September 13, 2011

Trivia Blog: Ballsy Biking

These Trivia Blog posts come from the emails I send out as Quizmaster of the Gael Pub Trivia Night every Tuesday.  But seeing as how they comprise most of the writing I seem to do these days, I thought it fitting to include them on the Pale Writer blog as well.  I won't include things like info about categories or drink specials, but will keep the bulk of the rest.  Hopefully you enjoy, so much so that you come out some Tuesday at 8:30 (3rd Ave. b/t 82nd and 83rd)...

When we talk about “New York’s finest,” no one ever mentions the delivery guys…

I’m a man who likes to try and stay in shape, if at all possible.  I have a philosophy in life that a man can be two of the following three things and still be accepted by polite society: 1. Bald, 2. Pale, and 3. Fat.  At this point in my life, as you can clearly see from the giant head in our fancy Gael Pub Trivia Night graphic above (“It looks like an orange on a toothpick!”), I’ve accepted that I fall nicely into categories 1 and 2.

Which is fine.  People like the bald, pale guy who’s more or less slim (see: Steve Jobs, Phil Collins, Prince William, many English majors).  Just like people like the bald, fat guy with a nice tan (see: latter-years Marlon Brando; old, retired Jews in Florida); and just like people like the pale, fat guy with a nice head of hair (see: Louie Anderson, Chris Farley, John Kruk, affable IT guys); I still happen to be in a likable section of that particular Venn diagram.  What I can’t abide, though, is being the pale, bald, fat guy.  People are just uneasy with that guy, especially at the beach.

To that end, I recently purchased a bike for the first time in about 15 years.  After seeing the multitude of delivery guys fearlessly winding their ways through our thoroughly dangerous streets, I decided that the risk was worth the chance to take advantage of my Upper West Side proximity to Central Park and the trails on the Hudson River.  As long as I didn’t go full Cyclist Nazi (you know the guys I’m talking about, with their Lance Armstrong outfits and general lack of caring if they happen to plow over a 4-year-old girl whilst navigating the roadways in Central Park), it seemed like the perfect way to get a bit of extra exercise in the city.

But good god, is it a test.  Those delivery guys are heroes along the likes of Batman and Spider-Man.  Biking through New York should be listed as an extreme sport right up there with bungee jumping, skydiving, and hiring Casey Anthony as your babysitter.  Between the cars that don’t really look out for you, the walkers in the parks who seem to view you as nothing more than obstacles in their personal game of Frogger, and the evil, evil cabbies, you’re lucky to make it home alive.  This must be how the people who ventured West on the Oregon Trail felt (as far as my understanding of the computer game I played in 3rd grade goes).  I had thought that it would be nice to bike across Central Park on Tuesdays on my way to the Gael Pub, but now I fear a scenario that ends with one of our lovely bartenders, Jenna or Kylie, having to turn on the mic and announce, “Quizmaster Ryan won’t be able to make it in to host tonight, as he has a bus stuck on his face.”

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