Dear J—

I always forget the importance of tire inflation. One day I’ll notice that I’m really dragging along on the flats and I’ll fill up my tires that afternoon – in a let’s-not-be-lazy fashion. Given that my pump has a pressure gauge I can tell how long I’ve let it settle. Yesterday I inflated the tires, which had gotten down to around 15 psig, up to 60-65 psig instead. This morning as I’m riding it feels a little like having hard blocks underneath me but was running much faster than before, and with less effort too. You can sort of tell when you see that criss-cross pattern on your sidewalls that there’s a lot of flexing going on, cutting through the dust.

It reminds me of the interminable presidential race, which in other ways reminds me of a huge game of chicken (no, you drop out), and not just because of the windy nature of the debates. The way politics has been lately it’s been a contest to see who can react first, and who can react the most, and lately it’s all been negative. Hey, let’s cut out all the Syrian refugees. Really? I have to think that this race to the bottom is fueled by negativity, and instead of inflating your tires, it’s letting the air out.


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