It’s been like The Holidays around here lately. I’ve gotten package after package from some of my favorite retailers: Velo Orange, Rivendell, Pedro’s tools, Modern Bike.
All these shiny new toys serve a purpose, however: I’m finally ridding myself of the drop bars on my bike. I’m taking a stand, eschewing the peer and retail pressure to ride in an uncomfortable position to hold up the false pretense that I could, one fine day, try out for the Olympic team.
I’m switching to a swept-back “grandpa” bar. I can’t wait to finish it.
One thing is quite clear upon entering the football stadium at Wall High School for the first playoff game: This is no night to be outside watching football.
It is cold. Wintry cold. Bone-chilling cold. The air is sharp. It bites your nose and numbs your cheeks. Without a cloud in the sky, there’s no sign of it getting warmer, either.
The marching Spartans from Steinert High — tonight’s rivals — are warming up, as is the Spartan football team, with Wall on the other side of the field, running plays and trying to keep moving to gird against the chill. There’s a full moon above, and I wonder what that portends.
I make my way to the Snack Shack, where a crew of about a dozen inside is moving quickly across the tiny building, stocking shelves and cracking wise.
“It’s much warmer in here,’’ says Patti Bartsche, member of the Wall High School PTO-Booster Association, the volunteer group that runs the Snack Shack. “Come on in.’’
It’s a bit after 8 a.m. and there’s a crow cawing in my backyard. It’s sunny and already in the mid-50s, promising to hit around 70 today. It’s a nice, mild day. Some May days have that feeling of pleasant-ness, when the temperature and humidity collude to bring a day when both are easily ignored. Today is one such day.
By way of introduction, I guess I’ll start with some bonafides: I started writing for the web in 1994, when I was a student at San Francisco State University and email was not yet standard for students, let alone the rest of the world. I configured and used “Interslip” to connect my LC-era Macintosh to my brand-spanking new 14.4 baud modem. I ran several blogs before they were called blogs. They were just “Websites” back then.