Sunday, November 19, 2017

Family Values in Utah

Towards the end of a mountain bike ride, when I am feeling my best, I saw this family enjoying a ride together in Utah. I don't think a vision of a family ever seemed more appealing.


The boy was even wilder and more spirited than the border collie. His parents were wise to let him go first so he wouldn't always be struggling to keep up with them, and becoming discouraged. The bike was too large for him, but no doubt he was looking forward to growing into it -- and as soon as possible!

Friday, November 17, 2017

Appreciating Stylishness

There are even mountain bikers who ride with a certain stylishness, although they are not as stylish as horsemen. There is no need to watch a video of myself on a bike -- it can simply be assumed that I ride with no stylishness whatsoever.

This topic interests me perhaps because an appreciation of stylishness has developed so late in life. It snuck up on me.  Blame the horse opera DVDs I watch at night as a sleeping pill. They make everybody and every horse look so glamorous.

A female rider always has long hair streaming behind her, blowing in the wind.  Male riders are prone to high jumping onto the horse, without bothering with the stirrups. Or they ride with their upper body canted at a slight angle, to make them look more jaunty and confident.

The limiting case of this is Gary Clarke ("Steve"), one of the stars of the first couple years of "The Virginian." He would jump up vertically from the ground, and somehow insert his boot into the stirrup on the way up. I would like to see a blooper reel of the times he missed. 

The saddles and horse blankets of the horses are always gorgeous. And sometimes it seems as though the mane and tail of the horse were actually wigs.

But there are other examples of unbearably delightful stylishness. The actresses wore spectacular "Victorian" costumes on "The Virginian." One guest star on the same show had the sort of figure that most male sexist pigs couldn't take their eyes off of. But an above-average pig might have noticed her unusual voice, or rather, vocal delivery.

Perhaps the explanation for this appreciation is that repeated watching of a show or movie causes the viewer to ignore the story, dialogue, or suspense. This results in a type of vacuum, which the viewer then fills with their imagination. And it moves onto other things.