Friday, February 27, 2009


Last week the weather was horrible, but I am kind of “training” for an upcoming event that is not entirely unlike what some people might call a “race.” These people, we’ll call them “racers,” call this event a race because they will actually be racing. However, I am what people call a “participant.” This is a nice way of saying “pack fodder” or “fat guy.”

Luckily, Arnold Schwarzenegger heard of my lack of fitness and declared, by executive order, that I shall have two extra days off per month to be used for training. Nice. Thanks, Arnie!

So Tuesday, my executively ordered training day, I rolled out of the house early to get some miles in. It was 37 degrees, and it’s not difficult to hit 40 miles per hour in a few places on the four-mile descent leading away from my house. I don’t know the equation for determining wind chill, but it was cold. Damn cold. I always have to tell myself, “It only gets warmer from here on out.”

After a couple hours I headed for home. The same four miles where I froze going down were now the last obstacle between myself and a hot shower. As I climbed I glanced down to see a small makeup bag in the road. It was dirty and smashed flat. I briefly thought about picking it up, but at that point I just wanted to get home.

On Wednesday, my regular day off, I went out for a similar ride. It was a little warmer and much more enjoyable. Going up the last climb I again saw the makeup bag, but this time I picked it up. It was too light to possibly contain anything. I tried the zipper, but it was pretty much welded shut from repeatedly being run over by cars. I looked around and found a sharp stone, which I used to cut the bag open. Inside was a dirty $20 bill. Hello, Mister Hamilton!

On Thursday, Lincoln’s birthday, I again prepared for a ride. The skies were dark and ominous, but the radar showed no precipitation on the way, so I took off. Within 10 minutes it was raining on me, and it continued off and on for the entire two hours I was out.

About halfway through the ride I saw something in the road ahead of me. As I rode closer it looked to be money. As I pulled to a stop, there was a soaking wet dollar bill plastered to the pavement. Hello, Mister Washington!

So even though the state took 9.2% of my pay, I still cleared a cool $21 for the week working a side job. Is it taxable income? Not sure. Just to be safe, don’t tell Arnie. He’s going to want some of it.