February 21, 2009

Random babblings: Spring fever

Spring fever has begun creeping up on me yet again, with its usual symptoms of restlessness and agitation. I'm digging through cds and pulling out old music for a change of pace, having flashbacks in my mind's eye to summer bike rides and the scenery that accompanied them, and itching to hit the road for far away places. The winter's chilly grip is loosening, leaving me with a need to sweat. A hike in the woods or flowing yoga routine just won't cut it, I need to get out on my bike and really make my body work.

More compellingly, I want to get out on my bike, the first I've had that feeling in months. Knowing that the weather's oh-so-gradually warming up means it's time to get the bike cleaned and ready. I won't spring-clean my apartment, but I will give the bike a thorough going-over-- removing the chain and lovingly wiping down each link, polishing up the frame with a bottle of aptly-named Bike Lust, cleaning and adjusting the components to the best of my ability. This year, inspired by #4 of the How to Ride a Bike Forever manifesto, I've decided to remove the computer from the bike. I'll be doing this with a high level of trepidation. Despite riding statistic-less for the majority of my life, I quickly became addicted to entering those numbers on a log. None of them were particularly impressive by "serious" cyclist standards, but my left-brain was tickled pink by logging, reviewing, comparing, and analyzing. But I feel strongly that it's time to get back to right-brain riding for at least a while, so left-brain's just gonna have to handle its numbers withdrawal as best it can. Besides, getting all those wires out of the way will make cleaning the bike just that much easier.

On the subject of the increasingly run-down looking apartment that I hate to clean, it's becoming a major source of dukkha. After re-painting half of the place a few years ago and then having the bathroom somewhat professionally remodeled, I'd been planning to begin tackling other things in increments-- new dishwasher and refrigerator, then new flooring in the kitchen and sunroom, finally finishing the re-painting job... But $12,000 of veterinarian bills over the course of 2008 completely side-tracked those ambitions. Meanwhile, the list has continued to grow even as the money has shrunk. While I was in Vegas on a 10-day business trip last summer, the cats tore down a chunk of wallpaper in the kitchen, which means that room's just that much closer to needing a complete remodel. A crack in some small component of the furnace is being monitored at bi-annual maintenance checks, in the hopes that it won't necessitate a whole unit replacement for a few more years. And, more recently, I came home to find that some numb-skull left my storm door unlatched while distributing menus for a pizza place that I'll never call. The wind apparently then caught the door and blew it back against the wall of the building, yanking the retracting door closures out of the door frame and breaking the wood of the frame. I should be glad it didn't shatter the glass of the door, but as I picked screws, bolts, and other assorted parts off the ground, all I wanted to do was punch the un-thinking doofus in the face (for which I'll certainly spend another lifetime in samsara, if the whole Hindu/Buddhist reincarnation thing really holds water).

The houses we lived in when I was growing up always had the same hodge-podge, borderline decrepit feeling my place is beginning to take on. My father is a fairly competent, energetic handy-man, but he's also easily distracted, never fully completing any of the projects he begins. I'm in some sort of handy-person limbo, myself. I can swap out a door-knob or hang a curtain rod lickety-split, but was flummoxed in my attempts to remove and replace a worn-out kitchen faucet. And my only excuse for not getting back to re-painting the rest of the apartment is pure laziness. Painting's fun for about two hours, and then I can't take it anymore and want to just go play. I'm to the point that I feel like I need to begin sketching or writing poetry, just so I can absent-mindedly look around the place and shrug, using the excuse that I'm too busy being creative to worry about mundane things like the appearance of my home. It would be better than this feeling that I'm too broke and/or lazy to do anything about it.

Fuck it all, I'm outta here. It's flipping cold outside, but the woods are calling.

8 comments:

Truman Soloist said...

Ah, another case of winter malaise on the books. Hang in there, spring is coming. Thanks very much for the Bike Lust and Bridgestone references (owned a Bridgestone once, it was the best bike, sold it - what was I thinking?) Congratulations on your escape to the great outdoors...

KaliDurga said...

Malaise --> gud werd. Thanks.

Groover said...

Nice post. You sound like a caged animal. Oh, and in my eyes you are doing amazingly well if painting can hold your attention for two hours.

So how was the ride?

KaliDurga said...

It's still too cold for this weather weenie to ride, so I went for a hike. It was kind of grim, though- By late February, I'm tired of looking at bare brown tree limbs and need some color in the woods. It did feel good to be active, though, so that's something!

human being said...

what a journey...
spring... cleaning... bike... the house... repairing... unfinished... laziness... a call...

oh friend... that call is the cause of laziness... i relate much to this...
whenever i ignore the call, that laziness is upon me like a boulder... and when the call is heard, i don't feel my feet on the ground...

run-down looking apartment? come and see ours!
:)
hugs

PS... your sketches and poems will be stunning... i bet!

birds fly said...

Your post provided me with yet another gentle reminder that I need to clean my chain! It is such an unpleasant task that I tend to put it off way too long, like until turning the cranks yields a sound not unlike walking on gravel. Regarding computer usage, I have one on my non-commuter bike. I never got into tracking miles in a log or anything, but I do like to know how many miles I've done at the end of a long ride. I also find it handy for maintenance purposes, like having an idea of when to replace the chain and cassette. I think if I were more obsessive about it, though, it would probably impede my riding enjoyment.

KaliDurga said...

"whenever i ignore the call, that laziness is upon me like a boulder..."

You nailed it, my dear. Thank you and hugs back to you.

birds fly said...

I swear by ProLink myself. Will post Fiznit photos soon...I've got plenty!