I still remember the first time I realized what a worthless bunch of lying bicycle liars that lying cyclists were, which is all of them. I had been training like mad and hadn’t seen Fields for a couple of weeks when I swung by his apartment.
We started riding out to the Tuesday night training race. “How’s it going?” he asked.
“Great,” I said.
“Yeah?” he asked. “How so?”
“My training is going great. I got in 800 miles the last two weeks and am feeling great. I don’t think I’ve ever felt better. How about you?”
“Argh,” he grumbled, spitting. “I feel like shit.”
“Oh!” I said, concerned. “What’s wrong?”
“I’ve been so fucking sick,” he said.
“Fever, diarrhea, haven’t slept in five days, can’t hold anything down.”
I got really worried. “Have you been to the doctor?”
“Nah, just a bad flu or maybe pneumonia,” he said. “For sure I have fluid in one lung.”
“Dude,” I said, “let’s turn around. You’re too sick to do this race.”
Fields shrugged his typical hardman shrug. “I’ll muddle through,” he said.
The Tuesday Nighter was three laps out on the old Nuckols Crossing course. The first lap was always hot, and someone always attacked on the first little hill, which would invariably split the field but was never enough to establish a winning move.
At the bottom of the hill Fields attacked. It was so vicious that no one even tried to go with him, especially since that particular move never worked, and even more so because he had been hacking and coughing violently at the start, which everyone had carefully noted.
Of course we never saw him again.
“Holy shit,” I said after the race. “That was incredible! And you being sick and everything!”
Fields didn’t say anything, he just coughed some and pedaled listlessly back to his place.
The faces change but the lies remain the same
Baby Seal met up with his riding buddy for the NPR. “I am so out of shape,” he said.
“I haven’t ridden in six weeks.”
“And I’ve been sick. I think I’m just going to do one or two laps and then go home.”
“You, too? Why?”
“I haven’t ridden at all in the last three weeks. I was in Vegas last weekend, and I’ve been sick for three months with some infection I can’t shake. I can’t get my heart rate up or anything.”
“Damn,” said Baby Seal. “That sounds bad.”
The ride began and Frexit whipped it up to a stiff 34 mph, trading punches with a teammate as half the pack got instantly shelled and the remainder hunkered down for dear life. That was about the time that Baby Seal launched and held it for an entire lap.
Afterwards Baby Seal and his riding partner compared numbers. Both had ridden their fastest NPR ever.
“You are such a fucking liar,” said Baby Seal.
“You are such a fucking liar,” said his riding partner.
“No,” I thought, “they are such fucking cyclists.”