|That's my brother. That looks like a booger.|
Riding in tights is probably one of the reasons my brother dropped the beer belly and is down to 150 pounds since he started riding last year, that and the fact that he’s oblivious to the weight of bike accessories. Attached to his bike is a headlight and battery, a steel attachment for a kiddie trailer, a heavy duty rear rack and saddle bag that feels so heavy I unzip it to make sure it’s not hiding an Easter ham. It’s not, but there’s enough tools in there rebuild Milwaukee’s Northern Suburbs should a tornado strike while riding. I tell him we won’t need the lights for our ride.
|4000+ Miles on Marin and Conti Race Kings|
The wired bike computer on his Marin 29er crested over 4000 miles in the past 14 months. He looks great, but being only my 2nd time seeing him since he took up cycling, I’m still not used to him looking as thin as me. I can feel the brotherly competition between our mileage and weight brewing. His Conti Race King tires are balding. His jawline is as sharp as a granite cornerstone. From his tightly cinched belt, he still hasn’t comes to grips that he can wear 32 inch jeans and Banana Republic size small fitted tee shirts. Either that, or he thinks his kids will have to skip dinner if he buys a good looking $14 T-shirt that fits. I figured 4000 miles of riding a 30 pound 29er in tights for more than a year proved a commitment to the sport worthy of some hand me downs from me, the older brother.
|Ohio's Serpent Mound|
I pulled out a plastic Kroger grocery bag and whumped it on my mother’s kitchen counter. His eyes lit up. “Bibs! Bro! No way!” He had no idea the Cyclo-Christmas I was about to drop on him. It wasn’t only bibs. It was two complete matching dark blue BioWheels team kits: bibs, jersey and a new-old pair of gloves. I explained the design wasn’t a sperm, but a depiction on Ohio’s famous Serpent Mound. He read the sponsor logos on the jersey pockets. I hadn’t worn the shorts in nearly 2 years. The stitching was frayed on one pair and the padded chamois on the other had lost a bit of loft, but to him they were his new bike shorts.
|Me and my Teammate/Brother Mike|
“Yeah!!!” The kitchen erupted in cheers from my wife, my mother and me. He looked sharp, like one of the guys on the team albeit a bit hairier. Now I found a tear tickling the corner of my eye. I’ve been racing bikes since the mid 90’s, and for the first time I was about to paceline with my brother. We threw our legs over our bikes and put in a solid 40 miles, my wife and I and our new teammate…Mike.