last weekend's 18 miler, and this past week's inaugural mountain bike ride of '08, necessitated a visit to local bike and running stores, respectively.
store # 1: guys seem to enjoy bike shops the same way women (other women, not me) can rack up hours browsing and sniffing their way through a candle outlet. i personally find the latter nauseating to the point of migraine headaches, and the former so intimidating that i would rather get in, get out, and maybe no one will notice that i really don't know a bloody thing about tubes/cables/levers/chains/pokey things, and what they do on (or to) a bike. i think perhaps this may also be attributed to a former liaison with a pro cyclist- if he was versed in the ways of all things on 2 wheels, then by default i should be (the same silly cognition that my father's profession (dentist) qualifies me to identify a bicuspid or incisor at 30 paces). i left with lube (chain and skin chafe).
store # 2: the plan was get in ("size 6 brooks, please"), get out. the reality was; sit down, try on a shoe ("you've been wearing a size too big"), try on another shoe, talk with the owner (a transplanted brit) while he squeezed and poked my feet. i shared with him my frustration at the lack of black toenails (he offered to use the hammer they had back in the storage room "free of charge"). we bonded for about 20 minutes, about our peripatetic parallels to regions in the US, UK, south africa, and bahrain.
i got a hefty discount on the '08 shoes, and plenty of freebies: running socks, a singlet, and advice ("don't go running without a sports bra"). must have been the accent and the ovaries.
he did promise me that i will get black toenails-- and that they will fall out.