Okay -- mirror. Time to stop feeling like I'm about to be run over. Position, position, position. Okay, that'll pretty much work. Adhere to helmet. Wait, wait, wait...
Leg straps: check. Helmet: check. Bike -- not so check. Get down to the curb, tires go *squidge*. I'm fairly sure that "*squidge*" is not an appropriate tire noise, even for these newfangled ones. Press -- yep, flat, or at least a fair approximation thereof. Ah, there's something I didn't think to buy yet: a tire pump.
Shop, shop, oh shop. Along the way, stop at the bike shop. Spoiled for choice. There are Big Beefy Pumps That Look Like TNT Detonators. There are Elegant Cylindrical Pumps That Don't Have Pressure Gauges. Oh, look -- there are Precious Little Pumps That Fit in a Drawer. And here's a Precious Little Pump That Fits In a Drawer And Has a Precious Little Pressure Gauge! Perfect!
Dateline: Today. Our intrepid hero decides to try that again.
Okay, lessee. Attach pump handle: check. Slip Presta connector over Presta valve: check. Turn handle to lock: check. Pump -- hiss. Pump -- hiss. Pump -- hiss. Hmm.
Disassemble pump. Examine newfangled Presta valve. Reattach. Pump -- hiss. Try pressing a little harder. Hissss! Remaining air and tire decide upon an amicable divorce. Grr. Pump, hiss, pump, hiss, pump, hiss. Oh, Precious Little Pump That Fits in a Drawer And Has a Precious Little Pressure Gauge, why do you plague me so? Back to the store we shall go!
Shopping redux. Okay, time to go with first instincts: a Big Beefy Pump That Looks Like a TNT Detonator. Let's bring that home.
Instructions: ah, you're supposed to remove the cute little metal thingy on the newfangled Presta valve! Wouldv'e been nice if the other instructions had seen fit to mention that point. Attach, lock. Look at tire to find correct pressure. 115 PSI!?! Holy mother of God! That's... that's... that's 7.82528585 atmospheres! (Thank you, Google.) Okay, the Big Beefy Pump That Looks Like a TNT Detonator is seeming like a better and better idea. Pump: 30 PSI. Pump: 50. 70. 80. 90, 95, 100, 105, 107, 110, 112, 114, 115. Unlock, remove before losing all that precious air, replace cute little metal thingy on the newfangled Presta valve, replace the valve cap. Feel: no give at all. Much more like it.
Pedal, pedal, pedal. Mirror: check. Jiggles a whole heckuva lot as I'm riding, but all I have to do is tilt my head slightly and I can see what's behind me. Lovely: the odds of imminent road pizzatude decrease greatly. MacArthur School: well and truly demised. Oh, well -- at least we got one event there before they tore it down.
Result of ride: not bad. ~6 miles is starting to feel pretty short: I think I need to come up with a new route. Even the hills aren't straining me as badly as they were. And I made it up Trimount Ave, all the way home, for the first time ever! I rock! Okay, time for water and an LJ entry.
And so we stop, before this article becomes dangerously recursive...