Monday, January 21, 2008

Hairy Legs And All

Winter is a time for many things: time to bundle up, re-organize your CD collection, get used to leaving the message "I've got what's going around" in your best sicky voice on your boss's voicemail, queue up some NetFlix movies, mend worn gear, eat high fat foods, drink beer (duh) and let hair grow in uncustomary places.

This little art piece makes me think of washed up Euro trash superstars. The kind you see photos of 20 years after their retirements, wearing tight polo shirts pulled over prosperous bellies. Guys who were emaciated, sinewy with eyes bulging, rocking their classic steel machines over obscure passes high in the Alps in some black and white photo from the heyday. Now they're living large and chasing a tan along with young Adriatic women on free-for-all Italian beaches.

My tires got a little taste of snow again today. The forecast was subtle and, well, sort of missed the mark entirely. A light dusting of flakes pelted me on the way in. It was peacefully sublime. It really started snowing while I was at work. It basically didn't let up all day. It wasn't heavy, but it also stayed cold. We ended up with a couple of inches of snow that had very little "bite." Lots of fun wheel play was had in the mashed down ruts from cars. That was all well and good, but for some reason I took a detour down a street I don't normally pedal on the way home. It had some fantastic solid ice humps along the edges. I moved right to avoid a car into what I thought was beautiful, undisturbed snow. Well, it was undisturbed snow -- covering a very disturbing hunk of tractionless ice. Another sort of "bite" was experienced, the bite of my body hitting the pavement-reinforced ice. The driver I'd generously moved out of the way for had the decency not to stop and inquire about my ignominious agony; he simply kept driving as I pried my body and bike off the street. How thoughtful.

A last feature in this grab bag of tricks is a nice photo from prayers for the deceased yesterday at our Buddhist center. Prayers for the dead are intended to help departed ones have a favorable rebirth and are a nice way to stay in touch with the ever-looming presence of death. The cards have names of friends and loved ones printed on them. This year we added one for Rachel Dow. You never know where you might meet departed friends again. But it's nice to think that place will be a happy one, both for their sake and yours.

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