To be honest, I'm somewhat surprised I made it through the period between when I was about 25 and 30. It was, while nobody was really aware of it, very depressing and I recognize now that, had it would continued, offing myself would have started to make a lot of sense. I mean, I wasn't suicidal, but I was on a downward spiral that pretty much only ends one way.
And I kept that hidden from pretty much everybody, including family and close friends, because nobody wants to hang around somebody who's always unhappy and moody and about to cry. And maybe I just figured that eventually I'd 'snap out of it' or that this was the normal state in which humans were to live their adult lives.
It wasn't through psychology or drugs that I was able to overcome this, it was through cycling and the indescribable inner peace that it gives me.
Now, as far as I'm concerned, the statistics generally show that I loose a few days of my expected life span by cycling instead of driving. On the other hand, I've increased my expected lifespan by months by getting considerable amounts of exercise. Also, the accident statistics show that a lot of cycling accidents are caused by silly things like riding at night drunk with no lights or running red lights or things like that.
So logically I know that I'm not actually taking a huge risk with my life. I've taken my precautions and ride safely. And I kinda feel that this lifespan of mine extending into my thirties is really bonus time anyway.
But I do have fears. Two of them, in fact.
First, I fear getting hit while on a bike but not getting justice. That scares the fuck out of me. There's a bunch of cases. Like the one in Vail, CO where the prosecutor declined to charge the man with an appropriate charge because a felony would hurt his ability to continue to work that happened quite recently. Or the one in San Francisco where a cyclist was hit by a driver who fled and gave the police a picture of the driver's license plate but where the police declined to bother doing anything about it. Or my friend who got all banged up while riding a bike but was then denied disability coverage because she hadn't lived in the state long enough.
And second, I fear getting hit and having people decide that this means that cycling is unsafe. See, life's kinda like that. Some people have a massive heart attack in their forties or a car accident in their thirties while most folks make it at least till their 60s. And just because one person dies young for one reason or another doesn't mean that we're all similarly doomed.
I'm already feeling really punchy today about a bunch of unrelated stuff, but in the aftermath of the recent fatality on the 280 overpass, I saw an article in the local paper that pissed me off.
Some guy seems to have unresolved issues over his daughter's death. She was an experienced cyclist and was wearing a helmet when a car drifted over into the bike lane and hit her. And then this asshole has the gall to talk about banning cyclists from roads that aren't specially designed with bike lanes and forcing cyclists to wear helmets and be licensed and even complains that cyclists FORCED him to go over into the other lane of traffic around a blind intersection.
Let me make this very clear: If it turns out that there is an afterlife and ghosts and I catch any of my friends, family, or acquaintances writing or saying such bullshit, I will haunt your ass until you die.