May 16th, 2008

Calculating

Last night I faced a difficult decision. It was midnight. Should I go for bike ride, knowing that I would breathe more deeply and clearly afterwards, but also that I probably wouldn't settle into sleep until 1:30am or so, given the time it takes for my post-exercise energy burst to wane? Or should I head straight to bed, with the realization that my allergies would be worse this morning than if I had ridden? Are seven hours of somewhat fitful sleep better than five-and-a-half hours of slightly deeper sleep? In the end, I opted to go straight to bed. But I'm sure I'll be standing at a similar existential crossroads over the next week or two, until my allergies finally decline in force.

Every Day Provides a New Allegory

Someone unexpectedly opened a car door into my left shin while I was riding through the parking lot at the "Bagel Place" -- the Starbucks/Einstein Brothers at Oracle and Ina -- this morning. It has swollen to double its normal size, though I don't think anything major is wrong with it. I was in shock for a while, then started to feel the pain mount. But what really has me frazzled is the aftermath of the incident, in the course of which I somehow managed to end up feeling A) guilty for having this minor accident at this particularly stressful juncture; B) foolhardy for not stopping when the car slowed down in front of me; C) embarrassed for providing an example to the father of two young children at Starbucks, who said, "See, that's what happens when you don't watch where you're going. Just look at that man's bruise;" and D) stupid for not manifesting the extent of my injuries fast enough to mobilize myself or other patrons to take down the license plate of the white Mazda Miata convertible, driven by someone I later, in a burst of compensatory irony at the Wild Oats check-out, described as "a sorority girl from Pima Community College." In other words, the pain in my leg is nothing compared to the pain in my head.