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Guest Post: Not Super, Just Mom (or, where I try not to cry when I think of being on the saddle hour after hour after hour)

by John on July 25th, 2011

Miranda, at Not Super-Just Mom undersells herself. Do you not read her? She’s a full-time parent, and full-time teacher talking about anything & everything. One day she’ll have you in tears . . . and the next, tears of laughter. Seriously, trying to balance work & parenthood? She’s got great tales. Trying to be a better blogger? She’ll guide you. Trying to lead a healthier lifestyle? She’s very honest about her own journey. My two cents on this entry . . . I’ve run two marathons. Each time, a marathon volunteer, wearing a number, passed me on a bicycle. If Miranda can do a bike loop in her car, I think I should be able to get credit for a marathon on a bike 🙂

Alright, so John is going to cycle across a state, right? That’s awesome.
I once participated in a bike race. A really big, important race that happens every year and brings about a suspension in open-container-on-the-sidewalk laws.
Except I was in my car.
A Corolla. In the Criterium.
I was 19 years old and after a relationship ended horribly, I decided one day to pack up and move. My best friend lived in the town I should’ve hit after I graduated high school and she needed a new roommate. She scoped out an apartment and called and said “Hey! I found a place!!” So I, because I had nothing better to do, hopped in my car and made the three hour drive to sign a lease on my new life.
There’s a bypass that goes around this town. People call it “the loop.” Except it doesn’t so much make a loop as it makes a U and at one point you actually have to get off “the loop” to get back on it again.
THAT IS NOT A LOOP, PEOPLE.
I had only been to this town twice before this moment, and I’d never driven there without someone else in the car. While I like to think I am generally good with directions I had no idea which end was up and the era of a Garmin in every dashboard had not yet dawned.
Hell, I didn’t even have a cell phone.
So when I got lost on “the loop,” which, based on its name alone is a feat one would think impossible, I was REALLY lost. And kind of frantic.
And then I saw a sign for a road I recognized. Broad Street.
YES! That street turned into another road and I knew I could get to her apartment if I could just get to Broad Street.
So I hopped off “the loop.”
I reached an intersection with one of those saw-horse looking barrier things blocking traffic from coming onto the street and I panicked. And then the car in front of me just went around the barrier and made an immediate right. So, I went around the barrier thinking…I don’t know what I was thinking.
I quickly realized that I could not turn left (onto what might as well have been the yellow brick road for all the importance it held for me at that moment) so I went straight.
Why straight? No idea. I knew it was the wrong way. But I knew that going right was an even more wrong way. So, straight it was.
Then I noticed a few people on the sidewalks kind of looking at me and pointing.
And then it happened.
No—not that. No one was harmed in the making of this story.
I began to cry.
I had no idea what I was doing thinking moving to this new place was a good idea. I had no idea where I was going. I had no idea how to get anywhere. I’d missed turns and I was now an hour and a half later than I should’ve been in getting to her house. I had no phone. I was alone. I was scared. I was stressed. And I am a woman. And a crier at that.
So I began to cry.
And then I saw the cop waving at me as I approached the next intersection.
Slowly, sure I was going to jail, I stopped and rolled down my window.
“You can’t be here! This is a closed course! How did you even get here anyway!? Didn’t you see the barricade!?”
Then he realized that I was crying and got the Man-Ic.
(You know what that is, right? The man-panic that happens when men witness women crying and their synapses fire on all cylinders to Please.God.Make.It.Stop.Now.What.Do.I.Do.Make.It.Stop!)
He softened a bit once he realized I was doing the ugly cry.
I managed to sniffle out that I just needed to get to Broad Street and he managed to give me directions I could follow that would keep me out of the rest of the race.
I managed to find my friend, sign a lease, and come to think of that town as my home.
But I never really developed a liking for the Criterium.
(John, enjoy your…uh…race? Is it a race? Enjoy that thing with the bicycles and the state and the beer.)

From → Guest Post

12 Comments
  1. I’ve been on that ‘loop.’ Who name that that? They were drunk. I know it.

    • I have NO IDEA. But that person? Failed kindergarten by being unable to identify a CIRCLE.

  2. Oh Miranda. That loop? Yes. It got me too. I’ve been lost because of the loop before.

    My story of traffic in said town involved attempting to go out for breakfast. On a Saturday morning. The day of the GT/UGA game. Oh yes. I had no clue. It took me 2 hours to go less than half a mile down Prince Ave. I could have gone home but I WANTED that sandwich something fierce plus once I was stuck in traffic… there was no going back….

    I learned an important lesson that day.

    On a home game day?

    You do one of four things:

    LEAVE. (To watch the game at a friend’s house, of course)

    STAY AT HOME. (to watch the game)

    GO TO THE GAME.

    GO OUT AT HALF-TIME. (so you don’t miss the game)

    Ah. The joys of SEC football.

    • My first apartment was on Prince Avenue! And yes, those four things are the only four things to do on gameday in that town. Only.

      I prefer #3!

  3. Thank you so much for having me over, John!

  4. Such a funny story! I love the term Man-ic. Imma have to remember that!

    • There’s also “man-look” which is when a man opens a drawer to look for something, glances in the direction of said open drawer, and then declares “It’s not here!” This is usually followed by a woman coming behind the man, opening the drawer, moving one thing a half an inch and–magically–said item is present and accounted for.

      😉

  5. What a hilarious story! And I know exactly what you mean by the Man-Ic. Sometimes I wish I could cry on cue…you know…you take full advantage of it. 😉

  6. Gina permalink

    I’m so glad you survived the bike race and made it to sign the lease with me. You weren’t the only one getting out of a bad situation despite my unwillingness to listen to anyone or anything! In honor of your twilight ride, I’ve never ever gone to Twillight and have no current plans to go..unless you wanted to compete again one day!

    • Me too! It sucked that our lives sucked then. But? They don’t suck (all the time) anymore! HOORAY!

      And I’ll pass on Twilight unless it has Taylor Lautner’s abs.

  7. I love that the fact that your lives don’t suck all the time anymore gets a “HOORAY!”

    I can totally get behind that…

    Loved the post, Miranda.

    And John? Hope your ass is okay, my friend.

    I’ve gotten behind in reading blog posts but your guests have been AWESOME.

    Can’t wait to hear about your travels. Or your travails.

    Or both.

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  1. My superhero name should be Lame-O

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