Notorious cycler Lance Armstrong is in Auckland shooting a beer commercial. While he was here he went for a wee bicycle ride around the city with a couple of cohorts.
While he was here, a good friend of mine was out running and passed him on her way.
Of course she then took to Facebook to post about it — who wouldn’t?
She then immediately had to clarify that she had run passed him as he cycled in the opposite direction. She had not overtaken Lance Armstrong.
Her clarification did somewhat ruin the perfect image that I had had in my head at the time. Nevertheless I wrote back to her telling her how I had pictured the scenario in my head.
And just in case any of you were wondering how the scenario went down in my brain, here it is…
I’m just imaging his face as you overtake him.
At first, as you pull up alongside him he doesn’t notice you. Then he glances over, though he looks away again, not really registering what he is seeing. But then when he realises what he saw his head snaps back to stare at you – like a classic hollywood double take. For a while he stares at you in confounded disbelief as you keep pace with the world’s fastest cyclist. But as you start to pull ahead of him, his eyebrows spring upwards and disappear under his helmet – all the while you don’t even look his way. Sure, you’ve noticed him there, but you’re making out it’s no big thing.
You’re glistening with sweat like some sort of shitty Twilight vampire, but your breathing is even which just fills a tired Lance with jealous rage. His face turns red and his eyebrows return from their hiding place up under his damp helmet to meet each other in a stern frown. He grits his teeth and puts everything he has into his pedalling, forcing his lyrca-clad cycler’s thighs to pedal faster and faster. Lance’s cohorts are left for dust as he is now pedalling at an almost comical rate of speed. Still you don’t even look over at Lance, but the corner of your mouth cheekily twitches up into a quietly confident grin.
For a while you continue onwards, stride for stride and pedal for pedal – but as you approach the bottom of the hill you know that you’ve got this.
With a metallic taste taking over his mouth, Lance lets out a bloodcurdling growl and throws everything he has left into his bicycle shorts – but it’s all over. He has already lost. The hill was nothing to you. It didn’t affect your pace at all.
With a display of slapstick comedy worthy of the silent film era, Lance’s bicycle is overwhelmed by speed wobbles and sways violently back and forth. Lance is perched perilously atop his bucking bicycle as he clutches onto it for dear life – but before he can wiggle his feet free from his fancy bicyclist’s grippy shoes, he has crashed dramatically into a bush that had apparently appeared from nowhere in front of him.
His cohorts – who had previously been left for dust – are now somehow suddenly have no room left to stop, resulting in a sizeable pile of limbs and bicycle parts. A lone wheel breaks free from the heap and races to freedom down the hill.
By now there is smoke billowing from your heels because somehow:
[extreme speed + science = smoke cloud].
That’s a real formula. Look it up.
You don’t even look back.
That’s how I imagined that it happened…
And just in case anyone wants to check out the runner who may or may not overtake Lance Armstrong…
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