Tuesday, January 6, 2009

How is a Man Like a Peach Tree?

I recently read about peach trees that they need a certain amount of cooling in order to be productive. That is, if they don't spend a minimum number of days below a certain temperature, then their fruiting is limited. I wonder whether there could be a hormonal or other chemical basis for a similar response in humans...
This morning, for example, I awoke to a dreary drizzly day, with temps in the 40's F. I experienced a brief struggle between the desire to ride in on my bike and to ride to the bus stop and enjoy reading a book on a nice warm dry ride. I was starting to express this to my wife and had got as far as saying that I was thinking of riding to the bus stop when she interrupted (innocently, I'm sure) to say what a great idea that was. I had, after all, mentioned more than one how drizzly and cold it was outside.
Then the oddest thing happened, at the top of my street, where I turn left for the bus stop and right to ride all the way in, the whole struggle came back to life and the desire to ride through the invigorating weather bubbled up inside, and before I knew any better, I was accelerating down Daugherty, to the right. I arrived at school slightly damp, but quite recharged. It's as if I need to be cold in the winter. If I don't get chilled down enough days, then the endless heat of summer becomes oppressive and unbearable.
Does that make any sense? Am I completely crazy? Is there possibly any physiological basis for this?

And just in case anyone's paying attention, I've put about 5700km on the Dynamic Crosstown 7 now. It's still doing well with no major problems. The shifter has lost a little precision, and I have a little trouble downshifting into 1st. I don't know whether the indexes in the shifter are wearing out a little or maybe the shifter cable is dirty. I just can't get it quite right with the adjuster barrel. At some point it will become irritating enough for me to take it all apart and clean it out, but for now it's not that big a deal.
Also, I think it's always done this, but the other day I noticed that the bottom bracket does deflect quite a bit to the left on a right-side down stroke. Not so with the left-side. Hmmm. No problems yet, but I wonder whether this will turn into a fatigue failure at some point.

1 comment:

calbaker said...

I can certainly relate to peach trees. I generally have at least one brush with hypothermia every winter - this year I've had 3. I think cold weather makes me feel clean... or at least not dirty like hot weather. Hypothermia causes me to think that other problems in my life aren't as scary. For instance, as painful as studying nonstop for PhD qualifying exams is, I don't have to worry that I might have to go to the E.R. from overexposure to these conditions.