STP 2012 Special Report, Best and Worst
A little more than 48 hours after I rolled past the start line of the Group Health Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic 2012, I’m back in Seattle wishing I could figure out a way to make pizza without actually getting out of bed. If I sound like a lazy shit, it’s because 202 miles in two days is a lot for a guy who commutes 6 miles through the city and tosses in a non-spandexed leisurely distance ride on the weekends. Some guys do it in one day because they can’t stand seeing the Pacific Northwest’s most beautiful scenery at less than 35mph through “aero” sunglasses. I opted for the two day because I like beer, and my seersucker shirt causes nipple chaffing when I go faster than 30mph. Anyway, it’s not a ride for glory and heroism and all that. It’s supposed to be fun, but there were no shortage of guys and gals who treated it like a game of team suffering. With 10,000 riders, you get all types. Before I pass out again, here’s the Best and Worst of STP 2012.
Best: “Get on the sidewalk where you belong!” – the slovenly wretch driving a rusted-out Aries K, shouting to at least 500 riders crossing a bridge that didn’t even have a sidewalk.
Worst: “On your left!” – Everyone. I’m going to bring 10,000 copper bells next year and make them mandatory equipment for riders.
Best: Dead even tie between the girl with the super sheer shorts who had a Metroid tattoo on her ass, and me wearing the shortest shorts LL Bean makes, a seersucker shirt, and Sperry Topsiders on my feet.
Worst: Dead even tie between the guy wearing elastic ankle sweatpants, and anyone wearing “wacky” helmet embellishments.
Best: Super clean 80s Raleigh Portage, a 650b touring bike with a lugged steel frame and canti brakes. Hard not to look smug on a bike like that, but the guy pulled it off. Must have been at least a 66cm frame, which made it even cooler.
Honorable mentions: Merlin, Litespeed, Independent, Bridgestone, Rivendell, Dahon, Rodriguez, Davidson, Ritchey.
Worst: Some random Cervelo TT bike that looked like it couldn’t fit tires bigger than 19c and wasn’t doing its rider any favors over the rough streets.
Honorable mentions: single speeds, fixed gears, full suspension mountain bikes.
Bicycles (Avant Garde category)
Best: Tie between a unicycle with a 36” wheel (the guy actually finished, amazing), and a 4-person tandem that was hauling ass on the flats.
Worst: There are no losers in the avant garde category.
Best: Bacon Cheeseburger, fries, and 2 beers at O’Blarney’s Pub in Centralia.
Worst: Finding out that they ran out of brownies at the first rest stop, mere minutes before my brownie-loving self rolled up. Settled for a banana, but I ate it in anger.
Best: Hundreds of people cheering us along the ride, including a massive crowd at the finish with signs and everything.
Worst: There’s no way to look natural when farting on a bike.
Best: Rolling hills and pastures of Yelm with the sunlight peeping through the mist.
Worst: 50 miles of crappy shoulder along Highway 30 after we crossed the Lewis and Clark Bridge into Oregon.