Friday, July 06, 2007

Get Used To It, Already

Hot out, isn't it? It's been up over 110 degrees here in Phoenix for the last couple of weeks.

I frequently hear people complaining about the heat (or the cold, or the rain....), and I have to admit that I complain about the weather on occasion as well.

But I know something they don't: the weather doesn't really get to me so much any more. I still get uncomfortable in high heat, but if there's even a slight breeze it doesn't phase me too much. Similarly, in the cold I just dress warmer and try to get on with what I'm doing.

Because I'm outside riding for a good hour and a half (at least) every day, the heat or cold just feels like fresh air to me. I mean, I still feel it, but it just doesn't bother me as much as it did in my pre-moto-commuting days. I'm used to the real weather.

Meanwhile, the unfortunates who run from climate-controlled building to climate-controlled automobile (barely hanging on to their coffee-like beverage all the while) are not used to changes in temperature. When a person spends all his/her time surrounded by conditioned 75 degree air, any change is going to be mighty uncomfortable.

Cages are addictive. Originally, we found or made shelter to protect us from nasty weather and dangerous critters. Then we started to spend more and more time feeling safe in our shelters instead of outside. We figured out ways to keep our brains occupied without having to leave the house. One gets used to "constant", and pretty soon one needs "constant."

Remember when we were kids and would play outside all year? Every now and then we'd go in for some Kool-Aid or hot chocolate, but otherwise we were out there and weather barely fazed us.

Slowly we got used to the concept of being inside all the time. Then we started to "need" the constant comfort of room temperature. We've gone soft!

Yesterday I passed another armor-clad biker on the sidewalk as I left work. I smiled and asked "Staying cool?"

"Always," he replied.

We all need to be reminded that there is no bad weather, only bad clothing (and bad attitudes). Find a friend who looks pasty and content in their cage and drag them outside to play for a few hours this weekend. If it's really hot, have a water fight. It's ok, you're never too old.

Life doesn't happen indoors. Get out and ride.


Combatscoot said...

I agree with you totally, though I am making a career of maintaining the Box People's air conditioning.

Michelle said...

No doubt. Here in Houston we get the heat along with humidity. So not only is it hot but you sweat like crazy too.

It is what it is, though. I find that the more I'm outside riding, doing yard work, or whatever the less it bothers me.

irondad said...

You've hit upon one of the maain differences between those of us who commute on two wheels and cagers.

We embrace our surroundings and literally open ourselves up to realling living as we were meant to. Like you said, box people insulate themselves.

Our lows can be lower and our highs higher but who's the richer for it?

irondad said...

In an interesting coincidence, right after I posted the last comment I came across a little article in a magazine.

It claims that people who remain in air conditioned surroundings are at a disadvantage for weight loss. Being outside and making our bodies adapt burns calories. The same can't be said for more controlled environments.

A little fat to chew on!