Horrible Things Are Happening Beneath My Helmet

07.5.2011 | 12:24 pm

This is a photo of me, wearing a helmet:


There are several notable things about this helmet. First, it seems to have taken its design cues from a bowling ball; it even has finger holes so — if you are so inclined and sufficiently strong — you can roll me down the alley. Sure, it would be humiliating for me, but hilariously so.

Next, this helmet is so heavy that, even though I am trying to hide it with a sardonic half-smirk, my head is lolling to one side.

Ventilation’s a problem, too. Specifically, there is none. No, wait, that’s not exactly true. There are those two holes, which set me up for a really awesome sunburn pattern on my forehead:


Looks like I’ve just recently filed my horns off or something.

OK, now here I am, wearing a different helmet:


Obviously, I don’t have the same ventilation issues with this helmet. I mean, you can pretty much see my whole head in this photo. And while such a helmet will definitely leave an interesting pattern on my head, it’s sufficiently complex that I won’t even bother trying to Photoshop it.

Also, this helmet weighs a lot less. In fact, when I wear it, I think my head weighs the same as it would if I still had hair. There’s no easy way to verify this fact of course, because the weight of hair varies quite a lot from person to person, what with different lengths, coarseness, thickness, and population density of hair.

Let’s just say this helmet weighs less than my hair did when I was going through my Bon Jovi phase, and move on, because this really has nothing to do with the point I wanted to make in this post, which is this: highly-ventilated helmets have a very, very serious problem, especially for those of us of the bald / balding persuasion:


Oh the Horror

I could simply describe, in clinical detail and with very exacting precision, from a non-involved third-person point of view, the trauma I have suffered due to insects flying into my helmet vents.

That would not, alas, convey the raw, freakish grossness of the bug-in-helmet experience.

Thus, what follows is a verbatim inner monologue I have conducted on a ride, shortly before and then during a typical bug-helmet encounter. All in italics, of course, because that way you can tell that the whole thing happened in my head.

Wow, that was a hard climb. I wonder if I beat my record. Oh. Nope. Oh well, I think I’ll just call it a “nice, easy climb” when I blog about it later, then.

OK, I’m picking up speed now. I bet I’m going 45 miles per hour by now. Should I risk taking a look at my bike computer to see how fast I’m going? I wonder how many cyclists have crashed because they were looking at their bike computer instead of where they were going? That would be an interesting statistic, especially if there were a way to compare reported wrecks due to looking at bike computers Vs. wrecks due to looking at bike computers where the rider claimed it was due to something else. I’ll bet there’s a blog post there somewhere.

I’m going to look.

What? Only 35 miles per hour? Seems like faster. I should write a blog post on how bike computers tend to under-report speed as you approach the speed of light / sound / Summer Equinox.


What was that? Did a bat just hit me in the helmet? Maybe a bird? OK, maybe it was a Japanese beetle. Well, it felt like a Japanese beetle.

Oh no. It’s still on my head. I can feel it crawling around on my head.

A wasp. I’ll bet anything it was a wasp. It’s going to sting me and the pain is going to be so intense and sudden that I’m going to wreck.

And then my head is going to swell up so big that the EMTs won’t be able to remove the helmet from my head.

OK, it hasn’t stung me. Not yet, anyway.

Oh great. Now it’s walking around. This killer wasp is walking around on my head and it’s looking for the most painful place imaginable to sting me.

No sting yet. Still walking around. I’d almost it rather go ahead and sting me already and get it over with.

I didn’t mean that, wasp. Please know that I didn’t mean that. I don’t want to get stung.

But why is it still walking around? Is it moving in some kind of freakish dance? Is the evil killer wasp on my head doing some kind of mate-attracting dance on my head? Fantastic, now my head’s a singles’ bar for wasps. Or whatever they are.

Maybe it’s not going to sting me. It’s been on my head long enough that I don’t think it’s going to sting me. So why is it still there? Is my head a comfortable place for bugs to hang out? Has it decided to take up residence? Is it about to lay eggs?

No. No no no no nonononono. That’s too awful to contemplate. I will now drive that thought completely out of my head. I will think of something else. That thought is gone.

It’s not gone.

The freakish little insect on my head is — at this moment — burying eggs right in my skull. Like in Alien, but smaller.

Wait a second. I don’t feel the insect anymore. It’s gone. I don’t know when it left, but it’s not there. What a relief.

Ow! What was that?


  1. Comment by Chris | 07.5.2011 | 12:33 pm

    Your thumbnails are missing http://cdn.fatcyclist.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/IMG_3065-tm.jpg But I fogive you because you’re such a famous blogger that you have your own CDN!

  2. Comment by Chris | 07.5.2011 | 12:34 pm

    Never mind the thumbnails are there now.

  3. Comment by Nogocyclist | 07.5.2011 | 12:36 pm

    Had a wasp get in my jersey through the collar and sting me in the elbow, so it happens. The only bad thing that has happened to me when a wasp got in a helmet vent is my fault. When the wasp landed up there, I ripped the helmet off so fast my shades went skipping across the pavement. Of course it scratched it where you would see it all the time.

  4. Comment by Liz | 07.5.2011 | 12:55 pm

    Oh, my. Of all the cycling related mishaps, I had not considered this possibility. Thanks, I think.

    (I should point out I do have hair, but the idea of wasps crawling through my hair is no more comforting.)

  5. Comment by Phill | 07.5.2011 | 1:05 pm

    Being folically challenged like yourself, I can complete relate to this horror story. You didn’t mention the skidding to a halt to quickly take your helmet off only to find that the killer hornet that felt like a cricket bat to the head was in fact only a small fly. And I agree I’ve had the thoughts about flies drilling into my head to lay their eggs.

    I’d be interested to know if anyone has solved the problem. I’ve thought about using one of my wife’s old stockings but the opportunity for P.ss taking outweighs the benefits.

  6. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.5.2011 | 1:12 pm

    While the conversation in your head is what we expect of you, the “…my Bon Jovi phase” is not and requires expansion. Is there a picture in your Mother’s collection? Would she share? Pleeeeease.

  7. Comment by GenghisKhan | 07.5.2011 | 1:42 pm

    Hey, you just need a new helmet: http://www.alpina-sports.com/Tec-en/articles/air-flow-vents-fly-net-en.html

    Or, even better, this, but perhaps modified a bit:


  8. Comment by franky | 07.5.2011 | 1:45 pm

    I can relate, but in a with-hair kind of way: I felt a little bump and afterward a slight tickle when its tiny claws went through my hair, it felt HUGE and drove me crazy, I couldn’t wait to find a place to stop and rip that helmet from my head to find … nothing. I still wonder what crawled around up there…

  9. Comment by Mike@Squirrelhead | 07.5.2011 | 1:51 pm

    This post had me cracking up at my desk. It reminded me of the crazy things that go on in my head as I ride.
    I am very excited about this weekend. Sadly I don’t land in Sacramento until 10:30pm Friday night which means I miss the awesome Bicycle Hall of Fame night. I have tried everything to adjust my flight without being robbed by the airlines. Fail on my part for not coming in Thursday. I will take it as a learning experience. Hopefully Team Fatty will do some hanging out on Saturday.

  10. Comment by AngieG | 07.5.2011 | 1:56 pm

    I can also relate, however a little lower on the body. I had a bee hit my face and land in my sports bra (yep my jersey was partially unzipped). I looked down and there he was doing his little pre-emptize “I’m going to sting you” bee dance.

    I did crash however slowly when I braked hard and was so focused trying to grab his little wings that I forgot to unclip. I landed upside down in a ditch still clipped into the pedals.

    The upside down helped the little booger slide right out of my bra and onto the ground. Both of us survived relatively unscathed. Unfortunately after the releif wore off I began to laugh hysterically at the site I must have made. I am much more cautious regarding the position of my jersey zipper. :-)

  11. Comment by Turn The Damn Cranks | 07.5.2011 | 2:01 pm

    Too funny. Just had this “pleasure” about two or three weeks ago, during a very casual evening ride, about 15 miles. The sole purpose was to check out my new Garmin. It worked out great, but the bugs hit just as dusk did. The little ones bouncing off my face were annoying, but not as bad as the webs that kept sticking to my face (sorry inchworms!). Then came the “highlight” of my buggy ride: at about the halway point, I felt a bump in a helmet vent and then extreme pain on my bald noggin; ripped off my helmet and found a small bump. No big deal, right? Well, I was kind of woozy the rest of the way, got home and was told by my wife that half my head was swollen. Took about two days for the itch to go away.

    Lesson? Ride during the day. Ride at night. Don’t ride at dusk!

  12. Comment by Turn The Damn Cranks | 07.5.2011 | 2:02 pm


    I might need me one or both of those!

  13. Comment by Brandon | 07.5.2011 | 2:14 pm

    I’ve found that insects only strike me in the head when I am not wearing my glasses. And by strike me in the head, I mean, fly directly into my eye.

  14. Comment by Paul Guyot | 07.5.2011 | 2:24 pm

    It only took one bug landing in my helmet and then searching for a place to deposit eggs, to get to make the decision to:

    Never ride without something under my helmet. A skullcap, a cycling cap, whatever, even in Arizona heat or St. Louis humidity, I always wear something under.

    Of course, this does nothing for my problem of bugs flying into my mouth when I’m gasping for breath on a ride.

  15. Comment by Dave T | 07.5.2011 | 2:29 pm

    I have encountered a few bugs stuck in the helmet no deadly egg laying wasps though. They usually work their way out quickly. Once I had a bee in my helmet and had to make an emergency stop and rip my helmet off to let it escape.
    You could build a protective shell that you wear under your helmet like this one, http://www.stopabductions.com/
    Could serve two important functions.

  16. Comment by Arizona Guy | 07.5.2011 | 2:33 pm

    And the vents don’t even eliminate this. Two weeks ago I was at the Eagleman triathlon in MD. I was of course fully geeked out with an almost ventless aero helmet hammering along at a high rate of speed.

    I pulled out to pass a little old lady I’d been chasing for about a half-hour, and pulled right into and nasty stinging (something). He got caught under the front edge of my helmet AND HAD NO PLACE TO GO! He buzzed around for a second or two and stung me just before I smashed him to goo by hitting myself in the head. This was all accompanied by very manly yelling that only once or twice went into falsetto shrieks.

    Mind you I’m still going 30 miles an hour, or 20, or at least close to 20. The nice lady I’d just passed asked if I was OK and I grumbled something about racing in a swamp… I thought about pulling over to ‘have a moment’ but it was hot and I just wanted to get it over with, so I kept going.

    My finishing photo (sans cap) shows a nice red circle on my forehead just like 1/2 your filed horn shot at the top.

  17. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.5.2011 | 2:34 pm

    I can relate to the gasping for breath and sampling dinner. They always seem to get caught at the back of my throat. I believe Fatty has solved this problem by packing ‘fry sauce’ on his rides. I wonder if he’ll bring some to Davis?

    I’m sure they’ll be some tech savy folks Friday night (that’s not me). Maybe we can get them to upload pics in real time on Fatty’s site for our far flung contingent to view. ?tech savy folks; we can do that, right? (i’m just an idea guy)

  18. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.5.2011 | 2:42 pm

    Your link is invaluable! It truly and concisely shows how the Internet better serves the world. Without it, only a small group of people in s.w. New Mexico, or remote Nevada would have this information. Thank you for sharing….do you think it would work in Black and Orange…..?

  19. Comment by LucyBP | 07.5.2011 | 3:02 pm

    my helmet has little netting across the vents… only the vents in the front of the helmet actually (which is I guess where the egg-laying peripatetic wasps are most likely to enter).

    I always assumed this was because it is a women’s helmet and it’s purpose was to prevent little wisps of hair from working their way out of the helmet to flap in the breeze.. cause that would look silly. but maybe a bug-catcher makes more sense!

  20. Comment by rokrider | 07.5.2011 | 3:09 pm

    I solved this problem by lining my helmet with a fine wire mesh, and connecting it to my bike light battery. It’s kind of like wearing your very own, personal “bug zapper”. It works great! If you can get past that nasty sizzling sound when they hit. And that awful smell of burning bug. Okay, I also have to admit the shock does kind of hurt a little whenever it start to rain… or my head starts to sweat…. Gee, maybe that’s why I haven’t heard back for Giro.

  21. Comment by evil3 | 07.5.2011 | 3:22 pm

    Bugs in the helmet……I just had a nightmare while I was reading that blog post. It gives me chills to think about that now, and I don’t know if I will be able to sleep tonight.

    Worst of all I have quite a bit of hair yet (not real long, but longer then most dudes), so just the thought of bugs in my helmet scares me that little bit more. I might not see it on top of my head, but I wonder if it is stuck in my hair someplace.

    Although I seem to get hit in the arm most of the time, right below where the sleeve ends, and a bug impact on raw skin hurts quite a bit.

  22. Comment by Jeremy | 07.5.2011 | 3:35 pm

    This is why I always wear a cap under my helmet. No eggs. No tan lines.

  23. Comment by Trailer Park Cyclist | 07.5.2011 | 3:41 pm

    I personally think snorting them is the worst.

  24. Comment by Sara Whatmore | 07.5.2011 | 4:36 pm

    Oooh, I have similar experiences with bugs down the sports bra :).

  25. Comment by Mike Roadie | 07.5.2011 | 5:47 pm

    A Fat Cyclist Cap (Twin Six by way of Walz Caps) works wonders……even in the South Florida heat!

  26. Comment by sbtokyo | 07.5.2011 | 6:52 pm

    Nowhere, not once, does he even think of putting on the brakes and getting the bug out. That’s a cyclist!

  27. Comment by ecco | 07.5.2011 | 7:01 pm

    Ugh! I read this far too soon after tonight’s ill-chosen dusk ride on a creek-following trail and almost gagged while reliving the horrors of the critter collection that died on me and in my hair. The worst is when you’re showering right afterwards and find a squishy bit that is neither hair nor shampoo. Though, the bra bug collector is a close, close second. Blech.

  28. Comment by Maggi | 07.5.2011 | 9:04 pm

    I had this happen on a ride — though the bug that flew into my helmet, then managed to get lost in my hair, really was just a little beetle, no stinger to worry about. Of course, I didn’t want my group to know what a girly girl I am, so I waited until the ride was done and I could lift the hatch of my car, duck into the back (somewhat out of sight), tear off my helmet, unbraid my hair, pick the beetle out of where it had wedged itself, buzzing, under a braid.

    I’m sure that, due to be hidden by the hatch, no one heard the squealing.

  29. Comment by BamaJim | 07.5.2011 | 9:16 pm

    Somehow the bugs that fly into my helmet vents can never seem to find the way out. That’s one reason I almost always wear a cap under the helmet.

  30. Comment by roan | 07.5.2011 | 10:14 pm

    Had several mean insects through the helmet vents, only one sting. But yellow jackets thru the open jersey neck usually means several stings from each until my chest thumping kills it (hummmmm Hammer/Runner could use that one next time she feels the need to get your attention, “THUMP,sorry I thought a deadly stinging wasp just entered your jersey”.
    I always wear glasses, glad I do too with the number of hits from large insects I seem to attract.
    The saddest flying death was a insect eating bat, I would have thought their radar was better. At least it didn’t hit me in the neck.

  31. Comment by gregc | 07.5.2011 | 11:03 pm

    Although I’ve never been stung on my head before, I did have one fly right into my mouth on a quick sprint trying to get over a hill. A terrifying couple of moments passed as it was stinging me in back of my mouth, my body was uncontrollably retching, I was still somewhat aware I was doing at least 20 mph with traffic and a very narrow shoulder. After what seemed like an eternity I was able to get off the road, the bike somewhat stopped and the smashed little critter out of my mouth. I don’t recommend this to anyone. After that I rode a few rides with a bandanna across my face and mouth until we got out of the particularly bad mid spring bug season.

  32. Comment by trekjocky | 07.6.2011 | 12:12 am

    Actually had a Bee strike me in the forehead between my helmet and Oakleys only to fall between my eyeball and Oakleys….. needless to say was more concerned with a 40-0 stop on the shoulder then the massive dump truck behind me. Gladly we all survived. And unless the bee was wearing shorts……. all with clean shorts.

  33. Comment by Jenn | 07.6.2011 | 12:42 am

    Silk scarf do-rag. No matter how hot. I will NOT have bugs crawling through my hair…eek!!!

  34. Comment by Chris | 07.6.2011 | 5:46 am

    I bought a Laser helmet a couple years ago that had mesh over the front vents. After a wasp related incident I thought it was a brilliant idea.

  35. Comment by Sara | 07.6.2011 | 7:36 am

    I ran into a swarm of dragonflies one day while out riding. (yes, a SWARM!) One of them flew into my helmet – and it’s an old helmet with smallish vents! – and I barely got through the swarm before skidding to a stop and ripping my helmet off. It felt like a large bird was up under there! I don’t know how you could continue to ride while feeling something crawling on your head. It gives me the heebie jeebies just thinking about it!

  36. Comment by MattC | 07.6.2011 | 7:44 am

    Bee’s are wicked…and wasps are PURE evil! I got stung FOUR TIMES last year (all honeybees thankfully!) Knock on wood and all, so far I’m sting-free this season! the worst was a bee flew right into my ear, and then being angry at my being in his way, he stung almost instantly…now THAT smarts! I’m guessing I squished ALL his little nerve-agent poison into me as I reamed my ear out with my finger trying to get him out of there, albiet too late.

    Now I typically ride with my Arriva headphones/IPOD shuffle even if it isn’t playing, just to cover that spot. Also I always wear a skullcap under the helmet even when it’s REAL hot (I’ve had a bee fly in a vent and sting me…the welt instantly makes wearing a helmet unbearably painful).

    I guess bee’s like me. Or they hate me. It does feel like I’m targeted, considering none of the guys I riding with ever get stung. Or maybe it’s the honey-flavored sunscreen I use…

  37. Comment by nh_joe | 07.6.2011 | 7:55 am

    Rudy Project helmets have a bug net!

  38. Comment by Bryan (not that one) | 07.6.2011 | 8:24 am

    Fatty, I can completely relate. Seems like I’m getting a bug in my helmet every other ride so far this summer.

    Several years ago I was riding along and a butterfly flew into my helmet. I tried lifting my helmet on my head while riding and shaking to get him out. I didn’t feel any movement so I was certain he was gone. When I got home and took off my helmet, there he was — nestled next to one of the helmet pads with wings folded up. I gave him a nudge and off he flew, about 10 miles away from where he started out.

  39. Comment by Obstinate Roadie | 07.6.2011 | 8:31 am

    I should think that your lack of hair would be advantageous in this situation. When it happens to me, with my full head of naturally wavy hair, the little bugger gets caught in my hair and panics, causing me to jam my fingers in any hole big enough to fish him out.

    This is why I won’t buy a helmet with holes that I can’t fit my fingers through.

  40. Comment by Jamey Rawstron | 07.6.2011 | 8:33 am

    If that gorgeous, feathery and incredibly well ventilated Giro lid is too troublesome for you due to bugs, I will happily take the risk. Having ridden with a bee in my jersey for over an hour and also had a bee fly into my mouth, both without any incident, I am prepared to take the risk. About the bald pate…well, I guess you’ll need a white cap under that lid :-)
    I am hoping it’s a size large!

  41. Comment by Tim | 07.6.2011 | 8:55 am

    Had a wasp fly into the vents last year during a triathlon. No delay at all in the waiting for a sting. He got me four times by the time I stopped swatting at my helmet and skidded to a stop and got my helmet off. Not sure what I thought I was going to accomplish by hitting the helmet. The delay in stopping simply got me two more stings. I stood there for a few seconds wondering what I should do and figured if I was going to have a reaction, I might as well get closer to the medical tent so I put the helmet back on, ow, and finished the race. By the time I finished I had four big red dots on the top of my head.

  42. Comment by Haven-KT | 07.6.2011 | 9:24 am

    @Angie: Been there, done that– only for me there was frantic braking, coming to a sudden complete stop and grabbing around in my chestal region trying to get the yellow jacket out from my sports bra. There may have been screaming in a girly, ew there’s a bug in my shirt sort of way. Which may have occurred in my head because my partner merely turned around and came back, asking what happened that I stopped?

    Then, not 10 miles later, another yellow jacket flew into his jersey and stung him. He was smart, though, grabbed the little sucker away from his skin and smashed him in folds of jersey (unzipped, natch) and brought himself to a controlled stop to dispose of the corpse.

    Fatty, my thought process when a bug gets in my helmet is a lot less coherent– more along the lines of OHMYGODGETITOUT WHATISIT IT’SAWASPORABEE EWWIT’SCRAWLINGAROUNDINMYHAIR

    Followed by stopping and ripping my helmet from my head to get it out. After flailing at my head trying to get it out– I’d rather be stung on the fingers than on the head, really.

  43. Comment by RedNBlondies | 07.6.2011 | 9:51 am

    Thanks for the laugh!! My co-workers already think I’m weird for my internet tracking of a bunch of people riding bikes through France every evening, now they think I’m certifiable! I try to tell them, “bugs, in the helmet, laying eggs!!” They just smile politely and walk away as quickly as possible. I’m sure they are putting a referral for me to the combat stress team!

    I’ve personally never had one in the helmet, but have had one down the sports bra, and I’m in a constant state of fear of swallowing one. Again. Ewwwww.

  44. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.6.2011 | 10:15 am

    You should check with your science friends and find out if the decline of the bee population is related to the increase in bicycle riding. I bet you could get a grant for that.
    A second grant proposal to study the correlation between helmet colors and native flowers in a given bee area, or the study: ’should sports bras fit better?’.

    Note to all: Davis is farm country, lots of bees to pollinate the crops.

  45. Comment by Asher | 07.6.2011 | 11:33 am

    This is the exact reason that I spent twice as much on a helmet as I might otherwise have done (though half as much, still, as I would have, were it not for the ‘bike industry’s writ of indenture’ — aka, the shop discount): the expensive helmet came with bug-netting inside the vents, and being as I’m allergic to bee and wasp stings, I’m freakishly paranoid.

    That said, all my previous rounds of ‘insect vs. cyclist’ have involved bugs crashing into my face, and sometimes embedding bits of themselves into said face, rather than crawling into my helmet vents, so it might not really help at all.

    I hear a fully-faired recumbent makes a great bug deflector…

  46. Comment by Asher | 07.6.2011 | 11:52 am

    Oh, also, I couldn’t help but notice the irony of the Olive Garden ad that happened to appear at the top of the page as I was viewing this, your latest post :) Made me giggle. Like a little girl. How embarrassing!


  47. Comment by Jim Miller | 07.6.2011 | 12:41 pm

    If there was a thumb hole it would be easier for your fellow riders to pick you up after you crash

  48. Comment by Elisabethvi | 07.6.2011 | 3:21 pm

    I agree with the women…it’s much worse to have something fly down a sports bra! Especially, a bee that’s ticked off to be trapped in there. Bugs in the hair is pretty gross, but not as bad as other areas.

  49. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.6.2011 | 4:28 pm

    All this talk of bees and sports bras. Now I know the meaning of that old Helen Reddy tune: “I am Woman…. Hear me Roar.”

    Didn’t know she was a cyclist too.

  50. Comment by Dan O | 07.6.2011 | 5:02 pm

    The bee in the helmet is always a recipe for fun. I’ve been there, but ripped the helmet off before being stung.

    I have been stung while riding though – one yellow jacket caught between my messenger bag strap and gut – got me right through the jersey. Ouch.

    Another time, grinding up an overgrown trail on my mountain bike, noticed a big blob in the bushes in my peripheral vision. “Wow, that looks like huge nest”, I think to myself. Within two seconds of that thought – stung in the ass, right through my shorts.

    I quickly “de-biked” and ran up the hill…

  51. Comment by Heber Chad | 07.6.2011 | 10:21 pm

    I laughed when I read the post and laughed again at some of yor stories. Thanks everyone for sharing. HC

  52. Comment by Yahoo!Rob | 07.6.2011 | 10:24 pm

    LiveStrong Davis is coming in 4 days – the only bugs I’m worried about are the ones that will feast on my carcass after the climb at mile 40. I’ve done centuries before, but only relatively flat ones…

    Anyone else worried? I’d love to get an idea of how many people will be doing the 107 mile loop vs. the 70 mile loop.

    Do we have a Davis discussion board for this yet?

    I’m feeling the pre-race nausea already, I think.

  53. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.6.2011 | 10:53 pm

    I know Squirrelhead is riding the 70. He’s using a bike of mine and I only put enough air in the tires for 70. Discussion Board? I thought this was a discussion board. And I wouldn’t worry about the bugs and your carcass. First you have to bloat up in the sun, then there’s the birds….I’m sure someone will see you before then. And as for the ‘climb’ I reference you back to Fatty’s Observation #2. (Just a find a target and follow it):

    “I, unlike The Runner, am perfectly happy to draft. In fact, I love drafting. And so, while tucked behind The Runner as she toiled away against a stiff headwind, I made the following observation”:

    “If you’re a guy, there’s something really, really awesome about drafting behind a very hot woman.
    I don’t think I need to explain my reasoning on this observation, for I consider it self-evident”.

    So don’t worry. Be Happy. It’s always Sunny in California.

  54. Comment by Skippy | 07.7.2011 | 2:12 am

    Pushing hard throughout the day and having to look for internet access whereever i can find it is no excuse to forget that you are all living in a variety of ” Time zones ”

    Another cyclist on the route mentioned they had seen ” fatty’s comment ” so took time out at today’s start to take a look . Goes to show how many ” fatty readers ” there are on the tour !

    Will try and read this blog post when i get to Le Mans or further along the track .

    Thanks for the apology, Skippy. Totally understandable; thanks for promising to not do it again. – FC

  55. Comment by zeeeter | 07.7.2011 | 9:16 am

    Hey Yahoo!Rob, I’ll be on the 105 miler too, first timer, totally understand the pre-ride nausea comment! Davidh – apparently if I can find out what drafting is by Sunday I’ll be fine!

  56. Comment by Jefferson | 07.7.2011 | 10:22 am

    Speaking of helmets, I’ve seen a bunch of riders in Las Vegas lately with no helmet…what gives? Fortunately, I’ve not had a bad spill on my bike (knock on wood), but if I did, I’d be happy to know there is something between my brain and the pavement. Any insight from the helmet-less crowd?

  57. Comment by Dave | 07.7.2011 | 10:48 am

    Doesn’t this look like Fatty?


  58. Comment by Mark J. | 07.7.2011 | 11:27 am

    Thanks Skippy.

    FYI, you’re not alone. I’ve had my TdF viewing spoiled three days in a row now by accidentally seeing or hearing the results before I wanted to. Not a huge deal.

  59. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.7.2011 | 11:29 am


    Only after the Davis Ride (sun) and his visit to The Bosley Medical Center:

  60. Comment by stuckinmypedals | 07.7.2011 | 12:02 pm

    @yahoo!rob and @zeeeter, I’m certain to be the Lantern Rouge on the 105 route. It’s not my first century, but I am seriously slow.

    As for bugs and stuff, I’ve yet to be stung (knock on wood), but I did have a butterfly get caught in between my glasses and my eye. It gave a whole new meaning to butterfly kisses.

  61. Comment by zeeeter | 07.7.2011 | 1:28 pm

    stuckinmypedals you sound like my ideal drafting partner, whatever that means!

  62. Comment by stuckinmypedals | 07.7.2011 | 4:50 pm

    @zeeeter I assure you, you will be faster than I am. Look for me at the start line. I’m the girl in the pink helmet in Fatty’s header picture. I’ll be clinging tenaciously to my husband’s wheel trying to convince him to slow down so I can hook a bungee cord to his seat post.

  63. Comment by Bob | 07.7.2011 | 8:27 pm

    Hey, I just wanted to thank you for the link/ref to my website, which remains normally hidden. Thanks for the visit concerning bug impacts on our faces. RP http://www.gbnpro.com tm.gif

  64. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.7.2011 | 9:34 pm

    Too Funny! From reading past comments I recognize that everyone seems to get different ‘ads’ showing up. But how appropriate for this ad to appear on todays post:?imm_cid=4W-0M&imm_mid=0009586&kwd={placement}:{ifmobile[mobile}[/img]

    Oh I hope this works!

  65. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 07.7.2011 | 9:37 pm

    Bummer! It was an ad for Bosley ‘The worlds most experienced hair restoration experts’ Their words not mine.

  66. Comment by a chris | 07.8.2011 | 2:20 am

    And I was JUST wondering why so many kids’ helmets have bug mesh in them. I get little bugs in my eye all the time, but aside from bees I don’t think there’s much around here that stings. I have been stung by a wasp under the jersey collar on a downhill in France, though. You don’t hear about that much in the TdeF commentary, do you? I guess if the sting doesn’t break your collarbone you’re not allowed to complain in that context.

    I was just relieved it was me and not the guy in front of me, who’s allergic.

  67. Comment by JamesinDallas | 07.12.2011 | 4:38 pm

    Bees and wasps are pretty bad around here, but nothing has hurt me worse than booking along at 25 mph…and running into a cicada going full bore the opposite direction, right between the eyes!

  68. Comment by finishline | 08.11.2011 | 4:56 am

    Hi !
    Thank you for the article and all your site, I really like it and had a nice time reading everything :)
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