I rode to meet Linda and the Kids in Central Park yesterday (I tried to fix this computer and failed, while they went and played [$$$], but I missed them terribly by evening). It took me 19 minutes to ride from my house in Sunnyside to Heckscher playground Central Park. On the way back, at night (I’m losing my daring) it took me 30 minutes from 81st and Broadway (Uncle Louie G’s) to home. Bikes are fast. Holla at me. Here Kiko meets Mike, which is how things start to happen in a linear way again. I want to speed up the pace. And of course, if you want to start from the beginning, go here.
So it was a relief to see the thin man with his thin bike snaking between the pillars before him. The unrealistic triangled mule and campesino that advertised Columbian Coffee on his back was the perfect point to focus on as he snaked through the plaza. Kiko found that by watching a fixed point in front of him, on a cab or a truck or whatever, he could allow his peripheral vision to take care of the cars, potholes, pedestrians and other unpredictable elements. By keeping his focus ahead he allowed his subconscious in league with his reflexes to navigate the details he was riding over. If he were looking for Heineken bottles, steel plates, manhole covers, rats, pets, broken glass, and litter he would not be able to ride as fast and efficiently as he does. It is by losing himself in the act that he makes the time he does.
He first discovered this empty mind theory when he delivered lunches and thought only of the address and the route. Eventually he knew his delivery neighborhood so well that the routes took care of themselves, and he was free to just focus on where he was going: “69 Murray Street, across our street, up Church, across Murray, lock at sign on corner” became, simply, “69 Murray.” So when he came across the man whom he had figured out by now was a bike racer it really didn’t dawn on him until, again climbing the bridge, he passed Mike.