April 15, 2010

Bikes, Brain Buckets, & Riding Clipless

I switched over to clipless pedals on my Bianchi Eros Donna and took it out for its first spin since the tune up. 

Not to be morbid, but for my first experience without clip/toe cages, I headed to a  cemetery to spin around and enjoy the learning process. The new system is a lot easier than I expected and it grants a full cycle of leg push & pull.  This will hopefully provide much needed muscular balance.  

This word captures clipless.  
Being alert, not zoning out, and 
expecting the unexpected in various circumstances. 
Cemetery-riding risk rating: low. 
Commuter-hour riding risk rating: high. 

On my inaugural ride I heard a new sound that was not present before the tune up. So, back to the bike shop. so they culd finish what they started. They'd accidentally left some of their screws loose (pun intended for comic effect) and found that the derailleur chimed against the spokes like a mechanical harpsichord—but only with weight and forward motion.
Buchika's fixed it on the spot and with great customer service. The mechanics are a lot of laughs and didn't flinch when I asked if they had any handlebar tape in HOT PINK leopard. The catalogs came out, we flipped through pages of tape from various suppliers but no such luck. Not giving in too easily to defeat, they uncovered a  bin—a time capsule—of 1980's fluorescent plastic handlebar tape (green, pink, etc.) stored along with dusty VHS copies of Breaking Away and American Flyers

Plastic tape in those colors? I thought about it, considered it seriously, but couldn't do it. It would have felt like installing neon windshield wiper blades on a Jaguar. Versus the stylish, possibly Italian inspired, cork leopard print. That would fit. 

Dear Universe,
Please send some leopard print handlebar tape. 
I would purr almost as loudly with some zebra tape.
With Affection, 
The Trail Pixie

To protect my noggin, I'm considering investing in a new, more comfortable, helmet. Being both playful and practical, my little quandry is that I am drawn to the Nutcase Helmets but think the comfort of an aerodynamic brain bucket might trump a Nutcase. 
The Contenders

 Can I wear a 
watermelon print hemet 
with my Bianchi? 
Why the fruit salad not!


Laurel said...

I have the exact same bike (only mine is a few years old)! It has given me a lot of good miles on the roads. I have plain old black tape on my handlebars. But I do have a crazy pink cycling top I wear sometimes.

Definitely get a good helmet! I just ordered a Gyro Zen, which is really a MT bike helmet, but I'll use it for my road bike as well. My old helmet seems to be cracked. :)

RawBodyGoddess said...

You are a rock star, my friend. :)
Are you running anything soon? Wanna come here for a run through the woods soon? Maybe we can convince Mich to come and have a girl's day :)

Running and living said...

Hurray for biking! I love clip in pedals! Be careful out there!