L’enfer du Bethesda

I have all these great plans for future blog posts, but somehow they never come to fruition. Part of that is due to my laziness, part of that is due to the time I spend every day vacuuming small plastic objects from under the refrigerator and stove, and part of that is due to the hours I spend on my bike, training for the century that Mama damned committed us to riding–enough hours that I feel that I must have embossed the stitches in my leather saddle into the skin of my ass.

Today, we squandered the blessing of a friend who was willing to babysit for four hours in return only for sourdough waffles and the use of our washer and dryer by venturing into the sticky heat for a bike ride to Bethesda. For those of you keeping score at home, that’s 36 miles, which is something that Mama is deservedly impressed by. That might be the longest ride she’s ever taken, and it’s a third of our eventual goal. Going by the rule that you can complete a one-day ride that’s up to twice as long as your longest training ride, that puts us pretty close to being sure we can finish the century. On the other hand, in those four hours, we could have watched two full movies, or watched a whole baseball game, or slept, or gotten that one last magnet out from under the fridge coils . . .

But, despite all of the woulda-coulda-shouldas, and despite the stickiness, which made walking outside feel like walking into a dog’s mouth, the ride was lovely. Unlike yesterday, when we took separate training rides, we remembered to drink and eat enough, we had each other for company, and we were able to stop at the Dunkin’ Donuts in Bethesda–just about right across from the other candy shop, the Apple store–for muffins and iced coffee.

For those of you who have never been to Bethesda or the surrounding Montgomery County before, I think that this litter sign says it all–how they must suffer, the hell they endure, not only separating glass from plastic, but pretty trash from ugly trash. However, they do pay people to take care of the pretty trash, but all that ugly trash will have to fend for itself, preferably in someone else’s jurisdiction:
Although, seriously, I thought “take care of the pretty trash” was a euphemism for “sent her to rehab in Malibu.”

Maybe next weekend we’ll ride up there again and see if we can find one of these starlet rehab resorts in Bethesda . . . and see if they’ll take our load of (slightly dusty) recovered refrigerator magnet toys.

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  • I know a way to cut it 18 miles…call me instead and I’ll drive your silly asses home from Bethesda.

    You two are crazy, but damn inspirational.

  • That sign is hilarious. And congrats to you and Mama!

  • I am impressed that you are working so hard to train. I keep saying how I don’t really mind the summer weather here, but then I realize that if I’m outside I’m:
    1) heading directly toward either my air conditioned home, an air conditioned store, or my air conditioned car, or
    2) sitting in a lawn chair reading a novel while the kids play in the yard.
    Hence, my kudos to you.

  • Steve: We’re only inspirational from a distance, where you can’t smell us.

    SJC: It was a great sign. Designed for camera phone toting cyclists, methinks.

    Henitsirk: What I don’t understand is why reasonable Europeans ever stayed settled here after their first full cycle of seasons. Then again, maybe that’s what drove everyone west–let’s go somewhere to get the hell outta here!

  • “take care of the pretty trash” was a euphemism for “sent her to rehab in Malibu.”

    …that’s funny.