I saw something sort of .... strange .... on our ride today on the Silver Comet Trail. If it hadn't had negative consequences, I wouldn't be writing about it. I probably wouldn't have even noticed it. Now, though, I am just curious about it.
Rozmo and I were behind part of the riding group early today, and we came upon them standing along the trail in a group, tending to one of the group's members. It was a man, probably in his mid-60's, bleeding pretty heavily from his elbow and less profusely from his knee. No one else appeared to have been involved in the accident.
Apparently this man forgot his cycling gloves, so he was wearing .... socks .... on his hands. Because socks aren't typically MADE to wear on the hands, they weren't fitting very well. He reached to adjust one of them, and he wrecked his bicycle.
Several things about this incident bother me. I have forgotten my cycling gloves too. Never once have I considered wearing SOCKS on my hands as a replacement. Oh wait ..... I don't remember ever having a spare pair of socks WITH me. How can you remember unnecessary socks but forget the cycling gloves that are so necessary you will substitute socks?
If I were riding in sub-freezing temperatures .... another scenario that is hard for me even to imagine .... then I might consider putting socks on my hands. Or .... here's an extreme solution .... I might not ride.
I'm not making fun of this gentleman, I assure you. I just can't figure out why it was so necessary to have gloves that he wore short white athletic socks on his hands. By the time I saw him, he was wearing BLOODY short white athletic socks. (Apparently socks can also substitute for bandages when necessary.)
I almost always wear cycling gloves. They serve many purposes. They provide padding to keep my fingers from going (quite so) numb when I'm riding. They keep sweat from making my hands slippery on the handlebars. (Even though my handlebars .... and I'm guessing almost everyone else's .... are covered with handlebar tape. In coordinating colors with the bike's paint scheme.) Gloves also have a terrycloth portion that is useful for wiping sweat off the end of my nose. I may or may not actually wipe my nose on my gloves from time to time. Obviously in cold weather, gloves keep the fingers warm(er). So yes, gloves are an important accessory for cycling.
I'm just not sure they are an INDISPENSABLE accessory. There may be a new member of that club this evening.
Other than that, the ride today was uneventful. I was worried about the heat, but most of the trail is shaded. And as long as you're moving, at least you are generating your own breeze. I made sure I drank enough water and G2 to avoid dehydration, since that's what happened to me one time on the Trail with VT and Rozmo. When I got back to my car, the outside temperature gauge showed 104 degrees. But that was only because it had been sitting in the sun for seven hours. After I got in and started moving, it cooled off to a mere 99 degrees.