Monday, November 17, 2008

In praise of the facemask.

I woke up this morning before I needed to get out of bed and I lay there for awhile trying to muster some gratitude. It wasn't that hard, because I'm pretty fortunate, so I just had a mundane little list going through my head as the light streamed into our pine-paneled traincar of a bedroom and the Brit gently snored away. The boy, the house, the job, the annoying cat, the heat kicking on, the fridge packed full of food after a weekend of grocery shopping and prep.

But I forgot one thing that I am grateful for, something I couldn't have anticipated: MY FACEMASK, oh dudes, my FACE. MASK. It is so clear and sunny today that I decided to get on my bike even though the forecast said something about "feels like 15 degrees" and "gusting winds from the NNW up to 20 mph." I head north for 6 of the 7 miles I ride to get to work, PS.

So anyway, I ordered this very thin balaclava (remember the first time you heard that word and thought it was "baklava"? I do) awhile back when I got some exciting super-light wool long underwear and cold-weather tech tops with thumbholes. I am all about thumbholes now and basically think all shirts should have them. But until this morning I hadn't trotted out the balaclava yet, and man am I glad I did. Without it, the ride would have been unbearable. I probably would have turned back. As it was, I found myself half-seriously singing "fuck...fuck...fuck" every time I pedaled through a particularly bad gust of wind. This happened every few minutes.

The crazy thing is that it didn't take any longer to get to work; it was just 4 times as hard and a lot colder than usual. I do feel like a bad ass, though, so mission accomplished.

8 comments:

  1. The Jews also had several moments of "fuck...fuck...fuck...this is cold" and hating the north wind. However, we like to think we are tough and this morning likened ourselves to eskimos. Except without the seal skins to keep us warm. Oh, and on bikes.

    P.S. The Jew has the most hysterical condom-like skull cap. Poor baldy.

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  2. The balaclava totally gives me condom-head. I think it's unavoidable.

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  3. Um, first time I saw the word balaclava was today, and yes, I thought it was baklava.

    Color me impressed with all of this, and I heart thumbholes.

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  4. Hee! It's a total northwoods word, so I'm not surprised.

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  5. It's not the mysterious word from The Beatles' "Back in the U.S.S.R." is it? "Let me hear your balaclavas ringing out"?

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  6. Ahem, pardon me: balalaikas.

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  7. You Minnesotans are a hardy lot. I mean, winter's my favorite season and I MUCH prefer cold to hot, but this sounds brutal.

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