It started as a friendly-enough idea. What if a couple of guys who blog — one writes about heady programming topics, one writes about being fat — and ride bikes got together and co-announced they’d be doing a ride that Saturday? Well, why not?
But then I told Raymond Chen – who rides during the moments he’s not busy being a beloved programming guru — about the ride. He’s in.
And then I told my boss’s boss about the idea, and he’s in.
This has stopped being about being a fun Saturday ride. This is now about me showing that there’s more to me than being a fat jokey dork with an IQ about the square root of any of these other guys’. This is about me showing, in fact, that I am a fat jokey dork with an IQ about the square root of these guys’ who can climb.
I hereby proclaim: I am going to try to be the first to the top. I will go at 100%, full-tilt, in the red, up the Zoo climb. If you want to say you beat the Fat Cyclist, you will have to earn it.
And then we’ll eat some cake and do some more sociable-like riding for another couple hours.
Here is how I will win the climb tomorrow:
- I will trash talk. I will use psychological warfare to demoralize my opponents. I will use unfair comparisons. I will criticize their choice of equipment. I will use ad-hominem attacks. I will use sarcasm, if I deem it necessary. Except for my boss’s boss, whom I will shamelessly brown-nose.
- I will use diversionary tactics. I intend to get Eric and Raymond engaged in a very demanding, intellectual conversation. I will do this by posing an intriguing programming dilemma. (Please, somebody, feed me an intriguing programming dilemma, ASAP.) While they are huffing and puffing and trying to solve this gordian knot, I shall quietly ride on ahead.
- I will pay other people to interfere with my boss’s boss. I know I can’t directly interfere with him, and I furthermore know that he’s a competitive cyclist with some serious climbing cred, so I will ask (bribe) Mo Lettvin to feign a seizure or other emergency. While my boss’s boss is attending, I will ride quietly on ahead. (UPDATE: Mo’s begged out of the ride. Maybe I can get my riding buddy Nick to cover body-checking duties.)
When That Fails…
Chances are, even with this clever multi-pronged approach to winning, I will lose. In that case, I will casually suggest to anyone who beats me up the hill that it would be very embarassing to boast about beating someone who calls himself "The Fat Cyclist" up a long climb. "Who would be impressed with such a claim?" I will ask, using the "voice of reason" I perfected years ago — my primary asset, really, in the absence of any genuine skills.
And if that doesn’t work, I will tell them that if they reveal I lost to anyone, they can’t have a piece of the Best Cake in the World. And if that fails, I’ll just lie and tell whatever story I want in this blog anyway, just like I always do.
I’ve got this thing sewn up, I tell you.
Come Join the Fun
(or what passes for fun in these parts)
If you’re in the Seattle-ish area and have a bike, why don’t you join us? I’ll tell you why you won’t. It’s because you’re chicken. There, now I’m using peer pressure on you. You’ll find a map of how to get there here. 2:30PM, tomorrow, September 24, 2005.
I will be the one wearing the Reeses Peanut Butter Cup jersey, and acting like a fun little group ride is actually a Very Important Race.
Today’s weight: 161.6