November 18, 2006

The Beauty And The Bilk. Did I Say Bilk? I Meant Bike.

I went for a wonderful mountain bike ride this morning.

I pedaled my way up a long, incessantly uphill climb on a local fireroad until I reached the very peak of the Santa Monica Mountains. As I stood at the top, I glanced to my right and gazed down at the great expanse of the San Gabriel Valley, houses and stores crammed like jailed sardines, shoulder to shoulder under a blanket of smog, bridled up against the looming mountains in the distance that stood like watchtowers over the valley's prisoners.

I looked to my left and my eyes followed the maze of Los Angeles, spires of the city bursting up like the begging hands of the hungry, dramatically emerging from the flat expanse of a perpetual sea of houses falling over the horizon. All of this came to an abrupt end at the edge of the Pacific. Oh how I wish I could reach out and lift this massive blanket of water and throw it down upon the city; to clean the world of the dirt and grime and filth and crime and hate that befalls upon us.

I took a left hand turn and started a rapid, jarring descent down the single track, hugging the edge of the mountain as I bounced and slipped towards the base. It is a long and fast trail marked by loose rock, hairpin turns and hidden drop-offs. There is a level of trust that is required in this type of mountain biking. Trust in yourself and in a higher power. You must trust that whatever awaits you around the next turn will not rip your head off your shoulders, or send you sailing and flailing over the handlebars like Wile E. Coyote's Acme Catapult Contraption.

And when I finished my ride, I came back here and wrote a long, heartfelt diatribe about trusting in the world and believing in ourselves and how just a modicum of trust can create an abundance of happiness.

But then I read all that I had written and realized it came across as a load of crap. So I erased it and decided instead to type out this pretentious, grotesque piece of literary piffle just so that I can say for once in my life that I correctly used the word piffle in a sentence.