|Group image before the ride.|
On Friday, Bike Club went for a ride, the first regular ride of the fall semester. There were five students on the ride, and although they all resisted my excellent advice that helmets are a good idea, it was a warm, pleasant afternoon for a quick, refreshing ride.
I suggested heading down to Greene Square in downtown Cedar Rapids for our ride, and the students like the idea. However, a passing gentleman who was looking for the music department snapped our pre-ride group picture and suggested the CEMAR trail.
Hmmm. But that newish trail doesn’t really go anywhere besides the Plaster Complex, so we stuck with our original Greene Square plan.
I was riding my hybrid bike, and was in the lead. We headed down the Hill.
I have a several advantages on downhills—my bicycle rolls with less resistance than the heavier bikes MMU owns, so the lightness of my bike is one advantage. Then there is the overall weight of the rider. Gravitational acceleration is a constant no matter the weight, but increased mass of a biker does help with more force that does more to overcome air resistance, or something like that. I don’t know, I’m a writer. But anyway, I have often observed, with many, many field trials that fat old men can zoom down a hill more efficiently than most other bikers.
And I presume the advantage comes more from “fat” than from “old,” although maybe old men can afford better bicycles, but that’s an untested assumption.
Anyway, I ended up well ahead of the students and found myself waiting now and then. Perhaps my helmet just made me more aerodynamic, too.
|Riding along Cedar Lake. I got ahead and stop to make image of club riders as they approach. And no, the student on the left did not ride on the grass, I think she is coming over to check on me, as a young person who protects old people.|
|Chatting after getting drinks and before heading back t campus.|
Anyway, one of the students was telling another something about what happens when she is with “old people.” I was right behind them, and did caution the student, jokingly, about what would be said next. It turns out the speaking student works with elderly people in a nursing home and feels obligated to protectively look after them.
Well, that seems nice. Says the old man.
|Long shadows by Cedar Lake on our way back to campus.|
Finally, before the ride, we noted that a seat and seat post had been removed from one bicycle. Another bike is completely gone—bike seven may have been stolen, we presume. Blah. Earlier this semester, we lost a bike that had been left locked along the Cedar River Trail and was damaged beyond repair. Now, sadly, bad things are starting to happen to bikes right on campus.
That’s not an uplifting note to end on, I’m sure. But despite the unpleasant reminders of the darker side of human nature, the first club ride was very nice, and more MMU Bike Club rides are to come. Watch the MMU app for times, as the club will probably vary its rides so that students who were at athletic practices late on a Friday afternoon can participate.
And we may ride downtown again: