Tomorrow, bright and early in the morning, I am setting off to participate in the annual Wheels of Love Ride to benefit Alyn Hospital. This is my fifth time participating and every year, the response is the same. I tell people about my participation in the Ride and they inevitably have the same reaction. “Oh, maybe there will be someone nice for you to meet there”. Now, on the surface, this is not an unreasonable thing to say. After all, a five day sporting event is precisely where one would expect to find men—and more specifically men who have enough extra time on their hands to be able to train for a five day sporting event. In fact, it is an eminently logical thing to say. But then one comes up against my unique brand of luck and savviness, and all logic vanishes in the mist. In a nutshell, it would appear that I have managed to find the one five day sporting event on the planet that is a veritable magnet for married religious people and has no attraction, whatsoever, for single guys.
So, is there anyone nice for me to meet? No. In case you were wondering.
When I mentioned this to Practical Yael, she disagreed.
Practical Yael: What are you talking about? There are singles on the ride.
Me: Yes, but they are, like, 12.
Practical Yael: Nooooo, c'mon, the minimum age for participation is 14.
Me: Oh, so there you go, they are 14. They don’t count.
Practial Yael: Well, okay, maybe not.
Despite the demographics, and despite the fact that I know in advance what the demographics will be, hope is a dumb beast and keeps springing eternal. While our daytime wardrobe does not leave much room for creativity (biking shorts plus Alyn biking shirt), the evenings are when we all get to sit around, drink, be merry and socialize. And every single year, anticipating this, I go out and buy some new item of clothing or two because, hey, maybe this year (1) there will be someone nice for me to meet and (2) this item of clothing will be so flattering that he will have no choice but to fall madly in love with me. This year I stopped myself. I have lots of clothes. Piles of clothes! I do not, by any stretch of anyone's imagination, need any more clothes. And anyway, there is no one to meet. And even if there were, it is safe to assume that yet another stretch cotton top or a brightly colored dress is not going to tip any scales in my favor. Stop the madness Gila! No shopping!
(Though I did allow myself a new windbreaker. The one I have now I have had since 1995 or earlier, and it is just as ugly now as it was then. And no one is going to fall for me because of a windbreaker. Even though this one really is significantly nicer than the one I am replacing.)
Of course, all my fine declarations notwithstanding, I still spent a good 40 minutes this morning trying on every damn shirt I have trying to decide which ones are most flattering. And I packed one of the new items of clothes that I bought for last year's ride.
Sigh….. I just have no sense.