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By ad hoc (Mon Sep 18, 2006 at 10:54:03 AM EST) (all tags)
After a mixup (in my own mind) of the date of the ride, I went on the CRW ride yesterday. It was a day of wrong turns, at least to start.

The first was on the way to the starting line when I took the wrong fork in Concord, headed to West Concord. Now, this is one of my usual afternoon rides, so there’s really no excuse for turning the wrong way. Except it was awfully early in the morning. But it was apparent right away, so I did’t get much more than about 1/2 mile before I realized it.

I got up around 5:30 to get to the starting line by 9:30. Way too early. I was sitting around the house with nothing to do waiting for the sun to come up. I got out of the house around 6:20 when it finally got light. Got to the starting line around 8:15 or so (29 mi).

Foggy early morning on the Minuteman Bikeway

CRW, while they lay out some really nice rides, is not a group I could ever join. Every ride of theirs I’ve done has had some really mean, nasty people at the check in table. This one was no exception. I walked up to the table to register and was greeting with “Anyone who comes to the table with a bike will be shot. We were just talking about that.” Well, what a gracious, nice, good Sunday morning to you, too. And I would know you were just talking about that, how, exactly? Now, mind that I was the only person there. The 100 milers left at 8:00, and the 100k’ers wouldn’t leave until 9:30. I was the only one around. Now, had there been a line or a crowd, I wouldn’t have gone to the table with a bike. But to confront someone like that really takes the shine off the day. So I said, “fine, I’ll go home,” and turned to leave. “No, don’t leave,” she commanded, “since you’re the only one here we’ll let you register.” Gee, thanks. And she started mumbling something under her breath, so I asked “do you want my money or not?” She said yes. I signed the waver and walked away, with her still lecturing on about something.

I got my little green wristband thing that would let me eat at the rest stops, ate a bagel and banana, hit the outhouse, and decided to leave. This ride usually has a mass start with someone lecturing on the rules of the road, which I’ve heard many, many times before. But that was about 45 minutes away, and as I was already warmed up, I didn’t feel like sticking around, so I started.

And promptly missed about three turns. This is a well-marked route, so it was obvious pretty early on that I’d missed the turns, but it did add about 5 miles to the overall trip, and right at the beginning so that it was hard to tell where I was on the cue sheet for the rest of the day.

But it was a nice ride, and a really, really nice day. It started out pretty cool, but turned into an almost summery day. It was a little longer day than I expected (125 miles total), but I felt good through it.

I had more chain trouble! WTF?!?! It started ticking around the 15 mile mark, so I stopped and worked the chain around a bit and didn’t have any more trouble until he way home when it froze up. It froze up, of course, about one mile past the train station. I got it freed up and it worked for another ten miles. It jammed up again on the Esplanade, but some tripple shifting seemed to get it back into shape, getting me home.

This is really disturbing. This time I even spotted some metal filings! Where are those coming from? I guess my only choice now is another new chain. I guess SRAM is my last choice.

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Mean People by Weapon of Pack Destruction (4.00 / 2) #1 Mon Sep 18, 2006 at 11:45:32 PM EST
I've seen a few assholes at race registration, but they're usually the racers.  "Fine - I'll leave then" - you handled that perfectly. 

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