Sunday, November 06, 2005

Who was that masked man?

Did you ever walk by someone and think, “Gosh! I know that person from somewhere, but I just can’t figure out where!” It’s happened to me a couple of times. And it’s always someone I’ve been riding with recently. Without the sunglasses and helmets, we hardly recognize each other!

Fritz, over on Cycle-licious, says he’s a One Man Crime Spree. His post provided the spark for this one.

I’ve been thinking about a piece of street theater – and no, it’s not the idea of issuing everyone on a group ride a toy Uzi submachine gun again – this is different.

We have ozone alerts here during the summer. Local residents are advised to limit driving, refrain from cutting the grass or weed eating, and otherwise reduce their usage of fossil fuels until the weather pattern changes. We get a ‘bubble’ of stagnant air that traps pollutants. Fortunately, Tulsa has remained in compliance.

Naturally, one of the recommendations is to use some form of public transportation, walk, or bicycle to work. You’d think that polluted air isn’t the best for a cyclist. So I started thinking about respirators.

I use a dual cartridge respirator at work for handling some paints and solvents. This one is designed to prevent inhalation of pesticides too, I think. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to wear one of these in traffic? Let’s see, helmet, respirator, and some of those goggle-type sunglasses, and I’d have a strong resemblance to Darth Vader! Now, if only I had a gravely voice like James Earl Jones, it would be perfect!

Once it gets truly cold here, I could wear a stretch balaclava or one of those neoprene facemasks instead of a respirator.

Think of the effect on motorists! Here’s a guy in the next lane crazy enough to ride in cold weather while looking like a neon version of a Star Wars storm trooper. Would you mess with him?

It would be difficult to drink from a water bottle or shoot snot rockets, but it might be worth it!

1 Comments:

Blogger Fritz said...

I was in the bike shop standing right next to some stranger while we waited in line. From the corner of my eye I saw the dude STARING at me. So I turned to look at the weirdo and that's when I finally recognized Brad, one of my regular Saturday riding partners that I've only known for two years or so.

I woulda felt bad, but he was starting at me because he couldn't figure out who I was either.

5:51 PM  

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