I got the Pfizer. They don’t tell you whether you had Omicron, Delta or Original Crispy Recipe… whoever the fuck they are. Tied at two and we are going to ooooooovvvvveeeeeertime!
So back in not-stream-of-consciousness world: I’m naturally psyched off the fact that after getting back into the LONG-RIDES saddle in summer 2019 (airlifted to New Orleans and pedaled north 1,300 miles in 18 back home) and keeping it up in 2020 (1,246 miles with a rotating crew in a clockwise loop), I’m now following a two-tours-a-year regiment for what is now looking like an unplanned two years in a row in 2022.
Enter the Loop Full Of FLowers like Bruce Lee’s one inch punch. Stay hydrated. Be like water. “You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend.” Or like coffee, goddamnit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncf-5qh5R8c
Nerding out on will become my third functional touring rig (well, as soon as a couple bombproof hand made wheels for my primary steed — the good ole Raleigh Sojourn — arrive), I fitted my All City Space Horse for most of the touring essentials this morning and this afternoon I find myself cruising through the clear dry streets of Buffalo New York on it. Below freezing air temperature but sunshine. Believe it that these streets are salty as fuck here in Buffalo. Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo. Bison from western New York intimate other bison from western New York in a manner way unique to bison from western New York. I’d trade empires for this sunshine. See what I did there? And if you’re counting at home – which you damn well better be – right now you’re asking yourself, how is this three? Didn’t the Space Horse get you from DC to Pitt on Canal Tour #2?
Yes. Good catch there, keep diggin’ Watson. Well, my Space Horse wandered off the ranch last July, right after the Canal Tour #2. More accurately some spineless fuck came into my backyard and stole my steed while I slept. Death to Bike Thieves. After a few months of scouring the streets and the internet for it to no avail, I found another new Space Horse in the wilderness of Akron Ohio. No tax spent, just shipping and I was once again where I needed to be. Then in a truly remarkable turn of events, about 5 months later, someone I never met saw someone they never met, identified them as not really being someone who rightfully owns a $1,500 bike, offered them $20 for it, and then returned my bike to the shop I bought it from. Yay city of good neighbors, sorry about the profiling! *shrugs*.
Some brutal honesty: I’m not the biggest fan of the Sunshine State. I’d much rather head to Arizona or New Orleans or Mexico or Costa Rica. My cousin is one of the smartest people I know, and after decades loving and working down there, he refers to it as “Floriduh”. I’ve always fancied the peninsula as the syphilitic penis of America, treating us all like filthy whores and driving us closer to insanity. Though I have to admit Florida is close and easy to get to, and it’s almost always sunny and warm, at least in the tip. Just the tip. So I’m not really that mad. Fabricated outrage. Fake news. I cop a direct round trip flight for $80 on Frontier (who doesn’t pay me but should). I arrange a ride for my bike on bikeflights (who also doesn’t pay me but should) which actually costs a little more. My intended route is to start out of Fort Myers, head up to Lake Okeechobee, then to the Atlantic Coast. Then up the coast, connecting the start point of my Keys ride to the end point of my Southern Tier ride. Looks good on a map. Feels good for my mind, body and soul. Then I’ll cut south and west, skirting between Orlando and Tampa, back down toward Fort Myers to close the loop. That central portion should provide all sort of flora and fauna and fucking insanity for a lifetime, or at least until I hit the Pacific Coast in September. Stay tuned.
“I breath like oxygen; it’s expensive
Don’t be offended; I am defensive.
I love you; take care, intensive.”