I don't have anything particularly important or exciting today (not that I ever have anything important to say), but Tuckerman's bored at home with two broken heels and the shop hasn't had a customer walk through the doors in over 2 hours.
Two broken heels, you say? How can that be? Well, maybe you should ask the invalid himself for the full story, but the abridged version involves: 1 late night, 1 tall concrete ledge, the desire to scare some friends and an undetermined amount of alcohol. The end result being a pair of hideous black and pink casts and Tuckerman being incapable of leaving his apartment without someone else opening the elevator door. This gives me semi-hilarious visions of my friend sitting in a rolling desk chair, holding his heels off the ground, doodling on his iPhone, waiting for some good samaritan to open the door and maybe roll him down to the coffee shop. Anyway. This one's for you buddy.
Recently the US Collegiate National Track Championships rolled into town. This to many collegiate racers is the Rose Bowl of turning left over and over again in skinny pants. The non-cycling world regards it somewhere on the level of the World Championships of Short Haired Kitten Wrestling, and the bike shop world thinks of it as a rough storm that must be weathered. Ten days of confused collegiate racers wondering why we don't have square-tapered italian-threaded Campy bottom brackets or requesting things like 15 matching aero helmets (and immediately following with questions about our return policy). No, these helmets are not prom dresses.
So we stock up on chainrings, chains, tools, cogs, all that crap that Aaron and I will probably buy anyway and hope for the best. The racing goes by smoothly, and it becomes pretty clear from the stands that this race is many of these riders' first time on the track.
One rider who's been on the track more than once is Aaron Kacala, who is racing for University of Colorado, although you wouldn't know it by the blank grey t-shirt he raced in. Aaron is awarded the Ride of The Year by virtue of a 4-up match sprint which was the most entertaining of the night by far. Aaron has been overloaded with school and work lately, so his training has been less than stellar. Read: he's ridden his bike to work a few times. Knowing this, The Big Gorilla decides to try and win by virtue of intimidation and control. If a rider tried to go over the top, he quickly found himself heading toward the rail so fast a parachute would be the only thing to save him. If a rider tried to go underneath, he would be immediately sandwiched between a slab of concrete and a big hairy ape in a gray t-shirt. I've seen a lot of match sprints, but until this day I've never seen someone travel farther laterally than they did forward. The officials were so overwhelmed that they stopped all the riders with one lap to go, removed the offensive simian Kacala from the track and restarted without him. Hilarious. So funny. Made me shoot beer out of my nose.
1 year ago