The pre-teen kid looks at me. Actually he is staring at my crotch and pointing. He is about 2 feet away. His dad is trying to ignore one of those moments all parents must dread and pay the 7 Eleven teller. I am too embarrassed to look. My hands are full with a red top, biscuits for later and a sandwich. I try and hold them in front of me and turn away. My mind is fried and I am clad in lycra. I realise that something needs to be done.
But first I must get glucose into my blood so that I can make it to a hot shower and a change of clothes and think. I am in Knysna and the MTB ride was harder than I thought and so I suffered.
A few months later:
Cliffy is plying me with whiskey when he presents the solution. As long as it starts with a J then I am happy (I never did acquire an appreciation for red wine). I learnt to drink whiskey somewhere between a climbing trip to Mutorashanga with Ed February and Tinie Versfeld to figuring a way through the lower Milner Amphitheatre. (Is the name dropping helping give this story an air of authenticity?) Back then a bottle would not last more than a night between the two of us (and it cost under a hundred bucks). We were fit back then.
Tracey is busy in the kitchen when I take off my pants to try on the Atom baggies by One Industries. Mel is more discreet.
I realise that I need new attire to go with my brand new carbon full suss whippet. A few whiskeys later I am sold.
Splashing through mud and grit in Hemel en Aarde the next day we sit down in the café which could easily fit in at the end of a country lane in the Lake District. Here they serve coffee and not pints but it reminds me of wet days running around the fells with Dave and Mary rescuing sheep (you see more name dropping of famous okes). Ok no jokes about Mary and a lamb. We did actually rescue more than one sheep in the pouring rain. Well Dave rescued and we watched and generally shouted encouragement.
I half-heartedly tried to keep the cushion dry on my chair. Sitting proudly and comfortably in the Atom. Comfy and stylish enough to almost blend in with the Sunday morning breakfast crowd.
Half the battle is looking the part or at least feeling the part. I recall some self-help text that claims that rehearsing an activity in your head for 10 000h you become proficient. Hence having the right kit must go a long way to proficiency. How can Malcolm Gladwell be wrong?
Looking the part gives me better kung fu to flow down the trails and better baarp!
That is enough for me!
Sunday I am out for a big session. I get some admiring whistles (like the one your backyard mechanic does when he looks are your car’s engine). Some directed at my new black carbon steed but some must be for looking the part. I tack to starboard up Plumpudding Hill. Oncoming traffic responds with “respect!”. Wow, I don’t even have to get up this thing to earn it. Intention is everything these days. (But that is for another post aka rant)
If you have managed to get this far without clicking the little cross or scrolling past then let me give you the deets:
The Atom Shorts by One Industries are quite tech in materials and finishes used. Click on the link for specs. Stretch panel in rear yolk gives you superb freedom of movement. The removable inner chamois liner is comfortable and stayed in place and elastic Velcro cuffs made waist adjustment a cinch.
I was concerned that the crotch of baggies would get caught on my saddle. After about ten seconds on the bike I completely forgot about this issue. The Atom is truly superb and I would be way comfortable wearing it post ride to the next Bantry Bay pool party this summer as soon as the invite arrives!
Actually would be confident wearing the Atoms to the 7 eleven knowing that pimple head would behave.