Monday, June 29, 2009

Making an Old Lady's Day

Anecdote from the life:

Alright blog readers, I'm going to try to paint a picture for you. This won't be a pretty picture, but it's an honest one -- and don't say I didn't warn you -- a slightly pornographic one. Let's begin at the third stage of the Tour Of America's Dairyland, a six corner twilight crit in a hip little town called Grafton, just outside Milwaukee. Our race didn't go especially well, with only one of us placing inside the money, but nobody crashed, and we raced better than the previous day, so as is often the case in bike racing, things could have been worse. Despite tail-gunning for 95% of the race, I managed to win a bottle of wine on a prime lap, so I was reasonably satisfied. I was slow in returning to the team van (I had to collect my wine after all). By the time I got back, it was getting late, and we were almost ready to go: Lang was loading the folding chairs and stacking them into the back of the van, Nick was throwing used bottles into the cooler, and Aaron was on the roof, putting bikes on the rack.

Now let me pause here, and briefly address the subject of public nudity at bike races. To be quite plain, it's a common occurrence. Unlike many sports, where the athletes can change clothes inside a locker room, cycling takes place outside, on public streets. Changing usually takes place a parking lot. Sometimes that parking lot is reserved for racers. Other times, we share the parking lot with (unfortunate) civilians. While some of us are more discrete, changing under a towel or inside a vehicle, most racers are indeed publicly nude for a few seconds every race-day. Beginning racers are sometimes shocked to see their teammates and competitors casually "drop-trow" while standing in plain sight. Seasoned veterans like us are so regularly exposed to brief flashes of nudity (and so regularly expose ourselves), we can grow slightly numb to the whole thing -- we forget that public nudity is not only a crime, but that for certain members of the general public, watching a man strip naked, slather his undercarriage with chamois cream, and then squeeze himself into what appears to be a spandex wrestling singlet is downright traumatizing.  

So there we were, in the very back end of a (seemingly) deserted, dimly-lit parking lot. I removed my helmet, coiled up my race radio, and unzipped my jersey. Nick was standing off to my side, still fishing around in the cooler. While partly concealed by the van doors, I was still standing solidly inside Nick's peripheral vision. When it came time to drop my bibs, I chose to do something that was, in retrospect, extremely inappropriate; however, at the time it seemed absolutely necessary. Feeling rather impish, and with my spandex around my ankles, I -- how shall I put this -- I did a little dance, and waved my genitals in my teammate's general direction. Nick avoided looking directly at what I was doing (fear of blindness?), but my body language, and the muted sounds of skin slapping skin told the story. For those familiar with the movie, think the opening scene of Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Aaron, who was still atop the van, also got the gist of what I was doing. 

"Dude -- not even cool," Aaron said, disappointedly. 

"Yeah, but you made this old lady's day!" a woman's voice issued from the darkness. Straining my eyes, and with the hair on the back of my neck standing on end, I focused on the a sixty-something year old woman who happened to be walking through the parking lot at that exact time. Dumb luck really -- had she approached the van moments earlier, I would have noticed her in time to abort my unseemly display; had she approached later, she would have missed it entirely. 

Now supremely embarrassed, and with my teammates starting to howl with laughter, I threw on my boxers. "Sorry 'bout that," I offered. 

"Whoo -- I haven't seen an ass that tight in a loooooong time," the woman cackled (mostly to herself), and strode off into the darkness. 


Anonymous said...


Patrick said...

i haven't laughed that hard it a while. awesome.

Perhaps a Parrot said...

They say one man's trash is another man's treasure -- well here at Glider Bison, one man's embarrassing trauma is another man's humor column. All to happy to be of service.