Friday, August 27, 2010

THE JERSEY IN ME - WAS I WRONG?

Normally my Tuesday and Thursday night runs provide me with a sense of relaxation and stress relief. Last night however, was the complete and total opposite.

I decided at the last minute to run to Rio High School instead of drive. It's only 3 miles to the school but it also was 95 degrees outside AND I had worked an 8 hour day (with minimal sleep the night before). Yet I had wanted to get some extra miles in since I have been some what slacking lately.

The run to Rio was fairly uneventful. I had one turkey crossing to deal with but otherwise no problems. My pace was around 8:30 because I wanted to get there fast so Pigeon wasn't waiting too long. As it turns out, I am not fast . . . she had been waiting 10 minutes. Ooops.

Without any chit chat involved we immediately headed for the bike trail. I was already out of breath and quite exhausted from my 3 mile run to get there. I realized not long after Pigeon and I started running, that my energy level was almost zero. Luckily I had some SCaps in my water bottle because I was getting mild chills from dehydration on the miles leading to our turn around spot.

Pigeon was feeling good or at least pretending to feel good because she stayed in front of me the entire way. About a half mile from our turn around spot I noticed two cyclists coming at us on the bike trail. The one closest to us was waving his hand in a sweeping motion and as he passed he said "off the pavement." What? Wait a minute, did he say what I think he just said? I immediately got in my defensive mode because annoying pompous cyclists are my BIGGEST pet peeve when running on the bike trail. I have a bike. I cycle and I know how to SHARE the bike trail with runners and cyclists alike. This gentleman apparently does not feel the need to share. I yelled back to him that I had a right to be on the pavement AND that he should not be riding shoulder to shoulder with another cyclist especially if he wants more space on the trail. That was it.

Pigeon and I made it to the turn around and sort laughed at what had just happened. She was sort of incredulous that he was actually sweeping us off the pavement. Normally, Pigeon runs on the dirt portion and I run on the pavement. She's training for a trail race and I am training for a road race. Even with me on the edge of the pavement, there is PLENTY of room for a cyclist to pass.

We turned around and headed back the way we came on the opposite side of the bike trail because if you're smart, you know that you always run against bike traffic and against car traffic.

While we were running, I was talking to Pigeon as usual, sharing with her some recently good news that I had learned when out of no where a cyclist, rather an "older" "larger" man on a bike came veering right at me! He was riding solo, not paired with anyone and yet swerved INTENTIONALLY at me, missing me by inches and ultimately shoving me into the dirt portion of the bike trail. He also said "off the trail!" or something along those lines.

Oh no he didn't!? Yes. He did. In a matter of nanoseconds I morphed into Jersey Trailmomma. Remember the old show the Incredible Hulk? Yeah, that was me but instead of transforming into a giant green monster, I transformed into a head bobbing, finger pointing, obscenity yelling Jersey Girl. I made the cast of the Jersey Shore look quaint. I dropped several curse words and called him a slew of names (most of which I have no idea what they even mean they just came flying outta my mouth). I was so angry tears came to my eyes. I yelled to him to come back! I yelled that I had every right to be on the pavement. I yelled that there is such thing as common courtesy sprinkled with a few F bombs and Mother F bombs etc etc. I am not proud of my instant potty mouth but at the same time, I was fed up. He was the straw that broke this Trailmomma's back!

The only thing amusing at this time was Pigeon's face. I think she was shocked to say the least and I knew she'd have my back should that aggro cyclist return. The only thing I am regretting at this moment though is that I didn't yell "COME BACK LANCE!" because obviously this tool thinks he is Lance Armstrong yet I know, being a Lance fan, that even Lance wouldn't shove a runner off the bike trail.

I ask you, readers, was I wrong? I know many of you run and cycle and so do I. I told Vans about the incident when I got home and it even angered him although his California back ground did not lend itself to as many curse words. Ah well, I'll be ready next time . . . I'll work on my come backs and my insults. Pigeon and I are running 20 out there this weekend, same course too so I am sure this won't be the last I hear from the cyclists.

I leave you with a peaceful image . . . not me yelling at a cyclist but of the Peanut reading Eat, Pray, Love to her mommy.

Let me read to you mommy!

See, no pictures!

Truly Sweet.

And of course . . . proof of my heritage! She has my spitfire that's for sure!

New Jersey!

7 comments:

  1. I love it! I think it's great that you yelled back! Just because you have equipment, doesn't mean you get all the space. Let's go back to Kindergarten and just share!

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  2. I laughed so hard reading this, and you know it hurts when I laugh! I don't think you were wrong, and yes I was shocked you transformed so quickly and right in front of my eyes. If we have any problems this weekend I will for sure have your back.

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  3. Hi, hope it's OK to contact you here. We would love to include your blog on our giveaway search engine: Giveaway Scout (http://www.giveawayscout.com). Have a look and if interested, use our online form to add your blog (http://www.giveawayscout.com/addblog/ ). thanks, Josh

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  4. As a retired State parks Person, I've got to say that bikers who think our multipurpose trails (formerly called "bike trails", which may be part of the problem) exist for them alone are an ongoing problem. Wheelchair users with limited mobility have occasionally had issues with rude bikers as well. Some parks have begun posting "Share the Road" reminders at trail entry point, but there are always a few ill-bred idiots out there. the budget situation hasn't helped with the new signage or, more importantly, the possibility of enforcement. I'm just glad you restrained yourself from trying to trip them up.

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  5. I would have lost it on them too! You sound just like me. Good thing those people aren't trying to share mountain bike trails with runners. I've never had a mountain biker get pissy with me on the mountain bike trails, always courteous, and those are some skinny trails. If they can't share a wide paved path with others then they are seriously lacking in skills and needed a good tongue lashing!

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  6. Diana: Thanks! Seriously, kindergarten is right!

    Pigeon: Thanks for having my back as always.

    Josh: I'll check out the site, thanks.

    Anonymous (although I have an idea who this is, wink wink): thanks for the validation! Yes, I like MULTIPURPOSE TRAILS much better then bike trail and may use that from time to time! ha

    AshleyR: Amazing how much nicer mountain bikers are right? I have a few run ins with some mountain bikers on those skinny trails and they have always been nice an apologetic. Cyclists unfortunately are not.

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  7. You were right to get Jersey on his ass. They had no right to be like that to you. I've become uber aware of runners, walkers and other cyclists around me since switching to cycling. Especially on a shared trail. They just need ot slow down a little bit when it's crowded, and be a little corteous. Obviously neither of those jagbags were going to do so. I even yell at other cyclists on the trail for being rude, no helmet(I become the helmet Nazi)or riding two abreast when passing oncoming cyclists or runners. It apparently takes a rocket scientist or a brain surgeon to figure out how to correctly utilize a shared path in California as well. Such a shame. Puts a sour taste in your mouth. FWIW, I don't think MTB bikers are any more nice/not than road cyclists, some still canbe jerks and think they own the single track.

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