Another thing I stuffed in people’s mailboxes was my version of the Get to ASCO By Bike FAQ in the model of a Dear Abby column:
Gabby: When is this GABB thing?
Dear Inquiring Mind: This year it is Friday, May 19th, for the 8 o’clock people and Friday, June 23rd, for the 7 o’clock crowd. As in the past, we will leave from the driveway of Brian & Donna Bogardus’s home one hour subsequent to work starting.
Gabby: I live a long way from the there. Do I have to ride my bike all the way there, and then turn around and ride 6–1/2 more miles to work?
Dear Farout: No, your best bet is to toss the bike in the trunk and drive over to 778 Boardman Road. If you ride the extra miles you will burn enough calories to eat an extra doughnut guilt free upon arrival at ASCO, but you will probably be the subject of scorn and ridicule from the other riders. Jealousy is an ugly thing.
Gabby: What if I get to work and decide that 6–1/2 miles of bike riding is all any sane person should attempt in one day? How do I get home?
Dear One-way: We will have a Star Trek style transporter available to beam you and your bike back to Boardman Road. Technology is not cheap though. Even with the company subsidizing 50% of the cost, you will still need a cool half-a-million bucks to take advantage of this service. There is a cheaper solution though, bum a ride after work with a co-worker to Boardman Road where you get in your car, drive back to ASCO and get your bike. Or find someone with a pickup truck to take you and your bike back to the start. Or get to work and sell the bike to some sucker and use the money for cab fare.
Gabby: What clothes should I wear when riding the bike?
Dear Fashionable: Skin tight shiny lycra stuff is not needed, but the padding that comes with bike specific shorts will be entirely welcome on the ride home. Comfortable shorts and a T-shirt are just fine. The usual shoes, socks and skivvies are optional but would be a nice touch. I would love to see everyone wearing a bicycle helmet. But if you don’t have one and want one, no big deal, we’ve got a couple of extra 2 quart saucepans that can be duct taped to your noggin.
Gabby: Will I get all sweaty and stinky?
Dear Dainty: Yes, you will probably perspire a small amount. As for being stinky… Not really, unless you subscribe to the bathing once a month is enough theory and normal shower day is the 20th. Wait at least 15 minutes after you have arrived at work, this gives the body a chance to stop sweating, then wet one half of a hand towel and take it into a stall in the appropriate gender’s rest room and wipe down with the wet end and dry off with the other.
Gabby: Combining the above 2 questions I have concluded that I will have to spend my workday attired in sweaty shorts ensemble. Ewwww!
Dear Fashionably Dainty: You could buy a $35 rack for your bike and spend another $50 on fancy bike bags so that you could carry a change of clothing. Or you could tie your work pants and shirt to the seat tube and tape your tie and belt to the ends of the handlebars . Just bring your work clothes and/or lunch in a bag because we will have a vehicle to carry your stuff to the plant.
Gabby: You ride your bike to work all the time and I hear it takes you less than a half an hour to get there. With me being a novice at this cycling thing it will probably take me a lot longer. You’re not going to take off at the halfway mark and leave me cycling alone in an unfamiliar part of town are you?
Dear Neophyte: No, this is only an exhibition, not a competition, so please no wagering. We are doing this for the fun of it, so we will ride as slow as the slowest rider. But if you are so slow that it jeopardizes our arrival to ASCO on time you will be asked to grab hold of the bumper of a passing vehicle to help speed things along.
Gabby: As Templeton the Rat from Charlotte’s Web would say, What’s in it for me?
Dear Curious: Aside from the camaraderie of huffing and puffing up a hill with your fellow cyclists? For one the there is the 2 course breakfast (1. coffee 2. doughnuts.) For another you will get a spiffy T-shirt that can be worn with pride and not too much embarrassment. Most importantly you can recapture your long lost youth, the joy of traveling under your own power, the wind in your thinning hair, and the sound of baseball cards hitting the spokes.
Gabby: When will I get my GABB T-shirt?
Dear Anxious: The shirts will be passed out the morning of the ride. You can wear it while you bike ride to ASCO, or you could save it and wear it at work, or you could just hide it your closet if you don’t like the color purple.
Started down, went up, back down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/08: 232