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Guest blogging today is one of my riding buddies Steve Gruman. – Vinnie
Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right. – Robert Hunter
“Oh Miss Crabtree, there’s something heavy on my heart.” Having navigated my first 52 years to my general satisfaction, I can pretty much attribute most of what I’ve learned to the Little Rascals, not least of which is a sometime fondness for older women. Now into my next half-century, I’ve come to realize where Chubsy, Spanky, and Alfalfa left off, my buddy Vinnie has picked up with uncanny seamlessness. Not unlike the lifelong influence of a ragtag group of television’s holy misfits, Vinnie has imparted some life-changing knowledge one could only expect from, dare I say, a buddha. Or perhaps, this Mulholland Moses, who has been dragging a small, lost tribe of the chosen through the canyons and hills of the Malibu badlands for over a decade, provides guidance in the quest for ever-greater wisdom and the ultimate meaning of Yogi Berra. With newly found knowledge and a revived approach to life, I can now continue my journey with a deeper sense of confidence, comfort, clarity, direction, strength, and a painful perineum. I told you that to tell you this — here, in my humblest words, is my attempt to share some of the unique wisdom I’ve gained from this bayou medicine man:
- Chamois butter is a life-saver, particularly good on toast after a brutal ride.
- Although cycling over 100 miles in triple digit heat usually won’t make headlines, you can always fool yourself into thinking that someone else might give a shit about all those wasted Saturdays.
- Peeing while sitting (on your bike) is manly.
- Never borrow a bike.
- Shaving your legs is especially manly.
- Waxing your underarms is not, but helpful for climbing.
- When in doubt, always ask yourself, “What would Fausto Coppi do?”
- Chianti in every other bottle will get you through most rides with dopey friends.
- Ginger is no Mary Ann.
- Sophia Loren is a better ride than Pamela Anderson.
- Fuck/Marry/Kill (for the first time) is good for a couple of hours after heat exhaustion.
- The second time is akin to suffering through Robin Williams’ standup act.
- An iceberg wedge and blue cheese along with a cold Guinness is the best secret for muscle recovery.
- Besides our own girlfriends, Paul Rudd’s girlfriend in Dinner For Schmucks may just be the perfect woman.
- Southern rock has always sucked (it’s a fact; learned BVE)
- Suffering enough on the bike results in automatic conversion to Catholicism.
- Complaining enough on the bike is a reminder of why you’re not at Shabbat services.
- Hydration is next to godliness.
- Nietzsche never understood why he developed terrible quad cramps on tough rides.
- A bad day on the bike is better than a good day on the water board (some would disagree).
- Vinnie’s like our very own Maury Wills; “let’s ride another six hours!” And as complete morons, “OK”
- Kris Kristofferson popularized American cycling in the sixties when he wrote the lyric, “Riding’s just another thing when nothing’s left to do.”
- The idea of four idiots racing through the hot desert for over 500 miles may be as foolish as it sounds. Or not – we’ll let you know.
I told you that to tell you this (can I use this again?). You should be OK through the next fifty years or so, but not to worry; there’s always Spanky and the boys to illuminate the path. But I digress.