Monday, March 11, 2013

Freakin' Out

For perhaps the third time in half an hour, I am stuck. My rear wheel has dug clean through the snowpack and is spinning on bare ground at the bottom of an axle-deep hole. I am five yards laterally from the perfect traction of the plowed road, but still some ten feet vertically below it, and I am producing a high-pitched banshee howl of rage that cuts clean through the revving of my bike and the snow and wind and sends my trailmates running. To my rescue, by some miracle of human sympathy, not away from me. 

My boyfriend gets there first, kills the motor, and lifts my battered, steaming KDX220 out of its trench and onto the rutted surface of the snowmobile trail. By this time, I am out of breath, and swears, and things to kick, so I thank him civilly, or at least sanely, and duck-walk the bike in first gear up to the road. 


Bruce is waiting there on his WR450, unfazed by the show. I probably owe the continuation of my relationship to Bruce and his unfazed-ness, if that can be made a word: Greg, my boyfriend, was at the outset visibly upset by my rabid reaction to falls, stuck wheels, stuck bolts, broken trailers, cancelled races and the like--he thought I was angry at him, as if it were all his fault for introducing me to this infuriating sport. Hardly: my rage has no object, save perhaps God and my own incompetence.


It runs in the family. My grandfather, when his televised view of the Apollo lunar landing was interrupted by static, took the TV out to the back yard and shot it. My mother, when I got a haircut that she particularly disliked, threw a teacup at my head (yes, she missed, and yes, it was full of tea). I always thought that that sort of behavior was normal. Greg's defensiveness in the face of my comparatively mild tantrums baffled and unsettled me. What was wrong with him? 


Imagine my delight, then, when Bruce began telling us of all the times he'd had to go retrieve his brother Jimmy's helmet from where it had been flung in fury to the bottom of a gulch, and about the time his son Jesse picked up a large rock and dropped it on the prostrate form of his dirt bike after a particularly aggravating crash. The more weekends we ride with Bruce, the more times I get stuck halfway up a snowy incline and fall victim to another unreprintable outburst, the less Greg takes it personally and the more enjoyable our excursions become. After all, I'm not bothered by my behavior. Hurling blasphemies into the silent, snowy woods is kind of a treat, actually--if I did that at work, where I really feel like hurling blasphemies, my boss would punch me out and I'd wake up at the DOL, filing for unemployment.*


Granted, in terms of my relationship with Greg, I can't help but feel that perhaps the wrong one of us has learned the wrong lesson, here. He shouldn't have to learn to cope with my inadequacies, I should learn to improve myself. I need to grow up, be a (wo)man, and GAS IT UP THE GODDAMN HILLS. "Fall all you want," Greg is fond of saying, "as long as you fall at the top." That's philosophy right there, I'm tellin' ya.


*It is interesting to note that, since the composition of this entry, I have, in fact, been fired. Anyone want to hire me? 









6 comments:

  1. Note from Anna's mother: the tea cup was not thrown at Anna's head, but to the kitchen floor; Anna's head was already suffering enough as the result of the self-inflicted buzz cut. She had already left the room when said tea cup met its maker...

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    1. I was totally in the room! You launched it in the general direction of me/the microwave/the ceiling!

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  2. Small fact check aside, excellent Blog Anna!

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  3. ...I'm so glad I had the sense to leave before the above happened.

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    1. HAH. Yes, you were also at somewhat risk in that incident, weren't you?

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  4. I've never heard anyone in the family yell obscenities... Now where did I leave my headphones?

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