Nerts…Gnats!

Every once in a while strange things happen.

My ride two nights ago was full of odd things; two trains, a chicken attack, and gnats by the millions!  One can’t ride anywhere in rural Indiana without crossing railroad tracks, but in the last three years I’ve never been stopped.  IMG_5044Friday night was a first… and a second; TWO trains!  No big deal really until my RiderID app (loudly) informed me that I had been immobile for 5 minutes.  I wonder what the people in the cars thought as I jumped and quickly removed my earbuds to escape the alarm.

I’ve read a lot about dog spray, and as recently as Tuesday I was riding with a buddy who carries it on his handlebars, but I’ve never needed to carry it for myself.  Oh yeah, I’ve had dogs come out after me, and got close to a shit-zhu once, but never have I been chased by a chicken!  Well, until Friday!  I don’t know what breed of chicken it was, but It’s vicious, with a sharp beak and an angry attitude!  Beware this bird my friends, and join me in developing and marketing Chicken spray to the cycling crowd.

Ok, now for the Gnats…

Hundreds… no, thousands… make that MILLIONS of gnats populated the air between miles 5 and 15 of the ride.  I was peppered the entire time, so much so that when I met up with my family after the ride my daughter Grace laughed and said, “Dad!  You’ve got gnats in your teeth!”  I know what you’re thinking… “Floss daily!”

Some interesting things I learned about Gnats…

  • I guess a fourth thing I learned about gnats is that they don't take very good pictures... trust me, they are there!

    I guess a fourth thing I learned about gnats is that they don’t take very good pictures… trust me, they are there!

    Gnats glow when flying in the setting sun.  Get a few hundred thousand of them together and the air literally sparkles.  This is REALLY cool when riding because they fly AT you appearing to be shooting stars.  (Honestly, it was really cool!)

  • Gnats do NOT taste like chicken, but according to all the survival gurus bugs are “a great source of protein.”  If that’s true then I’m sure I swallowed 3-4 grams of Protein.  Not my favorite in-ride snack.  Now I know why Clif bars don’t come in gnat flavors.
  • Gnats that fly up your nose induce nasal drip.  I’ll let you think this one through.  Trust me, it’s messy…very messy.

Ok, so the things I learned aren’t exactly scientific, but go ahead, test it for yourself.  All you need to do is ride through rural Indiana in the evening hours.  Oh yeah, and don’t forget to …

Enjoy the Ride.

(Thanks for reading my friends.  I appreciate you!  Please, share your favorite “bug encounter” story!)

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