Pimp my ride

11 05 2010

I happen to like white handlebar tape. Granted, it’s not the most practical or durable choice. But it looks classy, professional.

Alas, white bar tape doesn’t stay white for very long. And without the budget or a full-time mechanic of a pro team to swap my tape out after every ride, I’m resigned to enjoying my white handlebar bling for only a few rides before it starts looking grey.

Then it ‘s back to the shop to get a more practical choice, like blue, or lately, orange.

Back in the 80s, I used to enjoy those mottled color mash-ups, but they’ve fallen out of favor. And whatever became of those streamers you could have flying from the plugs in the bar ends? Oh yeah, those were on my CCM Mustang when I was 12. Wrapping the bi-colored spools requires too much precision. So it’s solid all the way.

Fortunately, I’ve gotten more proficient at wrapping the bars over the years, so swapping out the tape no longer intimidates me. And it’s a nice, inexpensive way to get that “new bike” feel without the hit to the bank account.

White bar tape: it's not very practical, but it looks fast, even standing still.

The weather seems to be taking a turn for the better, so I was able to kit up and head out right after dinner tonight. I may have been a little too ambitious for the length of daylight though, as it got pretty gloomy through the last few kilometers of my 58.77 km jaunt. No light on my Orbea, but my orange Euskaltel jersey is as bright as any headlight anyway.

On the way out, a car pulled alongside at a light; “I guess you don’t like hockey,” said the driver to me, apparently aghast that I’d chose a ride over sitting on the couch watching the hometown Vancouver Canucks squander their Stanley Cup delusions once again.

But that’s why God, and Gary Betteman, invented triple overtime (although the latter would like to think he and the former are interchangeable). Chances are the best part of the game wouldn’t be played until I got home.

Well, the lack of blaring car horns and whooping people during the course of my ride pretty much told me all I needed to know about the game; they got blown out again. I turned on the tv just in time to see half the arena empty out, while the other half turned away from the carnage on the ice to gawk at some sort of fracas in the stands. Guess I didn’t miss much after all.