Doing it all the hard way...

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Coffee and Lies #159 Out of Season forgiveness

Hottie and Sasha 
Our Sunday morning Coffee and Lies rides can be pretty intimidating most of the year.  If you joined us during the summer you would find we start with a low-key roll out down to Lake Washington followed by a mellow climb to the I-90 Bridge.  Then after a slightly spirited crossing of the bridge we pause on Mercer Island to shed layers.  Then, without a word to tip you off, it is an all-out race around the south end of the Island.  If the pace lets up for an instant, McWoodie or Moonlight or Big John will jump and if you don’t catch on your day is done.  Nobody has ever caught back on. If you have the fitness to hang on the final sprint serves up humble pie to those not mentioned above.

After the hierarchy has been set for the day we retrace our steps but this time it ramps up ever so slowly like a turbine engine.  The return begins at a conversational pace and slowly those who want to play separate themselves from those who don’t.  Then after the descent, there is a long gradual climb where everyone tries to position themselves on Big John’s rear wheel. The paceline begins to rotate and usually on the second rotation we begin to lose riders.   Seven of us, then six, now five, four…. Our numbers dwindle until the final climb when it all blows up.  McWoodie typically earns the KOM points here.

We regroup in the park and the ride back to the coffee shop is once again social.

In the dead of winter we follow a different script.

The short days mean we start before sunrise and most of us show up with lights front and rear.  Between the potential for slick roads and winter being the season of easy base miles our rides are much less intense.  This is more of a no rider left behind scenario and some of our less obsessed brethren can join and not get dropped.  
 One donut to rule them all......
With the weather often cold and crappy even the slowest rider can apply Rule #9 and feel good about themselves. It was no surprise then that no less than fourteen hearty souls made their way around Mercer Island this past Sunday morning.  When asked if we had considered an earlier start to accommodate the Seahawks playoff game we  reminded the enquiring party that the Seahawks had actually scheduled their playoff game so as not to interfere with our ride.
El Jefe' stoking the furnace

That is how I see it.

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