It’s Friday morning and time to warm up the ol’ fingers before I get down to work. I’m thankful to have work in this moment – this is a crazy fucking time and there’s been big, frankly upsetting changes going on, even at my company (and I just got this job, too). That said, my job seems pretty secure for now, and Alia and I are still getting along pretty well (though I was annoying the crap out of her yesterday), I stumbled upon another cool cover of “If it makes you happy” to go along with my favorite (by which I mean Spotify was playing random music for me and they did a good job). It’s amazing how my musical taste is regressing to things that I thought myself above in high school. Ah well.

Another good thing: outside.

Alia has a good rule for social distancing that we need to “go outside every day.” I think this is a good rule. And since I am not going to be commuting or riding in shitty weather for the foreseeable future, and since I am out of shape and would like to ride a light(er) bike, I spent a good two hours yesterday listening to punk rock and taking apart and rebuilding my bike, exchanging its single gear, fenders, and rack setup for many gears and no rack or fenders. Sure, I still need to twiddlefuck with the B-limit on the rear shifter (my rear dropouts are the wonky Straggler sliding dropouts, and my wheel position changed with the SS, and I was too lazy to fuck with the brake position, so the derailleur needed to be set up again, something which I was not feeling as patient for as I should have been), but the thing goes, ya know?

So anyway, I rode my bike. It was marvelous.

Like I said, I’m out of shape, but while I was on the road, at least, I was making good time and climbing well enough. It was fun to go fast downhill again and be able to pedal; it was fun not to feel like I had to power up every hill because I only had the one gear. It’s not to say that that’s not also super fun – I really do like the SS thing – but from a “I’m just going to leave the house and ride in a direction” point of view, this was maybe better, at least for me and my fitness right now.

I’m lucky that there’s some decent easy in-the-woods trails near my house, though because the weather was so nice yesterday they were way too crowded: even were we not supposed to be social distancing, there were too many people to really rip on though. Still fun, though, and I got to practice some “skills,” even though let’s be real: I am, always have been, and will always likely be a pretty garbage “mountain biker.” I am 100% fine with this.

Riding was important; I was kind of in a funk all day yesterday, having finished a pretty good effort draft of my thesis on Tuesday, dealing with fallout from the work shit Wednesday, and though I had things to do yesterday, and did some of them, it was hard to get motivated: and since there were not “hard” deadlines, that was OK. I am notoriously bad for not taking sick days or mental health days or anything like that (traditionally crashing pretty hard once the semester or project or whatever is over), and so I’ll call it that: a half day working on and riding the bike for mental health. It’s important. Getting your hands dirty and turning wrenches is important.

I should get to work now, but the point is: go outside. It’ll make you feel good.