SMC closes their pool down at the end of every year for maintenance, so I’ve had to find other places to swim until January. The best option has been the Van Nuys Sherman Oaks pool, not too far from work. Granted, the showers are just above lukewarm, and the pool’s always short course when I’m there, but it does the trick.
This morning, as I was getting dressed, there was a minor commotion at the locker room door. The source was a small man on a yellow beach cruiser, wearing a yellow jersey, yellow shorts, yellow socks, yellow gloves and a yellow baseball cap. His shoes and Coke-bottle glasses were black, and his voice was tuned to somewhere between Aggrieved At The World and Annoying As Hell. “I’ll bring my bike where I want,” he said. “I don’t care what she says, let’s see her come in the men’s locker room and try to stop me. She’s just abusing her minute authority.” He leaned his bike against the wall, took off his cap, ran his hair through salt and pepper hair. He looked like a cheesed-off bumblebee.
Now. I bike, and I think everything who can ride, should. But I also have come around on the whole cyclists-as-privileged-and-enlightened-members-of-society thing. Riding a bike means responsibilities, and one of them is Taking Care Of Your Own Shit. Bumblebee Man didn’t have a lock, and he also sounded like he couldn’t be bothered to get one (even though I know there are models with yellow casings). Both the woman at the front desk and the lifeguard they called in to tell Bumblebee Man that he couldn’t leave his bike there were following city policy (ie the City of Los Angeles doesn’t want to be responsible for your shit), and he was peeved that someone was calling him on it. Eventually, the lifeguard made him sign a waiver, and Bumblebee Man went about changing for his swim.
His trunks, of course, were yellow.