Friday, January 20, 2012

I Got Recognized!

So since it was so beautiful yesterday, I made sure to ride my bike today - and got recognized by a fellow train rider. I was just trying to be anonymous behind my monstrous beard and clear sunglasses on the train when a lovely young woman boarded, pushing a very nice red and white mixte bike with BFR spoke cards. She and I chatted a little bit about bikes, local parties we might attend, and internal hubs as the train hurtled down the tracks. After we talked gadgets for a few minutes, she demurely brought up this very corner of the web, and asked "Are you a blogger - I think I've read your blog. ". I waved my hand modestly and said "yes". I could tell she was trying to decide what she wanted me to autograph, and I was about to make the offer of my signature (as much as I try to avoid it) when we arrived at my station. I quickly exited to spare us both the awkward interaction I knew was pending. It was nice to meet a fan, but I wish that everyone understood that I need my privacy, despite my public persona.

Once I exited the train and headed for the trail, I spotted this guy.

Those things clamped to his arms are fleece earmuffs - and he was indeed selling them, for $5.00 a pair. He rides the rails, peddling these earmuffs in order to help him afford his $35 a night room; he is helping to support another recently homeless friend of his who has recently renal failure. If you aren't in Texas today, you might not know that we have had one of the warmer Januaries I can remember, and our friend the earmuff salesman was lamenting the temperature. "I have to buy inventory, and then a ticket, so I have to sell at least one a day to break even." I admire his go getter attitude. were I homeless as well, I would probably find something similar to raise money. I commiserated with him about the problems that small businesses face, wished him luck, and then called the police about him selling earmuffs without a permit as I rode away.