I almost forgot to say a big Thank You to my riding buddy Mike from the Ride for the Roses. As we were going along in the early miles of the ride, we were all talking about cycling and I mentioned that, as a newbie, I didn't really know what was a pace line.
For those other newbies out there, a pace line where a group of riders line up back-tire to front-tire, in an attempt to reduce the wind resistance. Well, for everyone but the front rider that is. But the idea is that the front rider peels off every so often and moves to the back and the cycle of cycling continues.
Mike then had us form an impromptu pace line and we began to practice. This was early in the ride so we were still filled with enthusiasm and good will. But I digress…
While we were practicing, Mike points out that I am “bouncing” too much and should shift to a higher gear. I was bouncing because I was pedaling hard to keep up with the dynamic duo in front of me, so I calmly and rationally mentioned to Mike that I couldn’t shift any higher – I was at top gear.
Mike looked down at my bike and asked what that third chainring was for if I was really in top gear. Well, he had a point. My bike does indeed have three chainrings up front, but if you look at the shifter it has an H and a L (that is two for the counting-challenged). The back sprocket shifter was at it's maximum of 6 and the front shifter was at H.
We then got into a polite philosophical argument about shifters, chainrings and people who ride bicycles. The end of the argument was reached, when, in an attempt to bolster my case, I jammed the shifter up past H and promptly shifted to the last chainring.
Look ma, six more gears!