I am recognized at the liquor store round the corner from the jay oh bee. They treat me with all the courtesy required by a humble man who doesn't drive a great big Cadillac and is, in fact, just riding a couple blocks over to pop a quiet top in the graveyard...I ain't special. I shut up and finish my drink. Pedal.
I am known at various points along related yet subtly ever-varied spots on the routes from this town to it's outlying dark, tree-lined or open maritime chaparral singletracks. It's only the Monterey Pines, the coastal live oaks, the Hooker's manzanita, the ceanothus, and the poison oak, but beggars cannot be choosers. Except in the sense that I have chosen these spots, and the skunks, the raccoons, and all the different owls who also choose them are my boon companions on a dark night. I flatter myself that my route is hard and my pace is high, but the reality is that I am working with boozy vision, chasing low-mid range bike lights down sandy, crumbly singletracks. Pedal.
I am accepted by the dark. Granted admittance, given a pass, have options laid out for me. I toast the lurid glow of Monterey and walk a few steps to the other side of the ridge to toast the garish lights of Salinas. I had left a pocket bottle of Old Grandad under the tree on that now-closed top section of 49, but last time around, there it was- emptied and tossed in the bushes. That treatment causes me to think it was some do-gooder pissing off trail who saved me from myself. That's just a waste, and I cannot be saved from the depravity sunk deep in my bones. Look at it: gently swaying along a trail miles from nowhere...it's absolute moral decay. Pedal.
So this next bottle, I hid it better. And, of course, some jackass drank the tallboy from the Caprock (remember before folks knew about it, and it was a regular bar?) and did not replace it. I figured that would be the case, and slithered on over to the new stairs. There's some beers there, and the masses don't know where it lies. Pedal.
I'd fixed the fixed gear. Tightened the BB, and reversed the chainring, so the drive faces are somewhat fresh. Good enough to get me further down the trails until I order actual new replacement bits. Home to workplace in the unseasonably warm sunlight, job interlude, then leave work thru Cside(!) with a little Frog Pond surprise singletrack and out and up So Boundary for a larger loop, pedal pedal pedal, don't stop. Except to piss in the street. Pedal.
It is a Good Feeling. Trails, trails, trails. Legs, lungs, no brain.