The weather this year has been kind of fucked. Still raining into June, and the conditions are unique because of it. Saturday we rode the Santa Cruz hills. Coach Road was like I’ve never seen it before. One of the neat things about Stage and Coach Roads (same road, different parts) is that you can see through a lot of the corners, as instead of hillsides and redwoods, you get these valley fields of low, brown grass to look through. The road is wide and undivided, but somewhat bumpy, if you have shit sportbike suspension. Perfect on the dualies. Anyway, point is, normally, this is a brownish grassy affair, but because of the weird rain this year, the grass was GREEN and like 10 feet tall, and there were wildflowers everywhere. Fucking gorgeous!
Saturday ride, very good. Must get out on the roads more. Really, no fucking around. Oh, and I have gotten so pathetically slow. Even YOU could keep up. Yeah, you.
Sunday was a mixed bag. My tolerance for the ride portion of the day drops a little every year, and I think I’m done. On the one hand, I insisted on going because I love to see everyone, before the ride, in Port Costa, and then at the party, but now I know I can’t tolerate the bullshit ride in between. So as we started going up the hill and I saw the Biker Boyz bullshit happening around me, I gave up: Slow down, put my hand in my lap, follow a minivan up the hill. Why on earth I had to witness some fuckup on a sportbike passing a car in a hairpin WITH A PASSENGER, to race to the next waiting point, I have no fucking clue. You, sir, are a dumbass. And your girlfriend is an idiot to ride with you. Multiply this by however many riders there were. Yeah, here’s a news bulletin:
1.) Riding in the Oakland hills sucks even on a good day. Too many cars and bicycles, and hardly any road anyway.
2.) The Port Costa run is like thirty miles (Or less?) with a lot of stopping and waiting in between to get the stragglers.
3.) The route NEVER changes.
4.) The cops know this, and are EVERYWHERE. (remember the year they followed us with helicopters?)
5.) Please advise what the hell you are racing for?
Paul and I decided at the gas stop (every year’s first stop. Again, did you all not know we were going to go for a ride?) that we would just take off and go straight to Port Costa, but unfortunately, a bunch of people followed us. I actually suggested ducking into Safeway, but it seemed silly. By the time we got into the lower part of the hills, it was boy racer dumbass time all around, and of course there were already cops waiting for the arrivers at the wall. That’s fine by me, as I do not need to ride like a dumbass to have a good time, particularly on the silliest ride of the year. Paul and I took off without pause at the wall, and had ourselves a nice, leisurely ride out to Port Costa. Not speeding. (Surprise, surprise: cops everywhere!) How many of the other riders saw the wildflowers and turkey vultures and goats and squirrels and tractors with kids and dogs in them? Not as many as saw their names written on speeding tickets.
Port Costa was fun, though, and we took off back through the hills (not freeway), pulling into a dirt turnoff to explore some crap just off the road. Beautiful vistas of the reservoir and valley. More squids getting tickets. (what, you were surprised to see cops?!?!)
The party was moved, sadly off the street, but still a good time. Many of the old faces never showed, and that was a bummer. I got silly on a little beer, on account of no food, and then punchy, and then tired, and then decided to take off.
The moral? I gotta start picking my battles more carefully. I know I hate riding with squidiots, and next time, we'll bypass the gas stop and the wall. I'll see you all in Oakland and Port Costa.
More ideas on how to make things fun, lest it just gets tired.
More quality time with quality people. If the danger and fun stupid shit are over, that's fine, but being left with quiet company means the quality counts a lot more.
Seeing the same people once a year makes it real clear to me who's moving and who's not. I've known so many of these people for years and years, and although I was never part of the tight-knit family part, I can see very clearly that I don’t want to fit in too much.
-If you’re talking to me about too much drama, I am delightfully clueless. I’m not even fed up with your “drama,” I just don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about! Fabulous!
-If your answer to “what’s new” is still “same old,” every year, what the hell is wrong with you?!?! You’re not getting any younger! Worse, though, is the visible downward spiral I see on some people.
-Overhearing someone talk about herself and “all the other girls in the scene,” makes me want to start slapping people. Wake up! THERE IS NO SCENE. We are all adults, with lives to make and enjoy, and growth to push for and foster, in ourselves and those around us.
Fortunately, several old friends I talked to were full of exciting news: trips to Baja, bikes back on the road, adventures on and off road, jobs, travel… LIFE. Everyone else: it's time, you are of age, make it happen.
Reading this makes me so happy I missed the ride for the first time since before 2000 to sing my very first paid role.
Posted by Marisa on Monday, June 06, 2005 at 9:19 PM