The Cat Days of Winter: That Anti-Frank Sinatra Wind

There is a saying that is, like most sayings, true most, but irritatingly not all, of the time. This one goes: “There is no bad weather, only bad clothing.” This saying is usually uttered in colder/wetter outdoors situations (hiking, biking, skiing, sitting in the outside bar at Marble Brewery) by those with better clothing than those to whom the phrase is uttered.

The relatively poorly equipped, in terms of outdoor couture, recipient of this saying is usually shivering when told, and/or has just complained about the weather in some fashion, a fashion almost always including cursing.

It’s a winter-time tradition this cursing and “weather/clothing” line.

Your humble blog poster very much subscribes to the weather/clothing maxim, and, while wishing to keep his cycle clothing expenditures at least somewhat reasonable, has the three bike jackets for different temperatures and moisture conditions, three balaclavas, lobster gloves, thermal socks, bike shoe “booties,” and various other accountrement of those willing to go out, at least when the temperature is 18-20 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer.

There is a personal exception to this temperature rule, however: wind.

Hence, after having averaged about 80 miles a week on the bike, most on weekends over the Climate Changed-induced warm winter, I finally broke down, for the first time this Winter, after trying the miserable wind yesterday:


By the way, yes, I know, the 1970s called and wants its carpet back.

Another part of my decision to breakdown and go “on-rollers” (I really don’t like them), is that we are now in that latter stage of Winter, what one might call “The Cat Days of Winter,” in contrast to “The Dog Days of Summer.” It was cold, at times, back in December and January, warmed abnormally for some of that time and increasingly this month, spoiling us immensely, then Winter crept back in, felinesque, on little wind feet that totally bug the hell out of me and many other bike riders.

A much, much more popular saying than “There is no bad weather, only bad clothing” in the cycling community, namely: “God, I @$%#^&* hate this ^*%$#@!$ wind!” Riders complain about hills, some much, much more than others, but wind is the true bête noire (along with certain motorists) of our little obsession.

Yesterday followed Saturday’s variant breeze with stiffer bluster and a lingering bone-chilling cold that left me finally getting out the damn rollers and motionlessly spinning while watching a Luis Luis Buñuel movie (“Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie”) and some “futbol” (Sevilla hosting Atlético…go Atleti!). Far from ideal, and far sweatier (as any Albuquerque cyclist on rollers can attest), but at least I was out of that #$%*&^% wind.

The Cat Days of Winter will be over soon, and eventually the winds of March will be replaced by the general meteorological monotony of an Albuquerque Spring and early Summer. I’ll probably be on rollers five, ten times tops over the next few weeks, happily packing the overly expensive rollers away for another year by mid-March or so.

Until then, I’ll be sweating all over that 1970s carpet. One more reason to FINALLY get rid of it. Indoor cycling does have one or two things going for it, I guess.



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