And yet I’m surprisingly good at triathalons…

I’m a pedestrian.

I walk about 4 miles a day (to and from work) and I can walk a good way and at a fair old speed without getting tired. I enjoy my walk to and from work and it’s just about the only exercise I get.

But it’s more than that. Walking just about the only form of transport I derive any pleasure from. Put it this way:

  • I have aerophobia (I take valium on long flights to keep me calm…)
  • I don’t like long train or car journeys much (but then who does?)
  • Not a fan of boats
  • Hovercrafts - can’t really say one way or the other…
  • I can’t drive (failed 3 times when I was 17)
  • I can’t ride a bike
  • I can’t swim
  • I can only jog for about 6 metres before collapsing in a wheezing heap

Wow. When I look at it like that it’s pretty impressive. I suck.

Swimming is something that most mammals can do to an extent - I seem to remember in that episode of Quantum Leap when Sam was a chimp it was said that they can’t swim due to the way they’re built. There’s also probably some random mammals too (surely bats can’t swim?) but I’ll stick my neck out and say that most mammals wouldn’t drown. Swimming has been something creatures have been doing ever since, well, whatever it was we first evolved from first pulled on its amoebic bathing suit and hit the primordial ooze.

On the other hand, there are only a handful of chimps, a few dogs, and perhaps a squirrel or 2, who can ride bikes. And yet people are usually more shocked by my lack of pedal power rather than my absence of swimming skills. But to me the bike is just a thing people can do. Handy, yes, but it’s not necessary. The fact that I can’t swim could perhaps put me in peril one day, but something very strange would have to be going on when my only chance of survival involved me peddling for my life.

I’m sure biking in good exercise, but then so is walking. And, for that matter, so is boxing, bull-fighting, and buggery, and I’m hardly about to become a pugilist, Spanish, or go into showbusiness.

Just to make sure I don’t do anyone a disservice, the blame for this is entirely my own. I did get swimming lessons at school but never seemed to get to the point of taking off the water-wings (which was pretty embarrassing when I was 17 and doing Higher PE…) My parental units tried to get me to ride bikes without stabilisers, and my siblings all learned, but I was never very interested in such things. There was probably something good on TV.

Anyway, maybe now is the time to learn. Perhaps you all want to sponsor me to cycle 5 miles, or swim 10 lengths? (I have no idea how hard 10 lengths would be…) I’ll use the money raised to train up other mammals to ride bikes… just imagine: The Bob and his Amazing Mammals - On Bikes! We’d be a hit on ITV9…

Right, this post has taken a wrong turn somewhere. I was actually going to complain about people who don’t respect pedestrians, ie drivers, cyclists, and joggers. Especially large groups of runners who take up the entire pavement and force the rest of us onto the road. I’ve often been almost trampled by such people on my way home from work. Students by the looks of them.  Young, healthy and, as they’ve probably only been out of bed for 2 hours, full of energy. Lazy/lucky gits that they are.

As I hurried onto the roadside this evening to avoid the stampede, I wondered what would happen if I continued to walk along the middle of the pavement. Unfortunately they all tend to be taller than me so no doubt I’d get flattened. And I bet they’d all be really nice and apologetic about it too. Damn them all.

Maybe I’ll start taking the subway again. Much safer…


2 Responses to “And yet I’m surprisingly good at triathalons…”

  1. Andrew Says:

    I’m sorry to inform you that your 5-year-old nephew is better at pretty much all these modes of transport than you are, except perhaps driving, and he tells us he’s prepared to give it a go (which is slightly alarming).

    He’s not as funny at blogging though.

  2. Penny Says:

    you can’t ride a bike????????????????????

Leave a Reply