Thursday, April 23, 2009

The "Insect" Incident

Greetings Readers

Amazingly enough I was able to get off work before 5:00 PM yesterday. That is truly amazing.

I changed from bike work clothes into my bike riding gear and soon left the parking garage. Wow I thought to myself, so that is what the sun looks and feels like when I get off at 4:30 PM. Although, there were some rain clouds in the sky on where I needed to go – home.

I started out slow and just enjoyed the evening weather and gusty winds, which affected my riding since I was riding with Andrea and the HED rims. A gusty or strong wind is felt so much more with a 90 mm deep rim – as opposed to no 0 mm rim. I have to have both hands gripped a bit tighter on the bandanna wrapped handlebars to make sure that I have better control in case a sudden gust of wind threatens to blow me over or into the curb.

On the way home I did stop off at my local bank that opened in a new location earlier this month. First time I have been in the new location since they moved early April. I did my business inside and then got two comments on my Southpark bike jersey by a couple of new employees. They loved it. Who doesn’t right?! Well, besides the people against curse words and foul mouth cartoon fourth graders. Or people who just don’t like Southpark.

15 minutes or so later I was getting close to home. I did encounter and feel some raindrops, but just a raindrop here and there. Matter of fact, I was ready to be rained on even though I did not want to. I think, that I was happy from getting off before 5:00 PM and getting rained on was nothing “grand” to get “bent” out of shape for.

The homestretch – I was cruising down a hill and going about 25 to 30 mph. I tapped the brakes a bit since I was turning into a corner that I was practically going in blind. Also, with the recent snowstorm there is a lot of gravel on the roads so I have to make sure that I do not slide on the sand, gravel or salt that was dumped by the snow plows on Friday. I could not see who or what might be around that corner I was turning into. Due to my speed I was going to be leaning sharp into the turn and even try to cut into the corner, but leaving me an out (alternate path of trajectory) in case I see a vehicle at the last possible microsecond and need to avoid a collision.

I approached the corner I estimate about 23 mph since the last speed readout I saw was at 27 mph and I did tap the brakes a few times quickly after that reading.

I turned left fast and at an angle.

In that turn I felt an insect hit my nose and then go up into my nose. Fucking sucks to be me. Since there was gusty winds I was holding onto the bandanna wrapped handlebars pretty good. I was also traveling pretty fast so that was the other reason I was holding on tight to the handlebars. During that moment the insect hit my face and then preceded to go up into my nose I wanted to put my hand up to my face immediately. I couldn’t. I dared not to for the thought of a gust of wind or perhaps riding into some gravel making me have an accident.

That insect was tickling/touching my inner nose hairs and immediately affected me. I did not feel I wanted to sneeze, but I wanted to close (pinch) my left nostril with one of my fingers, close my mouth and exhale through my right nostril as hard as I could to get that insect out.

I want to say that this was about 10 seconds or so of discomfort, but in reality it was about 5 seconds or so. As soon as I cleared the corner I immediately pulled to the right side of the road, slowed down (no locking the brakes since these are new tires as of Monday) and then put my right hand up to my nose, closed my mouth and blew as hard as I could out my right nostril.

I did not feel when the insect was out of my nose, but I blew like that over and over for about ten seconds or so. And yes Readers, I had to do a bit of finger penetration in the right nostril to make sure that the insect was not on the outside of the nostril perhaps hanging on for dear life to the insides of my nostril.

So, that marks the first insect up my nose for this year. I never go out without a season with an insect going into my mouth, up my nose, into my eyes, down my bike jersey or into one or both of my ears. Perhaps you daily commuters this does not happen to you, but to us hardcore riders it happens more often than you think.

Until the next time

Daryl Charley
The Fallen Athlete

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