How come you can inflict all kinds of pain on yourself in a bike race and you’re such a baby at the dentist? It’s weird, right? I’ve cramped so hard at Tahoe 100 that I fell over and couldn’t get up by myself. Still finished the race. But I get in that dentist chair and look out…
I wear black t-shirts to the dentist to hide my sweaty pits.
My brow beads and drips.
A death grip on the handles.
Sure I had some youthful trauma, back in the days of hammer and saw dentistry. But that was a long time ago, and my current dentist Paul is a college bud, nicest guy ever… he floats me a valium to take the edge off, we joke a lot, ask about each other’s kids, then I lay back… prepared to birth an alien.
I pay him for this, like I did this afternoon.
The day started off with Swami’s Wednesday beat down, which is free. 60 top athletes riding blistering through Camp Pendleton, the lungs burn and the throat is raspy, the group is whittled down to 30 after 30 minutes to cover 15 miles. Do the math.
I control the pain on the bike, and the hurt is exquisite with an after glow and egg burrito at Ellie’s.
Paul controls the potential pain, and the potential hurt is just as real…
…with a mellow drifting into In-n-Out for a chocolate shake.